Lindblad Expeditions - From the National Geographic Endeavour in Galapagos - Ruly A. Menoscal, naturalist

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From the National Geographic Endeavour in Galapagos

Jan 6, 2013 - National Geographic Endeavour

Galapagos Sea Lion
Nazca booby

Gardner Bay & Punta Suarez

The National Geographic Endeavour dropped anchor early in the morning, this time our location is south east in Galapagos archipelago. Is the island of Espanola, one the oldest in this remote area.

The temperature is 70 degrees and the visibility much better now. Early in the morning was cloudy, at this time of the year it tends to clear later, and now the conditions are nice and promising.

We are ready to disembark after all guests receive the snorkeling gear, today the aquatic activities are the highlight. The explorers onboard promptly line up to disembark in Gardner Bay, one the most enchanting beaches of the archipelago, a large number of options keep the enthusiasm high and the atmosphere cannot be better.

There are a great number of snorkelers enjoying the company of sea lions, sharks, and tropical fish. In another section of the visitor site are the kayakers and deep water snorkelers; photographers walk the sandy beach wondering what could be better than this for their photographs.

After the entire morning in this paradisiacal place with an endless number of attractions and unique features, we are heading back to the ship with delicious lunch waiting for us.

After short siesta and good photography lecture we all feel like walking. Knowing the natural potential of this next visitor site, it’s hard to wait to disembark.

Natural history groups are organizing to disembark first, and following this the photography groups will be ready to catch up on the path of Punta Suarez.

The conditions are fantastic; the entire island is lit up with a vivid light of the Galapagos sun. We begin the walk along the first three beaches, and the wildlife is spread all over creating a great natural view. Sea lions are laying on the beach accompanied by mockingbirds and marine iguanas. The vegetation seems dry; it has not yet gotten the first rain to turn green.

We keep up along the trail looking forward to encountering more of the birds likely to be seen here. Soon the baby chicks and blue footed boobies are found, and not far from them the Nazca boobies and swallow tailed gulls. The positive reaction of our explorers to the natural scenery surrounding them is obvious in each of their corporal expressions. As we walk far in to the island the great encounters with nature do not stop. We find our first albatross and then the Galapagos hawk and more marine iguanas along the path.

When we are about to end the walk on the island of Espanola we make time to stop by the sea lion nursery area to close the visit with a great positive idea that has exceeded our expectations.