From the National Geographic Endeavour in the Galapagos
Jan 23, 2013 - National Geographic Endeavour
Cerro Dragon and Daphne Island
The Galapagos Islands are a sanctuary of wildlife, and today we enjoyed more of the wonders that this paradise could hold as visited the northern side of Santa Cruz Island. Cerro Dragon was the best way to begin our exploration, and after a comfortable dry landing we were ready to get into nature in order to find the dragons of the Galapagos: land iguanas. Since the very beginning nature showed us its marvels as big male marine iguanas were found over the rocks. Once we reached the sandy area, ghost crabs decorated the beautiful white sand beach making a perfect contrast for a colorful view.
Farther into the trail, a brackish water lagoon was the perfect bird paradise as black neck stilts and three greater flamingos were feeding on crustaceans. As soon as we came into the incense tree forest, we were surrounded by a magic combination of dry forest vegetation. Once in the heart of Cerro Dragon, it was time to look for the main attraction of the morning: Galapagos land iguanas. The first individual was found inside the vegetation looking for a place to take shelter. As soon as we gave some space to the iguana, it came to us and moved around as disappeared inside the vegetation.
Once at the summit of Cerro Dragon, an awe-inspiring image of the islands was displayed on a marvelous landscape that we enjoyed for a few minutes before coming back on board National Geographic Endeavour. The next adventure of the day was going to be one of the most spectacular activities of the day: deep water snorkeling. The magnificence of the Galapagos marine reserve was displayed as we came into the water. A fantastic symphony of colors was found all over the rocks, and enormous amounts of fish were surrounding us all the time. One of the big surprises of the morning was the presence of Pacific green sea turtles while enjoying the company of playful Galapagos sea lions.
In the afternoon the exploration continued for navigation around Daphne Island. The biggest surprise of the day was displayed by the presence of bottle nose dolphins that started swimming next to us while circumnavigating Daphne. At the end of this fantastic journey, the horizon was decorated by a magic sunset time. This was like no other day in the magic paradise of the Galapagos.