Daily Expedition Reports

Browse photos & daily reports sent from the field every day




Lastest Expedition Reports

  • Santa Cruz Island

    The island is the second largest of the Galapagos Archipelago, with a surface of almost 1000 sq. km, and a population estimated in 20.000 people.

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  • Floreana Island

    Floreana is the most historical island in Galapagos because the colonization started here, and also it is the place well known for the occurrence of mysterious and tragedies of several events among its early inhabitants, just to mention one is that of a woman from Germany that came to live here with three lovers, which came with her from Europe, one day she and one lover disappeared without trace, others follow the same path of tragedy. Ecuador annexed and claimed the Islands in 1832, three years before Darwin arrived to Galapagos.

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  • At Sea, Drake Passage

    Well….It’s the beginning of the journey home, with all the mixed emotions which that brings.  We are looking forward to seeing friends and family again but leaving our new found feathery and blubbery Antarctic friends behind. 

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  • Casa Orquidea Botanical Gardens and Golfito

    Today, our last day in Costa Rican waters, we are ready to explore some more amazing sites in the Golfo Dulce, the southernmost gulf of the country.  Loaded with rich greenery and deep dark green waters, the Gulf has quite the distinct feature of being very deep.  At its mouth around 60 meters deep, but in some areas inside the Gulf are even 250 meters deep.  This morning we concentrated on the eastern side of this body of water and visited two interesting places. 

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  • The Cape Region, Baja California

    Our floating home the National Geographic Sea Bird woke up this morning to a very special sight: the beautiful pastel colors on the Eastern sky casted a gorgeous light over Los Frailes (The Friars), a rocky point that marks the southern boundary of the Cabo Pulmo National Park. The story of Cabo Pulmo is truly a remarkable one. The small commercial fishing community which resided there decided to stop fishing and asked the Mexican government to declare it part of the Mexican network of Natural Protected Areas. The fishermen succeeded and in 1995, the Cabo Pulmo Marine Reserve was created, later renamed in 2000 to Cabo Pulmo National Park. They had a hard time surviving without fishing for a few years, but quickly the park began to show encouraging signs of recovery. More than 20 years later, scientists have documented an astonishing recovery of fish and invertebrate population of more than 400%, the biggest rebound of biomass of any marine reserve on the planet! As we moved away from Cabo Pulmo we enjoyed watching the famous green flash as the first rays of the sun showed above the horizon. What a treat!

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  • Port Lockroy, Neumayer Channel, Antarctica

    The start to today could scarcely have been better. The National Geographic Orion was entering the Neumayer Channel, in wonderful clear weather and calm seas, surrounded by feeding humpback whales.

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  • Floreana and Champion Islets

    Today we visited Floreana Island in the southern region of the Galapagos archipelago. We started our day with an early morning walk on Punta Cormorant. This was an amazing visit, as we were able to see Galapagos penguins swimming at the sea, and Galapagos flamingos feeding on the brackish lagoon of Floreana. Nowhere else in the world we can have this experience: penguins and flamingos in the same place! After such an exciting pre-breakfast walk, we came back onboard for breakfast.

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  • Drake Passage

    This morning we were surrounded by ocean out to every horizon, meeting the sky all around.  We were in the Drake Passage where the South Pacific and South Atlantic oceans meet between the Antarctic Peninsula and Cape Horn at the southern tip of South America. The seas here can travel around the world without striking land, circling the globe, over and over and over again. We were south of the Antarctic Convergence, hence the temperature of the water was still in the mid-30s (°F).

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  • Playa Blanca, Osa Peninsula, Golfo Dulce

    Last night we left the swaying waters of the Pacific Ocean side of the Osa Peninsula to enter the calm dark waters of the Golfo Dulce. Still on the Osa Peninsula, this morning we landed onto the very long and grey Playa Blanca (the white beach) which is part of a small community called La Palma.  We changed gears a little bit today and our focus moved from the dense tropical rain forests to small community or family projects.  All of us had the opportunity to visit two of three sites, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. 

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  • Los Islotes & Bahia Bonanza

    Today was another busy and amazing day here in Baja California! As the sun rose with pink clouds scattered in the skies, we approached Los Islotes, a couple of small islets near Isla Partida. After a hearty breakfast, we jumped into our expedition landing craft to get close to the islands for a snorkel adventure. This area is known as a California sea lion haul-out, where snorkelers can have exciting up-close-and-personal sea lion interactions. Guests floated around, thrilled to see a variety of colorful king angelfish, Panamic sergeant majors, yellowtail surgeonfish, bicolor parrotfish, and crazy, iridescent Cortez damselfish. Curious sea lions approached to swim around the group and nibble on people's flippers. The morning ended with an expedition landing craft cruise around the islands to see blue-footed boobies sporting their blue feet in mating dances, frigatebirds and turkey vultures soaring on the thermals, and sea lions hauled-out on the rocks.

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Please note: Daily Expedition Reports (DER’s) are posted Monday-Friday only, during normal business hours.

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