Floreana Island

Sep 26, 2017 - National Geographic Islander

This morning we woke up at Floreana Island. Our activities started before breakfast at Punta Cormorant, and the rest of the day was spent visiting different sites of Floreana. This island is mostly dry and made up of hundreds of volcanic cones. It also has a small human settlement and some farming areas in the green highlands.

In the morning we landed at Punta Cormorant on the north side of Floreana. As soon as we landed we started to explore the Palo Santo forest. At Punta Cormorant there is a brackish lagoon surrounded by different types of mangrove trees. This lagoon is the right habitat for different types of creatures such as herons, shore birds, and flamingos. Sometimes we find some sea birds, such as pelicans.

At the end of our early outing we returned to the ship and we moved to Champion Islet. We explored this island from our Zodiacs for about an hour. During the Zodiac exploration we had sightings of different species of sea birds perching on rocky cliffs, flying close to the water, and some were fishing along the shore. Some of the bird species we saw were blue footed boobies, Nazca boobies, brown pelicans, tropicbirds, and the iconic Floreana mocking bird, among many others.    

This place is also one of the best snorkeling sites in the Galapagos. The numbers of tropical fish and the varieties you can discover within an hour is stunning!

After lunch we landed at the legendary Post Office Bay. Here we took part in activities such as kayaking and paddle boarding before heading to the legendary post office barrel. In the time of the whalers and seal hunters it became the most important method of communication on this side of the Pacific Ocean. The users of this system were English voyagers and it was very important to them as their journeys lasted for several years. This was the only way to tell their families what was happening here.  

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About the Author

Juan Carlos Avila

Naturalist/Certified Photo Instructor

Juan Carlos was born in Quito, Ecuador. He spent part of his elementary schooling in the province of Cotopaxi, a beautiful area in the Ecuadorian Andes ringed by volcanoes. In 1989 his family moved to the Galápagos and settled in the highlands of Santa Cruz, the second largest island in this archipelago. It was here that Juan Carlos finished high school and gained his deep love for nature.

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