Santa Cruz Island

Mar 14, 2018 - National Geographic Islander


Today we spent – in civilization! Puerto Ayora is home for 20,000 Galapageans, is the largest town in the archipelago and is the home base for both the National Park and the Charles Darwin Research Station. We visited the Darwin Station and the tortoise breeding center that is run by the National Park. We saw the famous Lonesome George (embalmed!) who was the last pure Pinta Island tortoise and who died several years ago of old age without reproducing. We visited the highlands, explored a lava tunnel, and learned about coffee and sugar cane production. We had a bountiful lunch and spent an hour walking among wild tortoises, which- like all the rest of the wildlife here in Galapagos – ignored us and went about their slow, deliberate lives while we took photos of them from all angles and heights.

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About the Author

Lynn Fowler

Expedition Leader

Born in Baltimore, Maryland, and one of seven children, Lynn grew up in various university towns where her father was a professor of physics. Lynn obtained her B.A. in biology from Earlham College in Richmond, Indiana, followed by a master’s degree in zoology from the University of Florida, which encompassed a study of marine turtles in Costa Rica. She arrived in Galápagos in 1978 and became one of the first female naturalist guides working for the Galápagos National Park.

About the Photographer

Walter Perez

Naturalist/Certified Photo Instructor

Walter was born in a very small town on the mainland of Ecuador. His first trip to the Galápagos was when he was 12 years old, visiting friends and aunt, who had moved to the islands. From the first moment he saw the Islands, he fell in love with them and knew then where his future home would be.

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