Santa Cruz Island

Apr 05, 2018 - National Geographic Endeavour II

Today the National Geographic Endeavour ll anchored in Academy Bay, situated at the south of Santa Cruz island, the most populated island because of its geographical position and easy communication with the other islands.

After breakfast at 8 o’clock, we disembarked in the dock of Puerto Ayora, the main village of the island, and walked few blocks in order to take the bus and go to the Charles Darwin Research Station and tortoises breeding center. In that place, our guests learned about all the efforts of these institutions to restore and preserve the Galapagos Islands.

On our way back, we had the opportunity to explore a bit of the town and the local culture. One of the highlights of our walk around town was the fishermen’s pier at the waterfront; where one can see sea lions and brown pelicans waiting for scraps.

After our morning visit, we moved to the highlands of Santa Cruz to a small farm where we learned how they roast Galapagos coffee beans, and process sugar cane juice into sugar and alcohol, as well as processing/roasting. After lunch, we headed to a private ranch called El Chato. We had an incredible experience with wild giant tortoises, and explored the lava tubes, which are geological structures that serve as evidence that we are visiting a volcanic island. This is one of the most scenic lava tubes on Santa Cruz due to its size as well as the double decker structure inside.

Later we returned aboard and had a time with some local artisans of the community, as well as a scientist from the Charles Darwin Foundation, who came to explain about their projects in Galapagos.

We had an incredible day full of endemic wildlife as well as a taste of the local people and their daily lives.

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Saul Araujo

Saul Araujo

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