Santa Cruz Island

Apr 19, 2018 - National Geographic Endeavour II


Today we encountered civilization for the first time in many days.  It is great to learn about the conservation efforts in place to preserve this unique archipelago, and the best example is my home island, Santa Cruz. We visited the giant tortoise breeding center in the morning. Our guests enjoyed seeing the baby giant tortoises from different islands. Afterwards there was time to wander around the cozy town of Puerto Ayora. We boarded buses at the meeting point and headed towards the highlands. An amazing visit to a local farm was included, where we observed the cultivation and processing of brown sugar, coffee and sugar cane alcohol. The afternoon was spent at a giant tortoise natural reserve. It is amazing to walk among the emblematic animals of the archipelago, which gave the name to the islands—Galapagos means tortoise.
There is magic in every single visit, Galapagos is an unforgettable experience!

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About the Author

Wilfrido Castaneda

Wilfrido Castaneda

About the Photographer

Gianna Haro

Naturalist

Most of Gianna´s memories seem to be dreams, made on flawless white sandy beaches with black lava rock contours and gorgeous turquoise ocean waters. Most of it happened while barefoot, in an enchanting place that some people regard as an ideal natural laboratory, the Galápagos Islands. For her it was home. Gianna grew up going to the beach nearly every day, snorkeling in crystal clear waters, playing with wild flowers, having sea lions steal her ice cream, observing marine iguanas, and identifying invertebrates. The latter was by no means technically accurate—she dubbed each new discovery with its own made-up scientific name. At some point during those early years, being an observer became an innate ability and she knew she wanted to be a biologist. 

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