Santa Cruz Island

May 17, 2018 - National Geographic Endeavour II


Santa Cruz is the second largest island in the archipelago, and by far the more inhabited. We spent the entire day ashore, beginning with a visit to the Charles Darwin Research Station to learn about the giant tortoise breeding program, which has had some tremendous successes in the past few decades. The efforts to protect and re-populate the islands with giant tortoises continues to be one of the most significant and successful ecological restorations on our planet.

After a lunch at the tropical “Aquelarre” restaurant, everyone bussed to a giant tortoise preserve, where wild tortoises are able to roam freely while remaining quite assessable to visitors. A number of small groups spread out and found many tortoises feeding and ambling along at a ridiculously slow pace.

The Galapagos are most famous for the giant tortoises, and the opportunity to see them close enough to hear them tearing the leaves off small shrubs is the kind of moment that Lindblad guests have come to treasure.

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About the Author

Doug Gould

Naturalist

Travel and adventure were an integral part of Doug’s upbringing in a small town on the south shore of Long Island, New York. Growing up on the Great South Bay, his family claims Doug learned to sail before he learned to walk. Whether it was camping, sailing, birding, traveling across country or spending most of fifth grade living in Europe, Doug’s formative years left him with a love of wildlife, the outdoors, and a desire to keep moving. 

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