Floreana Island

Jul 17, 2018 - National Geographic Islander

It’s early morning, another opportunity to explore this paradise. We have on our agenda an early disembarkation on Floreana Island. Floreana is one of the inhabited islands of the Galapagos. It has a rich human history, as this was the place visited by Charles Darwin in 1835 and the colonization of the islands begun here.

In the morning we landed at Punta Cormorant for a fast-paced exploration walk through the holly stick forest. These trees and most of the vegetation are already leafless at this time of the year, as the drought in the Galapagos has already begun. There is a brackish water pond in the middle of this forest and it is surrounded with mangroves and other coastal plants. This place is the right habitat for herons, migrant birds and flamingos.

In mid morning we set our course to Champion Islet for a Zodiac ride. This old volcano is like a magnet for marine life! During the Zodiac ride we had the opportunity to spot many types of sea birds such as: blue footed boobies, Nazca boobies, brown pelicans, tropicbirds. It was just amazing! To complement this ride, we had young sea lions playing close to the Zodiacs!

We also went snorkeling in these waters. The numbers of fish are stunning, as well as the varieties that make up this complex ecosystem.

In the afternoon we had several activities such as kayaking, a visit to the Post Office Barrel and a Zodiac ride. The legendary Post Office Bay of Floreana Island is very important as this barrel became the most important mechanism of communication on this side of the Pacific Ocean. The users of this system were mainly the English whale hunters. Later on we had an opportunity to go kayaking and Zodiac riding among sea lions!

What an amazing day we had!

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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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