Espanola Island

Jul 29, 2018 - National Geographic Endeavour II

This is our first full day in the Galapagos Islands, and today we are going back in time, visiting the oldest island in the archipelago. Espanola Island is estimated to be 3.5 million years old, and is a wonderful example of the natural laboratory for evolution that exists here. Because of its age, this island and the creatures that inhabit it have had more time to evolve, and you can see it in the colorful species of marine iguana, the endemic lava lizard, and the endemic mockingbird. We started the day exploring the ocean with our first deep water snorkeling excursion, and then continued our adventure on land, visiting a beautiful white sand beach at Gardner Bay, where a sea lion colony lives. In the afternoon, we visited Punta Suarez for an amazing hike among nesting and flying albatross. Today has been magical and this is just the beginning!

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About the Author

Gianna Haro


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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