Sombrero Chino and Sullivan Bay

Jan 04, 2019 - National Geographic Islander


Exceptional! That is how everyone described today’s adventure. We started our day exploring Sombrero Chino with our Zodiacs. Here, we enjoyed the amazing geological landscape and spotted various sea birds, our favourite of which was the Galapagos penguin.

Later on, we came back onboard to get ready for snorkelling. This was an incredible outing, with wonderful encounters with white-tipped reef sharks and a hammerhead shark, spotted eagle rays and manta rays, dozens of species of reef fish, and even penguins. The penguins were catching fish and approaching so close to us that we got surprised a few times by these little rocket-speed swimming birds. At the end of the snorkelling, as we were navigating back to the ship, we found a pod of dolphins swimming slowly, allowing us to approach to have a closer look. It was a pod of approximately 60 bottlenose dolphins swimming and pirouetting close to our Zodiacs, which gave us the opportunity to quickly jump back in and observe them underwater: an unforgettable experience!

With all this excitement, we finally came back for a delicious lunch and some rest before the afternoon hike. Our last outing was to Sullivan Bay, where we explored the historical lava flows of Santiago Island. This was a great opportunity for landscape and macro photography. We ended our day with a nice barbecue on the top deck, enjoying the mild weather that is typical of the Galapagos at this time of the year. We’re excited about the wonderful experiences we all shared today onboard National Geographic Islander.

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About the Author

José Guerrero

Naturalist/Certified Photo Instructor

José Guerrero Vela is an Ecuadorian permanent resident of the Galapagos. His mother was born in the islands and his grandfather was one of the first generation of teachers in the Galapagos, which has always inspired him to promote education as the main path to protect the archipelago.

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