Floreana Island

Jan 28, 2020 - National Geographic Islander

Due to its location in the archipelago, Floreana, also known as Mystery Island, was ideal for the whaling industry and used as a basecamp for whalers and navigators of the 18th century. Later, the Ecuadorian government decided to colonize Floreana Island thanks to its permanent fresh water supply and cultivable soil. Moving forward to present day, we started our morning visiting Cormorant Point on a green-olivine beach with small colony of sea lions, and some blue-footed boobies. Behind this beach lies a lagoon where we found flamingos for the first time on the trip, and even more wildlife was spotted as we finished our trail and visited an active nesting sea turtle site.

Later we navigated to Champion Islet and explored the area first on Zodiacs in order to take photos of the unique birds and our beloved sea lions. This location also offers great snorkelling and has an abundance of fish, sharks, playful sea lions, and more! We then headed to Post Office Bay where in the 17th- and 18th-century pirates and whalers picked up mail, collected fresh water, and used giant tortoises for food. After our visit, we walked along the beach, did some more snorkelling, and kayaked along the coast.

We ended this lovely day with wine tasting at the sky deck.

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About the Author

Patricio Maldonado

Naturalist/Certified Photo Instructor

Patricio, better known as Pato amongst his friends, was born in the Galápagos Island. His family moved to the islands from the mainland and settled on the island of Santa Cruz over thirty-five years ago. Pato had an enchanted childhood in the islands, where his keen interest in the wildlife of the Galápagos was born initially through catching lizards and observing how they lost their tails. His experiences in the islands have led him to teach visitors about the need to protect this rare and unique environment.

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