Fernandina and Isabela Islands

Mar 02, 2020 - National Geographic Endeavour II

This morning we arrived to Fernandina Island and the sun was shining. Right after breakfast we visited Punta Espinoza, and our first encounter was with lots of marine iguanas basking in the sun after a feeding session in the ocean. Resting and nursing sea lions were laying on the organic beach around the trail, and our guests had the opportunity to take some good pictures of them. A little further along the trail we saw some flightless cormorants gathered together drying their atrophied wings, while others were swimming and fishing around.

When we went back to the ship, the bridge announced we had pilot whales to the starboard side! After watching them for a bit, it was time to get ready for the snorkeling outing in the bay. The water was slightly cool, which was perfect for the sunny day ahead of us. While snorkeling, we spotted some big sea turtles and lots of different fish. The highlight was seeing a cormorant going after a huge school of black-striped salemas, diving back and forth to hunt them.

We enjoyed a Mexican meal for lunch today. The enchiladas, tacos, and burritos were delicious!

Patricia Leon gave us an interesting lecture about the efforts of conservation and restoration of ecosystems in Galapagos throughout these last years and the results of those efforts. Zodiac rides were very successful this afternoon; we had the opportunity to see many Galapagos fur seal pups swimming and playing around the rocks, lots of marine birds on the cliffs, penguins and cormorants swimming around, sea turtles popping their heads right next to us, and a beautiful big school of golden cownose rays cruising outside of the cave.

Back onboard, it was time for the famous wine tasting of the week as we crossed the Equatorial line! Meanwhile, common dolphins were giving us a show nearby. Fernandina always surprises us all. It was a beautiful day surrounded by nature!

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About the Author

Paola Luque


Paola was born in the major Ecuadorian port city of Guayaquil, raised near the ocean and rivers. Since childhood she felt a deep connection with nature, which led her to settle in the Galapagos Archipelago in 1998, on the central island of Santa Cruz. Here she got involved in the tourism industry, with a particular interest in food and cooking.Her passion for the sea and traveling then led her to sail the world's oceans to remote destinations, working as crewmember and chef on private yachts for 5 years.

About the Photographer

Benjamin Ayala


Ben is a German-Ecuadorian naturalist guide who grew up on San Cristobal, the eastern-most island of the Galápagos Archipelago, home to the political capital of the province.

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