Daily Expedition Reports

Daily reports from our days in the field

  • Santiago Island, Espumilla, Buccaneer Bay & Puerto Egas

    Today we visited Santiago Island, a place where Darwin spent nine days during his visit to the Islands during his voyage on the Beagle. This Island is rich in human history and conservation efforts and was adopted by Lindblad Expeditions in 1997 to support its conservation efforts. As a result of that, goats and pigs have been eliminated from the island, which makes this one of the most successful restoration efforts around the world.

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  • Santa Cruz Island

    The island is the second largest in the Galapagos archipelago, with a surface area of almost 100 square kilometers, and a population estimated in 20,000 people.

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  • Santiago Island

    On Wednesday, we woke up as we reached the shores of Santiago Island. This is where Darwin expended most of his time in the Galapagos. Nine days camping, with the sky for a roof and the ground for a table.

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  • Urbina Bay and Tagus Cove

    This day was spent at the largest island of the Galapagos archipelago, Isabela Island. In the morning the National Geographic Islander was anchored at Urbina bay where the waters were calm and clear. As the Zodiacs approached we observed Pacific green sea turtles and resting nicely on the bottom of the black sand were several diamond sting rays. The long hike took us along the rocky coast, a great place for Sally light foot crabs, huge male marine iguanas, and flightless cormorants! We then headed inland to observe the giant coral heads, proof that the whole area had been underwater. The area was uplifted in the 50’s and since then vegetation has covered this location and now it is a perfect site for Galapagos land iguanas. We observed a female land iguana right on the trail and underneath the poison apple trees we found several male land iguanas. We arrived to the black sandy beach, where there was time for a good swim and a group of fearless guests even swam back to the ship!

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  • Isabela and Fernandina Islands

    Quite a day full of fantastic experiences! After a night-long navigation we reached the western isle, the most remote region of the Galápagos archipelago. In the early morning sunshine we woke up to stunning landscapes of elegant volcanoes and lava fields. The north of Isabela is crossed by the equator line, so a ceremony to celebrate this event was a must! When we dropped anchor at Punta Vicente Roca, we suddenly felt we had somehow reached some Nordic fjords, with the tall, dark outer slopes of Ecuador Volcano nearby. Fernandina to the west is the youngest of the Galápagos Islands and is rather dull and inhospitable-looking, but as soon as we set foot on it we realized we had reached a new dimension. It is a world entirely dominated by reptiles, where the endemic marine iguanas are king. On the nearby shores, endless numbers of marine turtles, and young Galápagos sea lions made this a day we shall never forget.

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  • Isabela Island

    Today was our last day of exploration on the island of Isabela. During the morning, we dropped anchor at Urbina Bay, a place that was uplifted in 1954, bringing the bottom of the ocean up above sea level. Here we encountered land iguanas and giant tortoises. Later in the afternoon, we moved to Tagus Cove, where a number of snorkeling options were offered, as well as a hike to Darwin’s Lake.

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  • Bartholomew and Rabida Islands

    It was our first full day in the Galapagos archipelago. It was our first snorkel, first penguin, first white-tipped reef shark, first hammerhead shark, first lobsters in the wild, first octopus, first sea lion underwater, first red beach, first sting rays, first flounder, and first marine turtle. It was a world of firsts in twelve hours! As a resident, as a naturalist for over 30 years here, I get to stay in the islands and watch again and again these marvelous landscapes and happenings. But there is never anything quite so special as the first time.

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  • Fernadina & Isabela Islands

    Today our guests explored the westernmost realm of the Galapagos. During the morning, the entire group landed and snorkeled at Punta Espinosa, Fernadina Island. The highlight of the morning were the countless Galapagos marine iguanas that were basking at the shore line as our guests explored the island. While snorkeling, we observed many green sea turtles feeding on seaweed over the rocks.  For the afternoon everybody went on Zodiac rides to experience Punta Vicente Roca, Isabela Island.  This site offers an impressive view of a collapsed volcano, and the cliffs are a good perch for seabirds like Nazca boobies, flightless cormorants and Galapagos penguins.

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  • North Seymour and Jervis Islands, Galápagos, Ecuador

    Today we woke up anchored in a canal between Baltra and North Seymour Islands. After breakfast we landed on North Seymour Island and during our walk we saw sea lions, blue-footed boobies, land iguanas, lava lizards, a snake, frigate birds, small marine iguanas and swallow-tailed gulls. Land iguanas were introduced in the 1930’s and today we can see how the surviving Opuntia Cactus is getting taller and developing thorns due to selection/predation by the iguanas.

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  • Genovesa Island

    Today it was the last day of an amazing expedition in the Galapagos archipelago. This island holds the largest population of red footed boobies in the world! It is an incredible place to observe sea birds, such as great frigate birds, Nazca boobies, and swallow tailed gulls. The morning was spent at Darwin bay, a delight for nature photographers, as the birds pose for you. The conditions for deep water snorkeling looked very favorable, so we went to the exposed cliffs and were fortunate to see a hammerhead shark. It was a big one! During the afternoon we enjoyed a great walk at “El Barranco”, where we got to see the short eared owl! It was a fantastic trip and the memories will last a lifetime! 

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