Today we woke up at Gardner Bay in Española Island. After a delicious breakfast, some guests disembarked for deep water snorkeling along the shore of Gardner Islet, while other guests went to visit Gardner Beach. Sea lions welcomed us at the beach and guests had a great time taking photos of these animals peacefully basking in the sand. In the afternoon, we disembarked to explore Punta Suarez. Here, we could find one of the most beautiful sea birds in Galapagos, the waved albatross. It’s the end of the mating season for these birds, and we observed a few couples in their final days on Española before they fly down to the coast of Peru to find food. We also found one of the largest nesting grounds of Nazca boobies, where we observed males bringing tiny rocks to females to catch their attention for mating. We ended our day with our traditional recap of the day onboard the National Geographic Endeavour II.
National Geographic Endeavour II
Today we woke up for an early walk to the top of Bartolome, a satellite islet of Santiago Island. This relatively new island is a good place to appreciate new basaltic flows and different geological formations, such as tuff and spatter cones. The presence of pioneer plants, such as Tiquilia nesiotica and lava cacti, makes Bartolome a good place to understand how life started in the Galapagos as the first plants grew on newly formed islands. We also had a chance to explore below the water, where we had the opportunity to observe a number of fish. During lunch, we navigated towards Chinese Hat, a few miles away from Bartolome and next to Santiago Island. We observed the iconic Galapagos penguins basking on lava rocks. We also had one of the most magnificent snorkeling activities of the week, followed by a Zodiac ride. Guests had the chance to appreciate the outstanding landscape and wildlife of this place. We ended our day with a delicious barbeque dinner on National Geographic Endeavour II .