In the western realm of the Galapagos, we arrived at Fernandina Island, the youngest island of the archipelago. After an amazing sunrise, we began looking for marine wildlife as we navigated across the Bolivar Channel. Dramatic views of the impressive volcanic landscape enhanced our breakfast.
We went ashore for a walk, and it was like we were transported back to a time when the land was newly formed. The highlights of our morning were countless. Galapagos marine iguanas basked along the shoreline. We found many unique creatures, including the flightless cormorant, Galapagos sea lions, and the top natural predator of the archipelago, the Galapagos hawk.
After a walk on lava flows that are only hundreds of years old, we snorkeled under great conditions. We observed iguanas, sea lions, several species of fish, and green sea turtles feeding on seaweed. We were surrounded by Galapagos penguins and had the chance to feel accepted as part of this environment. The western islands are formidable and the most remote. The newest islands are strongly influenced by the Cromwell Undercurrent, which brings cold, nutrient-rich waters. The newer islands are also pretty active volcanically.
In the afternoon, we backtracked north and navigated towards the northwestern realm of Isabela Island. We arrived at Punta Vicente Roca, a collapsed caldera of Volcano Ecuador and one of the six volcanos that form Isabela. Groups took Zodiac rides to explore the coast because the geology of the site does not allow disembarkation. We observed fur sea lions, blue-footed boobies, Nazca boobies, Galapagos penguins, and the impressive flightless cormorant.
After a spectacular day full of activities in the field, we returned on board. We celebrated as we crossed the equator with a sunset wine tasting on the top deck. Every day in the Galapagos is an opportunity to reconnect with the beauty of nature through unbelievable encounters, and today was no exception. Today’s visit was outstanding!