29.04.2011 - 01.05.2011
We spent 1 night at the Royal Palm hotel and 7 nights on a wonderful boat (the Integrity) here is a synopsis of the trip.
Once we got to Galapagos and our hotel, we had lunch. The food is definitely better in Peru than Ecuador. We also miss our guide in Peru. After 10 minutes at lunch, our new guide was in to politics and elections. In 4 days with Katerina we never talked politics. In hind site Equidor is a very different country and so are politics.
After lunch we headed out to see some turtles. Nothing very interesting just walking through mud to get to see two large turtles. Our focus was getting back to the hotel so we could swim. When we arrived in Galapagos, it was around 88 degrees. At 5 pm for our swim, I would guess it was around 75 degrees and cloudy an it was nice to take a dip in the pool. Had fish again for dinner. It was a little better than lunch, but still no comparison to Peru.
Day 2 - Charles Darwin Station & the boat
Today we went to the Charles Darwin station to see turtles and iguana's before we headed out to the boat. We left the hotel around 9 am and headed to some lava tubes first. From there we went to the Darwin station. I think I expected more. I thought we would see buildings where they were doing studies and there would be more scientists doing studies, but we did not see any "workers". We did see a lot of turtles and some land iguanas, which was pretty cool. Before we got into the Darwin station we saw marine iguanas just hanging out.
Afterwards we headed off to lunch where we saw our first blue footed boobie. We also saw a pelican hanging out on the roof of the restaurant. And then it was off to the boat which is very nice. The rooms are a pretty good size and roomy and our guide seems pretty good.
Day 3 - Espanola
Didn't sleep that well last night. Started with the lights flickering when we turned them off. Troy took the light bulbs out of the one over our bed so we could sleep. Fell asleep after that, but then when we set sail we woke up again as the rocking went from side to side to back and forth. Took a Dramamine and all was well.
After breakfast, we headed out to a beach on Espanola. There we saw tons of sea lions. A Galapagos Mocking bird came right up to us. He had no fear and I think he was more curious of us than we were of him. We also saw a Galapagos Hawk, iguanas and other birds.
After the beach we went kayaking and snorkeling. It wasn't a big kayak trip, but we did see the blue footed booby, a sea lion cub and some other birds. There wern't too many fish as we were in a calmer place getting a feel for snorkeling. Hopefully tomorrow will have beter snorkeling.
In the afternoon, we went to a different part of Espanola and hiked through some boulders. Not as difficult a hike as Machu Picchu, but you did need to be careful where you walked. We saw more sea lions and a lot of birds including: Nazca bobbies, blue footed boobies, swallowtail gulls, oystercatchers, Galapagos doves, Galapagos hawks, marine iguanas, lava lizards and albatross. The albatross come back to the island between mid to late April and when they land they trip over themselves. When they find their partner (they stay with the same partner their whole life) they do a beautiful dance.