Galapagos Cruise Travelogue
Western Galapagos Island Cruise Part II
We have already reported on the first days of our Galapagos Cruise. Also the second part of our trip to the western Galapagos Islands was amazing and full of exciting experiences!
Puerto Villamil and tortoise breeding centre
In the afternoon we drove to Puerto Villamil and from there in about 10 minutes with a Chiva to the Arnaldo Tupiza tortoise breeding center. It was especially interesting that the baby turtles were not fed here for a month – as nature intended.
During the walk back to the place we saw flamingos and again numerous sea iguanas. In Puerto Villamil we visited the Cormorant Beach House and the Casa de Marita, our absolute favourite on Isabela!
Animal observations on the way to Punta Moreno
Overnight we cruised from Puerto Villamil to Punta Moreno. This part of the Galapagos Islands can only be discovered on a cruise as the distance is too great for a day trip. Even before breakfast at sunrise we could observe sea turtles in the water, frigate birds, blue-footed boobies and pelicans in the air! We were almost alone with only two other small cruise ships nearby. After breakfast we went on a panga tour where we saw breeding cormorants, spotted tiger rays, golden rays, penguins and the largest marine iguanas of the tour.
After that we went snorkeling again. Swimming with sea turtles, penguins, sea lions and hunter fish is a truly unique experience!
Still during lunch one of the crew members came in and shouted “Ballenas!” – Whales! Everyone ran on deck and in fact the dorsal fin of a whale was seen a few times.
Elizabeth Bay and Mangroves
In the afternoon we were in Elizabeth Bay with one of the highest forests of red mangroves.
On a rock sat a big heron, which did not fly away, although we approached really close. In fact, after some time a second heron came along and the two began their love play, right in front of us! I can hardly imagine that something like this would be possible elsewhere in the world! It sometimes creeps up on you the irrational feeling that the animals want to be seen!
Hike to the Tagus Cove and trip with the glass bottom kayak
Breakfast was served at 7 am and then we could choose between a panga ride (rubber dinghy trip) or a hike in Tagus Cove. We decided to do the hike and the children took the rubber dinghy. On the small catamaran one gets to know each other quickly and so we did not have to worry about letting the children go alone with the skipper and another guest. The hike was mainly scenically interesting and led half around a very salty lake. It is fed by the sea water through filtration and there is nothing in it except an algae species that has adapted to the extreme conditions. A special type of goat that could drink from the lake has unfortunately disappeared as a result of the comprehensive plan to destroy the goats on Isabela.
Back on the boat again we had the choice between a snorkeling trip and a trip in a glass bottom kayak. Since the children felt quite insecure in the waters, we decided for the glass bottom kayak. It was a good choice, because through the glass bottom I could take some photos and videos of the fascinating underwater world.
Ferdinanda - Visitor Point Punta Espinoza
Later the highlight Fernandina with the visitor point Punta Espinoza was on the agenda. We saw a lot of sea iguanas, sea lions and lava lizards scurrying next to each other and partly on top of each other! Wherever you looked, there was some animal to discover and we got fantastic impressions of the animals living together, like finches cleaning the backs of the sea iguanas!
As Fernandina is the youngest of the Galapagos Islands, there is less vegetation on it than on the other islands, but there is an interesting cactus that pioneers the way for more plants!
Crossing the equator
Overnight the longest passage of the tour awaited us: via the northern tip of Isabela to Baltra to the airport! As we crossed the equator on this trip after the spectacular view of Punta Vicente Roca, we were invited shortly before to the bridge of the captain to photograph the GPS with the indication 0:00 degrees and to say goodbye officially to the whole crew afterwards.
In the morning we could visit the beach Las Bachas. There is not much to see of the remains of the ship that sank there in the Second World War – in contrast to ten years ago.
It was a fantastic round trip on the Galapagos Islands with incredible wildlife and animal observations you couldn’t experience anywhere else in the world. Such a trip is a unique and unforgettable experience for all nature and animal lovers. You can find our Galapagos cruise offers and round trips in the category Galapagos Islands Tours.