South America – Automatic Update #1

Here is a link that you can click on anytime to follow my trip… http://tinyurl.com/pk22487

Well I should have just finished sailing the Galapagos Islands in a small yacht. This has been a life long dream to visit the area that was very important in helping Charles Darwin develop his theories of Evolution.

The Galapagos Islands are located about 1000 km (620 miles) off the Pacific coast of South America. The archipelago is comprised of 13 major islands and scores of islets that served as a living laboratory for Charles Darwin, the renowned evolution theorist. Long before Darwin arrived in the Galapagos, seafarers knew these isolated islands as home to some of the strangest and most wonderful wildlife imaginable, including birds that could swim but no longer fly, aquatic iguanas, dragon-like lizards left over from prehistoric times, and the giant Galapagos tortoises for which the islands were named.

Covering nearly 5000 square km (3100 square miles), the Galapagos Islands are now a National Park. The Galapagos National Park is the institution that controls the preservation of this environment, assisted by the Charles Darwin Research Station. Inaugurated in 1964 and based in Puerto Ayora on Santa Cruz Island, the Charles Darwin Research Station is the one place where visitors can easily see the famous Galapagos Tortoises, which may live up to two hundred years. This is also the training centre for naturalist guides who accompany all visitors landing at more than 40 approved sites on the islands, and members of the international scientific community often come to study at the station.

The highlight for me will be some of the islands will visit and the wildlife we’ll see. This includes; San Cristobal, Espanola, Floreana, Isla Santiago, Bartolome, Santa Cruz, and Baltra. I think I am most looking forward to the boobies. I find them to be such an interesting bird, especially the red and blue footed variety. I’m also likely to see Waved Albatross, Marine Iguanas, Sea Lions, Sea Turtles, Tortoises and much more. I think I’ll like hiking the islands the most. I am currently undecided about snorkelling and swimming as I am not a strong swimmer, so we’ll have to see what the currents and waves are like.

Can’t wait to post some pics!

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