What can I say the Galapagos were truly amazing. I may have only been there a short time, but it felt much longer; not because I badly twisted my ankle, but in a good way.
I remember standing on a beach and thinking; who would believe that I (someone who dislikes the heat) would be standing on a beach at the equator. How did I get here? Funny story, I was thinking of taking a cruise that was being organized for members of the Cadet Instructor Cadre, but realized I’ve never really been interested in taking a cruise, but really wanted to do it to be with friends, I decided that is an expensive trip for something that I never really wanted to do, so I asked myself if there is anywhere I would ever consider cruising, and thought retracing some of the steps of Charles Darwin would be ultimate, and thus started my South American adventure!
It was a short trip, but a great one. Lots of great scenery, including walking across the islands, including walking across 600 year old lava flows and down lava tubes, and across sand beaches…
Some great animal encounters; which included, magnificent frigates flying above,
Marine iguanas; including having salt water squirted on my legs from them and watching them feed while snorkelling,
Crabs, were everywhere, some flees when you got close, but not on every island,
Albatross, mainly watching some of their courting rituals,
Sea Lions, by the hundreds, I wish I could share the stench, umm I mean smell of them with you too,
There were many more too, some of which I can’t post photo’s of until I get home and can take pictures off my camera, this includes, sharks, sea turtles, rays, tortoises, etc.
But a highlight was the boobies; I saw lots of Nazca Boobies,
And the most exciting for me; the Blue Footed Booby. I remember the first one I saw, from a distance perched on a rock to the last. But getting close to two on land was a highlight, they were actually on our trail and wouldn’t/didn’t move as we all moved past them.
My world is still rocking, it’s hard to believe that you can still feel the effects if the sea for a week afterwards, considering I wasn’t even on the boat that long, but I’ve been spending the last few days just resting my ankle. I think it is going to be a few weeks for this to properly heal.
I was really impressed with how the Park was set up to handle the ever increasing pressure of tourists. The islands have had some pressure that has decimated the tortoise population, and currently have had issues with shark finning. But they really are spreading the message of sustainability and conservation. I wish them luck in continuing this, and hope that future visitors have as rich an experience as I’ve had.
I leave for Peru tomorrow, and am there for the rest of the month. Let’s see what adventures await me there.