Thursday, November 7, 2013

Our Trip to the Galapagos Islands -- Part 5 of 5


On our fourth day, we went on a tour of Isla Isabela (aka Albemarle).  Isabela, the largest island in the archipalego, is actually a chain of five young, active volcanoes.  Wolf Volcano is the highest point in the Galapagos at just over 5,600 feet. Isabela is also home to the second largest volcanic crater in the world, Santo Tomas.  Caleta Tagus is a trail surrounding the salt-lake crater.  This beautiful region is also known as the "land of marine iguanas."

It was a 2 hour boat ride from Santa Cruz (each way).  We were with a larger group than yesterday so the boat was larger, which was good because it was a much smoother ride than yesterday's ride.  Here's a picture of the captain and our friends sitting behind him.  We didn't know they were going to the Galapagos at the same time as us until we saw them at the airport in Guayaquil!

Our friends, Dale & Joan Lance
Upon arriving at Isabela, we pay the $6 Galapagos National Park Fee ($100 if you don't have a Cedula).




Then we took a taxi to the area known as Los Tintores.  We saw beautiful scenery along a path through lava fields that lichen has grown on.  Over the years, different types of lichens have been able to colonize the southern face of the lava rocks.  They receive moisture during drizzles when prevailing winds are from the south.










































Marine Iguanas (do you see at least 8?)































Tintoreras (White-Tip Sharks)



These reef sharks feed mainly at night, in total darkness.  They eat reef fish which they detect using electromagnetic pulses.  Unlike most other sharks, tintoreras sleep during the day, living on the ocean floor, alongside rocks or in caves.








video




















After leaving the lava fields, we see flamingos in a lagoon, and then we head out to go snorkeling.  As we sail off to go snorkeling, we see blue-footed boobies and penguins.
















Snorkeling with sea lions and green sea turtles
Blue-footed booby




























Galapagos Penguin

Handsome fellow!















On our fifth day (our last day), we didn't have anything planned.  We just walked around Puerto Ayora, and then took the water taxi to the Angermeyer Waterfront Inn for lunch.  It was a nice relaxing day before getting ready to travel back home the next day.


Marine Iguanas



Here are pictures of the wildlife we saw in Puerto Ayora


Warming up in the sun

Mother and Baby
















Here we came across a Sea Lion Resting Lounge!

This sign says "This area has been taken over by the original inhabitants of the Galapagos Islands.  We are adapting to their manners.  We truly appreciate your understanding."





Then we took a water taxi to lunch.

















The building that is now the reception area of the Angermeyer Waterfront Inn was once the home of Gus Angermeyer.  Gus was one of four German brothers who arrived to Santa Cruz in 1933.  He took it upon himself to construct this unique building of lava rock which resembles a cave and through the years has been referred to as the "cave".  Thus, the name of the cafe bar is "La Cueva de Gus".


We ate at the outdoor dining area with a view of the pelicans, iguanas, sea lions, and local birds while enjoying the fresh sea air.

































We had a wonderful time on our vacation, but it's time to go home.  It's not easy to get back to Cuenca, but after taking taxis, buses, planes, ferry boats, etc., we arrive home safely!

4 comments:

  1. Loved the blog and pictures. We all need to relax like the seals. Great pic!
    Thx
    J & J

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi John & Jean. Hoping everything is going well for you guys, and that we'll see you in Cuenca soon!

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  2. I like your post thanks for sharing nice pictures

    ReplyDelete