Category: Galápagos Islands

Celebrating July 4th

July 4, 2018 – day 6, last evening on board

Once back on board La Pinta, we had time to freshen up before the ship’s crew hosted a 4th of July Celbration for us,  It was a nice way to toast our last evening onboard.

 

 

 

 

 

We trekked down to the dining room for another delicious meal.

 Click HERE to read about the last of our adventure, as the trip is sadly coming to a close. 

Punta Cormorant – Floreana Island

July 4, 2018 – day 6, our last land adventure

We loaded into the Pangas for our last official land exploration – headed to Punta Cormorant, an olivine-crystal Beach with a brackish water lagoon.  

 

 

I had my own private Shore Walk, guided by Daniel. I was so happy to see nesting Blue Footed Boobies, since I had missed them on our very first outing to North Seymour Island.

 

But then, I looked closely and was saddened by the sight of a dead Booby Baby. The parents looked on in distress:

 

Wait … a miracle!

 

The baby lives!  Daniel explained how the parents teach the young to “play dead.”  This is to protect the baby when the parents fly off to gather food. Speaking of food, our newly arisen baby woke up in time for a snack:

 

Daniel pulled me away from the birds, and we hiked a short distance to the shore of the lagoon  and, another surprise!

 

 

 

We found flamingos!  The American Flamingo is one of the “Big 15” species sought by travelers to the Galápagos Islands.

Daniel and I walked back along the beach, and had a chance to see more Blue Footed Boobies. We even saw some pairs doing the dancing ritual, where the male raises his foot in a stilted dance-like move, hoping to attract the female.

 

 

 

 

 

More baby action:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here’s a shot of Catherine and Olivia exiting the Panga at the end of our excursion. When the water was choppy, the Panga could rise by 2-3 feet with the swells, making the exit tricky.  We always had at least two crew members assisting.

Click HERE to continue.

The Hunger Games

July 4, 2018 – day 6, lunch and more ship info

We never went hungry, despite the title of this post. And, we never had to battle for our food. We did wait in a buffet line for breakfast and dinner, but with only 48 passengers on board, the line didn’t take long. Plus it was a good time to socialize.

First, a few more photos of the ship.  This is the lounge on Deck 3.  This is where we met for Naturalist Talks and other briefings.  By the end of the trip, there were lots of card games taking place.

 

Lou navigates the stairs from Deck 3 – to Deck 2 (where all the staterooms are located) -to Deck 1 (reception, ship’s store, life jackets, and dining room). This wasn’t his (or my) favorite part of the trip, but he did really well and figured it made up for missing physical therapy. He used his cane as a precaution, but was quite good at navigating without it.

 

Oscar was the Hospitality Manager, and he took care of all the customer questions and details. He also gave us each a password for one device, but the internet was very very slow.  This made it possible to check emails, but provided a barrier to some people spending too much time thinking about work!

 

The ship’s store had a surprisingly good selection of stuff you might need, as well as souvenier clothing, jewelry, and artwork.

 

Life jackets were stored by the door we generally used to board the Pangas.  The crew was strict about safety protocols, and life jackets were a must. The ship also provided walking sticks.

 

Now to the good stuff. Food.  The feature for today’s lunch was grouper. It was apparently very good (I tend to avoid food that looks back at me).  As usual, lots of desserts, and many optional selections. The fried chicken was tasty, and the rice and beans hit the spot. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Disclaimer: these desserts were arranged strictly for the photo, and were certainly not consumed by one person!

As you can see, we never went hungry!  After this feast, we had only a short downtime, as there were two more activities scheduled for the afternoon.

Click HERE to see the afternoon’s adventure.

More Floreana -Water Sports Day

July 4, 2018 – Day 6, splish splash at the beach on Floreana Island

We had a relaxing couple of hours to swim, snorkel, kayak, paddle board, or just lounge on the beach. It was a great way to spend part of our 4th of July holiday. 

 

 

 

Catherine found a kayak partner, and they did well together.

 

 

 

This was not an attempt to get artsy  I reminded myself I wanted to get some shots of the colorful water and our fellow passengers enjoying themselves. Upon downloading this series of photos, I realized I had accidentally switched the camera to monotone … duh .

 

Catherine snapped a few shots of fun in the water:

 

 

 

We didn’t see a lot of wildlife at the beach – just some crabs and sea lions.

 

The lone paddle boarder … I’m guessing this is one activity that made Olivia miss her sister, Victoria.  The two of them had a blast on paddle boards on our Alaska trip -taking turns dunking each other in the cold water.  (Victoria was originally scheduled to come on the trip, but had to cancel when her Volleyball Team made the junior national tournament in Detroit, Michigan. Catherine reluctantly agreed to take Victoria’s spot)

 

We headed back to the ship, just in time for lunch. 

Click HERE to see what’s for lunch.

Floreana Island -A Most Unusual Post Office

July 4, 2018 – day 6, the first adventure

We woke up to a beautiful morning and set off right after breakfast for a wet landing on Floreana Island. We were going to visit a “post office”established in the early 1800s.  Whalers devised a system where they would drop letters in a barrel, hoping those from other ships would stop and pick them up for delivery. 

 

 

 

 

 

We were all encouraged to write postcards for delivery by future visitors.  Fernanda retrieved postcards deposited by previous adventurers, and it seemed Many people addressed the postcard to themselves (which makes sense, if you think about it).

 

 

Volunteers, including Olivia and Claudia, read off the addresses of the postcards waiting for us.  It is considered cheating to take a postcard and mail it to the recipient – the spirit of the “game” is to hand deliver the postcard if at all possible. We had a good time sorting out who might be able to deliver the various postcards.

 

 

Olivia poses with the postcard she chose – she picked a postcard from Santa Barbara, thinking that was a good destination for a road trip.  There were almost no postcards from places like Los Angeles or Orange County, California.  We assumed those were readily picked up by other cruisers.

 

 

 

 

 

After a fun time collecting postcards, we loaded back up into the Pangas for a short ride to another location on Floreana. It was a beautiful day for water activities. 

Click HERE for more Floreana.

Baby Booby Playing with a Stick

Hello Friends.  Claudia made this sweet video, and is sharing with us. She is working on some more stuff  but I wanted to test to make sure the videos are loading and playing properly.  Please let me know if this works ok for you.  Thanks!

 

 


Click HERE to go to the Post Office.