Sunday, March 4, 2018

Isabela, Galapagos Island 2

March 4 - 14, 2018


This was by far my favourite island. It is very rustic so, if you are sailing there, make sure you are well provisioned as there is next to no shopping. It takes approximately 10 minutes to walking town and can feel longer due to the heat.

While we were on Isabella we walked along the beach where there is a marine iguana nesting area. Paige took her metal detector along one day and found $20.00 USD in about an hour. We also went snorkeling at a local spot that was really close by. We were lucky to spot some Blue Footed Booby birds near Element. They are awesome!

wall art
The ultimate in basking.
The Booby Trap restaurant
nautilus shell art
Mini godzilla on the beach in a nesting ground.
A broken lookout point beside the marine iguana nesting site.
walkway to a snorkeling spot
The snorkeling spot.
Paige in the water
Our first blue footed booby sighting!
The metal detector that we brought from Canada.
The spoils from 1 hour of metal detecting.
Our family wanted to see some of Isabela by bicycle but realized that Jordan hadn't ridden a bike for nearly 3.5 years. We ended up renting a bike for a couple of hours over 2 days to have her re-learn. It worked great. Once she was ready the whole family went on a big tour to the turtle breeding centre, and along the national park. This trail leads to many beautiful lookouts and through areas where there are wild tortoises. It is a great way to see some of the island.

Re-learning how to ride a bike.
Flamingos live in the Galapagos.
We went to the Arnaldo Tupiza tortoise breeding sanctuary.
These 2 were trying to reach a tree branch.
This employee or volunteer was numbering this baby tortoise.
Our bike ride along the National Park.
a beach lookout
Wild tortoise!!!!!!!
Of course Paige found a way around the no touching the tortoises.
Estero Tunnel is a lava tunnel.
Loads of marine iguanas basking in the sun.
The girls and I wanted to cool off in a tidal pool after cycling.
On this day Element and Windancer IV went on the Los Tuneles lava tunnel snorkeling tour. This is well worth the tour. We chose Rosedelco ( and were very glad that we did. The boat operator is known as John Tavolta because of his blue eyes (it's not his real name). Our tour guide was awesome! He found out that we all love to fish so, he dropped in a couple of lines on our way to the tunnels. We managed to catch 3 groupers and a barracuda. We also spotted manta rays and were able to jump into the water with them.

The lava tunnels tour was exceptional! The water clarity mixed with the wonderful lava formations was incredible. We saw such a variety of animals. I think this was the day the girls and I counted upwards of 20 different animals unique only to the Galapagos. From seahorses to sleeping white tip sharks. Due to our fishing escapade we ended up at the tunnels a bit later than the rest and had the area to ourselves. While we were there, our guide explained that because the Galapagos is so close to the equator and the sun is so hot, the cacti and plants have adapted and have their leaves perpendicular to the sun instead of horizontal. This reduces the surface area and also reduces the amount of evaporation.

Our boat ride to the Los Tuneles, lava tunnels.
We did a little fishing on the way.
We saw a seahorse while snorkeling.
Eagle Rays.
White tip sharks "sleeping" in an underwater cave. One would patrol the others and then it would trade off and another would take the next patrol. It was incredible to witness.

Our first views of the lava tunnels.

Up close and personal.
Those blue feet!

I call this the carousel, there were 4-5 turtles swimming around and
around and the water clarity was amazing.

The money shot!

Our view as we departed.
On our last day in Isabela, Shaun, the girls, and I decided to take a tour up to the Sierra Negra volcano. The caldera has a 6 mile dimeter with a depth of 300 meters. 

We caught a bus early in the morning, which first stopped at a large lava tunnel, and then we headed up to the starting point for the volcano hike. We used Rosedelco again and were not disappointed. The hike is lovely and well worth it. Bring water and a good hat as the sun is extremely hot.

The entrance to a large lava tunnel.
Inside the tunnel.
This is the beginning of the hike.
Sierra Negra caldera.

It goes on and on.
Lunch time.
We took a different route back down.

The path.

These are piles of lava rock alongside the road.
Isabela did not disappoint. I was sad to leave.

One of our last sunsets before we headed to Santa Cruz.
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