Sunday Oct. 23rd 2011
Definitely got a cold during snorkelling yesterday…super lame now I just have to fight it to be able to diveeeeee!!! Argh. So we decided to go to another island for a few days and then dive.Isabela Islandwas recommended by a few people we had spoken with. After the tour yesterday, we decided not to book anything and to go by our own means. And so we bought our ticket for the ferry in the morning and headed off to the Charles Darwin Station, where still today, research and breathing of some animals is done. There we saw tortoises of all sizes; little baby ones to really big old ones. (for those who don’t know, the difference between a tortoise and a turtle is that the first is on land and the other under water) Because it was Sunday, the museum part was closed, but outside there were signs with interesting facts. One thing that shocked us both was that during the incubation of the eggs, whether the temperature is higher or lower is what makes the tortoise male or female. The difference is like 1.5 degrees too! So little, it’s crazy!
We also saw some iguanas which are extinct and unfortunately we couldn’t see the other parts of the station. If we have the time, we might go back and check it out.
Then we headed off to eat some lunch and went to catch the ferry. Once there, they inspected our bags to make sure we were not bringing organic foods to the other islands. Then, there was a lot of confusion as to which boat Cosima and I were meant to be on. One of the guides helped us out a bit and we ended up on the boat with him. His name is Renny and he was really nice and we chatted for quite some time.
Isabela Island, named after Queen Isabela, is the largest one of the Galapagos, but most of it is out of reach for people, especially tourists. It also only has a population of 100 people! On the map, it has the shape of a seahorse. It is also the only one to have the equator cross it. It has 6 volcano craters, 5 of which are still very active.
Once on Isabela, Renny offered us a ride with him and the German couple he was going to guide around during their stay in Galapagos. He even helped us find a reasonably priced place! Once again, we were lucky and got something for 10$ a night. After we settled in, he took us to a lagoon to see the flamingos, which there were only two because it was so late in the afternoon and then we walked on the beach and saw the sun go down.
He was very helpful and nice to us this afternoon and even told us we could join him on the volcano tour the next day since he was not on a private tour and it would be without charge! And so we will!