It was overcast as we approached Española Island early this morning. The sun was hiding behind some clouds and the air felt humid and warm.
We disembarked after breakfast at Gardner Beach. The surf was quite strong and there were high waves, but our experienced Zodiac drivers helped us get on land safely.
The beautiful white sand beach was very inviting and we went for a stroll. There were sea lions resting on the beach and swimming on the shallow waters. Some Hood Mockingbirds came very close to us in hopes of getting some water and a Yellow Warbler jumped around trying to catch some mosquitoes.
We then went deepwater snorkeling around Gardner Islet. Visibility was not the best today because of the choppy waters but we managed to see some fish and a couple of sea lions swimming around.
At lunch time, the Silver Galapagos navigated for some 40 minutes until we got to Punta Suarez, the westernmost point of Española Island.
We encountered large waves as we got inside a tiny bay in order to disembark. Once on land, we found many colorful marine iguanas sharing the beach with several Galapagos sea lions. Some females were nursing their pups and a few cubs were frolicking in the tide pools.
I had been in Española only three weeks ago, but today the island looked very different. There was green all over the place, leaves were back, and it was very humid.
As we started walking the trail, we found a family of American Oystercatchers. My guests and I had the opportunity to watch both parents feeding their almost full-grown chick with some Sally Lightfoot crabs. This was a very exciting moment.
Later on, we found many Nazca Boobies and Darwin finches, and at least three Galapagos Hawks could be seen soaring around as well.
We came back on board to enjoy a quiet sunset. We then attended the briefing on tomorrow´s activities, the Venetian Society Cocktail, and finally enjoyed a delicious dinner in The Restaurant.
I went to sleep with a wonderful feeling of accomplishment. Today had been another memorable day in the Galapagos.