• Call us +1-888-978-4070 or contact your travel agent
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Call us +1-888-978-4070 or contact your travel agent
Day 15 |
Jun 07, 2014

At sea en route to Taiwan

By Juan Carlos Restrepo, Geologist
N 21º03.4’, E 121º40.8’
Air Temperature:
1006 hPa
Weather: Overcast and rainy
Wind: 20 - 25 knots

Having left behind the Philippines and its wonderful, warm and friendly people, we had a day at sea today as we sailed north towards Taiwan. A day at sea provided a good opportunity for our guests to catch up with sleep, sort out their photos, read a book and enjoy the onboard lecture program.

The day started with a lecture by Malcolm Turner entitled ”Adapting Islands and Coral Reefs to a Changing Climate”. Malcolm has decades of experience in managing the Great Barrier Reef in Australia, from the coral reefs themselves, to the islands, coralline cays and the many species of seabirds and marine animals that call this massive ecosystem, the largest living organism in our planet, home.

Malcolm has seen radical changes in the physical conditions of the Great Barrier Reef, most of them associated with a changing climate, so he started his lecture explaining climate change and how it all works and why -and then followed with how it is affecting the ecosystem in the GBR. This was an eye-opener, indeed. I did not know for example that the Great Barrier Reef had seen a 50% loss of live coral cover in the last 30 years!Right before lunch, Greg Calvert delighted us with his “History of the Hamburger”, a unique and interesting view at the humble hamburger. Greg went through the history and the biology of the elements and ingredients that make up this popular meal. Very informative and it certainly did wet my appetite for one of them at lunch!

As the morning went by we sailed along the Batan Islands, a volcanic archipelago which holds Philippines most northerly volcanoes. We enjoyed the beautiful sights of the islands as the weather deteriorated with winds picking up, increasing swell and rain. During most of the afternoon we experienced a Beaufort 5, with winds ranging between 20 and 25 knots.

At 5 pm the expedition team held the daily Recap & Briefing where Mick explained the plans for tomorrow in Hualien, followed by a couple of us on stage for the last recap of the voyage.

It was then time for the Captain’s Farewell Cocktail, where Captain Luksa had a chance to bring on stage and publicly thank a good number of the Silver Discoverer’s crew for their good work and efforts and of course also to wish our guests farewell, as this voyage is coming close to its end. After the Cocktail our Executive Chef Pia and Restaurant Manager Robert invited our guests for the Captain’s Farewell Dinner.

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