Friday 16th May 2014
Galapagos Islands, Ecuador (Mosquera Islet and Bartolome)
We arrived in position to travel to Mosquera Islet just near Baltra at about 2:00am. This morning after breakfast we headed out on the zodiacs to the islet. It was very difficult landing on the rocks near the beach as the tide was so low. After listening to a talk by the guide about sharks, we walked along the beach taking photos of sea lions and interacting with them. We also saw crabs and small lizards and many birds. After our walk, we came back to the zodiac. As we were waiting to get on the zodiac one of the young sea lions took a liking to Zack, who with Mary-Anne was our resident honeymooner. It sidled up to him, stood on his foot and hooked his teeth into Zack's board shorts. It was really cute as it would not leave him alone or even get off his foot. Zack was hoping it might leave a bite mark in his shorts as a souvenir, but unfortunately not. Everyone said it was part of the 'honeymoon special'. We had the same difficulty getting back on the zodiac as before, with the low tide. Back to the boat and then some of the people went for an open deep water snorkel. We stayed on board, sat on the deck and chatted until they came back. Then we had lunch and a break until we went out again in the afternoon. At lunchtime the boat set off for Bartolome and stopped in a bay off the island. This was where they made the film "Master and Commander" - it was very scenic. Our first excursion for the afternoon was a snorkel from a nearby beach. It was quite clear and they were many fish which we managed to film on an underwater camera. We then went back to the boat and shortly after, we left on the second excursion of the afternoon. We set off from the boat, landed and walked up a wooden pathway to the top of the volcano. The top was an old vent where there had been lava that had come out under great pressure sometime in the past. When we reached the top, there was a great view of the island and surrounding bays. The island was almost totally bare and dry - the guide explained that it was in a rain shadow. After taking in the views, we walked back down again and then traversed around the bay, looking for birds (blue footed boobies) and penguins. We managed to see both, then went back to the boat, had a drink then dinner and bed at around 10:00pm. Today the weather was fine and warm, around 27C.