On our fifth day on board National Geographic Islander II, we arrived at Española Island. When thinking about the different islands and their unique and varied wildlife, Española is one of the jewels in the crown. Before breakfast, the early birds decided to get some exercise by kayaking. The morning was cool as the sun came out. During our outing, we observed sea lions resting on rocks, sea turtles popping their heads out to breathe, and blue-footed boobies starting their fishing activities.

After a great breakfast, our guests chose between deep-water snorkeling or relaxing on one of the most pristine beaches in the Galapagos, Gardner Bay. Walking along this beautiful white sand beach is a peaceful experience. We observed large numbers of the mockingbirds that are unique to this island and curious lava lizards that were interested in the human visitors. Snorkelers also had the opportunity to enjoy this wonderful place. A second round of kayaking was offered for those who wanted to get more exercise while enjoying the breathtaking landscapes in this visitors’ site. No doubt: when we gathered for our next meal, there were lots of happy faces and hungry guests!

After a well-deserved rest, our guests prepared for one more adventure. We visited Punta Suarez, a small site full of wildlife on Española Island. The walk can be challenging, but we were rewarded with incredible sightings. Some of the animals found in this place include the waved albatross that only nest on this island, blue-footed boobies, Nazca boobies, the most colorful marine iguanas in the archipelago, a big colony of sea lions, mockingbirds, finches, and much more! This adventure was a definite highlight for our guests.

As a little extra on an already incredible day, the sunset on our way back was just stunning!