We made it back safely to Quito from the Galapagos! We spent the last week there, three nights on the Galaven yaht, venturing to several of the islands and finally two nights of home stays on the island of Isabela.
Our time on the yaht was an amazing experience to say the least! When we weren't laying out on the deck soaking up the sun, we were learning all about life in the Galapagos: from the four species of mangrove that encompass the shorelines to the giant tortoises, sea lions, marine iguanas, penguins, and the infamous blue-footed boobies that call these islands home. All of these species have their own unique adaptations which allow them to survive in the harsh climate.
Snorkeling was also a regular daily activity aboard the Galaven. Of the four times we snorkeled, we saw all sorts of marine life including white-tip reef sharks, sea turtles, yellow-tailed surgeon fish, parrot fish, rays, penguins, and some very playful sea lions. Snorkeling was without a doubt one of my favorite parts of the trip so far!
During our home stays at Isabella, we learned some of the history of the islands as well as made the 10 mile trip (by foot) to Volcan Chico and Sierra Negra. We also had a tour of the tortoise breeding center where they raise tortoises to release in the wild.
Though we weren't on the island long, our host families were amazing, and it was fun to get to know them a little (this was more difficult for some since some of our Spanish was a little rusty).
Tomorrow, we head to Old Quito where we will learn a little bit of the city's history. When we return, we will have our second exam before we leave for the Amazon Tuesday morning.
I hope to have another update before we depart!
Until next time,