Urbina Bay & Tagus Cove, Isabela Island

Mar 19, 2019 - National Geographic Endeavour II

Isabela is the largest island in the Galapagos, and today we had the chance to explore more of it! We started with a wonderful walk at the foot of the Alcedo Volcano, expecting to find land iguanas but…we also found wild giant tortoises! Our walk took place in Urbina Bay, where the whole area was an uplift—so until 1954 this trail was underwater. After getting to experience face to face encounters with these iconic animals, we had the chance to refresh on the beach, where even a passing penguin showed up to swim among us.

Back on board, we head to the lounge to join our naturalist Javi for his talk on the human history of the islands. We learned how the islands got their names, and who were their first unusual settlers. At lunch, we got to taste the flavors from all regions of Ecuador—ceviche, encocado de pescado, pan de yuca and chancho hornado were among the favorites.

At the afternoon, we moved to a different location, Tagus Cove, a traditional stop for whalers. Here we had the opportunity to kayak or paddleboard inside a beautiful caldera. Afterwards, during our snorkeling excursion, some friends showed up—a few penguins, flightless cormorants, sea stars, some sharks, and even an octopus!

Our last outing of the day was either a sunset Zodiac ride, where lucky guests found a couple of manta rays and penguins, or a hike up the rim of a caldera filled with a salt water lagoon. Not only a breathtaking view, but also a historical site, being that Darwin himself visited the area during his time in the islands.

Evening went as usual, with recaps from our naturalists and dinner afterwards. The last surprise was for our Global Explorers that had a pizza and movie night. We can just say it was another amazing day in the Galapagos! Let´s see what awaits us for tomorrow!

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About the Author

Anahí Concari


Anahí grew up in a small house by the beach in the Galápagos Islands. Along with her best friend, she used to wander during the days around mangrove trees, becoming a different animal every day. She used to camp on solitary beaches, snorkel with sharks, dive with her uncle, a local dive instructor, and sail around the islands with her free spirit neighbors, learning about nature with her own hands, eyes and ears.  

About the Photographer

José Guerrero

Naturalist/Certified Photo Instructor

José Guerrero Vela is an Ecuadorian permanent resident of the Galapagos. His mother was born in the islands and his grandfather was one of the first generation of teachers in the Galapagos, which has always inspired him to promote education as the main path to protect the archipelago.

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