Daily Expedition Reports

Browse photos & daily reports sent from the field every day

Lastest Expedition Reports

  • Santa Rosa Island

    On our second day here in the Channel Islands, we awoke near the shores of Santa Rosa. From the sandy beaches of this beautiful location we hiked in search of the native torrey pine, kayaked among the fringes of the kelp forest, and enjoyed a rare rainy day in the national park. In the afternoon we set off in search of wildlife and found ourselves watching northern elephant seals on the wild shores of San Miguel Island, one of the most windswept of the Channel Islands.

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  • Golfo Dulce

    After a smooth navigation westward, we arrived at Costa Rica. Either by kayaks or by Zodiacs, every single guest got to enjoy the richness of this tropical deep-water golf surrounded by an exuberant and bountiful forest.

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  • South Plaza Island and Santa Fe Island

    Two fabulous islands with a focus on land iguanas, but also so much more! South Plaza in the morning is a seabird haven. As one walks along the upper trail a few steps back from the cliff edge, all kinds of seabirds catch the updraft and fly by, almost at eye-level. Land iguanas were showing signs of courtship, head-nodding to each other and looking their best. Sea lions lined the lower shore, sleeping, nursing, barking, calling, and bleating.

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  • Lemaire Channel, Yalour Islands & Paradise Bay

    This morning we navigated through the seven-mile long Lemaire Channel, a narrow and absolutely stunning passage past towering mountains, glaciers, and icebergs. When we arrived at the Yalour Islands, we paddled kayaks through glassy water and brash ice. Zodiacs cruised around the low, rocky islets, where Adélie penguins were nesting on patches of bare rock. Upon returning to the ship, nearly 60 brave guests did the polar plunge—they jumped into the icy Antarctic water (and quickly got out!) Under clear skies in Paradise Bay, we had glorious views from a snowy hilltop, then we sat on our rears and slid downhill—a very fun ride! After dinner, the twilight seemed to last forever as white mountains glowed under magical light.

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  • Bartolome and Santiago Island

    Today, we woke early in the morning to explore of the most famous island of Galapagos, known for its unique topography and moonscape, with many volcanic formations and a legendary iconic monument called Pinnacle Rock.

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  • Charles Darwin Research Station and Highlands

    We awoke to find National Geographic Islander peacefully anchored in the crowded harbor of Academy Bay, of Santa Cruz Island. The bustling town of Puerto Ayora with some 20,000 inhabitants was well awake by the time we disembarked at 8:00 a.m., taking buses to the east end of town. We walked about a half-mile to the headquarters of the Charles Darwin Research Station (CDRS) and the national park. Our naturalists Cindy, Gianna, and Ixora explained about the successful breeding program for endangered species of giant tortoises and we photographed Super Diego, a tortoise from Española Island who has been an excellent breeder. We learned that from a dangerously small total population of 15 adult tortoises which were brought into captivity so they could find one another to mate, there are now over 2,000 tortoises again in the wild on Española.

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  • Dragon Hill and Daphne Major Islet

    Today we navigated towards the uninhabited side of Santa Cruz Island. Some of us went on a pre-breakfast outing to explore a visitor site known as Dragon Hill. After a dry landing, we walked further inland to find the nesting grounds and natural habitat of the Galapagos land iguanas. A couple of shore birds were spotted at a coastal brackish water lagoon, such as black-necked stilts and least sandpipers.

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  • Anacapa Island & Santa Cruz Island

    The first morning on board National Geographic Venture greeted us with overcast skies that gave way to bright sunshine and calm seas. Cruising the Channel Islands off the coast of Southern California is a special treat, and today was no disappointment. We began with Zodiac tours of Anacapa in the morning and finished the afternoon with hiking in historic Santa Cruz Island.

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  • Playa Zapotal

    This beautiful morning National Geographic Sea Lion anchored in front of Playa Zapotal, a first time ever for our motor vessel in this remote location in the Costa Rican northern Pacific coast.

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  • Granito de Oro, Coiba Island National Park

    After visiting Granito de Oro, it would lead one to think that if you look at the word “paradise” in the dictionary, you will find the name of this gorgeous little space. Coiba Island National Park it’s one of the most pristine and well protected parks in Panama, and the little islet of Granito de Oro offers some of the best snorkeling in this region, a rocky reef with hard coral and many, many fish.

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Please note: Daily Expedition Reports (DER’s) are posted Monday-Friday only, during normal business hours.

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