A lot of people were curious after last weeks post about how close we were to the animals and if we could pet them etc. To answer that question, if you are looking for hands-on encounters with animals, then the Galapagos is NOT for you. While we were hiking, or even visiting the turtle reserve the importance of observing from a distance and not approaching nor interfering with the wildlife/nature in any way was made very clear. That being said, often times the animals didn’t seem bothered by our presence, and would move in our direction and end up fairly close to us. The Galapagos Islands are so unique and it is crucial for visitors to respect the conservation efforts if we want these incredible places to exist in the future.
After our adventures in Santa Cruz, we took a boat to Floreana which ended up being my favorite of the three islands we visited. All of the islands were wonderful in their own way, but Floreana was closer to how I pictured a trip to the Galapagos. This island was much less built up than Santa Cruz, and was a beautiful escape from everyday reality.
Our accommodations for the night were through the Red Mangrove Floreana Lodge, and we stayed in these cute little cabins. You can see our luggage waiting for us outside the room… we brought our own snorkel sets (though they were provided while we were there, but double check before you go in case this has changed), and both of us brought a duffle bag, and a backpack.
We did some snorkeling off the beach (wetsuits & beach towels were provided too! I packed my own of both since I wasn’t sure if they would be… but again, if you’re heading there, you may want to double check that that’s still the case). The snorkeling was a lot of fun and we saw a sea turtle! Unfortunately the water clarity was fairly low on that day, so my underwater photos didn’t turn out very well.
The next part of our journey was a tour of the island. I again wasn’t sure what to expect; here’s a picture of our ride:
I really enjoyed the island tour, and we saw a lot. Just a note though, if you are prone to motion sickness I’d recommend taking medication before this, and consider sitting in one of the front rows of seats. The roads were quite bumpy.
The island was full of so much unique natural beauty:
And then… we came upon one not so natural (or partially natural?) piece of landscape… the famous rock carving thought to have been done by one of the earliest settlers of the island.
Our adventures in Floreana were fairly quick, and I would have loved to stay longer but we were excited to continue onto explore in Isabela. Stay tuned for next Monday’s post which will be all about Isabela!
Bring motion sickness pills! Boating between islands did get a bit rough for those prone to sea sickness.
Pack lightly – it makes life easier when packing up and traveling island to island every couple days.
Bring hiking shoes, and beach shoes