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Sunday 28 Feb 2010
Galapagos Islands, Ecuador

Cruise Day 3

Quick summary entry for now...

  • Up REALLY early for an early trip at 6am on North Seymour island before we check in for our flights at 9am
  • Great time to see lots of wildlife: sealions with lots of pups, frigate birds in mating pose, lots more...
  • Got boat to Baltra island and then they gave us a lift to the airport and even helped us with check in! Great stuff
  • My brain was still in "sea legs" mode and so the whole world was wobbling as I walked around... in fact this still is happening 2 days later when I bend over!!! A bit like vertigo.
  • The trip was really ... 1/2 day on 25th, 2 full days on 26th/27th then 1/2 day on 28th ... so I guess it was a 3 day cruise in the end
  • Went to explore old town of Quito after I arrived back. Some very nice architecture, but it didn't really blow me away despite the UNESCO World Heritage ranking. I thought Cartagena, Colombia had much nicer-preserved buildings in the old quarter. Many people warning me about "Peligroso" Quito, I find this funny.
    A NOTE ON HOW TO AVOID GETTING ROBBED IN SA: I have never been robbed as I keep my wits about me/don't start conversations with randoms/don't walk around drunk with valuables/and know when to run (or when to act crazy to scare them away). If they have a gun it's different of course ... people reckon getting robbed in Quito is a guarantee.. pfft ... small kid tried the whole "spill icecream on you while my friend wipes you down (and relieves you of cash)" but I just got up, scoffed at how small he was, and wandered off. Backpack at the front at all times!
  • Quito is safe as a safe.
  • Anyway, bottom line: Galapagos cruise was definately one of the highlights of the trip, and a must-do... just as long as you know how to get it cheap!
  • Incidentally, Lee - who had read Darwin's account of his time on the Galapagos while doing a cruise himself (why don't I ever bring relevant books like that?!?) - told me about Darwin and his less-than-altruistic behaviour toward the animals he encountered which proved to be an eye-opener. He regarded the black iguana as "ugly stupid animals" since, after throwing one of them into the sea (as you do), it came right back to the same spot over and over. He also remarked how hard it was to crack open a penguin's skull with a rock (although I'm sure he eventually succeeded). So eh... the Galapagos might be famous because of Darwin, but ironically they could have done well without him ever setting foot there!

Pic o' day:

Santiago   Frigate bird
Santiago Frigate bird


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South America Twenty Ten

Travel blog by peterforan



After previously dipping my toes in Latin America via trips to Cuba and Central America, it's time to go for the big splash! 3 1/2 months to take in as much as I can, armed with little more than my camera, laptop and a few dodgy Spanish phrases.

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    Santa Cruz   Tame iguana everywhere
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    Santa Cruz   Marine iguana
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    Santa Cruz   Baby sealion
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    Las Tintorellas   Marine iguanas