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I want to live in Galápagos

ECUADOR | Saturday, 17 March 2007 | Views [3650] | Comments [3]

Why is it that the most amazing adventures are so difficult to describe? I have been reflecting on my time in Galápagos since I arrived back on mainland Ecuador and its really daunting to try and pen words that illustrate my experience there. Here goes.....

The Boat:

Was named the Friendship and had 16 passengers aboard (half of which switched after 4 days). To start with, I joined the boat along with a "United Nations" of passengers - a couple from Iceland, a couple from Ireland, 2 gal pals from Canada & Kenya/England respectively and a crazy dutchman for good measure! Already on board were a bunch of surly Israeli´s and yanks that didnt really have much to say to us newbies but that was ok! We had a ball and i met some mates that I will definitely catch up with later on.

The cabins were "Lani size" i.e only comfortable for people 5ft and under, which was fine for me! But not too good for my lanky tall roomie Peet from Holland (maybe he was 6ft or over???) but we all slept lots anyway because the rocking of the boat is so relaxing its hard to stay awake! We had a blast drinking beers on top deck - cruising the open water each afternoon - reading, lounging and topping up the tan!

The Crew:

An ecclectic bunch of locals, most born and bred in Galápagos. My mate Orsallo (the deputy captain) let me steer the boat into port a few times; our excellent waiter Vilmer (the hardest working person on the boat); our spunky captain who took the time to personally explain the entire voyage to me and draw a map for me to take home; and the other lads on board - chef & deputy, engineer and crewmen were outstanding!

Our Guides:

For the first 4 days we were led by Miguel - a middle aged bloke from the mainland that had a bee in his bonnet about "all those bloody Canadian and Australian guides coming to Galápagos and taking our jobs..." but I seemed to get on alright with him once I assured him I wasnt interested in a guides job.

Our guide for the last 4 days was César - 69 years old with the heart of an 18 year old fella! César was excellent - hes been guiding in Galápagos for 35 years and has seen it all! He was the fastest swimmer of the whole group and a daredevil - getting much closer to the sting-rays than I was prepared to (after the Steve Irwin connection and all...) César tried desperately to get me to stay and marry one of his 2 single sons on Galápagos (he was even calling me "daughter in law") but alas I had to decline. He has invited me to stay at his place in 2009 when he and his girlfriend (shes 25 years younger than him) get married & attend the wedding! 

The Islands:

Were absolutely beautiful. Our day trips ranged from Ravida - the red sandy volcano island to beautiful Seymour - where we walked with sea lions and danced with blue footed boobies. We snorkelled nearly every day (sometimes twice) and saw the most amazing wildlife - sea lions, turtles, star fish, rays, sharks, tropical fish, sea urchins, coral..... it was amazing! Off the coast of Isla Floreaña we snorkelled for over 2 hours and it was like swimming in an aquarium. Thanks mum & dad for getting me swimming lessons from an early age as some of the passengers missed out on the snorkelling becuase they weren´t strong swimmers! I would have been disppointed to miss such wonderful sights!

On land we trekked alongside iguannas, sea lions, birds galore and land turtles. At times we were so close to the animals I had to stop and pinch myself to realise how lucky I am to be here! On one of the islands (which are all volcanos) I walked 2km into the earth in a lava tunnel (a tunnel created when the lava flowed from the volcano). It was really scary and a bit claustrophobic, but definitely an experience!


Will I be back? Definitely. Gotta start saving now...... I think its something that everyone should see in their lifetime.

Just another day on Galápagos

Just another day on Galápagos

Tags: Beaches & sunshine



wow lani!!
it sounds amazing xoxox
thanks so much for keeping us all up2 date with ur adventures
love you

  meegan Mar 21, 2007 9:46 PM


Hey Lani! I really enjoyed that read and would love to see the iguanas and sea turtles!! it all sounds amazing- mucho fotos por favor!!! ;) keep having amazing adventures x0x

  Sarah Mar 22, 2007 9:25 AM


Lani, Both Carrie and I are green! It sounds so wonderful, a real experience of a lifetime. Thanks also for the great postcard, it has been drooled over and now holds pride of place on the fridge door!
Cheers, keep on adventuring, Dave

  Dave Mar 28, 2007 12:22 PM



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