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Bartolome View

Cruise Fourth Day (Wednesday) - Galapagos Odyssey - 4 night / 5 day Itinerary B (Northern Islands)

AM: Bartolome – wet landing. Activities: hiking, snorkeling

  • This young and rather barren island offers steep, dramatic volcanic landscapes which are frequently photographed by its visitors.
  • Upon arrival, the first impression is the moonlike terrain of spatter, tuff cones and small lava tubes, where the only visible flora consists of pioneer species such as the Tiquilia and Chamaesyce.
  • We will then climb up a wooden stairway that leads to the summit of the island; here, you will be able to enjoy the most famous landscape of the Galapagos.
  • The view is formed by two beaches separated by a narrow band of mangroves, as well as Pinnacle Rock, a distinctive rock shaped by the practice bombings of American pilots during World War II.
  • Snorkeling off the northern beach is extremely rewarding, as it is usual to see penguins near Pinnacle Rock.
  • At the southern beach, where swimming is not allowed, it is easy to find reef sharks and rays, and green turtles that tend to nest here from January to March.

PM: Santiago - Sullivan Bay – wet landing. Activities: panga ride, snorkeling from the panga

  • This fascinating volcanic site was named after Bartholomew James Sullivan, the first lieutenant on HMS Beagle, the ship that brought Charles Darwin to the Galapagos.
  • This unique landscape is composed of a pair of eroded scoria lava cones which were engulfed by a recent (in geological terms) pahoehoe lava flow and which is considered one of the finest in the world.
  • There are easy to spot tuff cones, miniature spatter cones, and the imprints of tree branches in the once molten rock all over the island.
  • Though the lava flow is over 170 years old, it looks much more recent because of its isolation on the island, that has greatly helped to its preservation.
  • Pioneer plants such as Brachycereus cactus and the endemic herb Mollugo are starting to colonize the dark grey rocks and lava, preparing the way for other plant species.

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