Location: Galapagos Islands
Today we woke up to sounds of loud blasting Hispanic music and what seemed like people in agony (turned out to be sea lions). We went down to breakfast which consisted of the best bread in the whole world, and what seemed like a cinnamon role surprise from Sky and Devin, turned out to be chocolate role surprise!!
After breakfast, we headed off to the market to pick up some lunch items that we would consume at the beach: avocados and all the stuff to make guacamole (aka Devin), AMAZING bread buns, NUTELLA, strawberry jam, ham and cheese, tuna, and a ton of tortilla and plantain chips. As we waited for the shopping process to finish, we ran into Josh, a guy we had flown into the Galapagos with and ran into for the 7th time that trip. It was as if we were following each other. Then, we headed to the beach, which was about a 45-minute walk.
Tortuga Bay beach was a white sand paradise. The sand was soft and smooth, it was practically perfect. It’s laid out like a big rounded bay with a small forest at one end that you can walk through to visit a marine iguana lava rock beach, and then it winds into a cactus land beach and then into a protected estuary where we swam safely (away from the rip currents). The ocean waves were perfect surfing material and Devin wished he could have surfed them.
As I approached the water with Samantha, an Ecuadorian coast guard approached us and made it very clear that we were NOT allowed to swim in the incredible waters of this beautiful wave infested beach. He suggested we walk all the way across the beach to the estuary where it was safer to swim.
Shortly thereafter, we all sat down for lunch. Most of us had two sandwiches each. Being the healthy person that I am, I ate two large Nutella sandwiches, then Devin made us all some hand made guacamole (literally). Due to the lack of salt, we ended up pouring the rest of the tortilla chip crumbs into the Guac in attempts to make it saltier.
After lunch we spent some time playing Frisbee in the shallow water. Isabel, Skylar, Sam and I went on a sand crab hunt. We dug for as many little sand crabs as we could find, and it was strangely amusing. We later blessed Cristina with the amiability to hold one of the crabs and her shriek was truly ear-piercing (it was totally worth it though). Devin spent some time talking to one of the coast guards and found out that we were in fact able to swim in a small portion of the ocean on the other side of the beach.
Aside from this wavy beach, there was a small portion with reefs. We went there and snorkeled a little. In our disbelieve, there was not one, but TWO small sharks in the water less than two feet below us! Sam even managed to jump straight into a shark, and then proceeded to freak out and jump right into me. This was truly incredible!!!
After our wonderful beach day, we took a water taxi back to our hotel area, some of us thought we’d even seen a whale!
We got back to the hotel, showered and changed and headed off to our last cultural Galapagosian dinner at J K Williams. I personally found that to be the best dinner we’d had in the Galapagos yet! After dinner, we headed off for our nightly ice cream run. I got a double scoop of cookies ‘n cream.
We walked back to the hotel and sat down for a forum; tonight talk was about ‘What is service? As a group, we talked about benefits and consequences of ‘service’ for a good hour or so. We then headed to bed for an early travel day wake-up.