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Isabela Island, Galápagos

Isabela was the 2nd island on our trip.  We mainly wanted to go there so we could snorkel with penguins and seahorses, but also because everyone said it was their favorite island.  We only had 1 late afternoon/evening and 1 full day on the island so we didn’t have time to do much.

We arrived on Isabela after a long day of ferry rides starting at 7am with a 2 hour ride from San Cristobal to Santa Cruz, a 5 hour layover on Santa Cruz, then a 2 hour ferry ride from Santa Cruz to Isabela.  I was so happy to finally get there, partly because it meant I could get off speedboats and partly because it was gorgeous there!

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When we arrived, we realized the dock was 1km from the town so we hired a taxi – more like a huge sightseeing thing that I wish we’d taken a picture of – for the ride to our hotel, La Gran Tortuga.  I guess the hotel was full because they moved us to a room a block away which turned out to be just fine.

Our first impression was that we loved the main town, Puerto Villamil.  It is so tiny and full of character and we loved that roads aren’t even paved.

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We didn’t have time to do much except check in for our snorkel trip, get some laundry done and eat dinner.  For dinner, I took a risk and ordered fish and it was outstanding.  Best meal of my trip so far.  Unfortunately, I woke quite sick the next morning (maybe it wasn’t the fish?!?!).  Really unfortunately, it was also the day of our big snorkel trip to see the penguins so I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to go.  Luckily I rallied and we had an amazing day!

When we got back into port, we saw some penguins swimming around the dock.  They are so fun to watch!


There were some massive marine iguanas hanging out near the dock too.


We then wandered to Concha de Perla near the dock to see if we’d get to swim with penguins and/or sea lions.  Unfortunately neither were present although Chuck did get to swim near a marine iguana.

The next morning we took the 6am ferry from Isabela to Santa Cruz.  We were sad to leave as we really didn’t get to spend enough time on Isabela.  Next time!