South Plaza Island & North Seymour Island
Today’s adventures will begin at South Plaza, a small islet with tall cliffs and a trail home to a variety of plants and animals. This island’s species of “Opuntia” or prickly pear cactus has been decimated by invasive species, so you’ll see young plants surrounded by nets to protect them. Keep an eye out for nests belonging to a variety of birds, such as swallow-tailed gulls, shearwaters, small ground finches, and red-billed tropicbirds. This geological uplift is also home to a colony of bachelor sea lions, with dominant bulls in various stages of recovery from battles over prime beach territory. You’ll also have an opportunity to see land iguanas up close, and learn about how they differ to marine iguanas.
Return to the vessel for lunch, at which time the Captain will sail to North Seymour Island, where a spectacular sight awaits – frigate birds with red sacs on their chests inflated, seeking mates. At the height of mating season, you’ll be surrounded by dozens, but no matter what time of year you visit, there will still be some individuals seeking mates. The Galapagos Islands are home to two different species of frigates, Great and Magnificent, and your guides will teach you to identify the difference. You will have a final opportunity to snorkel in deeper water. Look for sharks, sea lions, and starfish, along with a variety of tropical fish.
Before dinner, the captain and crew join you for a champagne toast to celebrate a wonderful week during the Captain’s farewell party. During the briefing, you’ll receive detailed instructions for disembarking the next morning. After dinner, there is a special presentation from your guides.