Blogs from Genovesa Island, Galápagos, Ecuador, South America


South America » Ecuador » Galápagos » Genovesa Island November 11th 2019

We awoke to find ourselves in beautiful Darwin Bay, on Genovesa Island, then transferred by Panga to Darwin beach for a hike round Genovesa which is mainly volcanic lava fields with dried up trees, some lagoons, and a beautiful beach, populated by sea lions, Marine Iguanas, and dozens of species of birds, many nesting on the ground shrub on the beach. These animals and birds have not learned to be afraid of humans, as the islands were totally uninhabited until relatively recently, and are 600 miles from the Ecuador coast. I could not believe that we could walk right up to them, including ground nesting birds, and they didn't flinch. In fact we had to be very careful not to stand on them at times! In the afternoon we snorkelled off the boat at El Barranco, ... read more

South America » Ecuador » Galápagos » Genovesa Island November 9th 2019

Well here we go! Dreamed of this trip for years and booked it over a year ago. Because of riots and Martial law, which settled only a week or so before we were due to depart, and GAdventures cancelling all Ecuador trips, we didn't know if we could go until only 3 days before our departure date. The indigenous population had invaded Quito in their thousands and blocked every road into, and within the city, and threatened to burn the parliament building, causing the entire parliament to flee to Guayancil. There were many injuries and a few fatalities due mainly to the heavy handedness of the police, following declaration of State of Emergency and imposition of curfews. They were protesting about austerity and specifically, the removal of fuel subsidies, brought about by the IMF insistence on ... read more

South America » Ecuador » Galápagos » Genovesa Island November 27th 2018

Regular schedule is 07:00 breakfast and out today at 07:30. Overnight we had navigated to Genovesa Island and we were anchored in Darwin Bay. At 08:00 we did our first wet-landing which means we arrive at a beach and then jump off the zodiac boat which is an inflatable motor boat into the water and walk onto the beach, carrying our shoes. Here we saw a lot of wildlife close-up, sea lions, petrels, red footed boobies and other birdlife. This walk was about 60 minutes and we then returned to the boat for a drink and snacks before going for our first snorkeling adventure. Unfortunately, I had a lot of trouble taking in too much sea-water as the sea was quite choppy in the area we were snorkeling in. The other times I have snorkeled were ... read more

South America » Ecuador » Galápagos » Genovesa Island August 28th 2017

Our activities today were all on Genovesa Island. Like just about all of the islands of the Galápagos, Genovesa has its Spanish name and also an English name, in this case Tower Island. It is also known informally as Bird Island because of the large number and numerous types of seabirds which nest here and raise their young, and also smaller birds that are restricted to land. Like most of the islands in the Galápagos, it is a shield volcano, although active within historical times. The center is a large caldera with one wall blown out during an eruption so that the island virtually encloses Bahia Darwin (Darwin Bay). We started our day at El Barranco and then Bahia Darwin. El Barranco gave us a prelude of the rest of the entire trip - you are ... read more
"Prickleless" prickly pear
Frigate bird
Galápagos mockingbird

This morning we crossed the equator to the Northern Hemisphere. We arrived at Genovesa Island and anchored in Darwin Bay, a huge submerged caldera of a dormant volcano. Genovesa is the island of the birds, one million of them, red-footed boobies, frigate birds, swallow tailed gulls, storm petrels, Nazca boobies and short eared owls. We sighted all species, an overwhelming seabird experience. This is mating season for the boobies and the frigates. The male frigates have a giant pouch that inflates upon their chest. They will sit waiting with the pouch inflated, fasting, for up to 10 days to attract a female. We observed these large birds, with a wing span of about 8 feet in the midst of their courting ceremony. In some cases a group of 5 or 6 juvenile males gather together as ... read more
Frigate Male
Prince Philip's Steps

South America » Ecuador » Galápagos » Genovesa Island November 11th 2012

Geo: 0.317229, -89.9574Breakfast was a buffet in the dining room as each morning. Then we headed to Genovesa Island. Actually we were anchored inside the caldera of a volcano so we were basically already at the island. We took the zodiac to a cliff wall where we climbed some steps in the cliff wall and climbed to the rim of the volcano. There we saw our first glimpse of boobys. We saw nasca boobies at first and then as we walked along we also got to see red footed boobies. We also saw frigate birds and marine iguanas. Then it was back to the ship for lunch. After lunch we did our white elephant exchange before getting ready to go to our next shore excursion.In the afternoon, we went to a beachy area in the caldera ... read more
Nazca Booby
Red Footed Booby
Genovesa Island Landscape

South America » Ecuador » Galápagos » Genovesa Island May 11th 2012

At 5:30am the boat engine cut off and I could see out the port window that we had arrived in Genovesa and the sun was just coming up. I went up to the uncovered deck to get a look. Everybody else was still asleep. There were thousands and thousands of birds in the sky hovering over the fairly small cliff edge. Three other boats had arrived as well and were anchored nearby, Genevieve (a large sailboat), Daphne, a first class boat we had been offered and knew this week it was a designated charter, and Comorant, what looked to be a luxury catamaran. After a few photos I went back to the room hoping to get back to sleep. No luck, 6:40 rolled around and we were getting ready for breakfast. All the meals are group ... read more
Sea lion pup looking for mom
Male frigate bird
Red Footed Boobie

South America » Ecuador » Galápagos » Genovesa Island March 17th 2011

Day 10. March 17, 2011: Genovesa, Darwin Bay Genovesa/Prince Phillip's Steps Today we had two landings on Genovesa. Genovesa is a horseshoe shaped island, with a volcanic caldera that collapsed, forming the Great Darwin Bay. On the first landing, we head up Prince Phillips’ steps/El Barranco and are surrounded by frigate birds. Some of the males are just sitting in the trees, while others have their red chests inflated and are competing for a mate. I felt like I was in an exhibit at the zoo, we were so close to so many birds. I think I could have stayed all day and watched the frigates (and I don’t even like birds). We took a walk around part of the island, and there were also very large bushes (like a tree/bush combination), with red footed boobies ... read more
Booby tree
Flying Frigates!
There were Frigate birds everywhere

South America » Ecuador » Galápagos » Genovesa Island December 20th 2009

I was very fortunate to be able to visit the island of Genovesa. The Guantanamera boat is one of the only tourist class boats that make the trek so far north to see this island, which was part of the reason why I ended up choosing this boat. We started the day by taking the dinghy boat around the cliffs of the island and getting a better look at Darwin´s Bay. Genovesa is famous for its red footed boobies and fur sea lions, along with many other species of frigate birds, tropid birds,a nd swallow-tailed gulls. Because of the lack of boat traffic here the water was very undisturbed and crystal clear - you could see all the fish swimming in the reef below right from the dinghy boat! We did a quick hike across the ... read more

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