Continue to the Charles Darwin Research Station. The CDRS is an international not-for-profit organization that provides scientific research, technical information and assistance to ensure the proper preservation of the Galápagos Islands. Visitors can learn about natural history, issues concerning the islands, and see the tortoise breeding and rearing project at work.
Osborn Islet is a small island to the southeast of Espanola Island is a marine visit where you can enjoy fantastic snorkeling and swimming.
Suarez Point is one of the most outstanding wildlife areas of the archipelago, with a long list of species found along its cliffs and sand or pebble beaches. In addition to five species of nesting seabirds there are the curious and bold Española Island mockingbirds, Galápagos doves and Galápagos hawks. Several types of reptiles, including the marine iguana and the oversized lava lizard, are unique to this island.
Continue to Leon Dormido, or Kicker Rock. This small, distinctive island comprises two rocks which jut out of the ocean and is home to a large colony of sea birds. Kicker Rock is an excellent dive site where you could see many reef fish as well as hammerhead and Galápagos sharks. Sightings of large rays and turtles are common but not guaranteed.
One of the first sites visited by Charles Darwin, Cerro Brujo is a beautiful white-sand beach where brown pelicans, blue-footed boobies, sea lions, and marine iguanas can all be found. An onshore version of nearby Kicker Rocks, Cerro Brujo is a very striking, eroded tuff cone. There is also fantastic snorkelling in the turquoise waters.
South Plaza has one of the largest populations of land iguanas in the Galapagos. It is also home to marine iguanas and a hybrid iguana whose fathers are marine iguanas and mothers are land iguanas. There are cliffs with spectacular views and a rocky trail circumnavigates the island displaying the combination of dry and coastal vegetation zone. The island is home to enormous prickly pear cactus and the endemic succulent sesuvian.
Hike Prince Phillip's Steps, an extraordinary, steep path leading through a seabird colony full of life, up to cliffs that are 25m high. At the top the trail continues inland, passing more seabird colonies in a thin palo santo forest. Leaving the forest you can overview a rocky plain. You could get a view of masked and red-footed boobies, great frigate birds, swallow-tailed gulls, red-billed tropicbirds and hundreds of storm petrels at the edge of the cliff.
Bartolomé Island is a volcanic islet just off the east coast of Santiago Island in the Galápagos Islands Group. It is one of the "younger" islands in the Galápagos archipelago. This island, and Sulivan Bay on Santiago island, are named after naturalist and life-long friend of Charles Darwin, Sir Bartholomew James Sulivan, who was a Lieutenant aboard HMS Beagle.
Chinese Hat or Sombrero Chino is named after its shape formed by volcanic rock giving it the name, Chinese Hat. Since it was given a maximum visiting capacity by the National Park Service it offers rare, up close viewing of Galapagos wildlife and well preserved remnants of fragile volcanic rock that can’t be found in such a unique condition anywhere else. The islet is home to a colony of sea lions on the white coral sand beach. Here you can see American Oystercatchers, Galapagos Penguins swimming along the shores, and Sally-Lightfoot Crabs in bright contrast to the dark volcanic rock.