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Rabida and Santiago

Dancers in a street parade in Quito
Dancers in a street parade in Quito
Up early and time to tour! Rabida has a darker reddish beach and a lake that we learn is so salty that few things live there. We take a boat ride around the island and find a fur seal hanging out in the rocks and nesting pelicans. Best of all is a Galapagos penguin swimming around our boat. Our guide, Jhover, imitates him perfectly and he and the penguin have a lively conversation! The blue footed boobies are dive bombing the water around us, and my head hurts every time they hit the water at mach 2! After riding around the island, we get to snorkel. Wow. The variety of fish and corals rival what we have seen diving elsewhere. The huge schools of tangs are breathtaking when the sunlight hits them as it goes through the water.

A huge yummy lunch, and more fun! We arrive on Santiago, and walk around the island. The marine iguanas are our favorites. They lie around in large clumps, and intermittently spit water, which our daughters loved. The brilliantly colored crabs, colorful lizards, and bright yellow birds are a nice contrast to the dark volcanic rock on the beach. We get to snorkel some more, and the sea turtles are swimming all around us. The highlight of the day was a penguin, who zipped through the water like a jet fighter around us. I tried to keep up with him in the water, but felt like a lumbering clumsy giant next to him. He did come right up to me in the water at the end and looked at me through my mask from about 6 inches away trying to decide exactly what I was! After a minute of us floating and staring at each other, he gave a "honk" and swam off!

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