We flew to the Galapagos this morning. The kitchen at the hotel was closed when we got up but they fed us a muffin and juice on the first part of our flight to Guayaquil. Then on the two hour flight to San Cristobal, we received a meat and cheese sandwich fixings with a beverage. I steered clear of the tomato and cucumber on the plate just to be safe. When we arrived, we had our documents in order and had to pay the $100 Galapagos National Park fee. Then Tomas met us outside and introduced himself as our guide for the week. There were eleven of us in the group and they drove us in a bus to Casa Opuntia. The room they put us in was on the second floor and overlooked the dining area and out to the ocean. It felt very tropical and like we were really on vacation now!
We had a wonderful lunch of soup and ceviche at the hotel and then headed out for a walk and snorkeling. Tomas and the staff had helped outfit us with wetsuits ($5-$10 depending on shorty or full) and fins. We had brought our own masks and snorkel just because we preferred not to get a rental. We walked about a mile down the coast and through town to a center where Tomas took us through an overall history of the island and the wildlife. Then we walked on through the low-lying trees and shrubs over a hill to Darwin’s Bay for snorkeling. The water was very brisk and I was thankful for the wetsuit. There was a variety of snorkeling skillsets represented in the group from beginner to advanced. I am a bit more tentative and not a strong swimmer so the bay was a great place to begin and get comfortable with the gear again. We snorkeled for about an hour and then continued on the hike up Frigate Hill for some great 360 degree views.