Today we visited the island named after Ecuador’s first president, Juan Jose Flores, who decided to annex the Galapagos as part of Ecuador on his very first day as president. Floreana Island has a rich human history that dates back to World War I. At that time, European colonizers decided to leave their homes in search of a peaceful life in the middle of the South Pacific, in the Galapagos Islands.

Floreana is also home to the first mailing system of the South Pacific, a wine barrel that was established to collect and send mail by hand from passing sailors. The barrel is located in Post Office Bay. This system remains alive today thanks to visitors of the Galapagos who maintain the tradition of hand delivering mail to addresses close to their homes or future destinations. Today we started the day by continuing this tradition with a visit to Post Office Bay. The visit was followed by a beautiful Zodiac ride and kayak outing, where the cutest group of sea lion pups, sea turtles, and seabirds ambushed us.

The morning continued in the water with a warm and exciting snorkel around Champion Islet, a small piece of land right in front of Floreana Island. Our snorkel was full of rays, whitetip sharks, and playful sea lions! In the afternoon, we visited Cormorant Point, a site where flamingos are known to nest, court, and feed in one of Floreana’s brackish water lagoons.

This magical day ended with a delicious BBQ dinner under the stars in this breathtaking paradise!