On the last full day of our expedition, we visited San Cristobal, one of the archipelago’s oldest islands. We started the morning with a hike to the top of an eroded tuff cone. A system of mountains created by compacted volcanic ash makes up the area. Disembarkation took place on a greenish sand beach that contains particles of olivine, a crystalized form of silica that shines green. We walked in groups through eroded cracks on the mountainsides to look for red-footed boobies. This is one of the only visitor sites in the Galapagos where red-footed boobies, blue-footed boobies, and Nazca boobies can be seen together.
In the afternoon, we visited Cerro Brujo, a beautiful, white sand beach at the base of a huge tuff cone. The area has two different beaches, one with rocks, large pieces of coral, and ash. The other is covered in fine white sand. We spent the afternoon relaxing and walking along this long beach. We enjoyed the presence of sea lions and shorebirds. Highlights included marine iguanas and fishing pelicans. With a view of Kicker Rock on the horizon, we watched the sunset from the ship.