Our first full day of our expedition and we are going to the center of the archipelago, Santa Cruz Island, to see what may be the most iconic Galapagos animal, the giant tortoises. No doubt they are wonderful and interesting, but the island has many other things that are worthwhile to experience.

Heading for the highlands of Santa Cruz, the weather was a bit drizzly. Our first stop was to visit a lava tunnel, which meant we were under a natural roof, and nobody got wet. Our second stop was to visit El Trapiche, a farm whose 85-year-old owner still runs the show. You may become an unexpected volunteer and end up milling sugar cane, peeling coffee beans, swirling molasses, or tasting moonshine! It was really a lot of fun!

After the farm, our destination was to visit Los Gemelos, a pair of enormous sink holes surrounded by the remnants of what used to be the forest before the arrival of settlers.

It was past noon, so we were hungry and headed for El Manzanillo to have lunch and see our gentle giants, the tortoises.