Early in the morning, we made a dry landing at South Plaza Island. Amidst the Galapagos sea lions and land iguanas, we marveled at the island's breathtaking landscape – all before breakfast.

Come afternoon, Santa Fe Island awaited. We explored its turquoise bay by kayak and snorkeling and swam alongside sea lions, green sea turtles, and eagle rays. A playful group of sea lion pups splashed water on us as we drew near, a delightful encounter. Later, we hiked to a beach where juvenile Galapagos hawks greeted us, capping off an incredible first full day aboard National Geographic Islander II.