This morning, we will take a short dingy ride from the catamaran to Isabela Island. An easy hike leads us to Tintoreras Islet, located a short distance from Puerto Villamil. This is home to a great variety of wildlife - its turquoise, crystalline waters are inhabited by white-tip reef sharks, Galapagos penguins, marine turtles and sea lions. A beach here surrounded by mangroves is one of the few sites where marine iguanas can reproduce successfully.
We also visit the Sierra Negra Volcano, which is the largest basaltic caldera in the Galapagos, with a diameter of 6.2 miles (10 km). This more difficult hike rewards participants with impressive views and the opportunity to observe up to seven species of finches and a rich display of vegetation. The north side of the caldera provides evidence of its most recent volcanic activity in 2005.
The Wetlands of Isabela Island are located just outside of Puerto Villamil. They consist of lagoons, swamps, and mangroves and are home to a variety of unique bird species such as common stilts, whimbrels, white-cheeked pintails, and gallinules. After lunch, the Wetlands can be visited on foot via a path through the swamps.
Next we move on to the Arnaldo Tupiza Breeding Centre, located about one mile (1.5 km) from Puerto Villamil. In this breeding centre, tortoise populations from South Isabela, Sierra Negra Volcano, Cerro Azul, Cazuela, Cinco Cerros, Roca Union, San Pedro, Tables and Cerro Paloma have been bred as part of a conservation project.
Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner