Vacationers from across the globe book Galapagos Islands cruises to see the archipelago's famed wildlife, which includes some of the most fascinating and approachable creatures on the planet. That distinction extends to the seas surrounding the South American island chain, and some of the region's most interesting marine life can be found in the waters of Black Turtle Cove.

The cove is actually a red mangrove estuary located on the north side of Santa Cruz Island and can only be reached by panga so as to preserve the local wildlife and the environment in which they thrive.

Home to numerous marine species, recent years has seen Black Turtle Cove turn into a nursery of sorts for sharks and rays. White- and black-tipped reef sharks swarm the area, as do large schools of golden and spotted eagle rays. The cove has even served as host to hammerhead sharks, though they are less prevalent. During your Galapagos cruise with International Expeditions, your survey of Black Turtle Cove will include time to drift peacefully along the water, absorbing the sounds and sites of this magical area.

Of course, the cove takes its name from the sea turtles that frequent the cove to mate.

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