International Expeditions was thrilled to welcome World Wide Will from MedjetAssist on a recent Galapagos cruise aboard the Evolution. Now Will shares his adventure!
This adventure started with an extra day in Ecuador’s massive port city of Guayaquil. We were met at the airport by the lovely Isla, one of International Expeditions’ (IE) organizers on the ground in Ecuador. Her energetic spirit jolted us out of our jet lag haze and reminded us of the wonderful congeniality that is so typical among South Americans. We arrived in the middle of the night so we were taken directly to the hotel where we poured ourselves into the bed and crashed into a deep sleep.
When we woke up we began exploring the city of Guayaquil. Even though it was early, the city was already bustling with businessmen, shoppers and street vendors. We walked down the main street, Avenue 9 de Octobre, towards the massive Rio Guaya. As we meandered through the city we shopped and ate empanadas from little food vendors that have literally set up shop in little holes in the walls of the city’s buildings.
About halfway through our journey we detoured to the right and checked out Park De Iguanas. This considerable patch of green in the middle of the city has for years been home to scores of feral land iguanas. These large and docile lizards stroll around the park eating and interacting with the locals. Their beautiful colors seem to blend perfectly with the colorful facades of the surrounding buildings. On one side of the park an imposing cathedral rises into the air as if it is keeping watch. Bronze statues dot the green park and offer resting perches for the pigeons who, by the way, seem to have no problem pecking around the iguanas in search of a bite to eat. I think the true magic of this park is that somehow all of these unrelated items seem to find a beautiful synergy and harmony that ultimately makes the park what it is.
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