Curious and playful, Galapagos sea lions frequently join your snorkeling excursions, inviting you to dive beneath the Pacific to explore their rich undersea world. Don't be surprised if you come face-to-face with a pair of huge eyes and a sweet face as a sea lion swims around you, nuzzling your flippers and blowing bubbles!
There are only 10,000-25,000 blue whales are believed to still swim the world's oceans, and lucky guests on International Expeditions' Galapagos Islands cruise in July 2013 had a moving encounter with these huge creatures. This video was captured by naturalist and expedition leader Boli Sanchez.
Frigatebirds have a well-earned reputation as the pirates of the skies above the Galapagos -- they are notorious for stealing food from other birds -- an evolutionary necessity as frigatebirds do not have water-proof wings like other sea birds! But even pirates have to settle down, and the male frigate's conspicuous ruby gullar sac and rapturous high-pitched cries are ideal for attracting a mate.
Huge land iguanas were once so prolific on various islands in the Galapagos that Charles Darwin once complained they left nowhere to pitch his tent as the ground was undermined by their burrows. Today, the archipelagos' two endemic species of land iguanas are confined to just seven islands.
While in the Galapagos Islands, sea lions will serve as your unofficial welcoming committee before becoming your constant companions during International Expeditions' seven-day journey. And although Galapagos sea lions seem awkward on land, their lurching side-to-side gait gives way to elegant, speedy twists and turns as they play in the waves or join your for a swim. Join International Expeditions in this wildlife paradise.
If the Galapagos Islands had a mascot, it would undoubtedly be its famed giant tortoises. Living over 150 years, the sizes and shapes of the tortoises vary from island to island. Spend a day on Santa Cruz among these gentle giants - a humbling chance to stand steps away from tortoises in the wild and learn about efforts to conserve the species while at the Charles Darwin Research Station. Join International Expeditions Galapagos cruise in this wildlife paradise.
Enjoy the latest Galapagos cruise video from our Brazilian travel guide Cassiano Zaparoli — “Zapa” — IE's Pantanal Expedition Leader and resident master "photog." Zapa is keen on birding photography, and has traveled and guided extensively. His passion for birding and wildlife has made him one of the most renowned naturalist guides in Brazil. Zapa shot this video on one of our Galapagos voyages with one comment that succinctly summarizes the whole Galapagos experience:
"Um paraíso chamado Galápagos...
A paradise called Galapagos..."
The video below comes to us courtesy of Jorge Salas, who has been an Amazon travel guide for more than 19 years, and a favorite among IE guests.
Special thanks to a frequent IE traveler, Bob Safay, who created and submitted this video from his Galapagos Islands tour. Wildlife enthusiasts the world over know Galapagos for its unusual wildlife — boobies boasting jewel-colored feet, a cormorant that can’t fly, an iguana that dives for food and more! But, speaking from experience, it’s not only just the magnificent images of the islands that will secure a place among your favorite journeys. The Galapagos Islands also have a sound that is truly their own!