Our scheduled stops were at Bartolome Island and Sullivan Bay on Santigao Island. This day was about the creation of Islands and the volcanic activity that happened thousands of years ago and up to as recent as the 20th Century. Only a few minutes apart by boat, the geological makeup and landscape on each locations are vastly different.
Bartolome, one of the youngest islands resembles a Martian landscape with few life forms inhabiting the island such as lava lizards, the odd snake and some cactus plants. The landscape is dotted with large boulders after volcanic eruptions sent them soaring hundreds of metres into the sky. This is a new site to be opened to the public with access only via a raised platform to preserve the landscape. The top of the walkway high up on the hill offers panoramic views out to the ocean and to Bartolome Island.
Sullivan Bay on the Island on Santiago offers a stark contrast in textures and conditions. The last eruption on this island was in the early 1900’s resulting in amazing looking lava flows resemble that of Hawaii all the way down to the coast line. As we walk across the lava flow, the heat reflects off the metal like texture making the excursion a very hot one. As we trek along the lava flows, I joke around expecting to see Han Solo appealing frozen like in carbonite in Star Wars.
The highlight of the day and up there for the trip was snorkelling with penguins afterwards near Pinnacle Rock. There were three of them chasing schools of sardines and they would be so curious that they would come up and give the camera a little peck. We see other sea creatures such as rays, sharks and sea lions however, most people would be able to
say brag that they got to swim with penguins.