floreana explored

we decided while we were on santa cruz island we’d try and get to one more island on a day tour.  we boarded a small power boat to wave pound our way to floreana for about 1.5 hours.  we traveled with a group of elder canadians thinking hmmm they don’t look like they’re going to snorkle but…

the hike through the interior of floreana was beautiful and different from the other islands.  this island has mysterious history etched in its rocks and paths.  Irishman Patrick Watkins was marooned here in 1807-09.  Lichen used to dye textiles was harvested but didn’t make a go of it.  Then a small penal colony was established along with tyranny, slavery and murder.  in 1929 eccentric German philosopher Ritter eloped with his misress.  In 1932 the Wittmers arrived and then Baroness von Wagner Bosquet (along with her 3 lovers) disembarked later in the year.  Stories abound about what happened, but basically no one got along and eventually almost everyone was murdered or disappeared.  i was warned to keep ahold of Jim in case the ghost of the Baroness wanted to take him.  he’s still on Chesapeake.

the hike was interesting but Jim was having foot problems which made the hike more of a painful ordeal but he was a trooper.  lunch was provided at a small place by the water and it was incredibly good.  we had our first pan de yuca (sounds like you ka) that looked like coconut macroons but tasted way better.  it’s a starch and very popular all over Ecuador.

after a brief rest on the beach in the blazing sun we got back on the boat and went to a small rock for snorkling.  Jim and i were the only ones going, along with the guide.   we were disappointed as we didn’t stay long, the water was murky and there wasn’t much sea life.  we did see a few turtles a a couple of larger fish but nothing compared to what we saw in the Las Perlas islands in Panama.

then it was a long ride back.  note to self:  book a day tour with a snorkle company, not a tour company.

a great blue heron

flowers along the path

stone carving with lichen

mosh pit of land tortoises chowing down

a donkey waiting in the jungle, probably used to carry the food for the tortoises.  not sure why he’s painted purple – maybe it’s some kind of medicine.

Nazca booby we saw from the boat as we were leaving

another Nazca booby

no pictures of the turtles because i left my camera on the seat in the boat.  probably just as well since the water was so murky.

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