As I mentioned in my last blog post, after doing the financial math, and much consternation, I decided to book a last minute cruise. My cruise ship, a yacht called the Aida Maria, held 16 passengers and 6 crew members, not at all like the cruise ships in North America. On the first night of the cruise, we needed to cruise eight hours to reach to Genovesa, a secluded and uninhabited island in the north, one of the only places that the red-footed booby lives and nests. We were fortunate enough to see baby boobies nesting.
We turned out to have a really great and mostly young group on the boat. Among our motley crew, the Irish couple and both Australian couples, the Uruguayan fellow and Swiss girl were also last-minute cruisers like myself. There were two older couples who had paid twice what we paid for the journey because they had booked many months in advance.
I had never been on a cruise before and was not exactly sure what to expect. Meals were delicious and served three times a day plus snack times, yet I hated having to wait for my dinner. Anyone that knows me, knows that I graze all day long. I hate waiting too many hours before a meal, or my blood sugar drops and I get hangry as hell. I also prefer to eat smaller meals rather than gorging myself. Sleep was easy, after popping the Ecuadorian version of Dramamine, the boat rocked me to sleep. Although there were some choppy times and a few passengers were ill.
There were daily excursions from the ship that included walking, hiking and snorkeling. I think I have had enough snorkeling to last awhile. An important note: the water is cold! I wore a shorty wetsuit and became cold after 20 minutes in the ocean. One day we had three freaking snorkel activities, which is one more than my max. However, we swam with Galapagos Penguins and sea lions- which was so damn beautiful. Below I have links to videos that one of the Australian's took with his Go-Pro. (I am totally saving up for one.) On the last day we walked around Dragon Island, and saw many land and marine iguanas, pictured below. Looking at those creatures really made me think of evolution and how those things looks so un-evolved. I seriously can see how one of the marine iguanas would inspire Godzilla.
Cruising is probably the best way to see the Galapagos. If you are debating whether it is worth it, I say go for it, especially if you have the time to negotiate a last minute cruise deal.
Hi, I'm Reverend J, a queer+ sober wanderer, activist, writer and ordained minister.