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Diving with Darwin: Day Three

Frigate Birds

Diving at Tortuga Island, Isabela:

How I slept. I bobbed up and down dreaming of diving. In my dream there was someone unfamiliar in the water- but I could not make out his face.

Bright and early, we jumped into today’s boat and met the excellent crew. All our kit was ready and the captain, himself an expert local Divemaster, took us on an exhilarating ride to our dive location at Tortuga Island. Both dives were drift dives with what felt like a medium current along the external rim of an ancient volcano. The visibility was about 15 metres on our first dive but less on our second. Sadly sharks stayed hidden. However, I was delighted to see green sea turtles, some stingrays and marbled rays resting in sandy nooks out of the current’s lure. We also saw a large shoal of Galápagos barracuda on our first dive. As a dive site we both thought it was interesting with bigger marine life the main attraction. As for pretty things to see there are few corals in the Galápagos, although on the volcanic island wall we spotted a few horizontally positioned fan corals. In addition there are over 500 species of beautiful fish (25 % of which are endemic), 24 marine mammal species and 27 shark species n the archipelago so divers have a range of life, much of it unique, to enjoy.


Afterwards we were taken inside Tortuga Island to see the caldera. Amazing to think that we had been diving around the edge of an extinct, and once enormous, volcano. Angular frigate birds, turtles and stingrays, relaxing in the shallow waters of the bay, accompanied us. All our kit was sorted by staff as we tucked in to a three-course lunch of asparagus soup, squid in garlic, followed by a perfect lime cheesecake.

Now we are retreating to our huge bed again. We have left the curtains open over the crashing shore….

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