04.02.2016 30 °C
Day 2 Galápagos
The art of slow travel yields excellence when paired with a bit of patience, and a willingness to get lost. There are many types of travellers on the road. Some like exuberant hotels and gourmet meals, others enjoy communal hostels, adventure and sport. Sometimes they fall somewhere in between. I think there is something to be said about slow travel, that is, minimal planning and allowing the day to unfold without having to rush off to the next big sight. This way, like today, one can find hidden gems that might have been unnoticed.
Today, was an allotted save money day! No spending unless it was on food, ice cream and water. I walked to the local market to pick up some empanadas and water for lunch. I sat in the park, munching away, looking over the map of Santa Cruz island. I decided to check out the Charles Darwin research centre. On my way there, I stumbled on a small artisan market tucked away between buildings. Through the mangrove forest, past the cemetery and the playa. I wondered around the research centre and into the turtle rehabilitation area. This area was a sanctuary for the famous giant tortoises of the Galápagos Islands. Here they are able to breed and hatch their young in safety, to be let out into the wild. The work this organization is doing is amazing. I absolutely love conservation and education. There was a small botanical garden, and I learned some local flora names. I continued to wander, with no destination in mind.
Eventually I made my way onto a side path, past some of the research buildings and through an open gate, it was open right. I walked along the sandy path and came to a absolutely gorgeous sandy beach, with not a gringo, or local, in sight. The waves crashed on the volcanic rocks in the water. I found sanctuary under a manzanillo tree, one of the most poisonous trees in the world, but rather awesome shade producer. I spent the greater part of the morning and a bit of the afternoon under that tree, reading, taking pictures and watching the iguanas surf the waves. Hakuna Mattata. I even had a little siesta!
For dinner I went to this little outdoor funky and creative eatery where I had a local delicacy. Fish ceviche and frittas. The ceviche was like a cold salad soup with local fish. The frittas, which is popular all over Ecuador, is fried plantain. Paired with a refreshing iced tea. I decided to eat here after first of all, seeing how creative the atmosphere was and second, their history on the menu explained how much they love life, love and peace. People who love life always have good food.
Love you all,