Playa Mann....the only time there wasn't a sea lion or sea lion crap in shot!
With heavy hearts we set off early the next day from Isabela. We were toying with staying another day or so as we'd met some really cool people and also because Casa Rosada were having a BBQ in the afternoon...tough decision! We had to get the ferry at 6am (again there's only one time slot per day) and we knew we had a long day ahead of us. We couldn't go straight to San Cristobal, so 2 hours later we back on Santa Cruz in Puerto Ayora. It was nice to be back for a few hours and we had breaky and did internet stuff for a few hours. The ferry over to San Cristobal was again at 2pm ($30 one way) and if we had thought the Isabela journeys were rough.
...mmmm...we were in for surprise! The driver seemed intent on breaking the speedboat speed record - we absolutely smashed into wave after wave and a few people at the back got completely drenched...luckily we had taken sensible seats under cover! When we arrived in Puerto Baquierzo on San Cristobal at about 4.45pm we went in search of somewhere to stay. Again, luck played us a nice hand and we bumped into a little old lady who had an appartment for rent - again, we proved we could barter for the Commonwealth by getting her down from $15 to $10 a night each...good work! We strolled around and I have to say we were a little disappointed by the 'capital' of the Galapagos - perhaps we were spoiled by going to Santa Cruz and Isabela before San Cristobal, but it just didn't give me the same special feeling as the other island.
Las Tijeratas, San Cristobal
That's not to say it's a craphole or anything...nothing of the sort, it just doesn't capture the imagination like the other two islands we had stayed on. We had a couple of beers and decided that going out was too energetic and just watched Bruno
(the hilarious and completely wrong Sacha Baron Cohen movie) in the appartment.
We set out the next day too explore the trails around the town, and after getting lost on the ridiculously badly signed trails near the Interpretation Centre, we sat and had lunch on Playa Mann - suposedly the nicest beach on this island. My lasting memory will forever be the stink of seal shit, it engulfed the nostrils and just wouldn't go away. The little buggers were everywhere, barking and sluggishly pulling themselves all over the beach, I think I only lasted half an hour there! Amanda did better than me, mainly because she is actually clinically obsessed with the furry, smelly little creatures and wanted to take another 1,000 photos of them.
Hello Mr Darwin!
another DVD night followed (the town just didn't seem that happening) - classic Anchorman had us both in stiches yet again! Another lazy day followed with some more smelly beach time and a few drinks at Calypso Bar near the waterfront.
We had managed to put our flight back to Saturday and the flight that day was an afternoon one, so a typically lazy morning preceeded us walking to the airport (yes, the airport is that close to the town that you can just toddle off down the street and get there in 5 minutes!). After checking in and getting through security, it became clear we were going to be on time taking off at 2.30pm. Eventually news filtered through that the plane coming from the mainland couldn't land because of bad weather. Now, this had to be a joke surely?! It was cloudy and there was light drizzle, I kid you not.
Bad weather my arse! Maybe Aerogal's ageing planes don't have radar or something...I just couldn't work it out. The only tiny upside was that Aerogal put us up in a hotel for the night, although on closer inspection it wasn't that great and we both agreed we wished we could've had the appartment again. Still, we watched Ecuador get stung in the last minute by Uruguay in the World Cup qualifier (much to the local bemusement) and had the alloted meal at the hotel. Sunday came and finally we were going back to the mainland and the end had come to two enlightening weeks on these unbelievable islands....let me go back!!