For our first whole day in the Galapagos, the plan was to snorkel at Kicker Rock and a beach named Cerro Brujo and to visit La Loberia. Kicker Rock (the Spanish name is León Dormido, because it’s supposed to look like a sleeping lion), is a large rock formation off of the coast of San Cristobal which took about 45 minutes to get to from the dock in Puerto Baquerizo Moreno.
On the boat ride there, we were really luck to go by a large pod of bottlenose dolphins that swam all around our boat, playing and jumping alongside us as we motored along. It was definitely one of the highlights of the trip!
Kicker Rock itself was very impressive. Most of the perimeter was sheer cliff of several hundreds of feet.
We snorkeled through the channel in between the two rocks and around the smaller of the two rocks. Prior to getting started, the snorkeling here was hyped up quite a bit, and we were told there was a high likelihood of seeing sharks (possibly even hammerheads), sea turtles, sea lions, and other marine life. Unfortunately, the visibility wasn’t very good (and the water was cold; we would have frozen without wet suits!) and all that we were able to see was a few giant sea turtles and bright little fish.
Back in the boat, we did our best to warm up again, and then we got a “boxed” lunch, which wound up being a fancy meal of chicken with a delicious ginger sauce, rice, and fried plantains, served on nice white plates– on real plates!
The quality of the lunch made up for the cold water and limited animal sightings. After lunch, we were dropped off at a beautiful, secluded beach where we observed plenty of sea lions, marine iguanas, and brightly colored crabs. We didn’t snorkel at all here; it felt much better to soak up the sun, although we covered up quite a bit in an attempt to keep our sunburns from worsening.
Later on we visited La Loberia, which is a hot spot for wildlife activity. We saw tons more sea lions here, with plenty of pups which were too adorable.
We went snorkeling here, also, and the water was slightly warmer because it was much more shallow. Here, we saw plenty more interesting fish, lots of sea turtles munching on the seaweed, a ray, and even had a brief encounter with a sea lion in the water. We were much happier with the snorkeling in this location since there was more activity and the water temperature was more bearable. This activity was meant to be on the first day but because of our flight delay it got lumped in with Kicker Rock and Cerro Brujo beach. We were happy it didn’t get skipped altogether, because it was a fun way to close out our day’s activities.
For dinner, we walked along Main Street and decided on Casa Blanca. We started with patacones, fried plantains, before ordering fish with a coconut sauce and Peruvian ceviche for our main dishes. We decided that eating delicious food on the deck right across the street from the beach made this dinner more fun than last night’s. However, the Peruvian Ceviche wasn’t as good as non-Peruvian, in our opinion.