Our last day ! The days had passed so quickly – probably because we ever had a moment when we weren’t busy doing some high energy activity, and had dropped into bed exhausted every night ! Today we had to be up at 6 am so we could breakfast and leave the boat by 6.45. We did so, and as soon as we landed in Santa Cruz I headed straight to the ATM that I knew would accept my card. I had experienced trouble elsewhere with ATM’s and we had literally paid out bar bill and wet suit hire on the boat with our last dollar – In fact Janet only paid $5 for a drink that should have cost $7, otherwise we would have been washing dishes ! But got some money from the ATM, and then we set off to the Darwin centre where they breed the Galapagos Tortoises and raise them until they can fend for themselves in the wild. They are gradually building up the numbers on all the islands, which is good to see. After a quick walk round the centre, and seeing lots of small tortoises (of varying sizes) we had to jump on our bus that took us back across the island towards the airport, across the little water taxi ride, and then another bus to the airport at Baltra – The reverse of the route Janet and I had come in last Sunday, but this time we had Enrique arranging everything for us – much easier ! We just made it to the airport in time, bought a couple of souvenirs from the expensive airport gift shops, and all jumped on our plane to Guayaquil (and, for some, to Quito.)
On arriving in Guayaquil, we said farewell to our new found friends from the past 5 days and headed back to the Holiday Inn to get our car which had been in secure parking there. We decided to spend a night there as it was getting on, and we went over to a nearby supermarket to restock the fridge and car with perishables, and then we got the shuttle bus to run us down to a nearby Mall where I was able to buy a cheap camera to use while my good one (hopefully) dries out ! So from this point on, photos are back !
Back to the hotel and had a supper in our room from the things we had just bought, tried to catch up on the blog a bit (not very successfully), and off to sleep in preparation for an early start so we could head south towards Peru.