After arriving on Isabela island we decided to go on our own the first 2 days (DIY = do it yourself). The Wall of Tears was constructed between the years of 1945 and 1959 by prisoners in the penal colony on the island, which had been established by President José María Velasco Ibarra in 1944, using infrastructure left by the US military after World War II. The wall is about 25 m (65 feet) tall, and is said to have been the cause of thousands of deaths during its construction (Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wall_of_Tears_(Gal%C3%A1pagos_Islands)).
When the wall was built, Galapagos was not the place we appreciate and love today, it was a distant retreat for adventures or scary outcasts and a destination for political prisoners and common delinquents. This day rented two bicycles and rode the 4 kilometers to the Wall of Tear, except of a few places with to much sand to ride in. We love seeing Galapagos from the bicycles, simply because the landscape is so different from everything else we have seen.
From the Wall of Tears a trail leads to a viewpoint, but the trail also gave us the view of the wall from above
Esben enjoying the local wildlife!
On the way back we stopped at the green lake – not really a pretty sight
Stopped at a breach, but because of high tide, there was not that much beach left
Took a right turn at the next beach where we enjoyed a sandwich
Again here on Isabela you see the amazing marine iguanas. Here you see a big male looking after the baby marine iguanas. An adult male weighs about 70% more than adult females.
Taking a look at the flamingoes in a series of Lagoons that will lead you to the Breeding Center of giant tortoises on Isabela. In the bird world, the flamingo has the longest neck and longest legs in comparison to its body size. The Galapagos flamingo feeds on small crustaceans and tiny water plants. One interesting fact is that flamingos can only eat with their heads upside down. The brilliant pink coloring of Galapagos flamingos comes from their diet. Their primary food source is crustaceans, which contain carotenoids, a pigment that causes the flamingos to maintain their bright pink color. (yes these photos has gotten an extra boost of pink)
Back to Puerto Villamil (the only town on Isabela) we headed for the dock and Concha Perla. We parked the bicycles at the dock and enjoyed the locals, that were relaxing the the benches in the shade.
Others occupying the sidewalk – we love it, this is what makes Galapagos so special to us
Don’t forget to look where you put your feet, when you walk on the sidewalk
Getting to Concha Perla, which is a small wooden wharf, where you can go snorkeling. We got into the water, enjoying the cold water without a wetsuit. Okay, we enjoyed the wildlife instead! Two sea turtles swimming around. Other visitors had seen a big manta ray resting on the bottom, but we didn’t see one the day we were there. Don’t forget that it is nature – not the zoo!
This is an adult male, which you can recognize on the big tail
Swimming to the surface to breath
What a great day!