Early in the morning, our boat was moored in the calm waters off Santa Cruz Island. The beach facing us was Bachas Beach, and in the distance we could see the mountains in the center of the island, where we visited the tortoise ranch on our first day.
During World War II, the United States had an air base on Baltra Island, and the remains of the barges used in those days can still be seen on the Bachas Beach. The locals found the word barge was too difficult to pronounce, so they came up with the name Bachas Beach.
Just behind the beach there is a small lagoon where flamingos and ducks often land. There were two greater flamingos standing in the water while we were there. The morning sunlight rendered the mirror-like lake with warm tone, complemented by the elegancy of the flamingos. None of us spoke, blending in with the silence.
Back on the beach, we saw a pelican standing on a reef not far from the shore grooming its feathers, with a few red crabs at its feet. In the distance was a small island that had sunk into the sea, leaving only the crater above the surface. This is the last image of the Galapagos Islands left for us.
The boat took us back to the Baltra Island ferry where we took the shuttle bus to the airport. Sitting on a bench at the airport, I actually felt a little dizzy. It is said that people who spend a lot of time on the water get “land sick” on land, and it seems to be true.
It was about 3pm when we got back to the Quito airport. Having been to Quito airport twice before, once at midnight and once in the early morning before dawn, I had never seen what it looked like until now. It still looked quite modern.
Our return flight didn’t leave until 11pm. We booked a room at the Wyndham Hotel next to the airport so we could get some rest before our departure. The hotel served a dinner buffet starting at 6pm. After dinner we slept in our room for a few hours before boarding our return flight.
The trip to the Galápagos Islands not only allowed us to enjoy the unique natural ecology of the islands in comfortable conditions, but also allowed us to understand Darwin’s theory of evolution in a more direct way. Darwin was inspired by his study of the flora and fauna of the Galápagos Islands, which led to the formation of the theory of evolution. The Galápagos Islands is not the only place in the world that is so amazing and intriguing. Far across the Pacific Ocean, the island of New Guinea is another island with a unique natural and human history. The world is a fascinating place to explore!