It started with an encounter two years ago in Cuba… which made me want to know more about Ecuador and the Galapagos….

Still amazed by the beauty and diversity of continental Ecuador, its people, food, faith and nature, I feel extremely privileged to experience the protected islands of the Galapagos which started  with the very urban celebrations of the New Year’s Eve in fascinating Guayaquil!

First we had to leave quiet Cuenca and its glorious Panama hats which owe their names to president Roosevelt who bought them for Panama Straight workers and the Homero Ortega owner bargained with me the purchase of my green hat….! 

We visited Cuenca Church with my amazing guide Romero Tutin, one of the most recognized high mountain guide who is slightly frustrated by the fact that having done one hike at the speed of an aging Galapagos turtle, I refused the mythical Chimborazo hike and preferred being pampered in the Baños hot springs !!!

Another Baroque church (the former  Cathedral) of Cuenca…

Then crossing the Sierra…

Then fields of cocoa 

Banana plantations (where I learnt that in order to now save all the bananas, not only do they put them under plastic but also add a separation between them). Of course the naturally grown ones are tastier but only 30% of them makes it till the end of the process! I have never seen a country that makes so much use of bananas in its cuisine by the way…
Rice paddies 

Mango groves…Did you say Paradise…!

Well…Galapagos is even more incredible! As laid back as can be, it hosts amazing animal and vegetal life, breathtaking landscapes and an incredible cohabitation of men and animals…in San Cristobal…

...Santa Cruz….

Mais la merveille fut ma découverte de l’Isla Isabela la plus sauvage… mais pour combien de temps…? déjà le Muelle est bétonné et l’une des rues de ce village mais les autres sont encore des chemins sablonneux peuplés des descendants d’anciens bagnards souriants, insouciants et hâbleurs!

Après cet ultime lever de soleil à Santa Cruz, l’incroyable plage de Tortuga Bay où les tortues nidifient…et les hérons prennent la pause à quelques mètres des requins marteaux, fous à pattes bleues et des ignanes spectaculaires…Après une vue de mes deux îles éponymes Daphné Major et Daphné Minor, un bref retour à Quito by night et un immense MERCI à mon guide Ramiro Tutin (ainsi que Victor, Fausto et Luis) pour m’avoir permis de découvrir l’Equateur et les Galapagos de manière merveilleuse!!!! Un goût de revenez-y, c’est certain!!!!

One thought on “Starting the New Year under the sign of environment

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