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Playa Escondida – Discovering A Hidden Beach on Santa Cruz Island

While visiting the Galapagos islands we took a boat trip to a hidden beach called Playa Escondida. It was a beautiful spot full of marine life and getting there was half the fun.


Getting To Playa Escondida

We set out in an inflatable boat with Monica and Bolivar from the Red Mangrove Aventura Lodge on Santa Cruz Island. It was the first time I had ever taken a trip across open water in an inflatable motor boat. The sun was shining and skipping across the waves felt amazing.


Along the way there were sea birds that kept flying down really close to the boat just above our heads. I think the fishermen must feed them while they are fishing because they were very comfortable being so close to us. When we held up our hands they came even closer!

When we reached the breakers in front of Playa Escondida I was curious and a little concerned wondering how Bolivar was going to get us past them and the large rocks that I new were creating them. It was fun to be in the boat as he zigzagged  his way between the breakers working with the swells. Monica told us that there are only a few people that know how to reach the beach by boat.

Blue Footed Boobies, Sea Turtles And More

Before we reached the beach we stopped at a little rocky island and saw Blue Footed Boobies, Marine iguanas and Sally lightfoot  crabs. We got some amazing pictures of the blue footed boobies!


On our way from there to the beach we saw spotted eagle rays, golden rays and sea turtles.

While I was waiting for the others I decided to do a little wading, the water was warm. When I was about up to my waist in the water a curious white tipped reef shark swam up and examined me! I am nervous of sharks, especially curious ones, so after that I didn’t go snorkeling with Bryan, Bolivar and Monica. Drew and I decided to relax and walk along the beach.

Observing And Being Observed

As we explored the beach an inquisitive sea lion swam up and kept popping his head out of the water trying to get a better look at us. I think he may have been wondering what we were doing invading his little piece of paradise.

When Bryan came back from snorkeling he told us that two sea turtles swam right in front of him! And that they hadn’t seen any more sharks. Maybe I’ll snorkel the next time.

On our way back to the lodge we went by El Barranco. It’s a big rocky cliff right at the waters edge. It was breathtaking to see the waves crashing into the cliff! We arrived at the lodge just as the sun was setting, the sky was on fire, it was beautiful.

Galapagos Sunset - Puerto Ayora, Santa Cruz Island


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About the author: Hi, I’m Dena Haines! I’m an traveler, photographer and Canadian entrepreneur. I’m a partner at Storyteller Media, a content marketing company for Canadian travel brands. I am co-founder of Click Like This a photo tutorial blog.

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