Review: The Beagle, first class Galapagos yacht

by on 29th January, 2016

Review: The Beagle, first class Galapagos yacht

The Galapagos Islands have intrigued humans on many levels for centuries.

From pirates searching for food and water, to Darwin seeking to prove his theory of evolution, to the present, with people seeking a way to protect this fragile environment as well as enjoying fantastic Galapagos cruises.

Tom spent a week on The Beagle sailing boat, visiting the northern and western islands of Genovesa, Fernandina and Isabela.


Marine Iguana colony on Fernandina island Galapagos

Marine iguana colony, Fernandina, Galapagos


He writes:

“The answer became clearer on the sixth day.

The question came later, and was seemingly: Where and what is the in between?

Sailing around the Galapagos Islands on The Beagle I spent eight blissful days in a state of flux.

Aboard, our gregarious group of 13 travellers and six crew explored some of the most remote parts of the most remote islands in the world.

The uninhabited and uninhabitable northern flanks of Isabela, the coarse lava of Fernandina, and the rolling seas around.


The in between

We broke the in between that the Beagle straddled – the water and the land – jumping into crystal blue seas replete with amiable turtles, sleepy sharks and fishing penguins.

The line, this watery mark between land and sea, producing swells and crashing surf; a line that the volcanic rock resists until pummeled into stunning white or black beaches.

Where iguanas, lizards, tortoises and plants have somehow started to make a home, the land fertile but not welcoming, tough yet malleable.

There are volcanoes within volcanoes, with sea lions and grasses living in their lightning rod fissures.

There are coves within coastlines, currents within currents and lava on ash on lava.

Birds don’t always fly – such as the flightless coromorant –  and hunters don’t always hunt, like the frigate bird that steals from tropic birds.


Sea lion stretch Galapagos

Sea lion, Galapagos


The movement between words

The Galapagos Islands, nestled on its small Nazca plate, are being crushed and mashed by the giant tectonics that they sit between, as they move a few centimetres eastwards every year.

Watching this unfold, being part of the motion, it was hard to summon the words to describe it. Like the Galapagos’ existence, I needed words between words.

Between power and force.

Between wild and natural.

Between life and regeneration.

In the skyline, a crescent moon and impossibly bright stars seems to flicker into life as if painted by a brush atop the Beagle’s mast.

And we did it all in fine, civilised style, with champagne accompanying snacks, rich soups leading to sumptuous mains and sweet puddings.

Back on land, I can still feel the movements of the boat, of the water, of the laughter shared.

The answer appeared to be between now and forever. And yet somehow that was not quite right.

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