Wednesday, November 02, 2005
What a day! I arrived in Loreto yesterday after a 5h bus ride from La Paz. We came along a pretty hairy road - lots of twists and turns but the scenery was spectacular! Cacti everywhere and lots of arid resistent looking plants, but they kept changing every time we went round a bend! Thankfully it was a little overcast so as I pottered through the town to my chosen hotel I wasn't too hot. I checked in to the Posada San Martin - which seems to be a pleasant place, though last night it started out as a two cockroach hotel and swiftly became a one cockroach ranking and this afternoon I notice my fellow inhabitant has departed too, may be my socks smell too much!!!
Last night I went from tour operator to tour operator trying to organise a few trips, being on my own seems to hamper this somewhat but nevertheless about 8pm a lass from Las Parras Tours came and knocked on my door - did I still want to go out to the islands tomorrow for a little kayaking? Yes!!!! I dined at a fabulous (in expensive) place, Islas Loreto, on local fish which had the texture of monkfish but I cound't catch its name......
This morning I was down at the harbour at 8.30 where I was directed to the boat with the kayak on the roof, El Coralito, and met with Andi and Olga, from Germany. It appeared I was the only one kayaking. Our boatman, Chico, whizzed us out to Isla Coronado. First we took a tour of the island, which is in Loreto National Marine Park. The island has amazing geology (I took some piccies for you D) and down at the base of the stacks a small colony of sea lions were sunning themselves! I also spotted two osprey nests and numerous pelicans and blue footed boobies!!! We landed our craft in a 'paradisesque' white sand cove. There were a couple of palapas (my new mexican word = basher) and I put my bag down in the shade and immediately paddled off on my kayak into the brilliant turquoise waters! I floated out over the rocky reefs and could even see the fish through the water. Back at base I found that Andi and Olga had not hired masks nor snorkels, they though they were included, so I tried out Dad's old snorkel and mask, which though circa 1980 and laughed at heartily by my fellow Earthwatchers, worked very well and then I lent it to them along with the kayak. The sea was clearer from above than when I looked at it through the mask, there was a lot of silt churned up my the boats. But I could see a myriad fish. I recon there were various types of damselfish, angelfish, cornet fish, puffers, stonefish, starfish, goatfish........ Great shoals and just individuals..... I hope that my underwater disposable camera records at least a vague idea of what could see! After several more trips in the kayak and for snorkelling, we got back about 1pm and I was totally exhausted, even though I had had three quesidillas. I had a siesta and now plan to visit the Mission Museum and the Mission itself before some tapas with Andi and Olga.