CC’s mum visits Isla Damas

Today we were off to spot wildlife!

In particular, the Humboldt Penguin – but also lots of other birds and animals (if we were lucky). Our destination was the Reserva Nacionalย Pingรผino de Humboldt, which consists of a few islands off the coast of Chile. These islands can be viewed on a boat trip from Punta Choros. One of the islands – Isla Damas – you are also allowed to walk around. Punta Choros is around 2 hours by bus from La Serena, and there is only one bus – which leaves from outside a Greek bakery at 9am (Yes that’s true, and yes we were on that bus!)

The tours all operate in the same manner – a boat ride around the islands, and then an hour on Isla Damas where you can walk on some trails. Only an hour is permitted on Isla Damas, as that’s the park rules – to minimise disturbance to the wildlife.

The whole boat trip lasts around 3 – 4 hours, and the only bus back goes at 3pm – so it’s a tight schedule, with 2 hours on the bus, then the boat trip, then 2 hours on the bus back to La Serena – arriving at around 5pm. We took a packed lunch which we managed to gobble up while we were on Isla Damas.

All in all, the day went very well – with lots of wildlife viewing ๐Ÿ™‚ The only downside was that it was very grey and overcast – so with the poor light and the moving of the boat, a lot of our pictures ended up quite blurred ๐Ÿ™


BUT, as we have said before on this blog…. ‘Blurred photos of birds are better than no photo of birds’…. so we are going to share them anyway ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

So, first off – it was time to get ready to board the boat!

The seafarers are ready for action!

Once we were out on the water we headed straight for the first island – where the boat driver cruised along the edges looking for wildlife. We did the same for a second island (the islands are called Isla Choros and Isla Gaviota)….and on both islands we saw lots of wildlife, of which we took lots of blurred pictures……

Peruvian Booby
Pelicans, boobies, and coromorants all hang out together…
Red-legged cormorants
Guanay cormorant
Humboldt Penguin
Risso’s doplhins – yes I know you can only see the fins – but we were reliably informed by the guide that these were Risso’s dolphins – so a first for us! ๐Ÿ™‚
Baby south america sea-lion
Sea otter – we saw lots of these – they were awesome, but hard to take pictures of…
Penguin and booby on a slippery rock!
Peruvian pelicans

So we were very happy with our boat ride – a non-stop wildlife extravaganza!

Next stop – a walk on Isla Damas – this was more about the scenery and a leg stretch as we didn’t see much wildlife while we were on the island.


The island has plants and flowers that only grow in the reserve – and so are quite unique. It was a very pleasant place to wander around.

Check out the island vegetation.
Common diuca-finch on a cactus.
View from the top of the island.
CC and PB on the island.
CC’s mum on the island.
While we are on the island, our boat waits patiently….

After Isla Damas, the boat returned to Punta Choros, and then it was time for the bus home… CC’s mum had a great day spotting wildlife (and so did we ๐Ÿ™‚ ) and so of course as we like lists so much – we made her a special list of the day’s wildlife when we got home…..

CC’s mum’s list of wildlife – expertly written in PB’s finest handwrting….

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