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Not everyone can explore the Galápagos Islands. There are a couple of flights and a handful of hotels on the inhabited islands, but you need a guide to take you to the visitor sites. With all the limitations, it’s hard to pretend you’re a 19th century explorer.

But your dreams of retracing Charles Darwin’s scientific steps are about to come true! In May, Google took its Street View Trekker—a bulbous camera attached to a backpack—to the archipelago. The mapping team has already trekked to Mt. Fuji, the Canadian Arctic, and the Great Barrier Reef, to name a few.

The whole imaging expedition, a cooperative effort of the Charles Darwin Foundation, Google Maps, Catlin Seaview Survey, and the Galapagos National Part Directorate, took ten days. The team hiked through wetlands on Isabela Island, marched along the craggy shorelines of San Cristobal Island, and even dove beneath the waves off the coast of Floreana Island. The results of the 360-degree photo mapping trip (on land and underwater) launched last week.

To encourage virtual wanderers to participate in citizen science, iNaturalist and the Charles Darwin Foundation launched a site called Darwin for a Day. If you happen upon an interesting species during your digital treks, you can call them out and try to identify them. And being that the Pacific islands are some of the most biodiverse places on Earth, you never know when you’ll run into a blue-footed boobie, giant ancient tortoise, frigates, or even a trove of sea lions.

Check out the gallery for our favorite island scenes.

Sea Lions Off The Coast Of Champion

Off the coast of the small island of Champion, near Floreana Island, these sea lions perform some incredible underwater acrobatics. One of the unique qualities of Galápagos sea lions is their friendly nature. Unlike most, who (rightfully) fear humans, these little guys came right up to the divers and smiled nicely for their pictures.

Galápagos Giant Tortoises

Here, a cluster of tortoises feed on leaves in a breeding center on San Cristóbal Island. The Galápagos tortoise is the largest of all tortoises, and can live for an incredibly long time—the oldest on record lived to be 152 years old. The tortoises used be hunted and now nonnative species are threatening their environment, which has led to their dwindling population and endangered status.

Lava Formation At Bahía Cartago

Though it looks like it, this is not an alien landscape. The mapping team claims it had to cross 4 km (almost 2.5 miles) of this immense lava formation on Isabela Island in order to reach the iguana restoration project.

Marine Iguanas

Charles Darwin called these wonderful little creatures hideous. The iguanas eat the algae on rocks that line shores, and can remain submerged for up to an hour, making them the only oceangoing lizard in the world. And of all the places in the world they could set sail, they only live in the Galápagos.

Magnificent Frigatebird

Here you can see a male magnificent frigatebird, with its tell-tale bright red breast. There are actually two frigatebird species on the Galápagos: the great frigatebird, and the magnificent frigatebird (not a joke).

Sierra Negra Volcano Crater

The Sierra Negra, located in the southeast region of Isabela Island, is the largest and one of the most active volcanos in the Galápagos. But despite the inner turmoil, its crater is lush and covered with mist.

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