Joining you aboard Nemo III for his fourth Australian Geographic Society (AGS) Galápagos voyage will be Ian Connellan. An AGS advisory councillorand editor-at-large of the Australian Geographic journal, Ian has hosted AGS groups in places as diverse as the Everest region in Nepal, Latin America and various wild parts of Australia. He brings along a geographer’s curiosity, a photographer’s eye and 30 years’ worth of yarns and insights gained in his work and travels. Co-host on the voyage will beIan’s equally curious partner Gail MacCallum. By joining Ian and Gail, you’ll help to raise funds for the AGS’s work in Australia.
As we fly from Quito to the Galapagos Islands, located in the equatorial water of the Pacific Ocean, we suddenly find ourselves in a very different world. As we board our vessel, the Nemo III, and follow in the footsteps of Charles Darwin, we start to encounter nature at its finest. Remote Genovesa Island is a bird-lover’s paradise with three species of boobies present, all resplendent and wearing their colourful ‘shoes’. Storm petrels and frigatebirds can also be seen, as well as a myriad of underwater life. A walk on Santiago’s eastern coast, Sullivan Bay, takes us over Pahoe-Hoe lava. On Santa Cruz Island we visit the Charles Darwin Research Station for up-close encounters with giant tortoises. We visit Isabela Island and walk on top of the black lava field for breathtaking views of Sierra Negra. This is indeed the Galapagos journey with something for everyone.
Ian’s love of learning, passion for accuracy and enthusiasm for all things new has seen him through a 25-year career as a journalist, writer, photographer and magazine and book editor. He’s travelled widely, written countless articles and authored several Lonely Planet travel guides; as a Lonely Planet Images (now Getty Images) photographer he’s had scores of photos published in magazines, books and online. Ian’s a regular guest expert on various radio broadcasts, an occasional photography competition judge, and a photography tutor – he’s the host of the AGS’s Masterclass photography workshops, and has also presented for Chris Bray Photography. Ian spent five years as editor-in-chief of the Australian Geographic group, leaving in 2013 to move to Hobart to avoid Sydney traffic and spend more time on photography and expeditions.
A traveller from childhood, Gail’s a meticulous planner and dogged miner of information about natural history, culture and food. Her work background is in publishing, where she’s enjoyed a stellar 20-year career. She’s edited and published fiction and non-fiction books, written and edited for several magazines and newspapers, and performed the mind-numbingly complex role of chief sub-editor for two of Australia’s iconic publications – The Bulletin and Reader’s Digest. Gail first travelled to Latin America in 2010 and returned in 2012 for an extended visit. With Ian, she’s hosted AGS voyages in the Galápagos, visited Ecuador’s marvellous Yasuni National Park and slogged upstream in Canaima National Park, Venezuela, for a look Angel Falls. Early in 2013 she joined Ian to manage the AGS’s scientific expedition camp in the East Kimberley, WA.