Duration: 6 days / 5 nights
Start / End: San Cristobal / Baltra
Highlights: Land iguanas, marine iguanas, fur seals, lava lizard, Waved Albatross (Mar-Nov), frigate bird, blue-footed boobies, red-footed boobies, short-eared owls, lava herons, sea lions, nasca boobies, sea lions, Galapagos hawk, mockingbirds, flamingos, penguins
Included: All meals and accommodation in double cabins while on board, all exursions and activities while on board, bilingual naturalist guide
Not Included: Flights to and from Galapagos, Galapagos National Park entrance fee, Migratory card fee, any extra beverages on board (anything in a bottle), tips, personal expenses
This itinerary focuses on the Central, Southern and Northern Islands, including visits to Tower and Hood Island, two of the highlights of the Galapagos Islands.
Day 1 (Sunday): Arrival San Cristóbal Island / Transfer to boat
San Cristóbal Island (Chatham): San Cristóbal is the easternmost island of Galapagos and also one of the oldest.
Pto Baquerizo Moreno: Here you will either visit El Junco o Cerro Tijereta depending on conditions, followed by a visit to the Nature Interpretation Centre. El Junco is a freshwater lagoon at 700m, with great views and ferns, miconias, pintails and gallinules. Cerro Tijereta has a frigate bird colony.
Day 2 (Monday): Española (Hood) Island
Hood Island (Española): Hood is the oldest of the Southern Islands and is the southernmost in the archipelago. Because of its remote location a unique range of endemic species evolved here
Gardner Bay: Located on the northeast of the island, the site has a long and beautiful white sand beach inhabited by sea lion colonies.
Islote Garnder and Islote Osborn: These islets are snorkeling sites where visitors will see an abundance of tropical fish, reef sharks, and turtles.
Punta Suarez: The wildlife at Punta Suarez is plentiful and varied. Along the cliff visitors can enjoy the blowhole where seawater is forced about 20m into the air. The highlights are the Waved albatross (April-Dec) that are only found on Hood, Galapagos Hawks, blue-footed boobies, Ñasca boobies, and Española lava lizards.
Day 3 (Tuesday): Santa Cruz Island
Santa Cruz Island (Indefatigable): Santa Cruz is the second largest island and the most populated of all islands.
Puerto Ayora & Charles Darwin Station: In Puerto Ayora visitors can enjoy a stroll through town and shopping at one of the many tourist shops, visit the Charles Darwin Station is a research facility and National Park Information center. The Charles Darwin Station has a giant tortoise and land iguana breeding program and interpretation center.
Highlands of Santa Cruz: Galapagos giant tortoises can be seen in the wild in the highlands of Santa Cruz.
Day 4 (Wednesday): Sombrero Chino Island / James Island
Sombrero Chino (Chinese Hat): Sombrero Chino is a small volcanic island just off the southeast tip of Santiago. The name of the island describes the shape of the island. Fauna includes Sea lions, marine iguanas and the Galapagos penguin.
James Island (Santiago): James Island is located between Isabela and Santa Cruz Islands. This Island offers a wide variety of seabirds, marine iguanas and fur seals.
Sullivan Bay: This site is of great geological interest. Highlights: 100 hundred year old lava flow field, pahoehoe formations, and lava bubbles.
Day 5 (Thursday): Tower (Genovesa) Island
Tower Island (Genovesa): Tower is an eroded flat volcanic island, with a natural harbor, which is actually the submerged caldera of this volcanic island.
Darwin Bay: The steep cliffs of this area dominate the island. This area is home to thousands of frigate birds, red-footed boobies, Noddy terns, lava gulls, tropicbirds, doves, storm petrels and Darwin’s finches.
El Barranco: There is a good possibility of seeing the unique “Short eared owl” at this site. During the dinghy rides along the cliffs fur seals and several species of seabirds can be spotted.
Day 6 (Friday): Santa Cruz Island / Baltra for return flight to Quito
Santa Cruz Island
Caleta Tortuga (Turtle Cove): Turtle Cove is a red mangrove lagoon on Santa Cruz and a perfect example of how mangroves alter the marine environment to create a rich and unique habitat.
Baltra: Return flight to Quito