- La Pinta
- Expedition Ship
- 48 Capacity
- 5 Days
- Price from
Summary : Explore the wonders of the Galapagos Islands aboard a comfortable expedition ship with kayaks, a glass-bottom boat and experienced guides. The Galapagos Islands are considered one of the most spectacular and pristine National Parks in the world. Visitors delight in the abundant, unusual, and surprisingly approachable wildlife--from Galapagos giant tortoises to playful sea lions to the fascinating blue-footed boobies.
We strongly recommend two pre-cruise nights and one post-cruise night in Quito or Guayaquil. Please inquire about adding these or other services to your trip.
Activities : Birding, Child-Friendly, Hiking, Kayaking, Snorkeling
Morning arrival at Baltra Airport and transfer to the Itabaca Channel. Cross the channel by small ferry to the north shore of Santa Cruz Island. Board a bus to the highlands of Santa Cruz Island to learn about the unique montain ecosystems and biodiversity. Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant.
After lunch,travel by bus to El Chato Reserve, one of the best places in the archipelago to see giant tortoises in their natural habitat. The tortoises are easy to spot, lumbering around, eating grass and leaves and wallowing in the small pools that are common in the reserve. Watch for highland birds like cattle egrets, mockingbirds, finches or flycatchers. There are several lava tunnels in the reserve, a great place to spot the barn owl.
After breakfast, disembark (wet landing) at a beautiful olivine beach (a volcanic crystal that forms in fast-cooling lava). The area has historical relevance since a small community lived in this area in the late 1900s, collecting lichen (Rosella Tictoria), used in the textile industry. Follow the trail to an old water hole used by the former settlers. Observe boobies, land birds and beautiful views of the northwest side of Santa Cruz Island. Several activities are possible after the walk, such as snorkeling or a panga ride along the shoreline.
Less than a quarter-of-a-square-kilometer in size, the tiny island of Sombrero Chino gets its name from its appearance: a Chinese hat. Lying just off the southeastern tip of San Salvador Island (James), this island, only formed fairly recently, makes a beautiful visit while exploring its 400-meter long trail, which begins at a crescent-shaped white sandy beach. Observe several species of shore birds along with marine iguanas, lava lizards, Galápagos penguins and sally lightfoot crabs. Experience excellent swimming and snorkeling opportunities with white-tipped reef sharks and tropical fish.
Disembark at Bartolomé Island (dry landing) for a hike to the summit. A great way to start the day! This is a steep climb up a wooden staircase with handrails and several resting and observation stops; the view from the top is worth the effort. Following the walk, a dinghy ride around colossal Pinnacle Rock, is rewarding, followed by time to enjoy the beach (wet landing) and some snorkeling, with possible Galápagos penguin sightings. Enjoy a ride in the glass-bottom boat for great views of the underwater world.
After lunch, board the pangas for a short ride to the landing site at Sullivan Bay on the east coast of Santiago. Wet landing on a white coral sand beach and a walk over lava that flowed here less than 100 years ago – the perfect place to see and feel the volcanic origin of the Galápagos Islands.
In the morning, a wet landing for an easy stroll observing thousands of birds including frigates, red-footed and masked boobies, gulls, herons, finches and mockingbirds. Take an optional walk over sharp lava and uneven terrain for dramatic views, or return to the beach to enjoy swimming and snorkeling at this beautiful natural harbor. The more adventurous can snorkel along the cliffs or paddle sea kayaks.
The afternoon starts with a very interesting Panga ride along the cliffs and then disembark (dry landing) on rocks for a steep climb (90 feet) up some stairs. Once at the top of the stairs, the land is flat, allowing for a stimulating walk of about a mile to the other side of this small island, observing large colonies of masked boobies, frigate birds and storm petrels.
Disembark on Baltra Island. Transfer to the airport to take the flight back to the mainland.
This itinerary is subject to change. ExpeditionTrips is not responsible for itinerary changes.
Dry Dock Dates: TBA
Shared transfer from main hotels in Quito (Casa Gangotena, Hilton Colon, Swissôtel, Marriott, Dann Carlton) and in Guayaquil (Hilton Colon, Oro Verde, Hampton Inn, Sheraton) to airport for flights to/from Galapagos; cabin accommodations aboard ship; all meals aboard ship, juices and carbonated drinks; all shore activities and excursions; guide and lecture services; sea kayaks; glass-bottom boat outings; snorkeling gear and wetsuits; internet and Wi-Fi; luggage handling; medical care on board (but not the cost of medication); taxes and transfers on the island. Subject to change without notice.
Hotel nights before/after cruise; transfers in Quito or Guayaquil; Galapagos National Park entrance fee, subject to change without notice; Galapagos Transit Card; international airfare; airfare to/from Galapagos Islands; alcoholic beverages; gifts and personal items; passport expenses; traveler's insurance; laundry service; gratuities to ship staff and crew are left to the discretion of the passenger; fuel surcharge may apply.
Airfare between Quito/Guayaquil and the Galapagos Islands:
The flights between mainland Ecuador (Quito or Guayaquil) and the Galapagos Islands are an additional cost. To secure your seats on often overbooked flights, ExpeditionTrips must reserve these flights for you at the time of cruise booking. Approximate cost (including service fee): $450-$600 per adult; $250-$325 per child under 12 (copy of passport required).