Summary : 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. Snorkel among sea lions, hike into and roam pristine beaches on this trip of a lifetime.
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, Triple/Quad Cabins
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Free Galapagos Airfare OR Complimentary Cabin Upgrade
$3,606 to $7,371
Arrive at Baltra Airport, bus transfer to the port, check in on board. Cruise to Black Turtle Cove, a turtle sanctuary with 4 species of mangroves. Observe turtles swimming in calm waters peaking their heads above the surface while fish, rays and small sharks circle below. White-tipped reef sharks can be seen beneath the boat. Sea birds, including pelicans, herons and egrets, all feed in the cove.
Explore Santiago Island's Sullivan Bay covered by lava flows and interesting geological features formed during the last quarter of the 19th century.
Experience Rabida's unique beaches covered in dark red sand. It is considered the epicenter of the Galapagos Islands due to the diversity of its volcanic geology. Nesting Brown Pelicans are found from July through September and nine species of Darwin’s finches inhabit the island. Cruise by Zodiac along cliffs to observe nesting seabirds, and snorkel off the coast where marine life is particularly active.
Visit the volcanic ash beach and coral area at Urbina Bay. Explore the uplifted coral reef that resulted from the 1954 volcanic activity, with a spectacular view of Alcedo Volcano. After the walk, enjoy time for snorkeling. Learn about the eruption of five volcanoes that formed this island on a visit to Tagus Cove. Admire a variety of seabirds, such as blue-footed boobies, brown noddy, terns, flightless cormorant, and a large number of Galapagos penguins (seasonal).
See the biggest marine iguanas mingling with sally-light foot crabs, as well as, flightless cormorants nesting sites at Espinoza Point. At Vicente Roca Point, enjoy great deep water snorkeling at one of the richest marine havens on Earth and the opportunity to find nazca and blue-footed boobies, noddies, brown pelicans, penguins, sea turtles, flightless cormorants, and white-tipped sharks.
This morning trek through the highlands of Santa Cruz, observe the famous giant tortoises in their natural habitat, walk inside surprising lava tubes. Continue to Mosquera Islet to encounter white sandy beaches, a large colony of sea lions, and enjoy stunning snorkeling.
Arrive at South Plaza Island. Observe land and marine iguanas, sea lions, blue-footed boobies and many other sea birds. Later on at Sante Fe Island, there are opportunities to see a number of endemic species including Galapagos hawk, Galapagos snake, rice rats, a variety of finches and one of the four species of Galapagos mockingbirds.
See a rocky reef called Pitt Point on San Cristóbal Island. This is probably the only site where the three booby species of the Galapagos can be seen together: nazca, blue-footed, and red-footed; as well as two species of frigate birds, and a sea lion colony. The view is impressive when you walk up to the high part of the island. Continue to Witch Hill “Cerro Brujo,” which is an eroding tuff cone which forms cliffs where seabirds are often seen nesting. It looks over a beautiful white sand beach where you can spot sea lions, pelicans, blue-footed boobies, marine iguanas.
Today, explore the Cerro Colorado Tortoise Reserve. It has been built to improve the status of the population of the island tortoises, Geochelone chatamensis in an environment with conditions similar to their natural state; it is one of the few places where you can see Calandrinia galapagosa, a plant endemic to San Cristobal in danger of extinction. Afterwards, travel to the airport for return flights to the mainland.
This itinerary is subject to change. ExpeditionTrips is not responsible for itinerary changes. Read this itinerary as a guide only, as the exact route and the wildlife you encounter may vary.
This trip makes up part of a longer trip. Therefore you may have passengers who have already been on board when you embark, and others that may be staying on board after you disembark.
Shuttle Service: Included to the airport from the following hotels only
Quito - Patio Andaluz, Swissotel, Quito, Mercure, JW Marriot, Dann Carlton
Guayaquil - Palace, Grand Hotel, Oro Verde, Hilton Colon
Cabin accommodations and meals aboard the ship; welcome and farewell cocktail; BBQ; 24-hour coffee/tea station; shore activities and excursions; snorkeling; guide and lecture services; baggage handling, transfers, and dinghy rides to/from Galapagos ports when air tickets are pre-paid through ExpeditionTrips. Subject to change without notice.
Air ticket between mainland Ecuador (Quito or Guayaquil) and the Galapagos Islands; accommodation before/after cruise; transfers in Quito or Guayaquil unless specified above; Galapagos National Park entrance fee; Galapagos Transit Card; items of a personal nature such as laundry, medical services, consumption from the mini-bar located in suites, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages except those mentioned as included; gratuities to ship staff is left to the discretion of the passenger; traveler’s insurance; wet suit rental; kayak rental; Internet; taxes for items/activities onboard; 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): $500-$700 per adult; $350-$450 per child under 12 (copy of passport required).