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Galapagos Islands Cruise Detailed Itineraries*
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Itinerary A - Itinerary B - Itinerary Oulines & Map (opens in new window)
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*These detailed itineraries may have slight variations to them depending upon weather and ocean conditions


Itinerary A Saturday-Saturday
8 DAYS / 7 NIGHTS

Saturday – Arrival at Baltra Airport
Upon arrival at Baltra Airport, you will first pass through an airport inspection point where your TCT (Transit Control Card) will be checked and stamped (please keep this carefully with your passport as you will need to show it again when you leave Galapagos). The $100 pp Galapagos National Park entrance fee has been pre-paid. To ensure that no foreign plants or animals are introduced to the islands, your luggage will be inspected as well. At the arrival hall a naturalist guide will meet you and escort you on a short bus ride to the harbor at Baltra. You will then be taken commence two overland excursions on Santa Cruz Island.
AM: Santa Cruz Highlands
First you will cross from Baltra Island to Santa Cruz Island via a ferry ride across the narrow strait. Then it is a one-hour drive to the Santa Cruz Highlands and passes through the agricultural zone, near the National Park boundary, the Miconia Zone, and then goes to the Fern and Sedge Zone. With clear weather (unpredictable) this area affords beautiful scenes of rolling hills and extinct volcanic cones covered with grass and lush greenery all year ‘round. Here you will visit the Twin Craters, which are two pit craters. You will also visit a local ranch where you can observe the Giant Tortoise specie of Santa Cruz Island in its natural habitat. After our Highlands visit, you will return to Puerto Ayora and the yacht for lunch.
PM: Charles Darwin Station
Although the great majority of Galapagos visitors come here to observe and appreciate natural wonders, it is also interesting to learn how the protection and conservation of the islands are carried out. The turtle breeding and rearing area of the scientific center are definitely a worthwhile visit.  (L, D)

Sunday  Floreana
AM: Punta Cormorant
This site probably offers the best flamingo lagoon in the Galapagos; it is also one of the largest islands. It’s situated between two lava tuff cones that give the area a special atmosphere. There are various species of shorebirds to observe besides flamingos; the most frequent are common stilts, white-checked pintail ducks and other migratory birds (mainly August & September). It is very interesting to see the two distinct beaches: The ‘Green Beach’ (due to its high percentage of olivine crystals in the sand) and the ‘Flour Sand Beach’ which is made up of coral. After your visit you will continue by yacht to the nearby islet known as Corona del Diablo (Devil’s Crown), where you can enjoy some great snorkeling.
PM: Post Office Bay & Baroness Lookout
Historically, Post Office Bay is the location of a wooden barrel that was placed in the 18th century by the crew of a whaling ship. Since this time it has been used by mariners and tourists as a post office. The idea is to carry letters or postcards to their destination by hand. Apart from being the Post Office Barrel, this site was the landing area for some of the first colonists. You will continue to the north of the island and ascend to an elevated slope to enjoy a beautiful view from the Baroness Lookout. It is said that Baroness Eloisa von Wagner loved this place and spent several hours watching the horizon. Within walking distance (30 m) are the ruins of what is known as her house. From this lookout, the landscape covers the coastline from the Enderby Islet to Post Office Bay, as well as Cerro Pajas, the pool of flamingos and wide forest of Palo Santo trees. (B, L, D)

Monday  Isabela Island
AM: Punta Moreno
Punta Moreno is located on the north coast of Isabela Island between the Sierra Negra and the Cerro Azul Volcanoes. The trail runs along a Pahohoe lava flow(solidified lava in the form of an accordion) into a complex of coastal lagoons. Its main attractions are several species of birds that can be found around the lakes and mangroves.
carefully at the graffiti on the surrounding cliffs of the cove. It has been written by pirates, whalers and buccaneers in past centuries.
PM: Elizabeth Bay
This is a marine visitor site. The excursion is carried out in Zodiacs, so there is no landing point. Your Zodiac ride starts with a visit to the Marielas Islets where there is the largest and most important penguin colony in the Galapagos Islands. The excursion continues into the cove that is surrounded by red mangroves where you can admire their red roots and green leaves. It is here that you are able to observe sea turtles, flightless cormorants, spotted eagle rays, golden rays, brown pelicans and sea lions. Visitors have been frequently able to see Galapagos Hawks soaring overhead while schools of pompano and dorado fish swim below. (B, L, D)

Tuesday Isabela & Fernandina Islands
AM: Urbina Bay, Isabela Island
Urbina Bay is located along the west coast of Isabela, between Elizabeth Bay and Tagus Cove. It is close to the base of the Alcedo Volcano. The coastline underwent a major uplift in 1954, which caused the shore to expand three quarters of a mile out. Here you will be able to find corals, shells, and many other calcareous organisms exposed above water. Urbina Bay is home to large and colorful land iguanas and giant tortoises of the Alcedo Volcano population. A lot of Darwin Finches can be seen as well.
PM: Punta Espinoza, Fernandina Island
Fernandina is the third largest island in the archipelago and has a single visitor site: Punta Espinoza, located at the northeastern tip of the island, just across Tagus Cove. Some of the most unique species of Galapagos can be seen here. Marine iguanas conglomerate in larger groups than in any other island. They bask around in the sand, swim near the shore and sometimes block the way at the landing dock. Among the endemic species found here is the flightless cormorant. A bird that, due to the lack of predators, evolved differently; it’s wings, tails and feet progressively adapted for swimming. To see these birds is to witness evolution happening right in front of you. You can observe the flightless cormorants and penguins very closely.  (B, L, D)

Wednesday  Isabela Island
AM: Tagus Cove
This is a tour along the cliffs in a Zodiacs that will give the visitors a good chance to see the Galapagos Penguin, the flightless cormorant and other sea birds. From the landing dock it is about a 30-minute hike along the trail up to the top of the cliff from where you can view Darwin Lake, an uplifted ultra saline lake, saltier than the sea. You can also see several volcanoes from this location. Look carefully at the graffiti on the surrounding cliffs of the cove; it was written by pirates, whalers and buccaneers in past centuries
PM: Vincente Roca
A Zodiak ride takes you to Punta Vincente Roca, where you can view the tuff walls, and enter a wave-sculpted cave frequented by sea turtles. (B, L, D)

Thursday Santiago Island
AM: Espumilla Beach
Espumilla beach is located on the northern coast of Santiago Island in an area known as James Bay. During the last occurence of the ‘El Niño’ phenomenon, one of the two lagoons in this site underwent a process of sedimentation, thus causing the disappearance of a representative colony of flamingos. The main attractions are the forest of palo santo trees and the marvelous marine iguanas. The beautiful brown-colored sandy beach is an important site for nesting marine turtles. The snorkeling is great and you may see moray eels, sharks and octopi.
PM: Puerto Egas
This black beach is located on the west side of the island and it is the main attraction. Volcanic tuff deposits have favored the formation of this special black sand beach. This site is called Puerto Egas, because there was an attempt to start the exploitation of salt by a company owned by Hector Egas. It failed because the price of salt in the continent was very low and did not justify its exploitation in Galapagos. Thus the project was abandoned. (B, L, D)

Friday Santa Cruz & North Seymour Islands
Bachas Beach, Santa Cruz Island
These two small beaches are found west of Turtle Cove. Their sand is made of decomposed coral, which makes it white and soft, making it a favorite nesting site for sea turtles. Behind one of the beaches there is a small brackish water lagoon, where occasionally it is possible to observe flamingos and other coastal birds, such as black-necked stilts and whimbrels. The other beach is longer, but it has two old barges that were abandoned during the World War II, when the USA used Baltra Island as a strategic point to protect the Panama Channel.
PM: North Seymour
North Seymour is an uplifted (different from volcanic origin) island and so is generally flat and strewn with boulders. There are good nesting sites here for a large population of magnificent frigate birds. Blue-footed boobies perform their courtship dance in the more open areas and swallow-tailed gulls perch on the cliff edges. Despite the tremendous surf that can pound the outer shore, sea lions haul out onto the beach and can be found bodysurfing. Watch your step, as the boobies don't worry much about where they nest, and you might just step on one. The trees are dotted with male frigate birds trying to attract the attention of the ladies by inflating their bright red skin flaps (seasonal activity in June). They sometimes fly in the air to call more attention to themselves. There's a circular path that takes you through the island to a beautiful, rocky shore where the waves crash with a silvery-blue color. (B, L, D)

Saturday Depart Baltra
Transfer to Baltra airport for your flight back to Guayaquil or Quito. (B)


*These detailed itineraries may have slight variations to them depending upon weather and ocean conditions

Itinerary B Saturday-Saturday
8 DAYS / 7 NIGHTS

Saturday – Arrival at Baltra Airport
Upon arrival at Baltra Airport, you will first pass through an airport inspection point where your TCT (Transit Control Card) will be checked and stamped (please keep this carefully with your passport as you will need to show it again when you leave Galapagos). The $100 pp Galapagos National Park entrance fee has been pre-paid. To ensure that no foreign plants or animals are introduced to the islands, your luggage will be inspected as well. At the arrival hall a naturalist guide will meet you and escort you on a short bus ride to the harbor at Baltra. You will then be taken commence two overland excursions on Santa Cruz Island.
AM: Santa Cruz Highlands
First you will cross from Baltra Island to Santa Cruz Island via a ferry ride across the narrow strait. Then it is a one-hour drive to the Santa Cruz Highlands and passes through the agricultural zone, near the National Park boundary, the Miconia Zone, and then goes to the Fern and Sedge Zone. With clear weather (unpredictable) this area affords beautiful scenes of rolling hills and extinct volcanic cones covered with grass and lush greenery all year ‘round. Here you will visit the Twin Craters, which are two pit craters. You will also visit a local ranch where you can observe the Giant Tortoise specie of Santa Cruz Island in its natural habitat. After our Highlands visit, you will return to Puerto Ayora and the yacht for lunch.
PM: Charles Darwin Station
Although the great majority of Galapagos visitors come here to observe and appreciate natural wonders, it is also interesting to learn how the protection and conservation of the islands are carried out. The turtle breeding and rearing area of the scientific center are definitely a worthwhile visit.  (L, D)

Sunday  – Española Island
AM: Gardner Bay
Located on the north-eastern coast of Hood (Española Island), Gardner Bay provides an excellent beach for relaxing, swimming and snorkeling, and the opportunity to observe sea lions. Here you may also observe sharks in the crystal clear ocean waters.
PM: Punta Suarez
This rocky land spot sustains one of the most impressive and varied colonies of sea birds in the Galapagos. High cliffs rise up from the sea along its southern shore, affording the visitor spectacular views of soaring birds and of the blow whole where water spouts up to 50-75 feet into the air, depending on the intensity of the surf.  (B, L, D)

Monday  San Cristobal Island
AM: Cerro Brujo & Leon Dormido
Cerro Brujo (Wizard Hill) is a beautiful beach made of white coral and volcanic ash. It is located along the north coast of San Cristobal, the island where Charles Darwin first arrived in September 1835. Cerro Brujo is an eroded tuff cone and several parts are composed of the AA lava type. In this fascinating landscape you can observe sea lions, as well as different sea birds, finches and warblers. The sheltered bay is popular for young sea turtles and rays. The salt water pools behind the sand dunes were used as a salt mine in the past. After visiting Cerro Brujo you will continue by yacht to Leon Dormido (Kicker Rock). This huge ‘cathedral’ of rock is an old lava cone, now split in two. On the rocks many blue footed boobies, Nazca boobies and frigate birds are to be found. The snorkeling is great here, with good opportunities for seeing sea turtles, spotted eagle rays, tropical fish and the Galapagos shark.  
PM: Punta Pitt
This morning, you visit Punta Pitt on the northeast tip of San Cristobal, a tuff formation that serves as a nesting site for many sea birds including blue footed, Nazca and red-footed boobies, frigate birds, swallow-tailed gulls and storm petrels. Punta Pitt is considered to be a first class site for birds and equal to Genovesa (Tower) Island (B, L, D)

Tuesday South Plazas & Santa Fe Islands
AM: Santa Fe
Located in the southeastern part of the Galapagos, this island was formed from an uplift, which explains why it is mostly flat. There are some theories that argue this could be the oldest island in the Archipelago. Santa Fe is the home of a number of endemic species like the Galapagos Hawk, Galapagos snake, Galapagos mockingbird, rice rats and one of the two species of land iguanas. After disembarkation in the beautiful and clear waters you will be in contact with one of the many sea lion colonies. You will see along the trail many salt bushes, as well as giant prickly pear cactus. There are great possibilities of snorkeling with playful sea lions and tropical fishes.
PM: South Plazas
South Plazas is located east of Santa Cruz Island, and forms part of two islands known as Islas Plazas. Despite its small size, some of the most interesting and outstanding species of the Galapagos are found here. The Plazas land iguanas are smaller than their relatives found on other islands. Throughout the island there are several hybrid iguanas, a result of crossing a male marine iguana and a female land iguana. They are unique and recognizable at first glance by their black/gray color, with a land iguana's crest, but face and tail of the marine iguana. The big population of iguanas is due to the presence of ‘tunas’ (prickly pear), their favorite food. Swallow -tailed gulls nesting in the rugged cliffs are seen along with other sea birds such as: Audubon shearwaters, red-billed tropicbirds, frigate birds and brown pelicans.  (B, L, D)

Wednesday  –  Genovesa Island
AM: Darwin Bay
This bay originated when the crater of this island collapsed below sea level. The wet landing is on a beautiful white coral sandy beach. This is a favorite island for birdwatchers: red footed-boobies, masked boobies, wandering tattlers, lava gulls, whimbrels yellow-crowned, black-crowned and lava herons, and yellow warblers can be seen in the area.
Continuing on the trail, visitors gradually climb to the edge of the cliff seeing red-footed boobies nesting in the mangrove trees below. Bird watching includes sightings of sharp-beaked finches, large cactus and ground finches, Galapagos Doves and swallow-tailed gulls. The trail at the cliff's edge offers an incredible view of the island and the many birds living there.
PM: El Barranco
El Barranco is located at the southern part of Darwin Bay and it is also known as Prince Philip’s Steps. Passengers will climb to a plateau that is part of the stretch of land that surrounds Darwin Bay on its eastern side. There is a big population of masked boobies and red-footed boobies in the trees; storm petrels and short-eared owls have found this place ideal for nesting in the lava flows.  (B, L, D)

Thursday Santiago and Bartolome Islands
AM: Sullivan Bay, Santiago Island
Santiago, also called James, or San Salvador Island, is located in the west central part of the Galapagos archipelago. It is the fourth largest island in the archipelago (following Isabela, Fernandina and Santa Cruz). Along with some of the large western volcanoes of Isabela and Fernandina, Santiago is also volcanically active, with many young flows and cones to be seen, particularly along the south, west, and east coasts. These may even be seen from the summit of Darwin Volcano and from space. A number of historic eruptions have been reported over the last 2 centuries. Santiago actually consists of two coalesced volcanoes: a typical shield volcano on the northwest end and a low, linear fissure volcano at the southeast end.
PM: Bartolome Island
Bartolome Island is situated across Sullivan Bay. It has an altitude of 114 meters, from where you can observe one of the most beautiful sceneries of the Galapagos Islands: volcanic cones, lunar-like craters, lava fields, and the famous Toba formed pinnacle eroded by the sea. There is very little vegetation on this island. It has two breathtaking beaches where marine turtles exist, as well as a very small colony of Galapagos penguins. (B, L, D)

Friday Rábida and Chinese Hat Islets
AM: Rábida
Rábida Island is unique because of the red color of the rocks and sand. The volcanic material in this island is very porous and external factors such as rain, salt water and sea breeze have acted as an oxidizing agent. A short walk along a trail lead you to a coastal lagoon behind the beach, which permits the observation of land birds, such as finches, doves, yellow warblers and mocking birds. At the lagoon there is a colony of flamingos. The beach is often full with sea lions, and there are good snorkeling opportunities.
PM: Chinese Hat
This is a small islet (1 sq km) located just off the southeastern tip of Santiago Island. It is a recent volcanic cone, shaped like a Chinese hat when seen from north side. On the west side lava formations may be observed, formed under the sea and raised upward. This is why coral heads are found on the lava. This is an excellent visit for the interpretation of geological features such as lava tubes and lava flows. The landscape is covered by sea lions colonies, marine iguanas and Galapagos Penguins. (B, L, D)

Saturday Depart Baltra
Transfer to Baltra airport for your flight back to Guayaquil or Quito. (B)

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