- Island Tour
- Price from:
- 2070 USD /person
- Payment Types:
- Credit Card
- Travellers cheque
- Wire Transfer
Last updated: 02/15/2007
The Galapagos Islands became Ecuador's first National Park and the non-profit Charles Darwin Foundation. The Islands were declared a World Heritage site by UNESCO underlining its universal value.
Arrive in Guayaquil
Fly to Galapagos
Board Darwin Yacht and Begin Cruise to Santa Cruz.
Located in the highlands of Santa Cruz, the Reserve is made up of tortoises that weigh 200 pounds and are as wild as they can get, so be careful. The reserve is not inside a regulated section of the park; you walk through dense and low growing vegetation. Depending on the time you vsit the highlands, you can watch red, orange and yellow little birds playing with the blooming flora, and harvest and eat tropical fruits.
The highlands are located in the northern part of the island and can reach elevations up to 1500 meters. The vegetation here is abundant, lush and the weather moist. Breakfast at the Grand Hotel, lunch and dinner aboard The Darwin.
Cruise to Rabida Island and Sombrero Chino
Rabida Island or Jervis has a different look with its reddish beach, cliffs, and steep slopes of volcanic cinders. A noisy colony of sea lions live on the beach and a short trail inland is a good place to observe land birds such as finches, doves, yellow warblers and mockingbirds. Hidden behind a narrow strip of green saltbush is a briny lagoon where flamingoes may be found, sometimes even nesting. There are nine types of Darwin's finches here. Continuing up the rocky red cliffs a short 15-20 minute walk leads to a cliff overhang with a fantastic view of the cove with the ocean, lagoon and scarlet cliffs. Returning back to the beach Rabida offers some very good snorkeling opportunities snorkeling along the rocks at the east end of the beach may reveal many of the reef fish common to these waters. Sharks and Manta Rays are commonly seen. This is also an excellent place to dive.
Sombrero Chino --Chinese Hat is a crazy little island looking just like a Chinese hat in the islands. It's right off the southeastern tip of Santiago island. Galapagos islands snorkeling is fantastic, and if you're lucky, you might just see a few Galapagos penguins. We also got a chance to see some mating eagle rays flopping in the water. The best view of the cone-shaped volcano is from the north, and there's quite a large islands sea lion community as well. Breakfast, lunch, dinner aboard the yacht included.
Cruise to Bartolome Isle and Sullivan Bay
Bartholomew island is situated across Sullivan Bay. It has an altitude of 114mts, from where we can observe one of the most beautiful sceneries of the Galapagos Islands, such as: volcanic cones, lunar-like craters, lava fields and the famous pinnacle formed of Toba eroded by the sea. There is very little vegetation on this island. It has two breathtaking beaches where marine turtles exist and at the base of the pinnacle, is a very small colony of Galapagos penguins.
The Sullivan Bay lava field is a variety of interesting patterns. The shapes and textures of trees, which once existed there and Hornitos caused when pockets of gas or water trapped under the lava exploded. The Sullivan Bay Lava is known a Panoehoe (Hawaiian for Rope). This thin-skinned lava's molten material cools down after an eruption causing the surface materials to buckle creating a rope like appearance. Panoehoe Lava is rare to the rest of the world, but is common to the volcanoes of Hawaii and the Galapagos Islands.In the nearly 100 year since the Sullivan Bay Flow only a few plants have managed to take root in this harsh environment. The low-lying Mollugo is commonly the first plant to emerge from a bare lava field. Together with the Lava Cactus (Brachycereus) found here these plants are evidence of life returning to Sullivan Bay. The walk takes approximately an hour to an hour and a half. Returning to the shoreline black and white Oystercatchers can be seen fishing for crabs and mollusks in the tide pools.
After exploring the lava flow, there is swimming and snorkeling with playful sea lions off two small coralline beaches. Breakfast, lunch, dinner included aboard the yacht.
Cruise to North Seymour Island
Bay Tour of Baltra Island
Here is where you can admire the beautiful frigate birds and nests of blue-footed boobies. 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. They sometimes fly in the air to call more attention to themselves, which is in itself, a funny display, as the puffy flap throws off their sense of balance! There's a circular path that takes you through the island to a beautiful, rocky shore where the waves crash a silvery-blue. This is also a hot diving spot and highly recommended. Here, you have a great chance to see hammerheads, garden eels, tropical fish, sea lions, the pacific green sea turtle, and any number of other colorful, interesting sea life. The currents are strong; just hold on, and enjoy the show.
Baltra Island --Desembark The Darwin at Baltra Island and transfer to the Red Booby Hotel in Puerto Ayora. During a private bay tour in Puerto Ayora, the captain takes you out of the bay towards the lighthouse at Punta Estrada to view swooping blue-footed boobies, herons and frolicking sea lions. Continuing into Shark Bay you can spot rays and sea turtles and observe white-tipped reef sharks. At the entrance to Academy Bay, off a small islet, you will have the opportunity to join a colony of playful sea lions. Breakfast on board the yacht. Lunch and dinner on your own.
Visit the Charles Darwin Research Station
Return to Quayaquil
This day during the morning you can visit The Charles Darwin Research Station where you'll learn first hand of the conservation and research efforts in the Galapagos Islands. See the tortoise hatchlings and breeding programs that are saving several races of tortoises from extinction. The Charles Darwin Research Station conducts and facilitates research in the Galapagos Islands and the Galapagos Marine Resources Reserve of Ecuador. The Darwin Station is part of the Charles Darwin Foundation for the Galapagos Islands, an international non-profit organization dedicated to scientific research in the Galapagos Islands since 1959. Transfer from Puerto Ayora to Baltra Airport to take your flight to Guayaqui.
Transfer out from Hotel Guayaquil
- Inclusions -
- all airport transfers in Guayaquil and Galapagos
- Exclusions -
- alcoholic beverages
- Extras -
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Email the tour operator - Galapagos Islands
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