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Unique landscape and cactus found on the Galapagos Islands

San Cristobal Island to Santa Cruz

Example 8 Day Cruise aboard M/Y Stella Maris
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Enjoy this 8-day adventure in the Galapagos Islands, cruising in luxury aboard the Stella Maris from San Cristobal Island to Santa Cruz Island. Participate in diving excursions, hiking, kayaking, snorkeling, and wildlife viewing with expert private guides trained exclusively for Stella Maris clientele. A charter-only experience, explore the Galapagos Islands aboard your yacht in ultimate comfort and style, and enjoy the wonders the Islands have to offer like never before. 

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : San Cristobal Island | Embark | Lobos Island
Day 2 : Punta Pitt | Witch Hill
Day 3 : Gardner Bay | Suarez Point
Day 4 : Cormorant Point | Post Office Bay
Day 5 : North Seymour Island | Bartholomew Island
Day 6 : El Barranco | Darwin's Bay
Day 7 : South Plaza Island | Santa Fe Island
Day 8 : Santa Cruz Island | Disembark | Twin Craters

Highlights

  • Encounter the unique wildlife of the Galapagos Islands
  • Hike the Pitt Point trail, ascending through several viewpoints
  • Visit Post Office Bay, a historic site that recalls the days of the whalers
  • View the extraordinary flora of South Plaza Island

Ship

M/Y Stella Maris

Places Visited

  • Ecuador
  • Galapagos
  • South America
  • Bartolome
  • Darwin Bay
  • El Barranco
  • Espanola
  • Floreana
  • Gardner Bay
  • Genovesa
  • Isla Lobos
  • Los Gemelos (Twin Craters)
  • North Seymour
  • Post Office Bay
  • Punta Cormorant
  • Punta Pitt
  • Punta Suarez
  • San Cristobal
  • Santa Cruz
  • Santa Fe
  • South Plaza Island
  • Witch Hill

Activities

Trip Type

  • Small Ship

Activity Level

Relaxed

Trip Snapshots

Unique landscape and cactus found on the Galapagos Islands The iconic feet of a Blue-Footed Booby Snorkel the crystal, warm waters of the Galapagos archipelago Ray swimming in the Galapagos Family in the Galapagos

Day 1 San Cristobal Island | Embark | Lobos Island

San Cristobal Island bears the name of the patron saint of seafarers, “St. Christopher”. Its English name was given after William Pitt, 1st Earl of Chatham. It has an area of 558 square kilometers and its highest point rises to 730 meters. This island hosts frigatebirds, sea lions, giant tortoises, blue- and red-footed boobies, tropic birds, marine iguanas, dolphins and swallow-tailed gulls.

Lobos Island is located on the north coast of San Cristóbal Island; the trail at this visitor’s site can be done in about three hours, including the panga (dinghy) ride. The site offers an excellent landscape, a long powder-like sandy beach where one can swim and snorkel with an excellent view of Kicker Rock on the horizon. There is a lagoon where the visitor can watch different species of coastal sea birds.

Day 2 Punta Pitt | Witch Hill

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Pitt Point is located at the east end of San Cristóbal Island. The trail includes an olivine beach of approximately 90 meters and a trail that ascends to the top of a volcanic tuff hill passing through several natural viewpoints. This is the only site in the Galapagos Islands where you can watch the three species of boobies and 2 species of frigates nesting in the same area. The reason that there are three species of boobies at Punta Pitt is due to the geographic location; there is enough food so there is no competition between them.

Located on the northern coast, Witch Hill and its surroundings present one of the most picturesque beaches in the Galápagos with its white powdery sand and the abundance of animals. Wildlife includes sea turtles, rays, and various types of booby birds. The clear water provides an excellent opportunity for enjoying swimming and snorkeling.

Day 3 Gardner Bay | Suarez Point

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Gardner Bay is located on the north coast of Española Island. The visiting area is defined by two beaches. The main attraction is the colony of sea lions, which inhabit the beach in great quantity during the breeding season.

Suarez Point is located west of Española Island. Española is known as one of the older islands, with an estimated age of 3.3 million years. Basaltic lava rocks cover much of the island. Albatrosses are present in Española from April to November or December; marine iguanas, the Galapagos hawk, a variety of mockingbirds, lava lizards, and Darwin’s finches are considered endemic to this island. Besides the wildlife on this island, a major attraction is El Soplador (a blowhole). Located on a cliff, the water rises up 20 to 25 feet, depending on the intensity of the waves.

Day 4 Cormorant Point | Post Office Bay

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Cormorant Point is located on the north coast of Floreana Island. The trail has an approximate distance of 720 meters; the trail leads the visitor to a viewing site above a lagoon where one can observe a large colony of flamingos. The same path ends in a white sand beach which is a nesting area for sea turtles. Large amounts of rays and sea turtles can be seen on the shore as well.

Post Office Bay is a historic site that recalls the days of the whalers, when they came for supplies of Galapagos tortoises and water. Presumably, a whaling boat captain placed a barrel in the eighteenth century for those who pass through the bay to leave mail and deliver those with the same destination. Another point of interest is a lava tunnel; the path to the cave is clearly marked.

Day 5 North Seymour Island | Bartholomew Island

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Seymour Island's name was given after an English nobleman, Lord Hugh Seymour. It has an area of 1.9 square kilometers and a maximum altitude of 28 meters. Just north of the Baltra Airport is the small islet of North Seymour which was created by seismic uplift, rather than being of volcanic origin. North Seymour is an extraordinary place for breeding birds, and is home to one of the largest populations of nesting blue-footed boobies and magnificent frigatebirds. Pairs of blue-footed boobies can be seen conducting their mating ritual as they offer each other gifts, whistle and honk, stretch their necks towards the sky, spread their wings, and dance showing off their bright blue feet.  

Bartolomé Island (Bartholomew) Island is a volcanic islet; it is one of the “younger” islands in the Galápagos archipelago. This island is one of the few that is home to the Galapagos penguin which is the only wild penguin species that lives on the Equator.

Day 6 El Barranco | Darwin's Bay

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
The visitor site of El Barranco is located in the southern part of Darwin Bay on Genovesa Island. The trail is on volcanic rock that has a length of 1.5 km. Everywhere one looks, there are masked boobies on the ground and red-footed boobies in the trees. Snorkeling can be done at the beach or alongside the cliffs. The water inside the bay is very rich in nutrients, so one never knows what may be encountered.

Located on Genovesa Island, Darwin's Bay's initial highlights are the nesting colonies of the common frigate, the Nazca booby, and the swallow-tailed gulls. Also find here nests of red-footed booby, which is the largest nesting colony of Galapagos for pelagic bird.

Day 7 South Plaza Island | Santa Fe Island

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
South Plaza was formed by lava upstreaming from the bottom of the ocean. Despite its small size, it is home to a large number of species and it is famous for its extraordinary flora. That is why this island is very popular with visitors. On the steep banks it is possible to see a great number of birds such as nesting red-billed tropicbirds and swallow-tailed gulls, but most of all, enjoying the beautiful view from atop the steep banks or strolling along the base of the cliff is an extremely pleasurable experience. Very attractive are the beautiful prickly pear cactus trees (Opuntia echios) and of course the large colony of Galapagos land iguanas. Depending on the season, the Sesuvium ground vegetation changes its color from intense green in the rainy season to orange and purple in the dry season.

Named after a city in Spain, Santa Fe (Barrington) Island has an area of 24 square kilometers (9 sq mi) and a maximum altitude of 259 meters (850 ft). Weathered cliffs provide a haven for swallow-tailed gulls, red-billed tropic birds and shearwater petrels. Santa Fe species of land iguanas are often seen, as well as lava lizards.

Day 8 Santa Cruz Island | Disembark | Twin Craters

  • 1 Breakfast
Santa Cruz (Indefatigable) Island: Given the name of the Holy Cross in Spanish, its English name derives from the British vessel HMS Indefatigable. It has an area of 986 square kilometers (381 sq mi) and a maximum altitude of 864 meters (2834 ft).

The Twin Craters area of Baltra has received much use in recent years due to several trails created that lead to the two craters. Guides are asked to use only the National Park trail to avoid further erosion and deterioration of the area. In 1989 a circular path around the largest crater was opened, which passes through the interior of the Scalesia forest, an excellent place to observe land birds, especially the woodpecker finch and the vermillion flycatcher.

M/Y Stella Maris

Per person starting at
$14,583
Stella Maris master suite
Select a Date
Master Suite
1 cabin located on upper deck. Offers a full beam layout with King-sized bed, desk, armchair, and magnificent view. Amenities include: Wi-Fi, LED TV, Bluetooth sound link, DVD/Blu-ray player, air conditioning, private en suite facilities. 29 sq m.
Select a Date
VIP
2 VIP cabins located on main deck, 1 cabin located on lower deck; all feature Queen-sized beds. Amenities include: Wi-Fi, LED TV, Bluetooth sound link, DVD/Blu-ray player, air conditioning, private en suite facilities. 18 sq m.
Stella Maris cabin
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Standard
3 cabins located on lower deck, featuring twin beds. Amenities include: Wi-Fi, LED TV, Bluetooth sound link, DVD/Blu-ray player, air conditioning, private en suite facilities. 12 sq m.

Notes

The luxury motor yacht Stella Maris is a CHARTER-ONLY yacht. She offers the following extensive list of yacht charter amenities and extras:
  • Accommodation on board
  • Transfers around the islands
  • All excursions approved by the GNP
  • Bilingual national park guide
  • Use of the yacht's water sports gear
  • Fuel surcharge
  • Free airport assistance
  • 24hr Crew Assistance
Not included:
  • Roundtrip airfare to/from Galapagos
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • $100 Galapagos National Park fee per person
  • $10 Transit Control Card per person
  • Travel / medical insurance
  • Personal expenses
  • Tips / A.P.A (Advance Provisioning Allowance)
Please note:

The A.P.A amount is used to cover expenses during the course of the charter in the Galapagos Islands such as: food, beverages, Galapagos National Park tax, Transit Card Tax, and other expenses not included in the Charter Fee. If there is a cancellation of the charter the A.P.A is refundable.

The crew manager of the yacht is responsible for accounting all A.P.A expenses during the charter and the breakdown will be presented to the client at the end of the charter.


Please note: The itinerary may be subject to change due to weather conditions or National Park directives. The captain may deviate from the published itinerary for any reason he deems advisable.

Child Discount

Children under 12 receive a discount of $135 off adult flight rates, and discounted Galapagos Entrance Fee of $50

Included

  • Accommodations on board M/Y Stella Maris based on double occupancy
  • Meals while in the Galapagos
  • Bilingual Naturalist Guide
  • Shore Excursions
  • Swimming and Snorkeling
  • Adventure Life Pre-departure Services and In-Country Assistance (Quito Representative)
  • Transfers and Baggage Handling in the Galapagos
  • Snorkeling Equipment

Excluded

  • Airfare (see Galapagos Flights)
  • Quito/Guayaquil Hotel and Transfers
  • $100 Galapagos Park Fee
  • $80 Galapagos Transit Card and Airport Assistance
  • $45 International Departure Tax
  • Minimum experience to participate: 30 logged dives or the previous evaluation of Stella Maris dive guides at another site.
  • Wetsuit rental included in charter rate.
  • 4 kayaks included in charter rate. 1 paddleboard also included.
  • Gratuities and drinks aboard the ship
  • Travel Insurance

Galapagos Flights

  • Quito - Galapagos Roundtrip
    • $530 - $595
  • Guayaquil - Galapagos Roundtrip
    • $475 - $540

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Beyond expectations! Then again we weren't sure what to expect. Lovely stay at the lodge, met other like-minded travelers (many had their trips planned by Adventure Life) and the owner was a gracious hostess. It felt like you were one happy family, visiting with a favorite aunt.
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