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Kayak on a beach in the galapagos

Galapagos Western Islands

Example 5 Day Cruise aboard Corals
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Enjoy this 5-day cruise through the western islands of the Galapagos. Get ready to see an abundance of unique wildlife including flamingos, frigatebirds, iguanas, and enjoy some friendly interaction with the island's playful sea lions. Highlights of the west include beautiful Santa Cruz, wildlife-rich Isabela, cliff-laden Fernandina, and the amazing black beaches of Santiago. The wildlife here is abundant and the landscape is stunning to behold, making this an incredible vacation.

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Baltra | Embark | Highlands Tortoise Reserve, Santa Cruz
Day 2 : Vicente Roca Point, Isabela | Espinosa Point, Fernandina
Day 3 : Urbina Bay | Tagus Cove, Isabela
Day 4 : Egas Port | Sullivan Bay, Santiago
Day 5 : Bachas Beach, Santa Cruz | Disembark | Baltra

Highlights

  • Snorkel at one of the richest marine ecosystems on Earth
  • Visit Fernandina, the island with the highest number of endemic species
  • Find giant tortoises and land iguanas on Urbina's volcanic black beach
  • Explore Santiago's shores, home to a variety of resident and migrant birds

Ship

Corals

Places Visited

  • Ecuador
  • Galapagos
  • South America
  • Bachas Beach
  • Baltra
  • Espinosa Point
  • Fernandina
  • Highlands
  • Isabela
  • Puerto Egas
  • Santa Cruz
  • Santiago
  • Sullivan Bay
  • Tagus Cove
  • Urbina Bay
  • Vicente Roca Point

Activities

Trip Type

  • Small Ship

Activity Level

Relaxed

Trip Snapshots

Kayak on a beach in the galapagos Travelers being guided across the volcanic landscape. Hanging with a giant Galapagos tortoise Extinct cinder cone in the Galapagos Curious sea lion during a snorkeling outing

Day 1 Baltra | Embark | Highlands Tortoise Reserve, Santa Cruz

Arrive to the Galapagos and transfer by bus to your ship, the Corals. Once the ship sets sail, head to Santa Cruz Island and visit the Highlands Tortoise Reserve. In the mountains of Galapagos is possible to admire different kinds of birds, such as tree and ground finches, vermillion flycatchers, paint-billed crakes, yellow warblers, and cattle egrets (usually standing on the tortoises’ shell). The journey to the reserve offers great opportunities to see the contrasts that the island offers in reference to the variety of ecosystems. The road goes from the coast through the agricultural zone and straight up to the dense humid forests. Often, Galapagos Giant Tortoises are also seen on the way, wandering through pastures in the paddocks. This spot is a birdwatchers’ haven since almost every land bird present on the island lives or migrates here.

Day 2 Vicente Roca Point, Isabela | Espinosa Point, Fernandina

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
This morning, visit Vicente Roca Point, a high peak of land created out of remains of a tuff cone, with two protected turquoise coves on both sides. One of them, the Bolivar Channel is one of the richest marine ecosystems on Earth. This place is only accessible by water, with great opportunities for deep-water snorkeling. In this part of the Galapagos, the upwelling of cold water currents from the west, offer an abundant plankton supply for marine species like red-lipped batfish, seahorses, frogfish, nudibranchs, octopus, and the mola-mola or sunfish. It is common to observe dolphin pods, sea lions rafts, and tuna banks. The dinghy ride along the coast allows observing a great diversity of seabirds like noddies, brown pelicans, Galapagos penguins, flightless cormorants, Nazca and blue-footed boobies are often seen feeding all at once during the cold season (May – December). Whale watching is also common while navigating.

In the afternoon visit Espinosa Point, on Fernandina Island, an area that boasts some of the highest diversity of endemic sea fauna in the Galapagos. Here, the largest, most primitive-looking marine iguanas are found mingling with sea lions and Sally lightfoot crabs. Fernandina displays a wonderful opportunity to encounter flightless cormorants at their nesting sites, Galapagos penguins and the “King” of predators on the islands, the Galapagos hawk. Pa-hoe-hoe and AA lava formations cover the majority of Fernandina terrain. Vegetation is scarce inland, with few brachycereus cacti and in the shore mangrove can be found.

Day 3 Urbina Bay | Tagus Cove, Isabela

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Today visit Isabela Island, stopping at Urbina Bay and Tagus Cove. In the morning explore the volcanic black sand beach of Urbina Bay, in search of giant tortoises, land iguanas, and the unusual flightless cormorant. After a short walk inland it´s snorkeling time, a chance to swim with sea turtles, sea lions, and countless tropical fish. Urbina Bay features a wide variety of plants with the different range of colors in flowers, attracting different insects, birds, and reptiles. One of the highlights of the island is the uplifted coral reef that resulted from the 1954 seismic activity; here the views of Alcedo Volcano are remarkable. When navigating from Urbina to Tagus Cove whale watching is usual in May – December.

This afternoon, make your way over to Tagus Cove and learn about the volcanoes that formed Isabela Island. Follow a trail that leads to Darwin’s salt-water crater lake for excellent views of lava fields and volcanic formations. Return by the same path for a dinghy ride along a shoreline full of marine wildlife, where you can admire a variety of seabirds, such as blue-footed booby, brown noddy, terns, flightless cormorant and depending on the season, a large number of Galapagos penguins which are only 35 cm tall; the only penguin species in the world to live in the tropics. Afterwards, have an opportunity to snorkel in deep water.

Day 4 Egas Port | Sullivan Bay, Santiago

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
In the morning travel to Santiago Island, stopping of at Egas Port, a black volcanic sand beach, visited by Darwin in 1835. The first section of the trail is formed of volcanic ash (eroded tuff) and the other half is an uneven terrain of volcanic basaltic rock. The unique, truly striking layered terrain of Santiago shore is home to a variety of animals including the bizarre yellow-crowned night heron and marine wildlife including lobster, starfish and marine iguanas grazing on algae beds alongside Sally light-foot crabs. It is easy to see colonies of endemic fur seals swimming in cool water volcanic rock pools.

In the afternoon visit Sullivan Bay, a site located at the southeastern portion of Santiago Island of important geologic interest. It features extensive relative young pa-hoe-hoe lava flows formed during the last quarter of the 19th century. In the middle of the lava flow, older reddish-yellow-colored tuff cones appear. Mollugo plants with their yellow-to-orange whorled leaves usually grow out of the fissures. Walking on the solidified lava gives the impression of been in another planet. Tree molds are found, indicating that in that position large size plants grew in small crevices, until the lava flow of past eruptions burned down the flora of the island.

Day 5 Bachas Beach, Santa Cruz | Disembark | Baltra

  • 1 Breakfast
This morning cruise to Bachas Beach, home to two small flamingo ponds were iguanas sunbathe, see coastal birds, Darwin finches, mockingbirds, and gulls, as well as interesting native vegetation like red and black mangrove, salt bushes. This beach is one of the main sea turtles nesting sites in the Galapagos. At this paradisiacal site, you can also find the remains of barges that sank a long time ago, when the United States Navy operated a base during World War II on Baltra Island. Local people modified the word barges to “Bachas”.

After the visit, passengers transfer to the airport for your return flight to Guayaquil or Quito.

Corals

Per person starting at
$2,215
A standard cabin aboard the Corals
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Standard Cabin
Two on Coral I and one on Coral II. Panoramic skylights, located on the Sea Deck. Average area of 97 sq ft.
A Standard Plus cabin aboard the corals
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Standard Plus Cabins
Eight on Coral I and four on Coral II. Panoramic skylights, located on the Sea Deck. Average size 118 sq ft.
A Junior Cabin
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Junior Cabins
Eight on Coral I and six on Coral II. Two triple cabins available. Panoramic windows, located on Earth & Sky Decks. Average size 129 sq ft.

Child Discount

Children under 12 years old receive 50% discount, or 25% on holiday season sharing cabin with two full-fare paying guests.

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

Included

  • Accommodations on board Corals 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
  • Fuel Surcharge
  • $100 Galapagos Park Fee
  • $80 Galapagos Transit Card and Airport Assistance
  • $45 International Departure Tax
  • Wetsuits available - $25 for 4-day and 5-day tours, $50 for 8-day, 11-day and 12 day tours, and $75 for 15-day tours
  • Kayak available for $30/use
  • Gratuities and drinks aboard the ship
  • Travel Insurance

Galapagos Flights

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

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Mary C

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Kate was great to work with in the planning stage. She was prompt, helpful, and efficient. Our tour guide, Edwin, was knowledgeable and passionate. We were very happy to have traveled with Adventure Life, it made the trip easy and a true pleasure. We could concentrate on enjoying the experience rather than the details of travel.
Lisa Bridge

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