Arrive at the Baltra Airport where our guide will be waiting for you and will accompany you to the Archipell, located at the Puerto Ayora harbor. After arrival on board, you will check in and get general information before having lunch. Enjoy a visit to the Highlands of the island where the private farm “Las Primicias” is located. This reserve offers one of the best possibilities to see the huge turtles of Santa Cruz Island in their natural habitat. These amazing turtles can be observed at close range.
Isabela Island is the largest of the archipelago with a surface of 4588 square kilometers. This island contains more than the half of the land area of the whole Galápagos. On the island of Tintoreras take an easy walk through the unique lava landscape with its huge colonies of sea lizard and sea lions. Have a chance to observe white tip sharks resting in the flat water near the shore. The Humedales are located south of Isabela Island and have an extensive variety of flora and fauna as well as incredible scenery of the bay. The town of Puerto Villamil, volcanoes, islets and rocks can also be viewed from this point.
Punta Moreno has a young volcanic landscape with numerous fresh-water pools and lagoons. This is a great habitat for flamingos, bahama ducks, and other birds. The mangrove area of Elizabeth Bay has little off-shore islands where dwarf penguins make their home. Schools of manta rays, turtles, and other giants of the ocean, such as whale-sharks, are also common in this area. Take a zodiac excursion that starts with a visit to the Marielas islets which is home to the largest penguin colony in the Galapagos. Continue into the red mangrove covered cove where sea turtles, flightless cormorants, spotted eagle rays, golden rays, brown pelicans and sea lions are abundant.
Take a tour along the cliffs of Tangus Cove in a zodiac to get a good chance at seeing 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. Several volcanoes and the Darwin Lake can be viewed from this point. This is an uplifted ultra saline lake that is saltier than the sea. Espinoza point is one of Fernandina’s vista points. Espinoza is situated within a fascinating lava scenery filled with Lava-Cacti and mangroves. Enjoy seeing sea lions, penguins, the Flightless Cormorant as well as one of the biggest iguana colonies of the Galapagos. Snorkel and explore the hidden beauty of the the underwater world.
Las Bachas is a beautiful white-sand beach on the northern coast of Santa Cruz Island. Go for a relaxing stroll or do some easy snorkeling in the gentle surf. Sea turtles lay their eggs at the edge of the vegetation here. Also look for a rusted pontoon, a relic of the Second World War. 'Las Bachas' is a poor pronunciation of 'barges,' two of which were wrecked offshore during WWII. The locals mispronounced the name and it has been used since. North Seymour is located slightly in the north of Baltra. It is a low, flat island, formed as a result of submarine lava formation uplift. Covered with low, bushy vegetation, it contains the largest colony of magnificent Frigatebirds in the Galapagos. There is also a large population of Blue-Footed Boobies in this area. Get the change to see them perform an amusing courtship dance when nesting conditions are right. It is definitely one of the highlights of this island.
Darwin Bay is the only sandy beach found in the caldera on Genovesa. Colonies of the Great Frigates are found along the beach. The males will exhibit their red balloon pouch to females in hope of a match. Red-Footed Boobies nest in the trees while the other two booby species nest on the ground. El Barranco, also know as Prince Philip’s Steps, is a stair carved out of stone that will lead to a wide plateau. Large colonies of Masked Boobies, Frigatebirds, storm petrels and bahama ducks can be observed here. During this easy walk, cross a little Scalesia woodland and observe the short-eared owl.
At Bartolomé Island admire the spectacular panorama of the Sullivan Bay and the famous Pinnacle Rock. The beaches at the foot of the Pinnacle Rock are excellent for snorkeling. Take a trip to Sullivan Bay on the east coast of Santiago and explore the white coral sand beach and lava flows that are less than 100 years ago. This is the perfect place to experience the volcanic origin of the Galapagos.
Charles Darwin Research Station contains an information center, a museum, a library, and a tortoise breeding station. Encounter tortoises of different subspecies. Here these tortoises are prepared for reintroduction to their natural habitats. The most popular inhabitant of this Station is probably the Lonesome George turtle. (If your cruise takes only for 4 days after this visit you will fly back to the mainland of Ecuador). Highlands of Santa Cruz have incredible zones of vegetation. Enjoy a visit to the private farm Las Primicias which is a reserve that offers one of the best possibilities to see the huge turtles of Santa Cruz Island at close range.
Cormorant Point has beautiful green olivine sand beaches perfect for strolling. Follow a short path to reach a beautiful lagoon with an abundance of flamingos. Later visit the Post Office Bay which still keeps the legendary post barrel that whalers historically used to post their mail. Then enjoy a visit to “Mirador de la Baronesa” where your guide will tell the murder and mystery legend of the Baronesa. This viewpoint is located on the north of Floreana Island up a very easy climb. Steps are placed in this area for security.
Explore an abundance of natural wildlife on Española Island which his home to various species of birds, like the endemic Hood-Mockingbird. Enjoy excellent swimming at Gardner Bay and snorkel to find an abundance of unique fish and sometimes turtles and sharks. The bay is also frequented by colonies of sea lions which enjoy swimming with people. Point Suarez has one of the most outstanding wildlife areas of the archipelago. An extensive number of species are found along its cliffs and beaches.
Punta Pitt is one of the only two sites where all three boobies breed and it is also occupied by Frigatebirds, Swallow-tailed Gulls, and Galapagos storm petrels. Cerro Brujo is one of the first sites visited by Charles Darwin. This fascinating lava landscape is located on the northeast coast of San Cristóbal. Observe a variety of birds including boobies, seagulls and some pelicans. This is a protected bay making it very popular for young ocean turtles and rays.
Lobos Island is a great place to enjoy swimming and snorkeling with sea lions in the calm bay. It is also a seasonal nesting location for the Blue-Footed Booby and Frigatebirds. Around midday you will fly back to the mainland of Ecuador.
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