After arriving at Baltra airport, be greeted by our personnel to then cross the itabaca channel and reach Santa Cruz Island for your first visit in the Archipelago: the Highlands. This is also a good place to see the ground finch of the Island, which populates these forests where is also possible to see the vermilion flycatcher or the yellow warbler.
Return to the yacht for lunch and to freshen up to then head back to Puerto Ayora for your second visit of the day, the Fausto Llerena Tortoise Breeding Center. Here, you can see tortoises from different islands. The animals are found in large semi natural pens for their protection, but also to ensure an easy view for the visitors. Afterwards head back to Puerto Ayora, where you have some time to explore the town and shops by ourselves (this is the only change of shopping during on this itinerary) before boarding the M/Y Passion at around 5:00 p.m. Once on board, be welcomed by the crew and captain, have a short security drill and enjoy dinner and the briefing for the next day´s activities.
Dry landing on one of the oldest docks of the archipelago on colorful Plaza Sur, home to vibrant green prickly pears, deep red Sesuvium, and coppery‐orange land iguanas. Impressive seaward cliffs make the perfect perching spot for a variety of coastal birds. This is also a great place to observe the adult and pup sea lions swimming along the shores.
After a wet landing on Santa Fe, encounter a white beach where sea lions are usually resting. Look out for the endemic species of land iguana, larger and yellower than land iguanas on other islands. The largest prickly pear cacti in the Galapagos are also found here.
Spend the morning in the fantastic Gardner Bay (wet landing) of Española Island; an outstanding beach with sea lions, marine iguanas, and the intrepid Española mockingbird. Close to Española, there is a good spot for snorkeling called Gardner Islet. While snorkeling, there is a good chance playful sea lions join you. Get ready for more snorkeling at Osborn islet, a great place to observe great quantities of marine life.
In the afternoon head to Punta Suarez, one of the most popular landing sites in Galapagos. The highlights include: sea lions near the landing place, large marine iguanas, with red‐colored males in the breeding season, oystercatchers, blue-footed and Nazca boobies, Galapagos hawks, Galapagos doves, swallow‐tailed gulls, red-billed tropicbirds, and the waved albatross.
Day 4: Twin Craters | Disembark
This is your last day on the islands. After breakfast, disembark in Puerto Ayora to take your transport to the Baltra airport, making a short stop to visit the Twin Craters. The Gemelos(twins) are in fact not craters, but magma domes that have collapsed, leaving two deep and wide holes located to the side of the road that leads to Puerto Ayora from the other side of the island.
After this visit, make your way to the Baltra airport for the flight to mainland Ecuador.
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.