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Galapagos penguin on a rock

Central Islands

Example 5 Day Cruise aboard Aqua
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Take a 5-day cruise through the central islands of the Galapagos, aboard the charming and comfortable Fragata. Spend your days exploring the enchanted archipelago, encountering Galapagos giant turtles,  sea lions, sea turtles, marine iguanas, rays and much more! Visit some of the most popular destinations such as Chinese Hat, Cowley Islet, Albany Islet, Sullivan Bay and Mosquera. 

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Baltra | Embark | Chinese Hat
Day 2 : Cowley Islet | Albany Islet
Day 3 : Egas Port | Sullivan Bay
Day 4 : Rabida Island | Bartolome
Day 5 : Mosquera | Disembark

Highlights

  • Visit Santiago, where a small colony of Galapagos penguins has settled
  • Encounter a range of shark species, sea lions, stingrays & green sea turtles
  • Hike across the remarkable red beach of Rabida

Ship

Aqua

Places Visited

Activities

Trip Type

  • Small Ship

Activity Level

Relaxed

Trip Snapshots

Galapagos penguin on a rock Hiking the stunning landscape of the Galapagos White tipped shark Sea lions on beach in Rabida Colorful land iguana

Day 1 Baltra | Embark | Chinese Hat

Upon arrival at Seymour Ecological Airport, a check-up is carried out first, to ensure that no foreign plant or animal species are introduced on the islands.
Furthermore, your TCC (Transit Control Card) is stamped; this must be kept safe during your trip, as it has to be presented again on your return flight.

Chinese Hat is a 52m/170ft high volcanic cone, forming another islet right off the rocky coast of Santiago, where a small colony of Galapagos penguins has settled. Approaching Chinese Hat from the north, you will understand the meaning of the name. This is an excellent place to learn more about volcanoes, lava bombs, and lava tunnels.

Arrive just in time to witness how this barren islet is colonized by pioneer species that have begun to sprout! Beautiful beaches of white coral sand and holes in the eroding lava fields are filled up with lava sand, which enables rooting. Galapagos sea lions and countless marine iguanas contribute to fertilization, and all together create many favorable options for newcomers, such as saltbush and the sesuvium carpet.

Day 2 Cowley Islet | Albany Islet

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
This islet, located coast of Isabela, is a popular diving site due to the many incredible species located in the waters here. Encounter a range of shark species, Galapagos sea lions, stingrays, green sea turtles, cormorants, penguins, manta rays, and more! And if you’re lucky, you can encounter seahorses!

Albany Islet is an amazing sloping rock located off the Northwest Point of Santiago. This is a great site to observe tiger nudibranchs, sea turtles, Galapagos black coral, barnacles, Galapagos sharks, and golden eagle rays.

Day 3 Egas Port | Sullivan Bay

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Have a “wet-landing” and take an easy walk along trails and on the beautiful shoreline of the black-sand beach, where you can see birds, sea lions, Sally Lightfoot Crabs, marine iguanas and Galapagos Fur Seal. During the walk, you will be able to see some of Darwin’s finches, yellow warblers and many other beautiful and unique animals!

The arrival in Sullivan Bay is like a moon landing. The desolate, sprawling fields seem to be mostly lifeless, but this island, which is particularly popular among photographers, still offers a lot to see. There is even some life! Green sea turtles burrow in the small white sand beach, where you can also find crabs, blue herons and oystercatchers.

Day 4 Rabida Island | Bartolome

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
After a ‘wet landing’ on the remarkable red beach of Rabida, there are two short guided hikes. Oxidized iron particles give the rocks and sand their rusty color. The beach wall holds a shallow green-fringed lagoon; this oasis is the most fertile place on the otherwise arid islet, which is overgrown with leaf-dropping palo santo trees. The salty pool attracts all kind of aquatic birds, like pintails and sometimes American flamingos.

Between the evergreen foliage of the surrounding mangrove bushes, many species of songbirds hide and breed. One of the most outstanding attractions in the major breeding colony of brown pelicans, the only ones in the world that plunge-dive.

The beautiful volcano islet of Bartolomé is among the youngest of the islands, and on a geological scale was just recently born out of fire. Although at first sight lifeless, Bartolomé offers some of the wildest landscapes and best panoramas of the entire archipelago. To enjoy the postcard view of the idyllic ‘Pinnacle Bay’ you have to climb the stairs to the viewpoint on top of the island (114m/375ft).

Enter a dramatic world of threatening (though extinguished) nearby spatter cones, craters, and lightweight lava droplets that have been spewed out by fiery fountains. The Summit Trail is also ideal for witnessing how scanty pioneer vegetation such as lava cactus struggles to take root in the bare virgin lava fields.

Day 5 Mosquera | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast
Though close neighbors, Mosquera and North Seymour offer a very different experience; diverging habitats attract different residents. While North Seymour contains large breeding colonies of boobies and frigate birds, Mosquera stands out as one of the largest concentrations of Galapagos sea lions in the entire archipelago. It’s also one of the few spots inside the National Park where you can stroll around freely, without being restricted to a trail.

Galapagos sea lions are real beach lovers and Mosquera offers beautiful white coral sand beaches contrasting with the azure colored water. This islet is just a few meters higher than a sandbank and doesn’t complicate their landing, and they can roll relaxed in the surf. For fishing, they just have to enter the Itabaca Channel, which is a sort of natural place in which lots of marine life and schools of fish are concentrated.

After this excursion, you will be escorted to the airport for your flight to Quito or Guayaquil.
 

Aqua

Per person starting at
$2,395
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Upper Deck
3 upper deck cabins with a double lower bed and single upper bed (double or triple use)
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Lower Deck
5 lower deck cabins with single lower and a single upper bed
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Main Deck
1 main deck cabin with a double lower bed

Child Discount

20% discount for children under age of 12 at time of Galapagos cruise. Child discounts are conditional and may not apply on certain departures. Please contact us for more information.

Children under 12 may receive discounts on Galapagos flight fares and entrance fees. Contact us for details.

Included

  • Accommodations on board Aqua 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
  • Wetsuit rental charges should be paid aboard the yacht in cash (US Dollar).
  • Gratuities and drinks aboard the ship
  • Travel Insurance

Galapagos Flights

  • Quito - Galapagos Roundtrip
    • $530 - $675
  • Guayaquil - Galapagos Roundtrip
    • $475 - $620

Optional Hospitality Packages

Payment & Cancellation Policies
Travel Agents
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The trip was terrific with great planning on your part. Most of the adventures were not mainstream and somewhat off the beaten path which made it especially enjoyable!! We felt taken care of and you all were readily available to respond to questions and issues. I would highly recommend your company and friends have already expressed interest based on our pictures and excitement.
Gale Cantor

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