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Beach on Isabela island

Western Galapagos Luxury Cruise

Example 8 Day Cruise aboard Cormorant II
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Embark on an 8-day cruise aboard the tastefully appointed Cormorant II luxury catamaran around the Western Islands of the Galapagos archipelgo. Each island boasts new and exciting wildlife and landscapes carved from volcanic activity. Your journey includes snorkeling alongside sea turtles, viewing large colonies of sea lions and nesting shore birds, and short hikes to panoramic views. 
Sea lions napping on a dock in the Galapagossunset, Puerto VillamilFlamingo LagoonNo that is not the moon, it is Sierra NegraBeach on Isabela island
Highlights
  • Explore underground lava tubes more than half a mile long
  • Snorkel alongside schools of colorful fish and sea lions
  • View a colony of iguanas, sea lions, and a cormorant nesting site
  • Visit the Tortoise Breeding Station and learn about local conservation
Places Visited
Activity Level: Relaxed
Involves minimal physical effort and is typically associated with leisurely activities. Activities are low-intensity or last less than a few hours each day.
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Full Itinerary

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Day 1: Baltra | Highlands | Fausto Llerena Breeding Center

  • Ship
  • 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Morning flight from Quito or Guayaquil to Baltra, Galapagos Islands. You will arrive at Baltra Island in the morning. After passing through immigration and baggage claim, you will be met by a Cormorant II staff member and transferred to the yacht. You will be shown to your cabin where you will have some time to settle in before lunch and a welcome briefing.

Accessible by bus from Puerto Ayora, the highlands of Santa Cruz are a deep green which contrast beautifully with the dry, lower part of the islands. The predominant vegetation in the highlands are Scalesia trees which create a lush green forest. The lava tunnels, over half a mile long, are underground and walking through them is a unique, surreal experience. At this place you’ll have lunch.
Highlands, Santa Cruz Island
Possible Activities: Hiking (1.5 miles / 2 ½ km)
Difficulty: Easy
Type of Landing: Dry Landing
Highlights & Animals: Lava tunnels, Finches, wild tortoises, tortoise nesting site.

You will visit “Fausto Llerena” Tortoise Breeding Center in Puerto Ayora, where giant tortoises are bred in captivity. This is home to tortoises ranging from 3-inches (new hatchlings) to 4-feet long adults. Subspecies of the giant tortoises interact with one another, and many of the older tortoises are accustomed to humans stretching out their heads for a photo opportunity. The babies are kept until they are about four years-old and strong enough to survive on their own.
Possible Activities: Walking
Difficulty: Easy
Type of Landing: Dry Landing
Highlights & Animals: Giant tortoises, finches, Galapagos rails

Day 2: Tintoreras Islet | Sierra Negra Volcano | Wetlands | Arnaldo Tupiza Breeding Center

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Tintoreras Islet, located a short distance from Puerto Villamil, is home to a great variety of wildlife. Its turquoise, crystalline waters are inhabited by white-tip reef sharks, Galapagos penguins, marine turtles and sea lions. One of its beaches surrounded by mangroves is one of the few sites where marine iguanas can reproduce successfully.
Possible Activities: Dinghy ride and hike
Difficulty: Easy
Type of Landing: Dry Landing
Highlights & Animals: Whitetip reef sharks, penguins, marine turtles, sea lions, marine iguanas

Visit to the Sierra Negra Volcano, which is the largest basaltic caldera in the Galapagos with a diameter of 6.2 miles (10 km). The site offers impressive views and the opportunity to observe up to seven species of finches and a rich display of vegetation. The north side of the caldera provides evidence of its most recent volcanic activity in 2005.
Possible Activities: Hiking, walking
Difficulty: Difficult
Type of Landing: Dry Landing
Highlights & Animals: Basaltic caldera, stunning views, finches

The Wetlands of Isabela Island are located just outside of Puerto Villamil. They consist of lagoons, swamps, and mangroves and are home to a variety of unique bird species such as common stilts, whimbrels, white-cheeked pintails, and gallinules. The Wetlands can be visited on foot via a path through the swamps.
Possible Activities: Hiking
Difficulty: Easy
Type of Landing: Dry Landing
Highlights & Animals: Giant mangroves, shore birds, flamingos

Arnaldo Tupiza Breeding Center is located about one mile (1.5 km) from Puerto Villamil. Here, tortoise populations from South Isabela, Sierra Negra Volcano, Cerro Azul, Cazuela, Cinco Cerros, Roca Union, San Pedro, Tables and Cerro Paloma have been bred in captivity. In total there are 330 juvenile and adult tortoises.
Possible Activities: Walking
Difficulty: Easy
Type of Landing: Dry Landing
Highlights & Animals: Two of the five species of the giant tortoise

Day 3: Moreno Point | Elizabeth Bay, Isabela

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Moreno Point is located southwest of Elizabeth Bay. Here a dry landing onto what was once flowing lava is possible. The lava has left craters in its wake which formed crystal tide pools. By looking into the pools, you can peer into another world as the marine life drifts by your window. In the brackish pools of this area, you may see pink flamingos, white-cheeked pintails, and common gallinules. If you look carefully into the pools, you may see white-tip reef sharks and some sea turtles.
Possible Activities: Snorkeling, panga ride & hike (1.2 miles / 2km)
Difficulty: Moderate/Difficult
Type of Landing: Dry Landing
Highlights & Animals: Flamingos, gallinules, pintail ducks, turtles, white-tip reef sharks.

Elizabeth Bay is located on the east coast of Isabela Island. The bay contains many islets, which can be visited by dinghy. Penguins and blue-footed boobies can be spotted on the rocky islets. With an abundance of marine life and clear water, the area is perfect for snorkeling and viewing schools of colorful fish, sea lions, and perhaps even sharks.
Possible Activities: Hiking (1.5 miles / 2 km) and dinghy ride
Difficulty: Easy/Moderate
Type of Landing: Wet Landing
Highlights & Animals: Mangrove forest (unique in Galapagos), sea turtles, penguins, rays, herons and sea lions

Day 4: Espinoza Point | Vicente Roca Point

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Crossing the Bolivar Channel that divides Isabela and Fernandina Islands, you will land at Espinoza Point, and after walking past a colony of marine iguanas and a group of sea lions, you will reach the island’s highlight: the flightless cormorant nesting site. This area also provides a great opportunity to see the Galapagos hawk.
Possible Activities: Hike (approximately 1.2 miles / 2 km)
Difficulty: Moderate
Type of Landing: Dry Landing
Highlights & Animals: Flightless cormorant, marine iguanas, a‘ā lava, sea lions, penguins, active volcano “La Cumbre”.

Comprised of two separate coves, Vicente Roca Point is a large bay with spectacular sea life. Keep an eye out for seahorses, sea turtles, and the strange yet fascinating Mola mola (or sun fish) while you snorkel.
Possible Activities: Snorkeling & dinghy ride
Difficulty: Easy/Moderate
Type of Landing: No Landing
Highlights & Animals: Penguins, blue-footed boobies, terns, Nazca boobies, two types of sea lions, Sea turtles, rays and puffer fish.

Day 5: Egas Port | Espumilla Beach | Buccaneer Cove

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Egas Port, also known as James Bay, on Santiago Island is home to the curious Galapagos hawks and quick-footed Galapagos lava lizards. The trail leads to the coastline with gorgeous tide pools and grottos full of fauna. Here the Galapagos fur seals bathe in the sun. This is also a great snorkeling site.
Possible Activities: Snorkeling, hiking (1.2 miles/2 km)
Difficulty: Easy/Moderate
Type of Landing: Wet Landing
Highlights & Animals: Fur seals, Galapagos sea lions, tidal pools and grottos, Galapagos hawks, oyster catchers, marine iguanas, finches; snorkeling: reef sharks, turtles, rays, nice underwater formations.

In Espumilla Beach marine iguanas lounge and the Sally Lightfoot crabs attract the hunting herons performing the dance of predator and prey right before your eyes. Snorkeling is highly recommended as you could come face to face with an octopus, moray eel, shark and a variety of other species of tropical fish.
Possible Activities: Snorkeling and swimming
Difficulty: Easy
Type of Landing: Wet Landing
Highlights & Animals: Snorkeling

Buccaneer Cove is a testament to the fact that Santiago Island was once a refuge for British buccaneers. These pirates would anchor in the protected bay to make repairs and stock up on tortoise meat among other things. The steep cliffs, where hundreds of seabirds perch in front of the dark red sand beach, are a magnificent site.
Possible Activities: Short hike along the beach (less than 0.6 miles / 1 km), snorkeling, dinghy ride and kayaking
Difficulty: Easy
Type of Landing: Wet Landing
Highlights & Animals: Sea birds, historical site, snorkeling and rock formations

Day 6: Pinnacle Rock | Sullivan Bay

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
You will head to Bartholomew Island where the famous Pinnacle Rock is found. Bartholomew consists of an extinct volcano with a variety of red, orange, black and even green volcanic formations. We will take a trail of stairs to the summit of the volcano (about 30 or 40 minutes) where you will enjoy one of the best views of the islands! You will also visit a small, beautiful beach surrounded by the only vegetation found on this barren island. The beach is perfect for snorkeling where you may even see and swim with Galapagos penguins.
Possible Activities: Dinghy ride, snorkeling & hiking (1.2 miles/ 2 km)
Difficulty: Moderate/Difficult
Type of Landing: Dry & Wet Landings
Highlights & Animals: Pinnacle Rock, panoramic view, moonlike landscape, penguins, pioneer plants, lava cactus; snorkeling: penguins, reef sharks, rays, and great colorful fish.

You will visit Sullivan Bay located on the southeast part of Santiago. This place is interesting for its geology because the area is covered by lava flows. This place has elevations in the form of small volcanoes formed by the lava flows.
Possible Activities: Hiking
Difficulty: Easy/Moderate
Type of Landing: Dry Landing
Highlights & Animals: Lava flows, small volcanoes

Day 7: Chinese Hat Islet | Dragon Hill

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
This small islet is located near the southeast coast of Santiago Island. Its name comes from the distinct shape of the islet’s summit. Chinese Islet is a great location to view many geological formations such as lava tunnels and lava flows. Some of the lava flows were formed underwater and subsequently raised above sea level. The presence of coral heads on the lava flow indicates this phenomenon.
Chinese Hat Islet, Santiago Island
Possible Activities: Hike (1.9 miles / 3 km)
Difficulty: Easy
Type of Landing: Wet Landing
Highlights & Animals: Lava formations, great site for snorkeling with an abundance of marine species such as sea lions, sharks, rays and penguins.

The visitors’ site at Dragon Hill is located in northwestern Santa Cruz Island and consists of a 1,600 m long trail that runs through three different environments. The beach is very rocky. At high tide it’s a nice place for snorkeling. At this visiting site you can find vegetation of the typical intertidal zone and dry zone.
Dragon Hill, Santa Cruz Island
Possible Activities: Panga ride & short hike
Difficulty: Easy
Type of Landing: Dry Landing
Highlights & Animals: Frigatebirds, herons, blue-footed boobies, rays, reef sharks

Day 8: North Seymour | Baltra | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast
In North Seymour you may see Galapagos sea lions, blue-footed boobies, and magnificent frigate birds which are abundant on this island. North Seymour was formed by a series of submarine lava flows containing layers of sediment that were uplifted by tectonic activity. The island is characterized by its arid vegetation zone.
Possible Activities: Dinghy ride & hiking (1.5 miles / 2.41 km)
Difficulty: Moderate/Difficult
Type of Landing: Dry Landing
Highlights & Animals: Land & marine iguanas, frigate birds, blue-footed boobies, sea lions; snorkeling: rays, reef sharks, fish, garden eels.

After this final visit, you will be transferred to the Baltra airport in time for your flight back to the mainland.

Ship/Hotel

Cormorant II

Al Fresco dining
Sun deck

Dates & Prices

My Preferred Start Date

Per person starting at
$10,745
Main deck suite
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Suite
4 Interconnected Suites on the main deck (two of 527ft²/ 46m² and two of 474ft²/ 44m²) and 3 Suites (371ft²/ 35m²) on the upper deck feature a private balcony, binoculars, a safety box, a hair dryer, bathrobes, and a TV. Suites 1 & 2 include a minibar and a coffee maker
Upper deck Premium suite
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Premium Suites
2 Premium Suites (667ft²/ 62m²) on the upper deck with a private balcony, binoculars, safety box, hair dryer, bathrobes, TV, minibar, coffee maker, and a private Jacuzzi

Child Discount

10% discount for children under 12 years at time of Galapagos cruise traveling with two adults. 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
  • 7 Breakfasts, 7 Lunches, 7 Dinners
  • 7 Nights Accommodations
  • Accommodations as listed
  • Ground transportation as listed
  • Activities as listed
  • Meals as listed
  • Access to a 24-7 Emergency line while traveling
  • Snorkeling equipment, wetsuits, kayaks, and paddleboards are all included in the cruise cost and are available for your use onboard.
  • Bilingual Naturalist Guide 
  • Adventure Life Pre-departure Services and In-Country Assistance (Quito Representative)
  • Shore Excursions, Swimming and Snorkeling 
  • Transfers and Baggage Handling in the Galapagos
  • Walking Sticks
  • Soft drinks
  • Onboard internet service
  • House wine and beer during meals
  • Galapagos National Park Entrance Fee and Transit Control Card (conditions apply)
  • Underwater cameras
Excluded
  • Gratuities
  • Travel Insurance
  • Personal Expenses
  • Flight costs (please request a quote)
  • Additional excursions during free time
  • Fuel and transportation surcharges (when applicable)
  • Alcoholic Drinks
  • Internal Flights: Mainland Ecuador - Galapagos - Mainland Ecuador: $475-675

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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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