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Sea Lion resting on Red Sesuvium

Western & Southern Galapagos Islands

Example 11 Day Cruise aboard Alya
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Snorkel with sea lions and kayak surrounded by unique species. On this 11-day exciting journey, explore the exclusive shores of Santa Cruz, Isabela, Fernandina, and Santiago. Experience stunning encounters with Galapagos wildlife as you take part in adventure options such as hiking and swimming in pristine crystal-clear waters. Explore the Western and Southern Islands of the Galapagos archipelago and discover all that this wonderful destination has to offer.
Overlook at Pitt PointColorful kayaks on the beachHiking through cacti in the GalapagosBlue-footed booby mating danceSea Lion resting on Red Sesuvium
Highlights
  • Look for Galapagos penguins, one of the rarest penguin species on earth
  • Observe the famed Galapagos giant tortoises in their natural habitat
  • Walk across a lovely white-sand beach in Gardner Bay
  • Admire Santa Fe Island's breathtaking views and unique wildlife
Trip Type:
  • Small Ship
Activity Level: Relaxed
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Full Itinerary

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Day 1: Santa Cruz | Embark | Highlands

  • Ship
  • 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Morning flight from Quito or Guayaquil to Baltra, Galapagos Islands.

Arrive at Baltra Island in the morning. After passing through immigration and baggage claim, meet an Alya staff member and transferred to the yacht. Seeto your cabin where you have some time to settle in before lunch and a welcome briefing.

In the afternoon, visit the Highlands where you will hike and encounter giant tortoises in their natural hábitat, a natural wonder. For this visit, is recommended to use sport shoes, long pants, raincoat, hat and sun block.

Day 2: Isabela, Moreno Point | Elizabeth Bay

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
​In the morning, visit Moreno Point located southwest of Elizabeth Bay. Here experience a dry landing on to what was once flowing lava. 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 the window. In the brackish pools of this area, you may see pink flamingos, white-cheeked pintails, and white-tip reef sharks and some sea turtles.

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.

Day 3: Isabela, Urbina Bay | Fernandina, Espinosa Point

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
In the morning, visit Urbina Bay, located at the base of Alcedo Volcano on the west coast between Tagus Cove and Elizabeth Bay. This area experienced a major uplift in 1954 causing the land to rise over 16 feet. The coast expanded half a mile out leaving marine life stranded on the new shore. This area is also a great place for snorkeling.

In the afternoon, cross the Bolivar Channel that divides Isabela and Fernandina Islands, land at Espinosa Point, famous for the large colonies of marine iguanas and the home of the flightless cormorant, the Galapagos penguin, snakes, and more. From Espinoza Point, we can admire the beauty of Fernandina Island and its volcano which last erupted in May of 2005. Fernandina is the only island that doesn’t have mammals and the open areas are extremely fragile. From January to June, the nesting period of the marine iguana, we take great care when walking.

Day 4: Isabela, Tagus Cove | Vicente Roca Point

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
In the morning visit Tagus Cove on Isabela Island, located across from Fernandina Island, near the Bolivar Channel dividing the two islands. This spot has been frequented by ships since the 1800s, using the area as an anchorage site. Trails winding by Lake Darwin up to a ridge display wonderful views. Punta Tortuga, just north of Tagus Cove, is another lovely beach surrounded by mangroves.

In the afternoon, visit Vicente Roca Point. Comprised of two separate coves, this site 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).

Day 5: Santiago, Espumilla Beach | Egas Port

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
In the morning, sail to Espumilla Beach where marine iguanas lounge and the Sally Lightfoot crabs attract the hunting herons performing the dance of predator and prey right before your eyes. Snorkel and find yourself face to face with an octopus, moray eel, shark, and a variety of other species of tropical fish.

In the afternoon visit Egas Port (also known as James Bay) on Santiago Island, which 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 sea lions bathe in the sun. This is also a great snorkeling site.

Day 6: Bachas Beach, Santa Cruz | Seymour

  • 1 Breakfast
Today visit the beautiful beach, located in the north of Santa Cruz Island; Bachas is one km long. The site was named during WWII (World War II) when the American army left two barges on the beach. The early colonists couldn’t pronounce barges correctly, so they called the area “Bachas”.

In the afternoon, discover Seymour, formed by the lifting of volcanic marine lava. Marine fossils dating back to the Pleistocene period were found on this island. In 1932, Captain Alan Hancock and his crew took 72 malnourished land iguanas from Baltra Island to North Seymour Island so that the iguanas could live in better conditions. In 1934, colonists verified that the iguanas were in good condition. The vegetation of North Seymour is bushy and is host to nesting Real Frigates of the Galapagos.

Day 7: South Plaza | Santa Fe

South Plazas are two small islands, created by an uplifting of the land. The land iguanas are smaller here; they nest during the warm season. The hike goes along an extraordinary cliff where sea birds nest. There are approximately 1000 sea lions (Zalophus Wollebaeki) located on the south side of the Plazas.

In the afternoon enjoy Santa Fe Island. With 24 km2 and 60 m of height above sea level, this central island is a unique place to visit. It has an incredible bay of turquoise water, protected by a natural barrier of rocks. You will see colonies of seals as hawks fly overhead. This island is home to one of the two species of land iguanas found in the Galapagos. Their main food source is the leaves and fruit of the large, thick cactus found here. Crabs, nocturnal herons, marine iguanas, cucuves and land doves are seen frequently. The Bay is an excellent place to swim and to do snorkel. Marine tortoises, rays, sea lions and tropical fish are an amazing attraction! Snacks and refreshing beverages are waiting for you on board. Dinner.

Day 8: Interpretation Center | Lobos Island

After breakfast, your first visit is to the Interpretation Center of San Cristobal. This modern and sophisticated architectural space was designed for the natural interpretation of the Galapagos. You will learn about the volcanic formation of the islands, the evolution of the species, the history of human settlement, and complex systems and management models.

In the afternoon walk, swim and snorkel among the seals, frigates, marine iguanas, lava lizards, and the small endemic Galapagos snake at Lobos Island. 

Day 9: Gardner Bay | Suarez Point

Today visit Gardner Bay. The sea lion is one of the animals in Galapagos which gets the total attention of the visitors in the Galapagos: they are curious and playful, but at times aggressive; they are nice and loving, but also lazy. In Gardner Bay, you are going to find many of them relaxing on the beach enjoying the sun. In addition to observing these fascinating animals, while snorkeling, we will be able to swim with sea lions, sea turtles, a diversity of tropical fish, marine iguanas, etc.

There is no color more amazing and outstanding in this tropical desert island than that of the blue-foot boobies. These birds have an impressive form of “greeting” and it is a real thrill to see their mating dance. The blue-footed booby can be seen on several of the islands as nesting grounds and feed are located in several coastal locations. The albatross, an aristocratic bird weighing up to four kilograms, can be observed here. One of the largest birds of the islands, approximately 12,000 couples nest on Espanola Island and a smaller number nest on Silver Island, near mainland Ecuador. This species is considered endemic to this island; during our walk, observe these fantastic birds while taking in the beautiful landscapes offered by this island. It is important to note that albatrosses will not be seen between January and March (non-breeding) season. See colonies of marine iguanas, zayapas, masked boobies, finches, Espanola cucuves, and seagulls unique to the islands. The walk will be on lava rock where you will be able to see lava tubes. Red mangroves are found here. Delicious snacks and fresh beverages are waiting for you on the ship.

Day 10: Cormorant Point | Devil's Crown | Cerro Alieri

Discover Cormorant Point. This point is located at west of Floreana Island and it is famous for its dark green beach (due to the great quantity of olivine crystals).You can see many marine invertebrates, as well as sea lions, sea iguanas, the frigates and pelicans.

In the afternoon visit enjoy a panga ride around a small island, a satellite islet of Floreana Island. Here, you will find a group of rocks that resemble a Crown due to the constant erosion caused by the sea. It is one of the better places to snorkel (shallow diving) in the interior and around the crown. Excellent visibility allows guests to admire a great variety of fish and sea animals.

Followed by an exploration of Cerro Alieri, located east of Port Velasco Ibarra. Hiking. This place may be muddy and it may rain. Wear appropriate clothing and footwear for this type of weather. There are trees and shrubs characteristic of the place, the 56% of vegetation is native such as: Lippia salicifolia, Linum cratericola, Lecocarpus pinnatifidus, Scalesia Pedunculata. In this place there are a plant that is critically endangered: The Catericola Linum there are 40 individuals found.

Day 11: Santa Cruz Highlands | Disembark

Enjoy trekking and find the giant tortoises in their natural habitat at the Highlands. For this visit, we recommend good walking shoes, long pants, a raincoat, a hat, and sunblock. 

After this visit transfer out.

Ship/Hotel

Alya

Alya, Sun Deck
Alya
Alya, Lounge Area

Dates & Prices

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Per person starting at
$7,018
Matrimonial Cabin on the Alia
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Double Twin
9 comfortable cabins, 8 with private balconies. All the beds can be double or twin. Upper Deck cabins are 172ft² / 16m²; Main Deck cabins measure 215ft² / 20m².

Notes

The vessel itinerary is subject to change without previous notice; due to seasonal changes, weather conditions or Galapagos National Park policy.
 

Child Discount

10% discount for children under 12 years of age. Children over 6 years old are welcome aboard. 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
  • 10 Breakfasts, 9 Lunches, 10 Dinners
  • 10 Nights Accommodations
  • Accommodations as listed
  • Meals as listed
  • Ground transportation as listed
  • Professional, bilingual guide service as listed
  • Excursions and activities as listed
  • Snorkeling equipment, wetsuits, transparent sea kayaks, and stand-up 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
Excluded
  • Gratuities
  • Travel Insurance
  • Personal Expenses
  • Flight costs (please request a quote)
  • Additional excursions during free time
  • Galapagos Park Entrance Fee: $100 per adult, $50 per child under 12
  • Internal Flights: Mainland Ecuador - Galapagos - Mainland Ecuador: $475-675

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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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