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Sea lion on a pristine beach

West & South Galapagos Islands

Example 11 Day Cruise aboard Bonita
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Join the Bonita on an incredible 11-day cruise gives the entire family a once-in-a-lifetime wildlife experience. Enjoy the opportunity to explore the western islands of the archipelago as a naturalist guide reveals to you its magical secrets. Wonder at ancient tortoises, snorkel with sea lions, and kayak surrounded by endemic species.

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Baltra | Embark | Dragon Hill
Day 2 : Espumilla Beach | Boucanier Cove | Egas Port
Day 3 : Vicente Roca Point | Espinosa Point
Day 4 : Urbina Bay | Tagus Cove
Day 5 : Moreno Point | Elizabeth Bay
Day 6 : Tintoreras | Humedales
Day 7 : Charles Darwin Station | Santa Cruz Highlands
Day 8 : Cormorant Point | Devil's Crown | Post Office Bay
Day 9 : Suarez Point | Gardner Bay
Day 10 : Interpretation Center | Lobos Island
Day 11 : Daphne OR Bachas | Disembark

Highlights

  • Visit Espumilla Beach an important tortoise nesting place
  • Explore Vicente Roca Point, a large bay with spectacular sea life
  • Kayak and stand up paddle board along island coastlines
  • Hike across Urbina Bay and Tagus cove to admire unique landscapes

Ship

Bonita

Places Visited

  • Ecuador
  • Galapagos
  • South America
  • Bachas Beach
  • Baltra
  • Charles Darwin Center
  • Devil's Crown
  • Dragon Hill
  • Elizabeth Bay
  • Espanola
  • Espinosa Point
  • Espumilla Beach
  • Fernandina
  • Floreana
  • Gardner Bay
  • Highlands
  • Humedales and Wall of Tears
  • Isabela
  • Las Tintoreras
  • Puerto Egas
  • Punta Cormorant
  • Punta Moreno
  • Punta Suarez
  • San Cristobal
  • San Cristobal Interpretation Center
  • Santa Cruz
  • Santiago
  • Tagus Cove
  • Urbina Bay
  • Vicente Roca Point

Activities

Trip Type

  • Small Ship

Activity Level

Relaxed

Trip Snapshots

Sea lion on a pristine beach Two frigate birds Hike to find sweeping views of the Galapagos' volcanic landscape Giant Tortoise Cruising in the Galapagos
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Day 1 Baltra | Embark | Dragon Hill

Board the ship and get comfortably settle into your cabin. After lunch, your first visit is to Dragon Hill which is located in the northwestern area of Santa Cruz Island. It consists of a 1,600 m long trail running through 3 different environments. In 1975, it was one of the only places on Santa Cruz Island where healthy land iguanas (Conolophus Subcristatus) could be found. That same year, the Galapagos National Park and the Charles Darwin Foundation initiated a program to conserve land iguanas. In the lagoons found here, there are shrimp (Artemia salina), the food of the flamingos. At certain times of the year, the shrimp are more abundant and the flamingo population increases.

Day 2 Espumilla Beach | Boucanier Cove | Egas Port

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
The main attractions include Palo Santo Wood, the beach, and the stunning landscape; the beach is a very important site for tortoises because they use this place for nesting. One time, the pigs were the main predatory of tortoise’s eggs; pigs were eradicated with the creation of the Isabela Project. 

At Egas Port find a beautiful black sand beach; to the south of the beach is the Pan de Azucar Volcano, whose volcanic deposits have contributed to the formation of the black sand beach. The crater of this volcano contains a saltwater lake that dries up during hot weather. Between 1928 and 1930, explorations to develop a salt mine were carried out, but it was decided that a mine was not feasible. The workers’ use of endemic woods also damaged the environment and the development was scrapped. Descent to the salt mine is not allowed.

Day 3 Vicente Roca Point | Espinosa Point

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Vicente Roca Point is 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 (sunfish).

Fernandina is the third biggest island in the Galapagos and has only one visiting site: Espinoza 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 Urbina Bay | Tagus Cove

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Urbina Bay, this place is located at the base of Alcedo Volcano between Elizabeth Bay and Tagus Cove. Wet landing. Trail length is around 3.20 Km; during this walk, we can observe land iguanas, hawks, and tortoises. It is also possible to see red and blue lobsters.

Tagus Cove is located to the west of Darwin Volcano on Isabela Island. While walking, find several inscriptions (names of pirates) dating back to the 1800s. From here, we can see Darwin Lake, a saltwater lake with a depth of approximately 9 m. It contains no fish. It is very common to see a variety of bird species.

Day 5 Moreno Point | Elizabeth Bay

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Disembark at Moreno Point which is located near Elizabeth Bay on the west coast of Isabela Island. The plethora of birds seen during a dinghy ride along the striking rocky shores or a hike along a path through lava rock leading to tide pools and mangroves, create a birdwatcher’s delight. In the tide pools, green sea turtles or white-tip sharks can be spotted.

After lunch, visit Elizabeth Bay one of the island’s breeding sites for penguins. Located on the west coast of Isabela, Elizabeth Point is a marine visitor site. Visit Red Mangrove Cove: Brown pelicans, flightless cormorants, spotted eagle rays, golden rays, and sea lions are often seen.

Day 6 Tintoreras | Humedales

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Visit Tintoreras, located in the bay of Puerto Villamil, this small island, surrounded by calm, turquoise waters have an easy trail with great landscapes and very interesting fauna. Along the trail, see large numbers of Marine Iguanas basking in the sun, lava lizards, herons, gulls, and sea lions. In the coves, it is easy to find Sea Turtles, rays and even penguins. Among the many inlets and channels on the coast, sometimes see White-tipped Reef Sharks (in Spanish “Tintoreras”). Following the excursion, return to the boat for breakfast and sail to your next destination.

Los Humedales is one of the Isabela Hidden Gems. “Humedales” translates to Wet Lands and this area is characterized by sandy beaches, rocky shores, and mangroves, which have an extremely important role in the Galapagos as they provide a nursery for young marine animals as well as a nesting site for birds. Following the various paths, you will find a fabulous destination for bird lovers, pink flamingos and migratory birds including black-bellied and semipalmated plovers, whimbrel, osprey, greater and lesser yellowlegs, Wilson's phalarope, short-billed dowitcher, common tern, blue-winged teal, to name a few. You can also observe young giant tortoises from the Isabela Breeding Center.

Day 7 Charles Darwin Station | Santa Cruz Highlands

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
After breakfast, visit Charles Darwin Station which is located in the main port on Santa Cruz Island; take a private bus to the entrance of the breeding center where see tortoises and land iguanas in captivity. This center is the main breeding site on the islands. 

Visit the interesting highlands, hike and encounter giant tortoises in their natural habitat, a natural wonder. For this visit, we recommend using sport shoes, long pants, raincoat, hat, and sunblock.

Day 8 Cormorant Point | Devil's Crown | Post Office Bay

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Cormorant Point. Wet landing, snorkeling, and short trekking. This point is located at west of Floreana Island and it is famous for its dark green beach (due to the great number of olivine crystals). You can see many marine invertebrates, as well as sea lions, sea iguanas, the frigates and pelicans.

Second visit, Devil's Crown enjoy a panga ride and optional swimming. Enjoy a panga ride around a small island, a satellite islet of Floreana Island. Here, we 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.

On the afternoon explore Post Office Bay and enjoy a short walk, swimming, snorkeling, explanation of the mail system. Description: Mail Bay is located on the north side of Floreana Island. Captain James Colnett installed an empty barrel to be used as a post office for the whaling fleets that stopped at the Galapagos Islands. You can leave postcards to your friends and relatives here and/or pick up mail to deliver. Back at the ship, Delicious snacks and beverages are waiting for you.

Day 9 Suarez Point | Gardner Bay

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
This morning discover Suarez Point. 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 is 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 your 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. Our walk will be on lava rock where we will be able to see lava tubes. Red mangroves are found here. Delicious snacks and fresh beverages are waiting for you on the ship.

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, be able to swim with sea lions, sea turtles, a diversity of tropical fish, marine iguanas, etc.

Day 10 Interpretation Center | Lobos Island

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
This center is a location in the main port. After breakfast, our 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.

At Lobos Island, you can walk, swim and snorkel among the seals, frigates, marine iguanas, lava lizards, and the small endemic Galapagos snake. Here, you can swim and snorkel in the same place it.

Day 11 Daphne OR Bachas | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast
Daphne Major is a rather large tuff cone somewhat eroded by the sea. Nazca boobies, red-billed tropicbirds, and blue-footed boobies can be found nesting here. Nearly all of the finches on the island are banded. At Daphne Major, you can also observe sea lions, sea turtles, Eagle Rays, various species of sharks, and other pelagic species.
Or
This beautiful sandy white-coral beach is located in the north of Santa Cruz Island; the beach 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”. It is considered as one of the nesting sites for sea turtles. Observe, flamingos, seabirds and white-cheeked pintail ducks.

Transfer to the airport
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Bonita

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Per person starting at
$5,578
Galapagos Bonita
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Lower Deck
Cabins #7 & 8 have two twin lower beds and porthole windows. Cabins # 9 & 10 have two twin lower beds and one upper berth with porthole windows. These two cabins can be sold as triples. (Cabins average 110 square feet.)
Galapagos Bonita
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Upper & Main Decks
Cabins # 5 & 6 cabins have one double bed and picture windows. (Cabins average 90 square feet.) Cabins #1,3 & 4 have two twin lower beds and picture windows. Cabin # 2 has one double bed and picture window. (Cabins average 95 square feet.)

Notes

Stand-up paddleboarding equipment is included on this voyage.

Child Discount

10% discount for children under age 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

  • 10 Breakfasts, 10 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
  • 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
  • Snorkeling and kayaking equipment is included in the cruise cost and available for your use on board.

Excluded

  • Gratuities
  • Travel Insurance
  • Personal Expenses
  • Flight costs (please request a quote)
  • Additional excursions during free time
  • INGALA Transit Control Card $20
  • 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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Everything was amazing! The planning with Adventure Life went smoothly. The actual trip was fantastic! One of the best trips I have experienced. The cruise staff members were knowledgeable and attentive. I will be writing more about this on the blog!
Justin Chappelle
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