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Galapagos penguin on a rock

Private Charter - Southern & Northern Islands Aboard Hermes Ultra Luxury Cruise

Example 7 Day Cruise aboard Hermes Ultra Luxury Cruise
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Embark on a 7-day cruise with Hermes Ultra Luxury Cruise through the Eastern & Central Islands of the Galápagos. Begin at San Cristóbal Island, exploring Tijeretas and the Galápagos' history at the Interpretation Center. Gardner Bay offers white sandy beaches, Punta Suárez brings bird colonies and waved albatrosses, while Floreana reveals unique wildlife. Snorkel at Champion Islet, visit Post Office Bay and explore the Charles Darwin Research Station. Transfer to Santa Cruz for giant tortoises and lava tunnels, then venture to Cerro Dragón for land iguanas and flamingos. Discover marine life and bird-rich Genovesa Island before a serene morning panga ride at Black Turtle Cove. Disembark in Baltra, concluding your unforgettable Galápagos journey.
Manta ray during on a snorkeling trip.Sea lion in galapagosGalapagos beachFlamingo LagoonFrigate BirdSea lion in the GalapagosGiant TortoiseBlue footed boobyGalapagos penguin on a rock
Highlights
  • Enjoy exploring Española Island's ancient beauty and Gardner Bay's morning
  • Discover Floreana's green and white sand beaches, observing flamingos
  • Interact with the playful sea lion colony, snorkel at Champion Islet
  • Explore Genovesa Island, home to Red-footed boobies and unique landscapes
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: San Cristobal | Embark | Tijeretas hill

  • Ship
  • 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Catch an early flight to San Cristóbal Island. Learn about the history of the Galápagos Islands from the very beginning of their volcanic origins through to today’s conservation efforts. Tour the Human History exhibit to learn about the islands’ discovery and colonization, and discover the natural history and variety of flora and fauna that make the Galápagos so fascinating.

In the afternoon, visit Tijeretas, a great viewpoint and your first wildlife encounter. Learn about the origins of the Galapagos at the Interpretation Center. Tijeretas Hill bears its name thanks to the frigate birds as “Tijeretas” is how people locally call them. Here enjoy a great view of beautiful landscapes at the foot of a frigate bird nesting colony.
Activities: Hiking 

Day 2: Gardner Bay | Punta Suárez, Española

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Enjoy the day on Española Island, one of the oldest in the archipelago. Arrive at Gardner Bay in the morning, and spend the day exploring on shore and snorkeling in the bay. Visit Gardner Bay's magnificent white sandy beach, home to sea lions and sea birds. Be sure to explore the beautiful turquoise water and its incredible sea life. Spot young sea lions and large schools of surprisingly big tropical fish, including yellow-tailed surgeonfish, king angelfish, and bump-head parrot fish.
Activities: Hiking, Panga ride, Snorkeling, Paddleboarding, Kayaking

After lunch, sail to the western side of the islands to Punta Suárez, known for its amazing bird colonies and home to the waved albatross (April and December).  Punta Suárez is one of the most rich wildlife landing sites in the Galápagos. Be greeted by surfing young sea lions on arrival. Head to the trail to find many species of nesting sea birds, and, if lucky, see the waved albatross. Follow the path up to a cliff for great views over the ocean, and watch sea birds gliding in the wind.
Activities: Hiking

Day 3: Cormorant Point | Champion Islet | Post Office Bay, Floreana

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Land at Punta Cormorant, the only landing site on Floreana Island, and discover two amazingly different beaches: one with green sand, colored by olivine crystals, and another with white sand particles known as 'Flour Beach'. Spend the afternoon observing flamingos and other shore birds feeding in the lagoon. Spot penguins and marine iguanas at the water’s edge, and explore the lava tubes with the Galápagos CEO. Guided walks to observe the birds and wildlife and learn about the natural history.
Activities: Hiking, Panga ride, Snorkeling

Jump on in and get up close and personal with the playful sea lion colony that resides in the waters off this tiny island. Keep an eye out for sea turtles, rays, and colorful fish swimming by. There can be currents in this area, this activity should be done by strong swimmers only. Snorkeling excursion at Champion Islet.

Visit Post Office Bay and learn about its unique history. In the late 18th century, English whaling vessels placed a barrel here to be used as a post office. Today, the box is used mainly by tourists, who may drop off and pick up unstamped letters to be carried to far destinations. Continue the tradition – leave a letter and take one to deliver (be sure it makes it to the correct location).
Activities: Hiking, Panga ride, Paddleboarding, Kayaking

Day 4: Charles Darwin Station | Highlands, Santa Cruz

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Visit Fausto Llerena Breeding Center a great place to observe many species of tortoises and land iguanas in captivity. Brought back from the brink of extinction, see the famous Galápagos tortoise up close – a corral houses adult tortoises, and a nursery cares for the young until around age three when their shells have hardened. This area also houses the Charles Darwin Research Station, a scientific organization initiated in 1964, which works to preserve the Galápagos' ecosystem through the conservation efforts of scientists, researchers, and volunteers. While the offices themselves are not open to visitors, the research station provides a study location for international scientists and environmental education for the local community.
Activities: Hiking

In the afternoon enjoy the highlands of Santa Cruz and see the Galápagos giant tortoise in its natural surroundings. Explore the area and its incredible underground lava tunnels – some are more than 1km long! Wander along the volcanic tubes and keep an eye out for the (mainly) nocturnal barn owls that sometimes roost here.
Activities: Hiking

Day 5: Dragon Hill | Chinese Hat

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
This morning visit Cerro Dragón (Dragon Hill) on the west coast of Santa Cruz to see land Iguanas and a saltwater lagoon frequented by flamingos and other species of birds. Take a short walk from the beach to a hypersalinic (saltier than the ocean) lagoon frequented by pink flamingos, common stilts, pintail ducks, and other species of birds. Pass through a Scalesia tree forest; endemic to the area, there are only 400 specimens of Scalesia trees left in the world.
Activities: Hiking, Snorkeling

In the afternoon, the boat arrives at a small uniquely shaped island off the southern tip of Santiago called Chinese Hat. Here it is often possible to see galápagos penguins, and the marine life is fantastic for snorkeling. There is also a large sea lion colony as well as many marine iguanas that can be seen while walking amongst the volcanic scenery. Trek to see good views of the island's volcano. Snorkel right from the white-coral sand beach and come face to face with playful sea lions and large schools of tropical fish. Keep an eye out for marine iguanas and penguins too! 
Activities: Hiking, Panga ride, Snorkeling, Paddleboarding, Kayaking

Day 6: Prince Phillips’s Steps (El Barranco) | Darwin Bay, Genovesa

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Today, visit the beautiful and remote Genovesa Island. This northern island, famous for its red-footed colony, is a paradise for bird lovers. It is estimated that about 200,00 Red-footed boobies live on this island. 

El Barranco or Prince Phillips’s Steps as otherwise known, was named after a visit by the British Monarch in 1964. El Barranco's steep 81-foot stairway leads up to a high cliff face that opens out onto the plateau surrounding Darwin Bay. Here an amazing view can be appreciated. Once at the top of the stairway, we will meet Nazca boobies, red-footed boobies, mockingbirds, and finches along the way to a palo santo trail. It will also be possible to see wedge-rumped storm petrels swarm and short-eared owls. 
Activities: Hiking, Panga ride, Snorkeling, Paddleboarding, Kayaking

Darwin Bay was formed by the collapse of the flooded caldera of Tower Island, another name used for Genovesa. After landing at a small sand and coral beach, it is easy to realize why this island is a bird-lover paradise. Among the bird species found here, the most common are swallow-tailed and lava gulls, mockingbirds, yellow-crowned night herons, lava herons, Galapagos doves, and yellow warblers. We will continue on a short and flat trail to encounter red-footed booby and great frigatebird nests. Visit a tidal lagoon where sea lions swim playfully ending our path on a cliff with magnificent views of this remote part of the Galapagos. 
Activities: Hiking, Panga ride, Snorkeling, Paddleboarding, Kayaking

Day 7: Black Turtle Cove | Baltra | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast
Take a morning panga ride and look for marine life in Black Turtle Cove. Explore the mangroves by panga to find rich marine wildlife between the fresh and salt waters. Keep an eye out for manta rays and sea turtles in this tranquil ecosystem. Whitetip reef sharks can also be seen gliding by.
Activities: Panga ride

Disembark at Baltra and fly back to Ecuador's mainland.

Ship/Hotel

Hermes Ultra Luxury Cruise

Hermes Catamaran
Luxury Aperitif Lounge
Main Salon

Dates & Prices

My Preferred Start Date

Per person starting at
$222,205
Suite King
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Upper Deck Suite
Cabin size: 35 m² / 376 sq ft 6 convertible (twin/king size) double suites All suites feature a private balcony, mini bar, walk-in closet, and jacuzzi.
Suite Twin
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Main Deck Suite
Cabin size: 35 m² / 376 sq ft 4 convertible (twin/king size) double suites All suites feature a private balcony, mini bar, walk-in closet, and jacuzzi.
Hermes Single Room
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Main Deck Single Suite
Single cabin size: 20 m² / 215 sq ft 2 single suites All suites feature a private balcony, mini bar, walk-in closet, and jacuzzi.

Notes

  • Single supplement: 50% if both single cabins are already booked.
  • Child discount is 15% if travelling with 2 adults and under 12 years of age. Discount does not apply on discounted, promotional rates, or peak season.
  • Minimum age aboard is 6 years old. Children under 6 years of age are welcomed in charters and family departures with a waiver signed by their parents. They are and will be held fully responsible and liable for their kids’ safety during the entire cruise.

Child Discount

The minimum age aboard is 6 years old. Child discount is 15% if traveling with 2 adults and under 12 years of age. Discount does not apply on discounted, promotional rates, or peak season.

Children under 12 may receive discounts on Galapagos flight fares and entrance fees. Contact us for details.
Included
  • 6 Breakfasts, 6 Lunches, 6 Dinners
  • 6 Nights Accommodations
  • Accommodations as listed
  • Ground transportation as listed
  • Activities as listed
  • Meals as listed
  • Access to a 24-7 Emergency line while traveling
  • Laundry Service
  • Bilingual Naturalist Guide 
  • Use of snorkeling equipment, wet suits, kayaks, and stand-up paddleboards.
  • Satellite internet
  • Signature Menu by a Renowned Chef
  • Use of Library
  • Use of Hammam
  • Cocktail and Cooking lessons
  • Butler Service
  • Unpacking Service
  • Access to Galapagos Airport VIP Lounge
  • Alcoholic and Non-Alcoholic Beverages from Selected Menu
Excluded
  • Gratuities
  • Travel Insurance
  • Personal Expenses
  • Flight costs (please request a quote)
  • Additional excursions during free time
  • Fuel and transportation surcharges (when applicable)
  • Galapagos Park Entrance Fee: $200 per adult, $100 per child under 12 (fees of $100 per adult and $50 per child valid on arrivals through Aug 1, 2024). Payable upon arrival to the Galapagos, only in cash dollars. Subject to increase by Galapagos Park Service.
  • Internal Flights: Mainland Ecuador - Galapagos - Mainland Ecuador: $475-675
  • Massage services
  • Drinks not included in the Menu

Map

When to Go

Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec
Good to ideal period to travel, and many people choose to visit at this time.

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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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