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Chinese Hat (Sombrero Chino) Island, Galapagos

Eastern Islands

Example 8 Day Cruise aboard Tip Top IV
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Tour the eastern islands of the Galapagos over this 8-day adventure. Teeming with wildlife, volcanic wonders, and breathtaking landscapes, the eastern islands are an excellent place to spend a vacation! Snorkel, kayak, and trek your way through the islands, spotting sea lions, flamingos, sharks, frigatebirds and a spectrum of species unique to the Galapagos.

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Baltra | Santa Cruz Island
Day 2 : Espanola
Day 3 : San Cristobal | Leon Dormido
Day 4 : Mosquera | Santa Cruz Island
Day 5 : Chinese Hat | Rabida
Day 6 : Santiago | Bartolome
Day 7 : Santa Fe | South Plaza Island
Day 8 : Santa Cruz Island | Baltra | Disembark

Highlights

  • Learn about Giant Tortoises and their upbringing at the Charles Darwin Center
  • Sail around Kicker Rock and see the submarine life
  • Take an expedition on Rabida and observe marine iguanas and sea lions
  • Sunbathe and relax at Las Bachas Beach

Ship

Tip Top IV

Places Visited

  • Ecuador
  • Galapagos
  • South America
  • Bachas Beach
  • Baltra
  • Bartolome
  • Black Turtle Cove
  • Charles Darwin Center
  • Chinese Hat
  • Espanola
  • Leon Dormido
  • Mosquera
  • Rabida
  • San Cristobal
  • Santa Cruz
  • Santa Fe
  • Santiago
  • South Plaza Island

Activities

Trip Type

  • Small Ship

Activity Level

Relaxed

Trip Snapshots

Chinese Hat (Sombrero Chino) Island, Galapagos Snorkeling at Espanola Punta Pitt Punta Suarez Photographers on Mosquera

Day 1 Baltra | Santa Cruz Island

Arrive in Baltra where a guide meets you and will accompany you to the Itabaca Channel by bus. Cross the channel by barge and then continue to Puerto Ayora. Once aboard the yacht, receive a small orientation while enjoying a nice light snack. Later in the afternoon, embark on the first excursion to the Charles Darwin Station and its Interpretive Center. Enjoy a walk through the port town and admire the various handicrafts. Return to the yacht and enjoy a nice welcome cocktail followed by dinner.

Day 2 Espanola

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
After breakfast, make an early dry landing on Punta Suarez to walk along lava beds where you may observe unique colonies of marine birds, including albatross (May-December).

In the afternoon, make a wet landing in Gardner Bay for a walk on the beach and observe a colony of sea lions, which inhabit the beach in great quantities during the breeding season; this is also an important nesting area for sea turtles. Then take a panga ride around the Osborn Islet and the islets of Gardner. 

Day 3 San Cristobal | Leon Dormido

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Start your morning with a wet landing on Punta Pitt in San Cristobal Island. Hike a trail that includes an olivine beach approximately 90 meters and a trail that ascends to the top of a volcanic tuff hill passing through several natural viewpoints. Punta Pitt is composed of a volcanic tuff substrate. High winds present there have led to natural erosion. This is the only site in the Galapagos Islands where you can watch the three species of boobies and two species of frigates nesting in the same area.

Sail around Kicker Rock (León Dormido), a massive tuff-rock that juts abruptly almost 500 feet straight up from the ocean. Kicker Rock serves as a nesting place for many seabirds. Then make a wet landing on Cerro Brujo to walk on a white sand beach and observe sea lions, brown pelicans, marine iguanas, and blue-footed boobies. Optional: time for those who would like to swim, snorkel and/or kayak.

Day 4 Mosquera | Santa Cruz Island

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
After breakfast, make an early wet landing on Mosquera Island, a reef of rocks and coral (the result of an uprising) and a great white sand beach and tide pools. Observe colonies of sea lions, brown pelicans, blue-footed boobies, and Sally Lightfoot crabs - the contrast between these crabs, with bright red on top and blue on the bottom, and the black lava is stunning.

In the afternoon, take a panga ride around Black Turtle Cove, a series of mangrove-surrounded coves and islets. Here you can observe white-tipped sharks, marine turtles, spotted eagle rays, and yellow cow-nosed rays.

Day 5 Chinese Hat | Rabida

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Start the day with a wet landing on Chinese Hat (Sombrero Chino), a small island off the coast of Santiago Island. Here you can observe Galapagos penguins, eagle rays, sea lions, and marine iguanas. This is an excellent snorkeling site. 

Walk on Rábida and observe marine iguanas and sea lions, pelicans, blue-footed boobies, masked boobies, and brown pelicans. Walk to a small saltwater lagoon where you can see pink flamingos. Optional: time for those who would like to swim, snorkel and/or kayak.

Day 6 Santiago | Bartolome

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Begin the day with a wet landing on Sullivan Bay, a perfect place to observe the volcanic origin of the islands.

In the afternoon, make a dry landing on Bartolomé Island to hike to the summit. During the hike you may observe colonies of marine iguanas and lava lizards. On the summit, take in an impressive view of the surrounding islands, including the eroded tuff cone of Pinnacle Rock.

Day 7 Santa Fe | South Plaza Island

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
After breakfast, make a wet landing on Santa Fe Island to visit the cactus forest and a colony of land iguanas native to Santa Fe. 

Sail to South Plaza, where the crew makes a dry landing on the pier of the island. There, enjoy the antics of the sea lions, cactus forest, land iguanas, and many species of tropical birds.

Day 8 Santa Cruz Island | Baltra | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast
After breakfast, make an early disembarkation on Las Bachas Beach. During the walk to the flamingo lagoon, listen to your guide as they explain details about the lives of the birds and animals. Return to the yacht for disembarking on the pier at 09:00.

Tip Top IV

Per person starting at
$5,415
Cruise the Galapagos on the Tip Top IV Ship
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Lower deck cabin
6 lower deck with two twin beds that can be converted into king beds. Some rooms are interconnecting, which is a great option for families.
Cruise the Galapagos on the Tip Top IV Ship
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Upper deck cabin
4 upper deck cabins with two twin beds that can be converted into king beds.

Notes

Please reserve your wetsuit in advance prior to trip.

Child Discount

10% discount for children under the 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 Tip Top IV 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
  • Sea Kayaking

Excluded

  • Airfare (see Galapagos Flights)
  • Quito/Guayaquil Hotel and Transfers
  • $100 Galapagos Park Fee
  • Wetsuits available - $30 short and $35 long size for 4-day tours; $35 short and $40 long size for 5-day tours; $40 short and $50 long size for 8-day tours; $65 short and $75 long size for 11-day tours; and $70 short and $80 long size for 15-day tours
  • Gratuities and drinks aboard the ship
  • Travel Insurance

Galapagos Flights

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

Optional Hospitality Packages

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Our guide and driver were very good with their knowledge and were very helpful with our questions. It was a very pleasant visit that would have been impossible to do on our own. Hotels and restaurants were fantastic. The special places we got to go to, like the kitchens, were great. Enjoyed the entire trip!
Meyer Smolen

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