Have questions? We're here.
Colorful Sally Lightfoot crab on volcanic rock

Beyond Darwin's Footsteps

Example 8 Day Cruise aboard Grace
Talk with an expert
Build your ideal Galapagos trip. Call 1.406.541.2677
Start Planning My Trip
Close encounters with wildlife will make your journey a truly memorable one on this 8-day adventure. These islands are swarming with exotic and curious creatures that love to interact with visitors to the islands. Indulge in the wide variety of flora and fauna here as well as spectacular scenery on these islands. Enjoy snorkeling, swimming, and kayaking in the pristine crystalline waters of this incredible area. With all the wonders to behold, this will truly be the most memorable vacation.
Pinnacle rock on BartolomeSea Lion enjoying the warm sunSnorkeling in the crystal blue ocean.Darwin's statue in the GalapagosColorful Sally Lightfoot crab on volcanic rock
Highlights
  • Cruise around Kicker Rock, a 152 foot formation rising out of the Pacific
  • Enjoy the friendly company of sea lions in Punta Suarez
  • Walk along the incredible green beach in Punta Cormorant
  • Hike to see Galapagos doves, the cactus finch and the large ground finch
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.
0

Full Itinerary

Expand All

Day 1: Baltra | Embark | Highlands | Puerto Ayora and Darwin Station

  • Ship
  • 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
You’ll need to rise early this morning to catch your flight to the Galapagos. All flights to the Galapagos originate in Quito and stop briefly in the port city of Guayaquil to take on passengers before heading on to the islands. For this itinerary, you will be landing on the island of Baltra. After passing through the Galapagos National Park inspection your National Park Guide will be there to greet you holding a sign with the name of your yacht on it and will accompany you on the short bus ride to the Itabaca channel. Once you cross the Itabaca channel, visit Los Gemelos. The terrestrial world of the tortoise and the underworld of the lava tubes meet at Los Gemelos (the twins). These two large sinkhole craters were formed by collapsed lava tubes. The contrast between the marine desert coast and the verdant Lost World look of the highlands is most striking here and you can easily encounter rain even when the sun is shining half an hour away at the coast.

Los Gemelos is surrounded by a Scalesia forest. Scalesia is endemic to Galapagos and many endemic and native species call the forest home. This is an excellent place to view some of Darwin’s famous finches along with the elusive and dazzling vermillion flycatcher. A highlight of any trip to the archipelago is a visit to the Santa Cruz Highlands, where the sparse, dry coastal vegetation transitions to lush wet fields and forests overgrown with moss and lichens. The afternoon destination is the Wild Tortoise Reserve where you will have chances to track and view these friendly ancient creatures in their natural setting. This extends to the adjacent pasturelands, where farmers give tortoises a safe quarter in exchange for allowing paying visitors to see them.

Then board your home while in Galapagos, the Grace Yacht. In the late afternoon, visit Puerto Ayora, home to both the Galapagos National Park Service Headquarters and Charles Darwin Research Station, the center of the great restorative efforts taking place in the park, and a UNESCO World Heritage site. Here visit the Giant Tortoise Breeding & Rearing Program run by the research station, which began by rescuing the remaining 14 tortoises on the island of Española in 1970. This program has restored the population of animals there to over 1,000 today. You will see many of these animals, with their sweet ET necks and faces; from hatchlings to juveniles to large, distinguished individuals. This is where the famed tortoise, Lonesome George, lived out his last days as the last of his particular race of tortoises.

Enjoy the first Pacific sunset aboard the Grace yacht by celebrating happy hour atop her sky lounge where drinks are available daily along with hors d’oeuvres. A little later gather in the main salon for a presentation by a guide on the next day’s activities and visitor sites, before sitting down to dinner. Spend a bit more time in port this evening before setting sail for the island of Floreana.

Type of Landing: Dry
Activities: Hikes

Day 2: Post Office Bay | Cormorant Point & Champion Islet

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Floreana has had a colorful history: Pirates, whalers, convicts, and a small band of somewhat peculiar colonists—a self-proclaimed Baroness among them—who chose a Robinson Crusoe existence that ended in death and mystery. Today roughly a hundred Ecuadorians inhabit the island. In 1793 British whalers set up a barrel as the island’s post office, to send letters home on passing ships. The tradition continues to this day, simply by dropping a postcard into the barrel without a stamp. The catch is you must take a postcard from the barrel and see that it gets to the right place. That is how the system began and continues to this day. Some claim it works better than the official Ecuadorian post office. You’ll have a chance to continue the traditions by sending your own card and picking up others. Continuing a bit farther inland at Post Office Bay you will have the opportunity to enter the underworld of Floreana in the form of a lava tube. The lava tube descends fairly deep into the earth back toward the ocean, where you can swim in a subterranean grotto beneath the tide. Bring a good waterproof flashlight. Snorkeling in Post Office Bay offers choice encounters with waiting sea turtles and tropical fish.

Return to the Grace for lunch and a siesta. The next landing is further along the shore to the northeast. On route, pass within view of Baroness Point in an area of mangrove-lined lagoons. Eloise Wehrborn de WagnerBosquet, the self-proclaimed Baroness (of Floreana) frequented this overlook, but leave the rest of her intriguing story to your Galapagos guide.

Type of Landing: Wet
Level of Walk: Easy
Other Activities: Nature Hikes, Snorkeling

Punta Cormorant offers two highly contrasting beaches; the strand where you land is composed of volcanic olivine crystals, giving it a greenish tint that glitters in the sun. From here you’ll notice the small cinder cone that forms the point. The landing is just to the west of the cinder cone where a trail crosses the neck of an isthmus to a beach of very fine white sand known as Flour Beach. Flour Beach was formed by the erosion of coral skeletons. Between the two beaches, in a basin formed by the surrounding volcanic cones, is a hypersaline lagoon frequented by flamingoes, pintails, stilts, and other wading birds. Stop at the lagoon and then continue on the trail to Four Beach. Be careful not to wade into the tide with bare feet! If you stand at the edge of the water and look into the tidal area you will soon notice that the silty surf is rife with rays. Sea turtles also surf the waves off the beach. Return to the yacht and set out to the snorkeling destination as you don wetsuits while making your way around Punta Cormorant. Not far from the north shore of Floreana is the tiny islet known as Champion. Champion is considered one of the top snorkeling sites in the Galapagos offering prime underwater sea lion interactions. Dolphins are frequently seen near the shore along with humpback whales who like the bay off Flour Beach. As you swim with the sea lions you will be surrounded by an assortment of tropical fish including yellowtail grunts, amberjacks, and schools of king angel. You may spot sleepy white-tipped reef sharks hugging the bottom. Sea turtles glide by, while torpedo-like Galapagos penguins can also be encountered in the waters off Champion.

Alternatively, you may snorkel at Devil’s Crown which is located some 250 meters (700 ft) north of Punta Cormorant. The crown is an old submerged volcanic cone that has been worn down by waves. Devil’s Crown is home to a myriad of marine species including several species of corals, sea urchins, and many other creatures including a great number of fish species, making this place one of the best snorkeling sites in the Galapagos. The eroded crater walls form a popular roosting site for seabirds including boobies and pelicans. The snorkeling begins outside the crater to the southeast, where a swift current will take you for a ride along the north side of the crown and right into the middle. Relax, enjoy the ride, and let the current do the work. After the ride keep your eyes open for spotted eagle rays and golden rays that like to swim near the crown. Once back aboard the Grace, you’ll want to soak in the warm Jacuzzi after peeling off your wetsuit and then retire for hors d’ouevres and drinks to enjoy the sunset.

Type of Landing: Wet
Level of Walk: Moderate
Other Activities: Nature Hikes & Snorkeling

Day 3: Punta Suarez | Gardner Bay | Gardner Islet

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Hood is the southernmost island of the archipelago, and is one of the most popular due to the breathtaking variation and sheer number of fauna that greet visitors along with well-known Gardner Bay. The giant tortoise was reintroduced to Hood in the 1970s and counts as one of the park’s great success stories. They reside in an off-limits area, but don’t worry—the famous giant tortoise awaits you on other islands! The quantity and variety of wildlife at Punta Suarez is remarkable. Sea lions surf the waves beyond the breakwater landing, and tiny pups are known to greet your toes upon arrival. A few steps inland is a colorful variety of marine iguanas in the Galapagos. They bear distinctive red and black markings, some with a flash of turquoise running down their spine. They nap in communal piles or cling to the rocks for warmth. The trail then takes you beside the western edge of the island where masked boobies (also known as Nazca boobies) nest along the cliff’s edge. The trail descends to a rocky beach before rising to an open area where you may see a large gathering of nesting blue-foot boobies. Galapagos doves, cactus finch, and mockingbirds forage nearby, unconcerned by human presence. Both lava and swallow-tailed gulls, with their red-ringed eyes, sit atop the cliffs in company with marine iguanas.

The trail continues to the high cliff edge of the southern shore; below, a shelf of black lava reaches out into the surf where a blowhole shoots a periodic geyser of salt water into the air. Further east along the cliff is the Albatross Airport where waved albatross line up to launch their great winged bodies from the cliffs, soaring out over the dramatic shoreline of crashing waves and driven spray. These are the largest birds you will see in the Galapagos with wingspans up to 2.25 m or 7.4 ft. They are the only species of albatross exclusive to the tropics. The trees set back from the cliff are one of only two places in the world where the waved albatross nests. The 12,000 pairs that inhabit Hood Island comprise all but a tiny fraction of the world’s population of this species. Lucky visitors can watch courtship ‘fencing’ done with great yellow beaks. Large, fluffy, perfectly camouflaged chicks adorn nests on the ground nearby. The Albatross lay their eggs from April through June though they can be seen fencing long after that. Eggs take two months to hatch. Hungry chicks can eat up to 2 kg (4.4 lb) a day which keeps their parents busy. By December the chicks are fully grown and ready to set out on their own in January. Pairs mate for life.

Type of Landing: Dry
Level of Walk: Difficult
Other Activities: Nature Hikes

On the northeastern shore of Hood, Gardner Bay offers a magnificent long white sandy beach, where colonies of sea lions laze in the sun, sea turtles swim offshore, and inquisitive mockingbirds boldly investigate new arrivals. You will be lured from the powdery white sand into the turquoise water for a swim, but just a little further off-shore the snorkeling by Gardner Island offers peak encounters with playful young sea lions and schools of surprisingly large tropical fish, including yellow-tailed surgeonfish, king angelfish and bumphead parrot fish. The young sea lions like to snack and play along Gardner Island’s sea cliff. They dart up from the depths, playfully show off their skills, and then disappear. Sleepy white-tipped reef sharks can also be seen napping on the bottom. Gardner Bay and Islet also offer inviting waters for those interested in kayaking. For all who visit here, Española is a highlight of the Galapagos.

Type of Landing: Wet
Level of Walk: Easy
Other Activities: Nature Hikes, Snorkeling & Kayaking

Day 4: Punta Pitt | Lobos Island | Kicker Rock

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Punta Pitt is located at the east end of San Cristóbal Island. The trail includes an olivine beach of 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.

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. This is due to its geographic location, and abundance of food so there is hardly any competition between them. The blue-footed boobies nest in the interior of Punta Pitt, red-footed boobies nest on bushes and masked boobies nest in the cliffs. Sealions can also be found in the area. San Cristobal was the first island Darwin visited when he arrived in 1835. He reported encountering a pair of giant tortoises feeding on cactus during that outing.

Type of Landing: Dry
Level of Walk: Easy
Other Activities: Nature Hikes, Panga Ride, Kayaking & Snorkeling

To the southeast of Kicker Rock lies Isla Lobos. The tiny island is separated from the much larger San Cristobal by a narrow channel and a little bay. This basalt island outcropping lives up to its name Sea Lion Island and is home to a noisy population of frolicking and barking beasts. It is also a nesting place for blue-footed boobies and an excellent spot for snorkeling with sea lions. After walking the trail for some baby sea lion and booby-watching amidst the sands beneath the salt bushes have a real treat in store. Change into snorkeling gear for some swimming with sea lions! The sea lions like to dart past, and then swim up to you to blow bubbles at your mask. On occasion, they have been known to leap over, and then dive in front of unsuspecting snorkelers.

Following the snorkeling outing you will discover that the best place to warm up from your dip is in the Grace’s Jacuzzi. Heading up the coast from Isla Lobos have a chance to visit Leon Dormido, also known as Kicker Rock, a spectacular formation that rises 152 meters (500 feet) out of the Pacific. It takes the form of a sleeping lion, hence its Spanish name. From another angle, one can see that the rock is split forming a colossal table and, piercing the sea, a great chisel ready for etching. Circumnavigate the rock formation which is an ancient and eroded volcanic lava tuff cone in search of birds, and possibly, hammerhead sharks.

Type of Landing: Dry
Level of Walk: Easy
Other Activities: Nature Hikes, Panga Ride & Snorkeling

Day 5: Santa Fe Island | South Plazas

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Santa Fe offers one of the more beautiful and sheltered coves on the islands. Its turquoise lagoon is protected by a peninsula of tiny islets forming an ideal anchorage. The island lies southeast of Santa Cruz Island within sight of Puerto Ayora. Geologically it is one of the oldest islands in the archipelago and for many years was thought to be a product of an uplift event. Through satellite imagery, it has been possible to determine the island’s volcanic origins.

A wet landing on a sandy white beach brings you into contact with one of many sea lion colonies. Bulls contend for the right of being beach masters, while smaller males mask as females to make stealthy mating moves. Galapagos hawks are sometimes easily approached, perched atop salt bushes. An ascending trail leads toward the cliffs, where a dense thicket stands on the inland side of the island. The cliffside provides an expansive view of the ocean. You will be struck by the forest of giant prickly pear cactus found here that live up to their name, with tree-sized trunks! These are the largest of their kind in the Galapagos.

At the top of the trail, the goal is to spot one of the large species of land iguana endemic to Santa Fe. Beige to chocolate brown in color with dragonlike spines, these big iguanas truly resemble dinosaurs. An indigenous species of rice rat also inhabits the thicket, and lucky hikers may spot harmless Galapagos snakes. After the hike, there is nothing more inviting than snorkeling in the calm waters of the bay where sea lions play, sea turtles swim and tropical fish hide amidst the islets that form the natural reef. Santa Fe offers a more advanced kayaking route along its northern shore that ends at sea caves and is subject to conditions.

Type of Landing: Wet
Level of Walk: Moderate
Other Activities: Nature Hikes, Snorkeling, Panga Rides & Kayaking

South Plaza Island lies just a few hundred meters off the east coast of Santa Cruz Island. South Plaza is one of the smallest yet richest islands in the archipelago. Just over 400 feet wide, it was formed by lava upwelling from the bottom of the ocean. The landing is in the channel between North and South Plaza, where the island tilts toward the water. South Plaza is known for its lush and diverse flora. A grove of luminescent green prickly-pear cacti, a ground cover of red sesuvium, the turquoise waters of the channel, and fiery sally lightfoot crabs combine to create a colorful palate of an island to explore. One of the big attractions here is the friendly yellow land iguanas waiting for lunch to drop from a cactus in the form of a prickly pear. Follow a trail up the tilt of the island to cliffs that look out over the ocean. Swallow-tailed gulls with red banded eyes nest atop the overlook where you may spot marine life such as manta rays. South Plaza has a very healthy population of sea lions including a colony of bachelors that sit atop the cliff. They unintentionally polish the surrounding rocks with the oil from their fur. You may see red-billed tropic birds, Nazca, and blue-footed boobies catching rides on the wind currents.

Type of Landing: Dry
Level of Walk: Easy
Other Activities: Nature Hikes

Day 6: North Seymour Island | Bartolomé Island

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
North Seymour Island was lifted from the ocean floor by a seismic event, and its origins as a seabed give the island its low, flat profile. Cliffs only a few meters high form much of the shoreline, where swallow-tailed gulls sit perched in ledges. A tiny forest of silver-grey Palo Santo trees stands just above the landing, usually without leaves, waiting for the rain to bring them into bloom. This island is teeming with life! You might have to give way to a passing sea lion or marine iguana. Blue-footed boobies nest on either side of the trail where mating pairs perform their courtship dance. You are likely to see fluffy white chicks peeking out from beneath their protective mothers. The trail follows the eastern shore along the beach. You may be fortunate to witness flocks of brown pelicans and blue-footed boobies hunting schools of fish. The boobies, which look so comical on land, are ideally adapted as dive bombers and easily pierce the water, zeroing in on their targeted prey. Frigate birds with wingspans of up to 5 feet soar overhead and all around. They have named for the way that the trim of their wings in flight is reminiscent of the square-rigged sailing warship. Not coincidentally frigate birds are also called Man O’ Warbirds and they live up to that name in a literal way when they target boobies, pelicans, and other birds to steal their catch. Because the frigates are pelagic, they lack the ability to take off from the water, so they do better at snatching fish from the surface or simply stealing them. They also target marine iguanas and young baby sea turtles. The trail turns east and inland to reveal the nesting stronghold of the frigates. Here you can see males with large, bright red, inflated throat sacks known as gular pouches, all done in an effort to attract females. Your guide will point out the difference between the Magnificent, or Man O’ War frigates and their Great frigate bird cousins. Large puff-ball frigate bird chicks inhabit nests, waiting for their parents to return with a meal. Even at this young age they possess long hooked beaks and act defiant when they feel threatened. You will also get a closer look at the feathers of the proud parents and notice their iridescent quality and deep green tinge.

Another inhabitant along the trail is the yellow land iguana. The species was originally introduced to North Seymour in 1932 by Captain Alan Hancock and his crew from Baltra with the aim of rescuing the creatures from the poor conditions left by goats and other feral animals. The iguanas colonized the island without a problem. The original colony disappeared from Baltra when it became a US military base in WWII. In 1980 Charles Darwin Station began a breeding program using some of the animals found on Seymour and successfully reintroduced their prodigy to both islands. Today the population on Seymour is roughly 600 and on Baltra 1,500.

Type of Landing: Dry
Level of Walk: Moderate
Other Activities: Nature Hikes, Snorkeling & Panga Ride

The snorkeling site at North Seymour also attracts scuba divers. You have a chance to see many types of rays here including marble rays, golden eagle rays, spotted eagle rays, sting rays, and even manta rays. Dormitories of white-tipped reef sharks sleep on the bottom while schools of king angelfish and yellow-tailed surgeonfish swarm the rocky shoreline passing the occasional parrot and damselfish. Some of the rocks are actually well-disguised scorpion fish. Large schools of tightly packed blue and gold snappers, grunts, and jacks are usually found plying these waters. Sea lions pay visits from both Seymour and nearby Mosquera Island as sea turtles and the occasional hammerhead shark can be seen down in the depths. Creole fish, the color of red salsa, hieroglyphic hawkfish, with neon-like etchings on their flanks, and spotfin burrfish, which look a bit like a swimming shoe box with a cartoon face also inhabit the region. Bartolomé is famous for Pinnacle Rock, a towering spearheaded obelisk that rises from the ocean’s edge and is the best-known landmark in the Galapagos, which served as a backdrop in the film Master & Commander. Galapagos penguins the only species of penguin found north of the equator walk precariously along narrow volcanic ledges at its base. Sea lions snooze on rocky platforms, ready to slide into the water to play with passing snorkelers. Below the surface, shoals of tropical fish dodge in and out of the rocks past urchins, sea stars, and anemones. A perfectly crescent sandy beach lies just to the east of the pinnacle and across a narrow isthmus another beach mirrors this one to the south. Sea turtles use both beaches and another to the west of the Pinnacle as nesting sites and can sometimes be seen wading back out into the shallow water near the shore or resting in the sand recovering from the arduous task of digging nests, laying eggs, and covering them over.

Penguins like to rest atop the nearby rocks by the next landing site, about a quarter mile east along the shore. Here the submerged walls of a tiny volcanic crater give the impression of a large fountain pool. This dry landing no wet feet! is the entrance to a 600-meter (2000-foot) pathway complete with stairs and boardwalks leading to Bartolome’s summit. The route is not difficult and presents an open textbook of the islands’ volcanic origins; a site left untouched after its last eruption, where small cones stand in various stages of erosion and lava tubes form bobsled-like runs down from the summit. At the top, you will be rewarded with spectacular views of Santiago Island and Sullivan Bay to the west, and far below, Pinnacle Rock and beach, where the crystal turquoise waters of the bay cradle your yacht. The next landing site is a short distance away to the southeast. This evening will be especially relaxed and you can have a long lingering soak in the Jacuzzi. The Grace yacht can stay anchored where she is tonight already within sight of the morning’s landing site across the channel just to the south. The view east toward the tiny twin table mountain islands of Daphne Major and Daphne Minor is particularly inviting with the sun setting behind them.

Type of Landing: Dry
Level of Walk: Moderate
Other Activities: Nature Hikes & Snorkeling

Day 7: Chinese Hat Islet | Dragon Hill

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Tiny Sombrero Chino (Chinese Hat) Island is named for the resemblance its shape has to a traditional Chinese Coolie’s hat. Today’s visitor site is off-limits to larger groups and day boats, making Sombrero Chino, along with Daphne Major, one of the least visited sites in the central islands. The island lies just off the southeastern tip of the large nearby island of Santiago; separated by a narrow channel that makes for very calm, protected waters. Our landing site is a tiny crescent-shaped cove with a sandy white beach cradled between black lava rocks and the crystal turquoise waters of the channel. A sea lion colony likes to rest on the warm white sands, while the rockier sections of the coast are alive with fiery-colored sally lightfoot crabs. Marine iguanas sun themselves atop the rocks after foraging for algae in the channel. American oystercatchers stalk the tide pools stabbing at shellfish with their bright orange beaks. A quarter mile (400 meters) trail sets off into the island’s volcanic interior to explore its rock formations, including excellent examples of pahoehoe lava resembling black rock ropes. The area is inhabited by ground-hugging red sesuvim plants and curious lava lizards.

Back at the cove, you will not only have another opportunity to snorkel with sea lions but rockier sections of the coastline are inhabited by Galapagos penguins that dart past unsuspecting snorkelers. You’ll also have a chance to see the penguins during a panga ride. Galapagos penguins are the only species of penguin you’ll find living north of the nearby equator. Paddlers will have the opportunity to kayak here in the areas that are not off-limits (indicated by National Park Signs).

Type of Landing: Wet
Level of Walk: Easy
Other Activities: Nature Hikes, Snorkeling, Panga Rides & Kayaking

In the early afternoon, set out to Dragon Hill. There be dragons in the Galapagos in the form of bright yellow land iguanas that inhabit the northeastern shore of Santa Cruz Island. The large spines on their backs make them look even more like their legendary cousins. All they lack are wings. In the 1900’s their ancestors were once moved to nearby Venezia islet to protect them from the feral dogs that once roamed Santa Cruz. When the dogs were removed the colony was returned and today they thrive around the hill that is named in their honor, Cerro Dragon. The lava flows that reach out from the shore from Cerro Dragon form black reefs that make for excellent snorkeling at high tide.

As you make your dry landing keep your eyes open for yellow warblers that stand out against the black lava. Head up the beach to a trail that takes you to a hyper saline lagoon. This is a seasonal haunt for pink flamingos. As you make your way from the coast toward the top of Dragon Hill you’ll notice the transition from intertidal vegetation like mangroves to dry zone vegetation including Palo Santo cactus and the silvery-leafed Palo Santo trees. Keep your eyes open for the famous Darwin’s Finches. Also known as Galapagos finches, they were first collected by Charles Darwin and made a group of about 15 species that are found nowhere else. Ironically they are not related to true finches.

While you walk through the Scalesia forests that ring the hill, keep your eyes open for the dragons. Endemic cactus finch and woodpecker finch perch overhead. The loop trail heads inland and up the hill. The rough terrain makes this hike a bit challenging, but the view back toward the bay is rewarding. The real reward, of course, is the dragons hiding in the thicket which you are sure to spot. Back at the beach, you may be lucky enough to see one of Santa Cruz Island’s fearless Galapagos hawks perched atop the lava surveying the surroundings. 

Type of Landing: Wet
Level of Walk: Easy
Other Activities: Nature Hikes & Snorkeling

Day 8: Black Turtle Cove | Baltra | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast
This last morning of the voyage through the Galapagos and visit Black Turtle Cove. Located on the northern shore of Santa Cruz, the cove is a living illustration of how mangroves alter the marine environment to create a rich and unique habitat. Four species of mangrove crowd from the shore out into the lagoon, which stretches almost a mile inland. As you drift through the quiet waters in the dinghy, you are likely to see spotted eagle rays and cow-nosed or golden rays, which swim in a diamond formation. White-tipped reef sharks can be seen beneath the boat and Pacific green sea turtles come to the surface for air and to mate. Sea birds, including brown pelicans, blue herons, and lava herons, come to feed in the cove which has also been declared a “Turtle Sanctuary”.

Type of Landing: N/A
Other Activities: Panga Ride

It’s time to begin your journey home and set sail for nearby Baltra Island. During WWII the island was a US Air Force base and one can still see the remnants of the old foundations left behind from that era once ashore. It doesn’t take long for the Grace to navigate north along Baltra’s western shore to the island’s port. Don’t worry about your bags, your guide will instruct you on how to prepare your luggage and have it ready for pick up in your cabin. The crew will see to transporting your luggage ashore where you will reunite with it at the airport. All you need to do is take along your carry-on luggage in the panga for the short crossing to shore. Once there a bus will pick you up for the 5-minute drive to the airport. Your guide will be there to make sure you are checked in on the proper flight. This is your last chance to purchase souvenirs in the Galapagos and the airport offers an assortment of shops where you can purchase everything from baseball caps and t-shirts to animal figurines, jewelry, and much more; all with a Galapagos theme. There is one final checkpoint before you enter the waiting area from which you will board your flight. Almost all flights to the mainland stop in Guayaquil and continue on to Quito so make sure you know where to get off the plane. Say farewell to the Galapagos as you begin your journey home, or on to other destinations like the Ecuadorian highlands, Amazon, or nearby Peru.

Ship/Hotel

Grace

The Grace
Jacuzzi

Dates & Prices

My Preferred Start Date

Per person starting at
$9,950
Premium Stateroom
Select a Date
Premium Stateroom: C5
1 premium full beam stateroom on the Carolina Deck, with a twin bed and a queen bed, private bathroom, individual AC control, safe box, and plenty of storage space.
Twin Cabin
Select a Date
Twin Cabin: C3
1 deluxe twin/queen stateroom on the Carolina Deck. It features a private bathroom, individual AC controls, safe box, and plenty of storage.
Double Cabin
Select a Date
Double Cabin: C1 & C2
2 premium staterooms on the Carolina Deck, both with 1 queen bed(82.3in x 66.5in), private bathrooms, individual AC controls, safe boxes, and plenty of storage space.
Twin Suites
Select a Date
Twin Suite: A2 & A3
2 suites on the Albert Deck, both with 2 twin beds that can convert to 1 bed, private bathrooms, individual AC controls, safe boxes, and plenty of storage space.
Master Suite
Select a Date
Master Suite: A1 & A4
Ocean view Suite; located on the Albert Deck these cabins feature a Queen Bed (82.3in x 66.5in), private bath.
Kelly Suite
Select a Date
Grace Kelly Suite
The new Grace Kelly Suite features contemporary decor by award-winning designer Adriana Hoyos. It features 1 king size bed, private bathroom, individual AC control, safe box, and plenty of storage space.

Notes

Please provide your wetsuite size in advance prior to trip

Child Discount

15% discount for children 15 years and under at time of Galapagos cruise. Max. 3 children per family. 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
  • Bilingual Naturalist Guide 
  •  Snorkeling equipment, wetsuits, and kayaks are all included in the cruise cost and are available for you use on board.
  • 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: $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
  • Fuel Surcharge - to be invoiced separately
  • Fuel Surcharge

Map

Inquire

* By providing your phone number, you consent to receive direct phone calls or SMS messages from our Trip Planners to get the process started. We do not share your information with third-parties.
Travel Agents

We Love to Talk Travel

Call 1.800.344.6118
or
Chat Now
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
More Reasons

Why Travel With Adventure Life

All News

Recognized By