Explore the Western Galapagos Islands on this cruise of the Galapagos archipelago. This budget-friendly cruise ship allows travelers to explore the vast wildlife and remote shores of the Galapagos in style.
Day 1 : Baltra | Mosquera Day 2 : Isabela | Fernandina Day 3 : Isabela Day 4 : Santiago | Chinese Hat Day 5 : Santa Cruz Island | Baltra
Arrive into the Galapagos at the Baltra airport. Transfer to your ship and set sail.
Located between North Seymour and Baltra Island is the small island of Mosquera. The island consists of a long narrow stretch of white sand, rocks, and tide pools. Created by geological uplift, the island is flat rather than the conical shape of the volcanic islands. Mosquera Island is a great place for snorkeling, strolling on the beach, and enjoying wildlife without the tourist crowds common at many of the more popular islands.
Start the morning with a visit to Vicente Roca on the island of Isabela. The largest island in the Galapagos, it is also the youngest and the most volcanically active. Vicente Roca Point is comprised of two separate coves with a large bay and offers an amazing amount of marine life to be spotted.
Continue to Fernandina, located to the west of Isabela, which makes it the westernmost island in Galapagos. No foreign species have ever invaded this island, and as a result it claims one of the world's most pristine island ecosystems. On your walk across this island you will pass the largest colony of land iguanas in Galapagos, and if you're lucky and if the water is clear enough, you might see them feed underwater while snorkeling. Continue on your walk and pass a group of lazy sea lions, before arriving at the island's highlight - the flightless cormorant nesting site.
Tagus Cove is one of the landing spots on the island and was historically used as an anchoring site for pirates and whalers. The trail that goes from Tagus Cove will take you through many different vegetation zones and offers spectacular views of Darwin Lake, which is a saltwater crater lake. Once you get to the top of the trail, you will be able to see Darwin Volcano as well as Wolf Volcano, which is the highest point of the islands.
Santiago provides habitat for many of the 30-40,000 fur seals that call the Galapagos home. If you plan on taking pictures of the fur seals, Puerto Egas is an excellent spot. At dawn or sunset, the light is perfect for great photography. There are also plenty of sea lions on the black beach of Puerto Egas. Take a moment after exploring the island and swim with the playful sea lions off the coast of two small coral-lined beaches.
One of the most recognizable Galapagos Islands, Chinese Hat is easy to see why: this islet off of Santiago is shaped like an old-fashioned Chinaman’s hat, a gently sloping cone rising out of the clear Galapagos water. Because of its distinctive shape, this island has fascinated visitors as long as they have been coming to Galapagos. Follow the trails and stroll the beaches, spotting Sally Lightfoot crabs, marine iguanas, lava lizards and more. Lucky snorkelers may even see the rare Galapagos penguin here.
Day 5 Santa Cruz Island | Baltra
Visit the world famous Charles Darwin Research Center where efforts to protect and preserve the native and endemic animals are developed. Learn about the giant tortoise rearing programs.
Transfer to the Baltra airport for your continued journey home.
This was my first experience with Adventure Life - and I couldn't have been more pleased with the trip. The guides and local staff in both Buenos Aires and Uruguay were terrific - extremely helpful and accommodating. I really enjoyed meeting the friendly staff in Buenos Aires in person (I left my bags with them for the afternoon).