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Eastern Islands

Example 8 Day Cruise aboard M/Y Passion
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Take an 8-day Galapagos cruise to the Eastern Island aboard the M/Y Passion. Learn about the history of the islands, view the famous giant Galapagos tortoise and the red sand beaches of Rabida. Hike, snorkel, kayak and ride a panga to experience the beautiful landscapes. 

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Baltra | Black Turtle Cove
Day 2 : Darwin Bay | El Barranco, Genovesa Island
Day 3 : Punta Espejo | Sullivan Bay
Day 4 : Bartolome | Dragon Hill
Day 5 : Santa Cruz
Day 6 : Plaza Sur | Santa Fe
Day 7 : Gardner Bay | Suarez Point
Day 8 : Twin Craters | Baltra | Airport

Highlights

  • Explore the red beaches and saltwater lagoon in Rabida
  • Experience giant tortoises in their natural habitat
  • Visit lava tunnels found in the Highlands
  • Watch sea turtles and golden rays during a panga ride through the mangroves

Ship

M/Y Passion

Places Visited

  • Ecuador
  • Galapagos
  • South America
  • Baltra
  • Bartolome
  • Black Turtle Cove
  • Darwin Bay
  • Dragon Hill
  • El Barranco
  • Espanola
  • Gardner Bay
  • Genovesa
  • Los Gemelos (Twin Craters)
  • Punta Suarez
  • Santa Cruz
  • Santiago
  • South Plaza Island
  • Sullivan Bay

Activities

Trip Type

  • Small Ship

Activity Level

Relaxed

Trip Snapshots

Sail the Galapagos on the Origin ship! Wooden boardwalk in Bartolome (Santiago) Sea lions on beach in Rabida Sail the Galapagos on the Origin ship!

Day 1 Baltra | Black Turtle Cove

  • Ship
  • 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
After arriving at Baltra airport, meet with a representative and board the M/Y Passion. After lunch, navigate a short distance to Black Turtle Cove, a large mangrove lagoon on the north coast of Santa Cruz Island. Pelicans and herons roost on the branches, while marine dwellers such as green sea turtles or golden rays may cruise right next to the panga as it makes its way through the mangroves.

Day 2 Darwin Bay | El Barranco, Genovesa Island

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Travel to Genovesa Island and reach Darwin Bay via a wet landing. This unique site is lined with red mangroves and soft-haired prickly pear cacti where red-footed boobies and great frigatebirds perch.

After a dry landing at El Barranco, climb to the edge of a cliff where frigatebirds, masked boobies, and red-footed boobies make their nests. The trail takes you to the inner part of the island, populated by palo santo trees and cacti. Be seeking out the impressive red‐billed tropicbird amidst Galapagos storm petrels and the endemic short-eared owl.

Day 3 Punta Espejo | Sullivan Bay

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Today have the opportunity to observe the abundant marine life of Punta Espejo, on Marchena Island. This site is reserved for snorkeling and diving only, and it is safe to say that it is one of the best spots in the Galapagos for these activities. This location is known for having dolphins and hammerhead sharks, as well as the vast quantities of coral heads, allowing for a much higher concentration of coral than the rest of the archipelago. We will have two snorkeling activities during this morning, to have more time and opportunities to observe marine life.

After snorkeling, return to the yacht for an in-depth briefing about the ocean currents and their effect on the archipelago’s flora and fauna while we navigate to our next destination.

We will have a dry landing in Santiago Island’s Sullivan Bay, where we will walk over a recent lava flow with fresh pahoehoe lava formations, lava bubbles containing crystallized minerals, and pioneer plant fossils.  Along the shoreline, we may find Galapagos penguins and herons going after small fish.

Day 4 Bartolome | Dragon Hill

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Have a dry landing on Bartolome, followed by a mild climb up a set of wooden steps to reach the summit of a spatter cone for a breathtaking panorama of the island’s iconic Pinnacle Rock and views of neighboring Santiago, and other central islands in the distance. Afterward, visit the white sand beach used as a nesting site by sea turtles, followed by snorkeling in the waters of Bartolome Island, where it is not unusual to spot Galapagos penguins.
 
In the afternoon, navigate a short distance to Cerro Dragon on Santa Cruz’s northwestern shore with a dry landing to visit a saltwater lagoon, home to greater flamingos, black‐necked stilts, and white‐cheeked pintails. Further inland finds a fantastic land iguana nesting site.

Day 5 Santa Cruz

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Spend the day visiting Santa Cruz Island´s most famous highlights. Land at the dock of Puerto Ayora to then board transportation and head to the Highlands. This area, in contrast to the coastal region, has lush vegetation and forests due to the humidity that gathers in the higher regions.

Visit one of the ranches of the area, where it´s possible to see giant tortoises in their natural habitat. As these animals migrate from the coastal area to the highlands and back, the chosen ranch depends on the presence of the tortoises, as they roam free and change their locations. This is also a good place to see the Galapagos hawk and barn owl. The surrounding forests are filled with birds such as the vermilion flycatcher and the yellow warbler.

Enjoy lunch at the ranch then head back to Puerto Ayora for your second visit of the day, the Charles Darwin Research Station and the Fausto Llerena Breeding Center. Here see tortoises from different islands. The animals are found in large semi natural pens for their protection, but also to ensure an easy view. The pens are divided according to four different stages: eggs, neonates, juveniles (held here until they are mature enough to be "repatriated"), and adults.

After this visit, have some time to explore the town of Puerto Ayora and its many souvenir shops before boarding the M/Y Passion for dinner and the usual briefing.

Day 6 Plaza Sur | Santa Fe

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Land on one of the oldest docks of the archipelago to explore colorful Plaza Sur, home to vibrant green prickly pears, deep red Sesuvium, and coppery-orange land iguanas. Impressive seaward cliffs are excellent for a variety of coastal birds. This is also a great place to observe the adult and pup sea lions swimming along the shores.

After a wet landing onto Santa Fe's white beach where sea lions are usually resting, look for the endemic species of land iguana, larger and yellower than land iguanas on other islands. The largest prickly pear cacti in the Galapagos are also found here.

Day 7 Gardner Bay | Suarez Point

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Following a wet landing, spend the morning in Española Island’s Gardner Bay, an outstanding beach with sea lions, marine iguanas, and the bold Española mockingbird. Close to Española, there is a beautiful array of islets ideal for observing marine life. While snorkeling at one of these locations, come face to face with the marine reserve’s endemic species including the playful sea lions. 

After this visit, head to Punta Suarez, one of the most popular landing sites in Galapagos. The highlights include: sea lions near the landing place (sometimes seen body‐surfing in the large breakers) large marine iguanas, with red‐colored males in the breeding season, oystercatchers, blue-footed and masked boobies, Galapagos hawks, Galapagos doves, swallow‐tailed gulls, red-billed tropicbirds, and three species endemic to Española: the waved albatross (present only from April to December), the Española mockingbird, and the Española lava lizard. The trail ends in El Soplador, a blowhole that sprays water some 25 meters (75 feet) into the air.

Day 8 Twin Craters | Baltra | Airport

  • 1 Breakfast
The Twin Craters (Los Gemelos in Spanish) are, in fact, not craters. These impressive holes were formed by magma (lava) domes which hardened on the outside but continued to flow on the inside, leaving huge but empty chambers that collapsed with the passing of time, creating this breathtaking scenery that resembles two pit crates. The Twins are located in the highlands of Santa Cruz Island and are surrounded by lush and green forests, dominated by the endemic Scalesia plants. It is possible to walk along the rim of the craters to better appreciate the magnitude of the holes as well as the local flora and fauna. This site is also one of the most likely places to observe the endemic short-ear owl of the Galapagos.

After this visit continues to the Baltra airport for your flight to mainland Ecuador.

M/Y Passion

Per person starting at
$5,700
Galapagos Passion Stateroom
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Standard Stateroom
Standard staterooms feature air-conditioning and private bathrooms with bathtubs and showers.
Galapagos Passion Master Suite
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Master Suite
Master Suites feature air-conditioning, private bathrooms, panoramic windows, and private lounge areas.

Child Discount

Children under 12 may receive discounts on Galapagos flight fares and entrance fees. Contact us for details.

Included

  • Accommodations on board M/Y Passion 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
  • Wetsuit
  • Sea Kayaking

Excluded

  • Airfare (see Galapagos Flights)
  • Quito/Guayaquil Hotel and Transfers
  • $100 Galapagos Park Fee
  • Gratuities and drinks aboard the ship
  • Travel Insurance

Galapagos Flights

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

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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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