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Giant Land Tortoise

Highlands Cruises & Tours

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Just a short drive from the golden sands of the Santa Cruz beaches, find yourself in a completely different habitat as you explore the many attractions of the highlands on the Galapagos Islands. Visit a local hacienda, where giant tortoises roam freely, grazing tranquilly on the highland vegetation. Then it's off to the lava tunnels, where you can walk through naturally formed caves left when lava flows hardened. You next stop is a trek through a dense scalesia forest to twin sinkholes that formed when the massive calderas of extinct calderas collapsed. Though it takes just under an hour to cross the entire island of Santa Cruz from the northern Itabaca Channel through the highlands to Puerto Ayora on the southern shore, the highlands are a world of their own, just waiting to be explored. Contact us to start planning!
Best Galapagos Cruises & Tours

Top 10 Highland Tours of Santa Cruz for 2024-2025

Best Galapagos Cruises & Tours

10 Best Highland Luxury Tours of Santa Cruz for 2024-2025

Trip NameFromDaysNext DepartureSummary
North & Central Islands$58455May 28, 2024Enjoy an extensive adventure into the unique world of the Galapagos on this incredible 5-day journey. Admire the incredible natural beauty of this …
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Volcanic Wonders$97508May 26, 2024On this comprehensive 8-day tour of the Galapagos Islands aboard the M/V Origin, see unusual wildlife such as marine iguanas, blue-footed boobies, …
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Central East Islands$81955Apr 10, 2025Set sail on a 5-day cruise from Baltra to San Cristobal aboard Hermes Ultra Luxury Cruise in the Central East Galapagos Islands. Explore Santa Cruz's …
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Northern Islands$61954Apr 3, 2025Embark on a 4-day North & Central Islands cruise aboard the Hermes Ultra Luxury Cruise. Observe Santa Cruz Highlands' giant tortoises and lava …
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Southern & Northern Islands$116957Apr 14, 2025Join the 7-Day Hermes Ultra Luxury Cruise in the Eastern & Central Galapagos, beginning on San Cristóbal Island. Explore Tijeretas, Gardner Bay, …
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Central East & Southern Islands$129958Apr 10, 2025Explore Central East & Southern Islands on this 8-day cruise aboard Hermes Ultra Luxury Cruise. Visit Baltra and meet giant tortoises. Enjoy …
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Northwestern Islands$129958Apr 3, 2025Embark on an 8-day Hermes Ultra Luxury Cruise in the Northwestern Galapagos Islands. Explore unique wildlife, including giant tortoises and lava …
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Northern Galapagos Catamaran Cruise$51905May 28, 2024The Ocean Spray luxury catamaran takes you on a 5-day Galapagos Northern Islands cruise, exploring Genovesa, South Plaza, Mosquero, and Santiago. …
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Central Islands Cruise$94908Jun 1, 2024Discover the highlights of San Cristobal, Española, Floreana, Santa Cruz, Santiago, and Genovesa islands on this incredible 8-day adventure aboard …
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Western & Eastern Islands$144959Apr 6, 2025Explore the Western & Eastern Galapagos Islands on this 9-day cruise aboard the Hermes Ultra Luxury Cruise. Discover Bachas Beach, Tagus Cove, Urbina …
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Top 3 Highlands Cruises and Tours Deals for 2024-2025

Trip NameSaveFromDaysNext DepartureSummary
Western IslandsCustom Label$58638Jun 7, 2024Journey to the western islands of the Galapagos on this 8-day cruise on the Seaman Journey.
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Northern Islands CruiseCustom Label$58905Jun 4, 2024Board the Elite for a 5-Day sailing expedition across one of the most unique archipelagos on the planet, the Galapagos Islands. Experience the beauty …
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Central Islands CruiseCustom Label$94908Jun 1, 2024Discover the highlights of San Cristobal, Española, Floreana, Santa Cruz, Santiago, and Genovesa islands on this incredible 8-day adventure aboard …
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Santa Cruz Highlands Travel Guide

Getting to the Highlands
All of our cruises and tours of the Galapagos Islands are all-inclusive, so you will never have to worry about transportation. If you are touring the highlands as your first stop after arriving, then you may meet a taxi after crossing the Itabaca Channel from the Baltra Island airport. The taxi will take you right to your Highlands visitor site. Traveling from Puerto Ayora, you will likely arrive with your travel group on a motor coach or open air bus.

Activities in the Santa Cruz Highlands
  • Los Gemelos- Meaning "Twins," in Spanish, these two massive sinkholes are a sight to behold, where you can hike through a scalesia forest to see the extinct remains of two volcanoes that collapsed.
  • Lava Tunnels - Another impressive volcanic feature of the highlands are the lava tunnels, naturally hollowed out geologic features that created tunnels when the flowing surface lava hardened over hot magma that continued to flow underneath.
  • El Chato Ranch- Walk through the green pastures of this highland hacienda where giant tortoises roam in their natural habitat.
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