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Snapping a Photo of Giant Tortoise on Galapagos Wildlife Discovery

ISLAND HOPPING JOURNEY, 6 DAYS

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Meet the Local Inhabitants Up Close

Meet giant tortoises up close in their natural habitat and snorkel with sea lions, sharks, and rays. It's the Galapagos Islands at their best.

Itinerary

Day 1: INTERPRETATION CENTER, WALK AND SNORKEL TIJERETAS

After a morning flight from the mainland to San Cristobal Island, we continue to our hotel for an energizing
lunch, introductions, and a short overview of our trip. Our Galapagos adventure starts with a visit to the
local Interpretation Center, where we learn about the unique wildlife, geology, natural history, and social
dynamics of the Galapagos.
Now that we know a little more about the islands, we make our way to our first destination, with a
relaxed walk to Frigate Hill along natural lava rock trails. Along the way, our guides will provide insight
on the Galapagos cotton, palo santo, acacia, and cacti surrounding us, as well as the blue-footed
boobies, frigate birds, pelicans, herons, gulls, warblers, mockingbirds, and finches who make this unique
landscape their home. We’ll also take in scenic views of the sea cliffs and the vibrant beach town of
Puerto Baquerizo Moreno.
On the way back, we stop for a refreshing snorkel at beautiful Carola Beach, where we will swim with
sea turtles and sea lions and take in a gorgeous sunset.
We recommend you set out to explore the laid-back town and take a leisurely walk down the boardwalk
to view the colony of endemic Galapagos sea lions right next door. (L, D)

Day 2: SNORKEL THE NORTHERN COAST OF SAN CRISTOBAL

Today we take to the water with our snorkels and fins to meet some of San Cristobal’s marine residents.
We hug the coastline searching the coves and cliffs for sea turtles, sea lions, frigate birds, blue-footed
boobies, and Nazca boobies. In these tranquil waters, we’ll swim with spotted eagle rays, golden rays,
3 Galapagos sharks, starfish, clams, and seemingly infinite species of tropical fish. We might even have
the chance to spot some hammerhead sharks! We may visit Leon Dormido (Kicker Rock) or Punta Pitt. The
visiting site will depend on the week day and Galapagos National Park regulations. After a full day spent
exploring the seas, we head back to our hotel for a delicious gourmet dinner and a laid-back evening
overlooking the bay. (B, L, D)

Day 3: EXPLORE THE HIGHLANDS, VISIT RESEARCH STATION

Early in the morning, we board a public speed boat for a scenic ride to Santa Cruz Island. After checking
in, we head to the highlands, this time to El Chato, home to scores of Galapagos giant tortoises.
The sensation of walking amongst these ancient creatures, which can live to over 175 years old, is
indescribable. The giant tortoises share their habitat with pintail ducks, Darwin’s finches, frigate birds,
egrets, and the vibrant vermillion flycatcher.
Our next stop is a group of cavernous lava tunnels frequented by the pirates that once roamed the
Galapagos and, according to legend, a perfect hiding spot for their plundered Inca gold. We then carry
on to Los Gemelos, a pair of massive volcanic sinkholes at the high point of the island. We explore the
surrounding forest of endemic Scalesia trees covered in ferns and epiphytes, home to the beautiful but shy
short-eared owl. This quiet highland forest exudes a still, spooky feeling.
In the afternoon, we stop for a visit at the Charles Darwin Research Center. Scientists at the Research
Center rear endemic plants and animals for educational, scientific, and conservation purposes. Here we’ll
learn about the ongoing conservation efforts to protect the future of the Galapagos. After a full day, we
make our way back to the hotel, where we sit down to a delicious dinner and enjoy secluded views of the
bay, coastline, and town. (B, L, D)

Days 4 and 5 : WILDLIFE TOURS TO NEARBY SMALL ISLANDS

For the next two days, we’ll embark from Santa Cruz on day trips to two of the nearby small islands: Plazas,
Bartolome, or North Seymour. Boats depart to different islands on a weekly schedule, so our destinations
depend on the days of travel. The boat rides should take between one to two hours each way, and we’ll
enjoy activities like hiking, snorkeling, bird watching, and natural history interpretation. We’ll enjoy delicious
breakfasts and dinners at our hotel each day, and field lunches during our day trips. (B,L,D)

Day 6: TRANSFER TO BALTRA FOR FLIGHT TO MAINLAND

Finally, it’s time bid a fond farewell as we transfer to Baltra Island for our return flight to the mainland. Your
guest coordinator will facilitate your airport transfer. (B)

Quick Facts

Destination
Galapagos Islands: San Cristobal, Santa Cruz, and Isabela

Dates & Prices
6 Days from $3570

Category
Premium

Expedition Type
Wildlife

 

Expedition Level
Easy hikes, snorkeling, and kayaking

Accommodations: Choose your  hotel category.

Comfort Hotels: Casa Opuntia, Casita de la Playa, Isla Sol or Similar

Select Hotels:
Iguana Crossing, Angermeyer, Golden Bay, Casa Baronesa

Flights
Arrive to San Cristobal (SCY) Depart from Baltra (GPS) Book: Avianca, LATAM or TAME from Quito or Guayaquil We can arrange your flights from $565 – or do your own

Giant Tortoise Strolling Down a Dirt Path

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