Hotels: Casa Opuntia / Golden Bay
Activities: Hiking, kayaking, snorkeling, birdwatching, wildlife observation, community interaction, local fruit tasting.
San Cristobal is the fifth largest and easternmost island in the Galapagos, where Darwin first set foot on, and home to the oldest human settlement in the archipelago.
El Junco, a small freshwater lake near the top of the island, made this first settlement possible.
The northeast part of the island offers amazing snorkel sites where sea lions, tropical fish, Galapagos sharks, eagle rays, sea turtles and abundant marine life is often spotted.
The interaction with local families and farms guarantee a complete experience in every way.
DAY 1: Hike to a freshwater crater lake, walk among giant tortoises, visit a local farm filled with exotic fruit and snorkel with sea lions.
Today we’ll visit to El Junco, the only fresh water lake in the islands and the Galapaguera de Cerro Colorado, a free range tortoise breeding center, here we will search of wild Giant Tortoises and learn about the efforts this center does to support their conservation.
We stop at Hacienda Tranquila for lunch. We will learn about the local agricultural practices in the Galapagos highlands and try exotic fruits.
In the afternoon we head to Loberia to swim and snorkel with sea lions and sea turtles until sunset. (B, L)
Optional: If you feel energetic and curious to explore, you can hike to Las Negritas Cliff to spot marine birds and amazing views of the coastal line.
DAY 2: Enjoy some of the best snorkeling in San Cristobal and relax in clear waters of the northern coast.
After breakfast we take a speed boat to Kicker Rock, the highlight of San Cristobal and one of the best places in Galapagos for snorkeling and diving. This is a known feeding area for sharks and a great variety of tropical fish. Amaze yourself in this natural aquarium with its geological beauty and incredible marine life.
We continue our journey and disembark at one of the calm and pristine beaches of the northern coast for a picnic lunch. Relax, walk, swim or snorkel and soak in the natural beauty this place has to offer. (B, L)
DIVING: Optional diving for an extra fee. Highly recommended.
OPTIONAL DAY/NIGHT EXTENSION:
DAY 3 Hike up to the highlands for breathtaking views and kayak along the coasts of Isla Lobos.
Today we hike a scenery trail from la Soledad to Playa Ochoa. We continue on by kayak along Isla Lobos. While the frigate birds and blue footed boobies nest in the surrounding vegetation, marine iguanas, sea lions and sea turtles circle our kayaks in the calm waters of the canal.
We kayak past Playa Baquerizo and Darwin Bay, arriving to Playa de Oro right in time to relax and have a drink at your waterfront Opuntia Hotel. (B, L)