Complete Galápagos - Estrella del Mar

Marine, Quito to Quito
Image by G Adventures

Information from G Adventures

Tour description

This two-week-plus adventure is loaded with astounding experiences among the wildlife of the world-within-a-world of Galápagos Islands. Observe giant tortoises doing their thing, go snorkelling with the beautiful fish of Devil's Crown, take coastal walks, roam through lava tunnels, and marvel at the thousands of sea lions, frigatebirds, and (sometimes) flamingos that call this region home. Just another day (or 15 of them) in the Galápagos.

What's included

  • Cruise the Galápagos Islands aboard the Estrella (14 nts)
  • All meals aboard the Estrella
  • Certified Galápagos National Park Service Guide
  • Excursion to see giant tortoises in the wild (Santa Cruz Island)
  • Visit to the largest marine iguana colony in the Galápagos (Fernandina Island)
  • Chance to see flightless cormorants and penguins (Isabela Island)
  • Sierra Negra Hike (Isabela Island)
  • Visit to the Charles Darwin Research Station (Santa Cruz Island)
  • Hike to Tortuga Bay (Santa Cruz Island)
  • Visit to a wildlife interpretation centre (San Cristóbal Island)
  • Post Office Bay visit (Floreana)
  • Spot frigatebirds and blue-footed boobies (North Seymour Island)
  • Hike to the Bartolomé Island viewpoint overlooking the famous Pinnacle Rock
  • Excursion to see red-footed boobies (Genovesa Island)
  • Onboard snorkelling equipment and wetsuits
  • Internal flights
  • All transport between destinations and to/from included activities

Highlights

  • 14 nights cruising in the galápagos islands aboard the estrella
  • Explore the least visited islands of isabela and fenandina to see massive bird colonies and impressive volcanoes
  • Relax on santiago island's white-sand beach
  • Hike to the top of the sierra negra volcano the most recently active volcano in the galápagos
  • Go snorkelling with sea lions and search for turtles and rays

Itinerary

Day 1: Quito Arrive at any time.

Day 2: Quito/Puerto Ayora Take an early flight to the Galápagos Islands and transfer to Puerto Ayora and board the ship. Spend the afternoon in the highlands seeing giant tortoises in the wild and exploring lava tunnels.

Day 3: Chinese Hat/Rábida Island Spend the morning exploring lava flows and lava tunnels on the small island of Chinese Hat. After, enjoy a refreshing dip in turquoise waters. Search for fish and sea turtles in the protected bay. In the afternoon, explore the red sand beaches and salt water lagoons of this tiny island. Look for wading flamingos and nesting pelicans before heading out to do some snorkelling.

Day 4: Playa Espumilla/Puerto Egas In the morning, see the towering cliffs of Buccaneer Cove and keep an eye out for the hundreds of birds nesting on the edge. Later, land at Puerto Egas home to the elusive Galápagos hawk. Visit the salt crater as well as a dark-sand beach and tidal pools.

Day 5: Punta Espinoza/Urbina Bay Enjoy a morning visit to Punta Espinoza on Fernandina, the youngest of the Galápagos Islands. Witness the large colony of sea lions, marine iguanas, and a variety of birdlife. In the afternoon, travel to Urbina Bay, located at the base of Alcedo Volcano. Keep an eye out for land iguanas.

Day 6: Elizabeth Bay/Punta Moreno Pay a morning visit to Elizabeth Bay which offers amazing bird and marine life viewing opportunities. Head out on the pangas and explore the shallows and mangroves to look for sea turtles and penguins. In the afternoon, land at Punta Moreno on the southwest coast of Isabela to see lava formations, flamingos, and amazing views of the three most active volcanoes in the Galápagos Islands.

Day 7: Isabela Island Early landing in the small town of Puerto Villamil before beginning the hike to the Sierra Negra Volcano, which has the largest basaltic caldera in the Galápagos. Later on, visit las Tintoreras, one of the best places to see sharks and other marine wildlife. Choose to visit the wet lands or the tortoise breeding centre in the Puerto Villamil area.

Day 8: Santa Cruz Island Take the morning to explore Puerto Ayora, the largest town in the Galápagos. Visit the Charles Darwin Research Station, do some shopping, and see how locals live in the islands. After lunch on board, hike to the beautiful beach at Tortuga Bay. Choose to relax on the white sand or rent a kayak and search for rays and turtles in the shallow waters.

Day 9: San Cristóbal Island Visit the Interpretation Centre and learn more about the history of the Islands, after, enjoy free time to explore the town of Puerto Baquerizo Moreno. In the afternoon visit Isla Lobos.

Day 10: Punta Pitt/Cerro Brujo Enjoy a morning visit to Punta Pitt, the only site in the Galápagos where it is possible to see the three species of boobies as well as frigatebirds, all nesting in the same area. Walk up to the colonies along the lava flows of this volcanic island. In the afternoon, visit the beautiful white powdery sand beaches of Cerro Brujo and snorkel with the marine life at the famous Leon Dormido, otherwise known as Kicker Rock, off San Cristóbal.

Day 11: Bahía Gardner/Punta Suárez Arrive in the southern islands to spend the morning on the beach. Play the with sea lions and enjoy some of the best snorkelling in Bahia Gardner. Later, head to Punta Suárez on the extreme western side of Española and go for an amazing coastal walk with opportunities to see the Galápagos albatross, which generally nests between April and November.

Day 12: Floreana Island Spend the morning visiting Mirador de la Baronesa on Floreana island and send a postcard from famous Post Office Bay. In the afternoon, enjoy a snorkelling excursion at the Corona del Diablo and landing at Punta Cormorant. Take guided walks to observe the birds and wildlife and learn about the natural history.

Day 13: North Seymour/Bartolomé Island Early breakfast and landing at North Seymour in the morning to observe frigatebirds and blue-footed boobies. Afternoon hike up to the top of Bartolomé Island to see pinnacle rock one of the most famous views of the Galápagos. Cool off with a swim from the soft sandy beach.

Day 14: Genovesa Island Take a morning walk up the caldera to see red-footed boobies and other birds before searching for marine life in the protected Bahia Darwin. Enjoy an afternoon hike to the Prince Philip steps to get an amazing view of the island.

Day 15: Islas Plaza/Santa Fé Island Enjoy a morning walk around South Plaza islet looking out for marine birds and sea lions swimming in the turquoise waters. Later, explore Santa Fé keeping a close eye out for land iguanas in the unique cactus forest.

Day 16: Puerto Ayora/Quito Early morning visit to see the giant tortoises and lava tunnels in the highlands before heading to the airport and flying back to Quito.

Day 17: Quito Depart at any time.