Small Ship Cruising in the Galapagos Islands
• Galapagos Islands • Tortoise Conservation Centre • Island excursions • Wildlife viewing • Swimming • Snorkelling
The Galapagos Islands are an archipelago of volcanic islands that are famed for their vast number of endemic species and the studies that contributed heavily to his theory of evolution by natural selection. The Galapagos Islands are today a UNESCO World Heritage site and Biosphere Reserve and are teeming with a vast number of endemic wildlife species.
Your Ship: The M/C Archipel I and M/C Archipel II: Explore the Galapagos on one of these excellent small ships, taking a maximum of 16 guests onboard for an intimate experience. Both vessels are stable, wide-bodied catamarans and have ample room to relax and enjoy privacy onboard while being well taken care of by the dedicated onboard crew.
Central, Eastern, Southern Islands - 8 Days
Day 1: Arrive Galapagos Islands On arrival into Baltra airport you will be met and transferred to the harbour to board your ship. Settle into your cabin onboard, followed by a welcome briefing and lunch. This afternoon cruise to North Seymour Island, This islet is one of the most visited sites in the Galapagos and is teeming with birdlife. You will be able to get up close with a large colony of blue-footed boobies and frigate birds.
Day 2: Cruising the Galapagos Islands This morning visit the volcanic island of Bartolome, one of the youngest islands in the archipelago, and one of the most scenic. Climb up to the top of the island for a postcard view over Pinnacle Bay. Here you will see how volcanic activity has shaped the islands. Return to the ship and sail on to Espumilla Beach on Santiago Island, an important breeding site for turtles. During the months of February to August you may be able to see the breeding and hatching process if you are lucky. Continue to Buccaneer Cove where you will enjoy snorkelling with resident marine life before returning to the ship.
Day 3: Cruising the Galapagos Islands Disembark at Puerto Egas, on the west side of Santiago Island. The beach is famous for its black sand, formed by volcanic tuff deposits. This afternoon cruise to Rabida Island. With its red rocks and sand it offers a very different landscape from other islands you will visit. Enjoy a short walk to a coastal brackish lagoon where you can see a range of native and endemic birds including finches, doves, yellow warblers and mockingbirds. The lagoon is also home to a colony of American flamingos and many other aquatic birds.
Day 4: Cruising the Galapagos Islands This morning you will pay a visit to the Charles Darwin Research Centre on Santa Cruz Island. Here you can learn more about the protection and conservation efforts that are in place in the Galapagos and visit the resident young and adult tortoises who are studied here. Later you will drive to the Santa Cruz Highlands. The scenery changes rapidly as you gain altitude, and there is lush greenery all year round here. Visit the Twin Craters and then proceed to a local ranch where you can observe the giant tortoises of Santa Cruz in their natural habitat.
Day 5: Cruising the Galapagos Islands Disembark at Cormorant Point where you will be welcomed by a colony of Galapagos sea lions. The beach here has green sand and contains a high percentage of glassy olivine crystals. You will then visit another beach on the other side of Floreana Island which has beautiful, fine white sand. This sand is made from coral that has been pulverised by Parrotfish. You will snorkel here and spot schools of stingrays. If you are lucky you may even see Pacific green turtles. Later visit Post Office Bay. You can bring your postcards and post them from the peculiar barrel shaped post box, located here in this historic site. The barrel commemorates an improvised mail service that was set up in the 16th century by whalers.
Day 6: Cruising the Galapagos Islands Espanola Island awaits, and your first stop today is Gardner Bay, home to a large sea lion colony. Then cruise to Suarez Point where you can admire a natural phenomenon - a spectacular blowhole, where water sprays metres high into the air that has been created by huge ocean waves crashing into the basaltic cliffs over time. Keep your eyes peeled for the rare Galapagos owl here.
Day 7: Cruising the Galapagos Islands This morning stop at Pitt Point on San Cristobal Island, one of the most easterly points of the entire Galapagos archipelago. These cliffs were the first sight of land when the HMS Beagle and Charles Darwin arrived in 1835. Land on a small beach, where you will be welcomed by a group of barking sea lions. The colony here is a bachelor colony, filled with males who spend their time preparing for fighting and mating. Continue on to Witch Hill, where you can enjoy swimming and snorkelling from the shore. This site is one of the first visited by Charles Darwin and is home to an impressive landscape and several species of coastal and migratory birds, including pelicans, blue-footed boobies and swallow-tailed gulls. You can also see sea lions and marine iguanas here.
Day 8: Depart the Galapagos Islands This morning you will enjoy a final breakfast onboard before disembarking the cruise. A visit the Interpretation Centre on San Cristobal Island is included. The centre, along with the excellent commentary from your local guide will give you a final overview of the islands and what makes the Galapagos so unique. Enjoy a visit to the well-maintained botanic gardens, where you can see a number of native plant species such as the giant prickly pear and perhaps spot a Chatham mocking bird before transferring to the airport.
• 7 nights' in an Ocean View Cabin (twin) aboard the M/C Archipel I/II • Personal meet and greet on arrival in the Galapagos Islands • Transfers and transport • Island excursions and daily briefings with specialist guides • All meals on board • Galapagos Transit Control Card
Pricing (per person) $USD
Apr 5, 19; May 3, 17, 31; 28 Jun; Jul 12, 26; Aug 9; Oct 4, 18; Dec 27
2021 Apr 5, 19; May 3, 17, 31; 28 Jun; Jul 12, 26; Aug 9; Oct 4, 18; Dec 27
Booking conditions • Solo travellers may book an Ocean View Cabin at a twin share rate on a share basis and will be matched with another traveller of the same gender.
• Flights to/from Galapagos are not included in the cruise price.
• Galapagos Islands National Park fee of US$100 per person is payable on arrival.
• Surcharges apply for Galapagos during the Christmas and New Year period. Several alternative cruise itineraries are available on these ships. Please enquire for further details. Cruises can be combined for a longer itinerary and a discount will apply.
• Solo travellers may book an Ocean View Cabin at a twin share rate on a share basis and will be matched with another traveller of the same gender. • Flights to/from Galapagos are not included in the cruise price. • Galapagos Islands National Park fee of US$100 per person is payable on arrival. • Surcharges apply for Galapagos during the Christmas and New Year period.
Several alternative cruise itineraries are available on these ships. Please enquire for further details. Cruises can be combined for a longer itinerary and a discount will apply.