Talk to the Expert

Maite Paz

I have been designing trips to my home country of Ecuador for over 20 years. Traveling itself has always felt like magic to me: my mind is always on travel, but my heart is forever in the Galapagos as it never fails to surprise me.

Maite Paz

Latin America Specialist

+1 844 879 7838

Overview

  • from $8,231 PP
  • 9 Nights
  • Private
  • Year round
  • Moderate
  • 13 hours from London / 9 hours New York

Highlights

Your tour starts in Ecuador’s capital, Quito, a UNESCO World Heritage site built in 1543 by the Spanish. One of the best-preserved examples of a historic colonial city in South America, you will spend two nights here and have a guided tour of the sights. You will then fly to the Galapagos Islands where you will board your yacht for seven nights sailing around this unique ecosystem. The cruise focuses on the Central and Western Islands, including visits to Isabela and Fernandina Island, two highlights of the Galapagos Islands. There are expert guides on board to take you to explore the islands, there are opportunities to hike, swim, snorkel and kayak on your voyage.

Why Book with Us

  • Low Deposit To Book

    Book your trip with us and pay a reduced deposit with the rest 90 days before your departure

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What's Included

Blue-footed booby
  • 2 x Nights Quito including breakfast
  • 7 x Nights Ocean Spray Yacht full board and shared activities
  • All transfers as listed in the itinerary
  • All activities and entrance fees as listed in the itinerary
  • English speaking guide
  • Personalized itinerary that can be modified to suit your preferences
  • 24/7 support from our dedicated staff

Day by Day Itinerary

Day 1 Arrive Quito

Quito Ecuador

Welcome to Ecuador! On arrival into Quito airport you will be met by your guide who will transfer you to your hotel. Your guide will brief you on your trip, Quito and help you with anything you need.

Quito is the capital of Ecuador and one of the highest capital cities in the world at 2850m (9350ft) above sea level. The old town of Quito is a UNESCO World Heritage site as it is one of the best-preserved cities on the continent. The city was founded in the 16th Century on the ruins of the Incan settlement that was the hub of the Northern Inca Empire.

 

    Day 2 City Tour Quito

    Quito Ecuador

    This morning you will be met by your guide to explore Quito. You will start in the historic center at the main square, Independence Plaza. Historical buildings flanking the square include the main Cathedral, Presidential Palace and Archbishop’s Place. You will visit the La Compañía de Jesús which is one of the most beautiful churches in Quito with its intricate decoration and baroque style. Your guide will take you to El Panecillo Hill for panoramic views over the city.

    You will stop at a local restaurant for lunch before you visit the Equator where you can stand with one foot in each hemisphere. There will be time to stop at the Ethnographic Museum to learn about the indigenous people of the area. Your guide will then transfer you back to the hotel. We recommend you head out into Quito’s old town for dinner tonight.

      Day 3 The Galapagos Islands

      Ocean Spray

      This morning you will be met by your driver and transferred to the airport for your flight to the Galapagos Islands. You will land on Baltra Island and transfer to the M/C Ocean Spray.

      Visit Chinese Hat this afternoon. This site offers rare, up-close viewing of Galapagos wildlife and well-preserved remnants of fragile volcanic rock that can’t be found in such a unique condition anywhere else. The island is named after the similarity of an Asian type of hat. Here you can see American Oystercatchers and Galapagos Penguins swimming along the shores.

        Day 4 Isabela & Fernandina Islands

        Snorkeling, Galapagos

        Vicente Roca Point has outstanding geological formations and is a great place to see various bird species. Because this visitor site is located on the western area of the island, the Cromwell Current provides cold water that carries many nutrients for both land and aquatic species, offering the chance to see amazing feeding frenzies.

        As one of the most pristine islands in the archipelago, Fernandina has never had a foreign species invade. It is also the most active island and farthest west. Espinosa Point is the only visitor site on the entire island. Here you can see marine iguanas, Galapagos hawks and enjoy a hike and/or snorkeling activity at one of the most natural, unspoiled sites in the entire world.

          Day 5 Isabela Island - Tagus Cove & Urbina Bay

          Isabela Island

          If you like historic remnants, then you will enjoy finding what was left behind by pirates and sailors in the 1800s. Tagus Cove was one of their preferred pit stops while traveling the seas. The hike here will provide incredible views of the cove and on the other side the mangrove forest where the last 35 pairs of Mangrove finches thrive.

          Millions of years ago, Urbina Bay was once laying on the ocean floor. Volcanic uplifts caused it to rise and now it is occupied by sea lions, land iguanas and flightless cormorants. It is a great place to enjoy some free time on the beach or the guide may suggest a hike.

            Day 6 Isabela Island - Elizabeth Bay & Moreno Point

            Turtle Galapagos

            Elizabeth Bay is visited by panga only as the park authorities have no authorized landing in order to protect the island. While in the panga you can appreciate a large abundance of marine life that can be seen in the clear waters. It is great for snorkeling.

            The beautiful rocky shores of Moreno Point offer a plethora of birds to be seen. It is truly a birder’s delight. The main attractions are the coast lagoons where white-tipped sharks can be seen and the panoramic views of Sierra Negra and Cerro Azul volcanoes cannot be missed.

              Day 7 Santa Cruz Island

              Santa Cruz Harbor Galapagos

              The Charles Darwin Research Station is one of Galapagos Island’s most important sites for visitors. It is a research facility that has an extensive collection of Galapagos plant life specimens carefully preserved and also acts as a biological research station and active breeding center operated by the Charles Darwin Foundation. Their biggest conservation efforts are to one day eliminate all invasive and non-native plants and animals destroying endemic species within the islands.

              The highlands are located in the northern part of Santa Cruz and can reach elevations up to 1500 meters. This area is rich with hills, ferns, volcanoes, and wildlife. A great contrast to the molten lava-hardened beaches and rocky areas of other islands already seen. It is home to giant tortoises, mockingbirds, finches, and many other species.

                Day 8 South Plaza & Santa Fe Islands

                Iguana Galapagos

                South Plaza is one of the smallest islands with a visitor site but is home to an incredible amount of diverse flora and fauna. It has a large population of Sesuvium plants like the prickly pear cactus tree which is an important source of food for the land iguana. Just a few years ago mice were finally eradicated from the island, helping the population of land iguanas grow healthily once more. The amazing colors of the turquoise waters against the black lava create a setting for amazing photography opportunities.

                Santa Fe is home to the endemic Santa Fe iguana. The island was created by a volcanic uplift that now hosts a forest of Opuntia and Palo Santo trees. It is a picturesque island with two different trails, one leading to a scenic viewpoint and the other leading to a small beach. Giant tortoises were once native here but went extinct after pirates and sailors took them aboard as a source of food.

                  Day 9 Española Island

                  Frigatebird, Galapagos

                  Saurez Point is a phenomenal site where you will get to see many of Española Island’s endemic species. The trail will pass by the only Waved Albatross breeding site in all of Galapagos. If you are lucky you might see a young albatross take off for its first flight for up to five years at sea. Older birds stay at sea for months at a time, only coming back to breed. They have the same mate for life and will meet each other each year, only here to reproduce. Other species that can be seen are marine iguanas that stay brightly colored year-round, Galapagos doves, Nazca boobies, blue-footed boobies, swallow-tailed gulls, red-billed tropicbirds, and Darwin finches.

                  Gardner Bay’s white sandy beach is home to a large colony of sea lions and incredibly blue and turquoise waters. Three different finches can be seen, as well as the Española mockingbird. Over time, the mockingbird must have been offered water or food from tourists and now they have no fear of walking on your things or landing very close to you. It is so important not to feed or touch the animals. It can disrupt their normal behaviors and threaten their future.

                    Day 10 San Cristobal & Departure

                    Sea Lions, San Cristobal Island, Galapagos

                    A short distance from the center of San Cristobal is the San Cristobal Interpretation Center, open to the public since 1998, which provides extensive knowledge about the fascinating history of the archipelago and give visitors a more holistic understanding of these islands’ unique habitats and wildlife.

                    The main areas of focus, which are addressed through several expositions are natural history, human history, and conservation for the future. For those who are interested in the geology of the archipelago, there is a complete exhibit on the volcanic birth of the Galapagos and how this impacted the habitats present here

                    You will then be transferred to the airport for your onward flight connection.

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                      What's not Included

                      • As we have clients from all over the world. Our itineraries do not include flights. If you would like us to include flights in your trip, we are happy to do so. Please speak to your travel specialist at the planning stage to include them.
                      • Gratuities for local guides
                      • We strongly advise all guests purchase comprehensive travel insurance
                      • Visas if required

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