Unique creatures seemingly lost in time, moon like volcanic landscapes, pristine beaches and crystal clear waters teeming with life
characterize the Galapagos Islands. Located 600 miles off the coast of Ecuador, bisected by the Equator, Las Encantadas, the
enchanted isles, the Galapagos is one of natures most enchanting destinations.
The unique and unusual wildlife, which have adapted to varied conditions, have become a living study of evolutionary science. Here
the nineteenth century explorer and biologist, Charles Darwin, turned the world around with his insightful writings, On the Origin of
the Species. But more inspiring is the endearing and sometimes comical nature of the animals here. With little fear of man, sea lions
jump in to play alongside swimmers, iguanas sit patiently for portraits, while boobies and frigate birds pursue their mates within an
arms length of visitors.
To observe a waved albatross take flight or the birth of a sea lion pup is an unforgettable experience. These rich and prolific
expressions of life are contrasted by the timeless setting of the Galapagos Islands. After our unforgettable 8 day first-class cruise
we will exchange sea for Andes Mountains and have some time to explore Quito, Ecuador! You may choose to explore the city, shop,
take a day trip into the countryside or simply relax and reflect on your time in the Galapagos Islands!
Nov 3 - Saturday: Late afternoon arrival in Quito, Ecuador. Transfer to 4-star Eugenia Hotel.
Nov 4 - Sunday: Galapagos Islands. Morning flight from Quito to Baltra airport Galapagos.
We travel from Baltra to Santa Cruz and board our luxurious First Class Yacht in Puerto Ayora.
Today we begin to explore the Galapagos by traveling to the Highlands of Santa Cruz to see
the giant Galapagos land tortoise in the wild!
Nov. 5 - Monday: Espaola - Punta Suarez Espaola the southernmost island of the archipelago, is home to the worlds population,
about 15,000 couples, of waved Albatross, large beautifully striking birds, a wondrous site to behold. Well also find the largest
marine iguanas and lava lizards, sea lions, Naza & blue footed boobies nesting right next to the trail, Hood Mockingbird, red Tropic
bird and others. A spectacular blow hole, spewing water about 75 ft into the air is where you can watch seabirds perform their aerial
acrobatics. Punta Suarez is one of the most popular and attractive places in Galapagos, you will not want to leave this island!
Nov. 6 - Tuesday:
Santa Fe Gardner Bay. Santa Fe has one of the most beautiful coves in the archipelago, a turquoise lagoon with two small white
sand beaches, protected by a peninsula where sea lions rest. Hike through an Opuntia (prickly pear cactus) Forest. The cacti are the
main food of the Santa Fe land iguana, much larger and paler yellow than other species, you find them resting in the shade of the
cactus. Snorkel with sea lions in Gardner Bay.
Nov. 7 - Wednesday: North Seymour Bartolome. North Seymour is a low, flat island, formed as a result
of a lava formation uplift. It is covered with low, bushy vegetation and has the largest colony of
magnificent frigate birds in the Galapagos. There is also a large population of blue-footed
boobies that perform an amusing courtship dance, when nesting conditions are right. Their
goofy stride, picking-up their blue feet in slow motion, wing spreading, whistling and honking;
is a highlight of this island! On Bartholome you will climb to a lookout point where you can
admire the spectacular panorama of both bays and the famous needle shaped Pinnacle Rock.
The beaches boast great swimming and snorkeling spots with sea lions and also a good
chance to encounter penguins, sea turtles and some white-tipped reef sharks..dont worry if
you leave them alone they will leave you alone!
Nov. 8 - Thursday:
Punta Espinoza (Fernandina) - Urvina Bay (Isabela) Punta Espinoza is a narrow point of land extending out from the base of the
Fernandina Volcano. Here is the largest colony of marine iguanas in the Galapagos. Here we also see the flightless Cormorants
nesting on the open rocks. Another trail takes us through a lava field of recent volcanic activity with clumps of lava cactus. Past the
lava field is the tide pool area where we can sit and watch sea lion pups interacting, see sea turtles, rays and shore bird activity.
Enjoy some great snorkeling perhaps with penguins, sea turtles, flightless coromants in the water, and marine iguanas feeding on
algae at low tide. Urvina Bay is at the base of the Alcedo Volcano. After an eruption in 1954, 4 miles of coastal seabed, marine life
and all were uplifted about 15 feet forever exposing giant coral heads and marine organisms on what is now the shore. Here we
see marine remnants and coral skeletons some of them almost waist high. Urvina Bay is also the nesting site for brown pelicans and
flightless cormorants and you'll also see some giant marine iguanas.
Nov. 9 - Friday:
Elizabeth Bay - Moreno Point (Isabela) We explore Elizabeth Bay on a panga ride, first to a secluded cove lined with large red
mangrove trees and turtles, rays, and various birds are plentiful. Well spend some time here as there is a lot of activity going on.
Later we motor to some rocky islets called The Marielas to observe a colony of nesting penguins, they prefer these cooler waters
and the greatest portion of the penguin population is found here. Flightless cormorants and giant marine iguanas are also seen.
Nov. 10 - Saturday:
Floreana - Punto. Cormorant / Devils crown / Post Office Bay Floreana Island is perceived as one of the most exotic Islands of the
archipelago. The beach at Punta Cormorant has a greenish cast due to an accumulation of olivine crystal mineral. A trail leads to a
with flamingos, white-checked pintail ducks and other shorebirds. The trail continues to a white sand beach
which is a nesting site for green turtles. Enjoy a good swim or snorkel while sea lions play around you,
perhaps some sting rays and a reef shark or two. Devils Crown is a half-submerged volcanic cone,
considered to be one of the most outstanding marine sites of the Galapagos. To the west, Post Office Bay
keeps the legendary post barrel that whalers used to send their mail.
Nov. 11 - Sunday:
Santa Cruz/ Charles Darwin Station. Morning visit to the Charles Darwin Research Station on Santa Cruz. The station is a tortoise
breeding and rearing center, where tortoises of different subspecies are prepared for reintroduction to their natural habitats. The
most popular inhabitant of this island will probably be Lonesome George, he is the only survivor of a specific turtle species. Santa
Cruz is the second largest island in the Galapagos. The small town of Puerto Ayora is the economic centre of the archipelago, with
the largest population (10,000) of the 4 inhabited islands. Santa Cruz is also the only island where six different zones of vegetation
can be seen: Coastal, Arid, Transition, Scalesia, Miconia, and Pampa Zones. We then travel back to Baltra for our flight back to Quito
and check in at the Eugenia Hotel.
Nov. 12 - Monday:
free day breakfast included at Eugenia. A full day to explore the wonderful and interesting city of Quito, shop or simply relax after
our Galapagos cruise. A day excursion will be arranged and an option for those interested in visiting the small town of Cotaxoxi,
renowned for their hand-made leather goods and other crafts. The drive there also gives you a wonderful experience of the
landscape and country outside of Quito.
Nov. 13 - Tuesday:
Morning Transfer to Quito Airport for your return flight. Welcome Home from an unforgettable experience in the Galapagos and the
magic of the Andes Mountains in Ecuador. You return home with special memories, fantastic photographs and a group of wonderful
new friends who have shared this magical Galapagos Islands adventure with you!
Tour Cost: $3,850.00 Nov. 3 13, 2007
8 day Cruise first Class Yacht accommodation in double cabins with private bathroom, meals, naturalist guides,
Shore excursions, Transfers and flight from Quito to Galapagos.
3 nights Quito, Ecuador at the Eugenia Hotel, double accommodations, private bath, optional activities, meals noted.
Airfare to Quito, Ecuador.Galapagos Nat. Park tax $100.00, Liquor and beverages, tips to guide/chef/crew, travel insurance, personal
items, departure tax.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Where are the Galapagos Islands?
A: The Galapagos Islands (or Archipelago de Colon) is a Province of Ecuador located 500 miles (800 kilometers) west of the
Ecuadorian coast. They lie directly on the equator.
Q: What is the climate like?
A: The islands lie directly on the Equator and it is warm for most of the year. The hottest season is generally January to April with
average temperatures ranging from the low 70s to a high of 84 F. Everything is usually very green and it is during this period that
you might have a few afternoon thundershowers. From April to December is considered the "cool" season.
Q: Are vaccinations required for Ecuador? A: No vaccinations are required to enter Ecuador
Q: How much should we tip the guide and crew?
A: We recommend that you consider tipping 1) the guide, 2) kitchen staff and 3) the rest of the crew. As a general rule-of-thumb, we
recommend between $5 - $8 US from each passenger to each group per day. If you have received very good and exceptional
service, please be more generous!
The terrain can be a little strenuous. Passengers should consult their physician should they have any concerns regarding their
physical condition. The itinerary is subject to change due to weather conditions or National Park directives. The captain may deviate
from the published itinerary for any reason he deems advisable.
|To reserve your space for this trip
Contact: Gayle Lawrence
Journeys of Discovery
|....The Land That Time Forgot....
Galapagos ... The Enchanted Isles!