Galapagos Cruise Coral I & II : Western Route (5)

Tour/Activity in Baltra Island, Ecuador

About this activity

Discover the islands of Santa Cruz, Isabela, Fernandina, and Santiago onboard Coral I & II

Your Travel Experience with Galapagos PRO

Day 1

Transfer from the airport to the port Baltra

After your arrival at the airport of Baltra Island, transfer to the boat.

Highlands Tortoise Reserve, Santa Cruz Island

Afternoon: In the mountains of Santa Cruz, bird lovers can spot tree and ground finches, vermillion flycatchers, paint-billed crakes, and yellow warblers. Cattle egrets are known to take up residence on the shells of the Galapagos giant tortoise.

As you venture into the higher altitude areas, you will notice the changes in the vegetation as the climate becomes wetter and warmer. The earth in the upper altitudes is rich in minerals. Coffee plantations and fruit orchards line the streets. Here you can observe the famous Galapagos giant tortoises in the wild. This area is a birdwatcher's paradise - almost every land bird found on the island either lives or migrates here.

Day 2

Punta Vicente Roca, Isabela Island

Morning: The largest in the archipelago, this seahorse-shaped island is also one of the most volcanically active. While there is no cleared landing site at Punta Vicente Roca, your guide will explain the impressive geology and wonderful wildlife diversity in the area from aboard the dinghy. Explore the two coves and the large bay with spectacular sea life. Keep an eye out for seahorses, sea turtles, and the weird and wonderful mola-mola, also known as sunfish. In good conditions, Punta Vicente Roca is considered one of the best snorkelling sites in the Galapagos.

Punta Espinoza, Fernandina Island

afternoon: At 700,000 years young, Fernandina is the youngest island in the archipelago. In the midst of a cactus and mangrove-covered lava landscape is the visitor's site Punta Espinoza. At Punta Espinoza, a colony of sea lions and hundreds of marine iguanas sunbathe on the black lava rocks and on the beach. Snorkeling in this area will get you close to the resident penguins, often seen whizzing through the water.

Day 3

Urbina Bay, Isabela Island

Morning: Urbina Bay graces the southeast flank of the Alcedo Volcano. After volcanic activity in 1954 caused a significant uplift, the coast expanded almost a kilometer out. Marine life found a way to thrive in this newly fertile area and many species chose to stay. Today, this area is a great place for snorkeling. During your hike, you may see a large colony of land iguanas, Darwin's finches, giant tortoises (from June to September) and flightless cormorants.

Several species of whale have been spotted in the waters you'll be navigating through today.

Tagus Cove, Isabela Island

Afternoon: The historical pirate hideaway of Tagus Cove has been frequented by sailors since the 1800s. The names of visiting ships were often painted and carved in to the cliffs surrounding the cove.

Trails wind their way around Lake Darwin up to a ridge, offering wonderful views of the landscape, the ocean and Wolf and Darwin Islands on the horizon. Punta Tortuga, just north of Tagus Cove, is another idyllic tropical beach surrounded by mangroves. Later, take a danghy ride through the cliffs, observing penguins, flightless cormorants, boobies, pelicans and Sally Lightfoot crabs. Return to the cove to relax on the shore or snorkel.

Day 4

Puerto Egas, Santiago Island

Morning: After landing on the black sand beach of Puerto Egas, Santiago Island you hike along a 2 km long coastal area boasting sea lions, Sally Lightfoot crabs, lava lizards, Galapagos hawks and lava herons. The rugged lava coast with natural pools, where sea lions bathe and herons play, marks the end of your hike.

An excursion to Santiago Island is also one of the rare chances to see Galápagos fur seals in the wild, though not in large numbers.

Sullivan Bay, Santiago Island

Afternoon: On the other side of the island, you will reach the white coral beach of Sullivan Bay. Although this beach deserves its place in the highlights list, the day will surprise you with another highlight: the special pahoehoe lava flows.

Almost 100 years ago, lava flowed across the island and left behind various forms of soil - braided and stringy lava fields alternate with sharp-edged jagged formations. Feel the warmth of the black, unreal lava landscape under your hands and move back to the time of origin, when volcanoes raged here, ultimately creating a paradise.

Day 5

Las Bachas, Santa Cruz Island

Morning: On the north side of Santa Cruz, you will land on Bachas beach, one of the most important nesting sites for the Galapagos Island's sea turtle population.

Behind the beach, you will find two small flamingo ponds behind the bay. These ponds are a treasure trove of animal sightings - sunbathing iguanas, curious shorebirds, and Darwin finches, mockingbirds and seagulls frolic here. Native plant life is also interesting in this area. Red and black mangroves and salt bushes line the ponds edges.

In this heavenly place you will also find the remains of barges that sank long ago when the US Navy operated a base on the island of Baltra during the Second World War. Eventually, the local's changed the word Barges to "Bachas".

Transfer to the Airport

Transfer to the airport for your return flight to Guayaquil or Quito.

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