Galapagos Cruise Nemo III - Western Route (5)

Tour/Activity in Baltra Island, Ecuador

About this activity

Visit the islands of Santa Cruz, Isabela, Fernandina, Santiago and Daphne on the Catamaran

Your Travel Experience with Galapagos PRO

Day 1

Transfer to the yacht

At the arrival at Baltra Airport, an English speaking naturalist guide will assists you. Transfer to the yacht. Welcome and briefing.

Charles Darwin Station, Santa Cruz Island

Morning: At Charles Darwin Station, scientists from around the world research the many tortoise subspecies that are endemic to the Galapagos islands. The highlight of the research center is the breeding station, Fausto Llerena, where baby turtles take a training course over rocks, branches and sandy stairs in prepareation for their upcoming release in to the wilderness.

Visitors leave the station with a stronger understanding of the tortoises, iguanas and much of the flora native to the islands. You'll be impressed by the tiny tortoises, often only the size of your hand, who will grow over the next 100 years to become as large as the adults you'll also meet!

Day 2

Punta Moreno, Isabela Island

Morning: Punta Moreno is a rugged young lava bay. At first it appears to be a lifeless landscape, however as you walk over the cooled lava, you'll see new green areas and lagoons hosting a wide variety of birds. Marine iguanas and lava lizards are usually found in the lagoons you'll often meet flamingos foraging here for their favourite meal. While the sharp rocks make this hike a little tricky, its path itself is easy enough to be enjoyed by everyone and provides an unforgettable landscape set against a backdrop of three volcanoes, the most active of the Galapagos that are Sierra Negra, Cerro Azul of Isabela Island and La Cumbre of Fernandina Island.

We recommend bringing plenty of water during this visit, as the lava field reflects the sun making the temperature higher than average. Don't forget to apply sunscreen!

Urbina Bay, Isabela Island

Afternoon: 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.

Day 3

Punta Espinoza, Fernandina Island

Morning: Espinoza Point is located in the Fernandina Island, the youngest of the Galapagos’ archipelago and, volcanically, the most active. It has an incredible combination of aridity and amazing wildlife. Due to the fact that it doesn’t have any introduced mammals, Fernandina has a unique environment with the biggest density of marine iguanas and the sea lions share their habitat with crabs and hawks. This is a place you will surely enjoy during your cruise trip.

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, with Wolf and Darwin Islands dotting the horizon. Punta Tortuga, just north of Tagus Cove, is another idyllic tropical beach surrounded by mangroves. Later, take a panga 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 hike along a 2km 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.

Buccaneer Cove, Santiago Island

Afternoon: Buccaneer Cove is evidence of Santiago's long history as a haven for British buccaneers. These pirates were likely anchoring in this sheltered bay to make repairs and, among other things, to increase their supplies of turtle meat. The steep cliffs surrounding the bay, where hundreds of seabirds settle on the dark red sand beach, are an impressive sight to behold.

Day 5

Daphne Island

Morning: The Daphne Islands (Major and Minor) are two little volcanic islands. Daphne Major is made of a tuff crater, there are no trees on its surface and the coastline elevates 120 meters above sea level. The island is located right at the north of Santa Cruz’s main island.

On Daphne Major Island, scientists of the Princeton University have been studying birds, especially boobies, for more than 30 years by now. As a result, they have been able to observe evolutionary processes and this gained worldwide prestigious recognition for both the island and the scientists.

Transfer back to Baltra

Return transfer to the port of Baltra. From there you either head to the airport for your return to the mainland, or continue your planned Galapagos program from here.

Outdoor & Sports
Landscapes & Sceneries
Wildlife & Nature