Galapagos Cruise Santa Cruz II - Southeast Route (7)

Tour/Activity in Baltra Island, Ecuador

About this activity

Cruise through the islands of Santa Cruz, Santiago, Bartolomé and Genovesa

Your Travel Experience with Galapagos PRO

Day 1

Transfer to harbour of Baltra

After arriving in Baltra Airport, transfer to the harbour to board

Mosquera island

Between the two islands North Seymour and Baltra lies the small island "Mosquera". The narrow island extends in length and has wonderful white sandy beaches, rocks and tidal pools. Compared to the volcanic-shaped islands, this flat island, formed by a tectonic elevation, has a no particularly powerful appearance. It is the ideal place for snorkeling, walking along the beach and watching the exciting wildlife.

Day 2

La Galapaguera, San Cristóbal

Established by the National Park in 2003, the Galapaguera is a man-made breeding program for tortoises and an information center for visitors. Visitors can both observe giant tortoises living in a semi-natural habitat, but also learn about their origin, evolution, and threats by introduced animals.

Punta Pitt, San Cristóbal

Punta Pitt is located at the east end of San Cristóbal Island. The trail covers 1400m and takes roughly 2 hours, including an olivine beach approximately 90 meters and a trail that ascends to the top of a volcanic tuff hill passing through several natural viewpoints.

This is the only site in the Galapagos Islands, where you can watch the three species of boobies and 2 species of frigates nesting in the same area. There are also plenty of curious sea lions in the area.

Day 3

Santa Fé

After breakfast you take the boat to an idyllic white sand beach, which is home to many sea lions. The endemic land iguana, unique on this island, can also be discovered on walks through the cactus forests. Snorkeling and swimming on the beach, boating or a glass-bottomed boat tour for non-snorkellers complete this excursion.

The Galapagos National Park has placed a temporary ban on swimming, snorkeling or diving in the waters around Santa Fé. Rest assured, your tour operator will substitute the water activities wth something equally fantastic!

Plaza Sur Island

One of the smallest and most colourful islands in the archipelago, Plaza Sur, or 'South Plaza' in English, is just a short sail from Santa Cruz. Reaching dry land, you will come across some of the island’s friendly sea lions, one of the many types of animals in South Plaza for you to discover.

Wander by the nesting places of swallow-tailed gulls, audubon shearwaters, red-tailed tropicbirds, masked boobies and frigatebirds. The entire island is carpeted with dense sesuvium plants. From June to November, during the colder and drier season, the plants turn a deep red color which gives the island a dramatic, fascinating atmosphere. Watch the iguanas searching high up in the opuntia trees for fruit - a sight you'll never see anywhere else in the world.

Day 4

Charles Darwin Station, Santa Cruz

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 almost certainly see during your journey through the islands!

Activity of your choice

During a cruise on the Santa Cruz II, you have the opportunity to choose one of your own excursions, allowing you to further personalise your tour. Some options to choose from include hiking, mountain biking or kayaking in Tortuga Bay. The options will be discussed in advance with your tour guide.

Day 5

Punta Suarez, Española

Española is a geologically interesting island where you can explore the volcanic formations and spot a lot more of the Galapagos's unique fauna. Regular sightings include large sea lion colonies and flocks of seabirds, such as the Española mockingbird, the nazca booby and the spectacular red-beaked tropicbird. There are also marine iguanas, lizards and Sally lightfoot crabs.

A long hike will take you past the world's largest colony of Galapagos albatrosses! During mating season (May to December) you will have the opportunity to see the nesting area of the albatrosses and if you're lucky, you'll even get to witness their courting dance. The courting dance of the albatross is extra special as it is the start of a life-long bond for these birds who mate for life. Other interesting birds include Galapagos doves, Galapagos hawks, whip-tailed gulls.

Make a final stop to admire the dramatic topography of the famous Blow Hole, catapulting seawater an impressive 23 meters into the air.

Gardner Bay, Española

Join the colony of sea lions on the beautiful white coral beach. From the shoreline, you can observe the Galapagos hawks, American oystercatchers, Galapagos doves, mockingbirds, gold-warblers, lava lizards, marine iguanas and three different types of Darwin finch! When snorkeling or diving, you have the opportunity to see the diverse underwater world of Gardner Island. Californian angelfish, neon fish, parrotfish, manta rays and white-tip reef sharks all call these waters home.

You can also snorkel, kayak, tube or use a glass boat.

Day 6

Eden Islet

After breakfast, we take a panga ride to Eden Islet, a small island off the coast of Santa Cruz, where we can see blue-footed boobies diving into the water, reef sharks and frigates. Snorkeling equipment and, if the weather allows it, the glass bottom boat and kayaks are available for you to explore the lovely waters around Eden.

North Seymour

The small island of North Seymour is one of the most diverse islands in the Galapagos archipelago. It is only about two square kilometers in size and above all known for of the intensive courtship rituals of many magnificent frigatebirds, taking place here during mating season. The island is also home to large colonies of land iguanas, marine iguanas and sea lions. The characteristic bush landscape features diverse species of animals amongst the aromatic endemic balsa trees.

Day 7

Return to the harbour of Baltra

You will return to the harbor of Baltra. From there, transfer to Baltra Airport in time for your return flight to the mainland, or continue with your planned route through the Galapagos.

Outdoor & Sports
Beach
Landscapes & Sceneries
Wildlife & Nature