Galapagos cruise Seastar Journey - Western Route (6)

Tour from Baltra Island to San Cristóbal Island, Ecuador

About this activity

On the Yacht through the islands Santa Cruz, Isabela, Fernandina, Santiago, Tintoreras, San Cristóbal i.a.

Your Travel Experience with Galapagos PRO

Day 1

Transfer

Upon arrival at Baltra Airport, trasfer to the harbour to board the Seastar Journey.

Charles Darwin Station on Santa Cruz Island

Afternoon: 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 preparation 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 400kg!

Day 2

Las Tintoreas Island

Morning: Prepare yourself for some wonderful encounters with the wildlife of Las Tintoreras, the small archipelago in front of the harbor of Puerto Villamil.

Take in the gorgeous scenery and unique wildlife on Las Tintoreras. Along the shores, the blue-footed boobie males show off their striking blue feet in an attempt to woo the females, the marine iguanas warm themselves up on the black lava rocks and the Galapagos penguins and Galápagos sea lions recover after their dives.

After circumnavigating the islands, put on your snorkeling equipment and explore the underwater world with your guide. In addition to sea turtles, you'll likely spot manta rays and other colorful fish - and if you're lucky, the white-tip reef sharks that migrate here.

Sierra Negra Volcano on Isabela Island

Afternoon: Spend the morning exploring the volcanic landscape of Isabela Island, created by five side by side shield volcanoes, whose lava flows have united to form a landmass.

Although Sierra Negra is not the highest volcano at 1,200 meters, it has the second largest volcanic cone on earth, with a diameter of about 9 kilometers. From the endge of the crater, visitors are treated to a magnificent view out over the island of Isabela.

Note: Please remember to bring high SPF sunscreen. The Sun's harmful rays can be very strong here.

Day 3

Punta Moreno on 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 the volcanoes Sierra Negra and Cerro Azul.

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!

Elizabeth Bay on Isabela Island

Afternoon: The wide and sheltered Elizabeth Bay, on Isabela's east coast, hosts a bevy of the archipelago's unique wildlife. The mangrove-lined shore contrasts starkly against the surrounding lava fields. The myriad of small islets and rocky reefs make this is a particularly rich area for wildlife.

The waters here are particularly clear, and this makes Elizabeth Bay a great place to spot the rays, sharks, green sea turtles, Galapagos penguins, pelicans, and Galapagos sea lions known to gather here. Nearer to the shores and mangroves you'll see Galapagos flightless cormorants and the sunbathing marine iguanas.

Day 4

Punta Espinoza on Fernandina Island

Morning: Today you are heading towards Fernandina, the westernmost and with just about 700,000 years, the youngest island in the archipelago. Surrounded by hills amidst a lava landscape covered with cacti and mangroves is the visitor location Punta Espinoza. Meet sea lions and hundreds of marine iguanas basking on the black lava rocks and on the beach. While snorkeling you might come close to the resident penguins darting quickly through the water.

Tagus Cove on 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 and 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, enjoy 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 5

Espumilla Beach and Busaneer Cove on Santiago Island

Morning: EEspumilla Beach is known for its marine iguanas and red cliff crabs, also know as Sally Lightfoot crabs. The crabs attract hunting herons, who perform their hunter-prey dance. The richness of marine fauna, such as octopus, moray eels and various sharks lends a unique feel to snorkelling in the waters off Espumilla.

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.

Puerto Egas on Santiago Island

Afternoon: After landing on the black sand beach of Puerto Egas, 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.

Day 6

Lobos Island

Morning: Isla Lobos is sometimes known as Sea Lion Island, for the huge colony of resident sea lions. Fire engine red Sally lightfoot crabs strike a strong contrast against the black volcanic rocks during your hike on Isla Lobos. Other curious creatures living on the otherwise uninhabited island include land iguanas and pelicans. Bring your snorkeling gear and treat yourself to a refreshing dip.

Return to the harbour of San Cristóbal

The cruise ends in the San Cristóbal port. From here you may take a return flight to the mainland of Ecuador or continue on with your planned route through the Galapagos.

Outdoor & Sports
Wildlife & Nature
Landscapes & Sceneries