Galapagos small group tour - GAL20

Number of Days: 7
Destination: Galapagos
Overview
Itinerary
Inclusions
Available Dates
  • The Galápagos islands are a hotbed of exotic wildlife and picturesque landscapes, and there’s no better way to view it all than from a comfortable ship like the Monserrat. On this trip, you’ll have the chance to relax on the beach, mingle with sea lions and turtles, and even hike a volcano. There’ll even be two naturalist guides on hand to help make this your most dynamic and educational adventure yet.

    • 4 nights cruising the Galápagos National Park aboard the MV Monserrat
    • Search for sea turtles in secluded bays and snorkel with sea lions
    • Hike the Sierra Negra Volcano – the largest basaltic caldera in the Galápagos
    • Choose to search for sea turtles or
    • Relax on the white-sand beaches of Santiago

  • 7 DAY ITINERARY

    Tour commences and concludes in Quito.

    Day 1 - Quito

    Arrive at any time. Booking pre- or post-trip accommodation is highly recommended to fully experience the city and take advantage of the optional activities available.

    Your opportunity to meet your tour guide and fellow travellers and learn more about your tour. Opt to join the group for a local meal afterwards. Don't forget to see the notice in the lobby (or ask reception) for the official time and place to meet up with the group.

    Accommodation: Hotel Hilton Colon (or similar)

    Day 2 - Quito/Isabela Island

    Fly to Baltra. Meet the guide and transfer to the boat. In the afternoon, sail to Mosquera Island and walk along the beach and observe the vast sea lion colonies.

    Flights from Quito to Baltra depart between 6:40am and 9:40am depending on the day of the week. These will arrive into the Galápagos between 9:30am and 12:30pm with a short refuelling stop in Guayaquil (you will not disembark the plane). You will generally arrive onto the boat in time for lunch on Day 2 before the afternoon activity.

    The National Park charges a visitor fee of USD100, payable on arrival, which funds park maintenance and supervision in the Galápagos as well as ecological study, conservation, and infrastructure development in Ecuador's other National Parks. Entry fees and the funds they generate for the National Park System are among measures taken by the Ecuadorian government to protect its natural heritage.

    Mariscal Sucre International Airport – Seymour Airport 2h

    Excursion Mosquera Islet 2h-3h
    Wander along the beach and keep a look out for wildlife on land, in the air, and at sea. Relax on the sand or search for aquatic life in the tidal pools that dot the coastline.

    Monserrat Baltra Island – Isabela Island
    Board the spacious 20-person vessel and enjoy the amenities while cruising to your next destination. Spend time on the top deck lounge and bar, indulge in a meal with new friends or relax in the indoor air-conditioned areas.

    Meals included: Breakfast | Lunch | Dinner

    Day 3 - Isabela Island

    Arrive at Puerto Villamil, home to the small community that lives on Isabela Island. In the morning, hike the Sierra Negra volcano, which has the largest basaltic caldera in the Galápagos. Visit Las Tintoreras and the tortoise breeding centre in Puerto Villamil in the afternoon.

    In the morning, visit Las Tintoreras, a small island in front of Puerto Villamil. Its bay is known to be home to a colony of whitetip sharks. Check out the tortoise breeding centre to see some of the famous giant tortoises of the Galápagos.

    Las Tintoreras Visit Isabela Island
    Take a panga across the bay to "Tintoreras" Shark Alley to observe the whitetip reef sharks found swimming in the channels between the rocks. Get a close-up view of pelicans, frigatebirds, and diving blue-footed boobies. Watch for manta rays and rare Galápagos penguins.

    Sierra Negra Volcano Hike Isabela Island 1h-2h

    Hike to the rim of the 10km (6 mi) wide crater of the Sierra Negra volcano, which has the largest basaltic caldera in the Galápagos. Trek across the moon-like landscape of the lava fields and fumaroles, and enjoy spectacular views looking north toward Fernandina and the rest of Isabela Island. The volcano last erupted in June 2018, making it the most recent eruption of the Galápagos. This hike is 7km in total (3.5 km each way).

    Giant Tortoise Breeding Centre Visit Isabela Island 2h-3h
    Walk through the town’s wetlands to visit the Giant Tortoise Breeding Centre. With the giant tortoise on its way to extinction in the late 1950s, this program was established to protect these noble creatures.

    Monserrat Isabela Island – Chinese Hat
    Board the spacious 20-person vessel and enjoy the amenities while cruising to your next destination. Spend time on the top deck lounge and bar, indulge in a meal with new friends or relax in the indoor air-conditioned areas.

    Meals included: Breakfast | Lunch | Dinner

    Day 4 - Chinese Hat/Rábida Island

    Visit Chinese Hat for snorkelling opportunities and to observe the birds and sea lions. Take an afternoon excursion to Rábida to see a lagoon and sea lion colony.

    In the morning, the boat arrives at a small uniquely shaped island off the southern tip of Santiago called Chinese Hat. Here it is often possible to see Galápagos penguins, and the marine life is fantastic for snorkelling. There is also a large sea lion colony as well as many marine iguanas that can be seen while walking amongst the volcanic scenery. Trek to see good views of the island's volcano.

    Visit Chinese Hat 1h-2h1-2km
    Explore Chinese Hat’s beautiful landscape and view many geological formations such as lava tubes and lava flows.

    Snorkelling Chinese Hat 45m-1h
    Snorkel right from the white-coral sand beach and come face to face with playful sea lions and large schools of tropical fish. Keep an eye out for marine iguanas and penguins.

    Visit Rábida Island
    Arrive at a red sand beach at Rábida to explore its trails. A short trail leads to a saltwater lagoon; another trail goes past the lagoon to the interior, where the revered palo santo trees grow. (When burned, the branches of this tree give off a pleasing aroma and ward off mosquitoes.)

    Snorkelling (Isla Rábida) Rábida Island 45m-1h. Take a panga ride from the beach to a cliff wall that drops off into the water to find one of the best deep-water snorkeling spots in the islands.

    Monserrat Chinese Hat – Puerto Egas
    Board the spacious 20-person vessel and enjoy the amenities while cruising to your next destination. Spend time on the top deck lounge and bar, indulge in a meal with new friends or relax in the indoor air-conditioned areas.

    Meals included: Breakfast | Lunch | Dinner

    Day 5 - Puerto Egas/Santiago Island

    Morning excursion to Puerto Egas to see the salt crater as well as a dark sand beach and tidal pools. Continue to Playa Espumilla, one of the most idyllic beaches in the Galápagos Islands, which boasts thick mangroves and flamingo and sea turtle nesting sites. Head to Buccaneer Cove to witness the towering cliff wall rock formations.

    Morning excursion to Playa Espumilla, one of the most idyllic beaches in the Galápagos Islands, which has thick mangroves and flamingo and sea turtle nesting sites. Continue to Puerto Egas to see the salt crater as well as a dark sand beach and tidal pools.

    Santiago Island has seen its share of human activity from whalers and pirates over the years, and despite the introduction of goats to the island many years ago, the wildlife of Santiago has otherwise flourished and provides outstanding viewing opportunities. The island boasts marine iguanas, sea lions, fur seals, land and sea turtles, among others. Enjoy great wildlife viewing both on land and in the water.

    Please be sure you are a competent swimmer. The "crown" provides protection from the open sea, but the water here can be rough and the currents strong at times.

    Visit Puerto Egas
    Explore the spectacular shoreline of Puerto Egas, also known as James Bay. Spot a great number of shore birds and reptiles – the beach area is home to a plethora of wildlife.

    Snorkelling (Puerto Egas)
    Grab a snorkel and jump into the water right off the beach to explore Puerto Egas' interesting underwater world. Keep your eyes peeled for rays, turtles, and reef sharks while snorkelling. After, visit the large tidal pool area – marine iguanas and Sally Lightfoot crabs are everywhere.

    Visit Playa Espumilla
    Head to Playa Espumilla, one of the most idyllic beaches in the Galápagos Islands, which has thick mangroves and sea turtle nesting sites.

    Buccaneer Cove Visit Santiago Island
    Jump into the panga and cruise alongside high cliffs and rock formations on this visit to Bucaneer Cove, which was a favourite hideout for pirates looking to stock up their boats with food and water. Spot sea lions relaxing on the beach and sea birds nesting in the cove – there’s lots to see at this site.

    Monserrat, Puerto Egas – North Seymour

    Board the spacious 20-person vessel and enjoy the amenities while cruising to your next destination. Spend time on the top deck lounge and bar, indulge in a meal with new friends or relax in the indoor air-conditioned areas.

    Meals included: Breakfast | Lunch | Dinner

    Day 6 - North Seymour/Quito

    Visit North Seymour for guided walks to observe birds and wildlife, including vast sea lion colonies. Disembark at Baltra and fly back to Quito.

    Visit North Seymour, just north of Baltra, home to sea lions, marine iguanas, swallow-tailed gulls, magnificent frigatebirds, and blue-footed boobies.

    Transfer to the airport on Baltra Island for a flight to Quito. Flights from Baltra to Quito depart between 10:00am and 1:00pm depending on the day of the week. These will arrive into Quito between 2:30pm and 5:30pm with a refuelling stop in Guayaquil (you will not disembark the plane). You will arrive back at the hotel in the early evening in time for dinner.

    North Seymour

    Have an amazing wildlife experience visiting North Seymour Island – this island is teeming with life! Follow trails to see all the action (you may need to give way to a passing sea lion or marine iguana while walking). Depending on the season, see blue-footed booby nests where mating pairs perform their courtship dance. Head to a rocky shore to see flocks of pelicans having lunch in a dive bomb feeding frenzy, then turn inland to a large nesting site of magnificent frigatebirds. These huge, dark acrobats have two-metre (6.5 ft) wingspans, and males, with their puffed-up scarlet throat sacks, sit precariously perched in low bushes to watch over their equally large chicks. Top off your visit with a snorkel excursion among the colourful fish who call this area home.

    Monserrat, North Seymour – Baltra Island

    Board the spacious 20-person vessel and enjoy the amenities while cruising to your next destination. Spend time on the top deck lounge and bar, indulge in a meal with new friends or relax in the indoor air-conditioned areas.

    Seymour Airport – Mariscal Sucre International Airport 2h

    Accommodation: Hotel Hilton Colon (or similar)

    Meals included: Breakfast

    Day 7 – Quito

    Depart at any time.

    Meals included:Breakfast


    Accommodation:
    Comfortable tourist-class accommodation with character; mix of public and private transport. Small-ship adventures on the world’s great seas, rivers, and other places only accessible by boat.

    Dossier Disclaimer:
    The information in this trip details document has been compiled with care and is provided in good faith. However, it is subject to change, and does not form part of the contract between the client and the operator. The itinerary featured is correct at time of printing. It may differ slightly to the one in the brochure. Occasionally our itineraries change as we make improvements that stem from past travellers, comments and our own research. Sometimes it can be a small change like adding an extra meal along the itinerary. Sometimes the change may result in us altering the tour for the coming year. Ultimately, our goal is to provide you with the most rewarding experience. Please note that our brochure is usually released in November each year. If you have booked from the previous brochure you may find there have been some changes to the itinerary.

    VERY IMPORTANT: Please ensure that you print a final copy of your Trip Details to review a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans.

    Itinerary Disclaimer
    While it is our intention to adhere to the route described below, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable to make alterations. The itinerary is brief, as we never know exactly where our journey will take us. Due to our style of travel and the regions we visit, travel can be unpredictable. The Trip Details document is a general guide to the tour and region and any mention of specific destinations or wildlife is by no means a guarantee that they will be visited or encountered. Aboard expedition trips visits to research stations depend on final permission. Additionally, any travel times listed are approximations only and subject to vary due to local circumstances.

  • Tour Inclusions

    • Cruise the Galápagos Islands (4 nts)
    • 2 Certified Galápagos National Park Service guide
    • All meals aboard the Vessel
    • Sierra Negra Volcano Hike (Isabela Island)
    • Giant Tortoise Breeding Centre
    • Snorkelling at Chinese Hat, Isla Rábida and Puerto Egas
    • All landings and excursions
    • Snorkelling equipment and wetsuits
    • Internal flights
    • All transport between destinations and to/from included activities

  • Available Dates

    • $4,399 per person based on twin share. Single supplements are applicable if you wish to have your own room. Contact us for details

    Enquire Now

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