Santa Cruz II Vessel ( Capacity: 90 passengers) Northern Islands: 5 Days / 4 Nights

Santa Cruz II Vessel ( Capacity: 90 passengers) Northern Islands: 5 Days / 4 Nights

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Something for Everyone

The Santa Cruz II offers more flexibility in group composition. Our Expedition Leader works with guests to create appropiate groups depending on numerous factors including language, physical abilities and/or personal interests (e.g. shorter walks, glass-bottom boat rides instead of snorkelling, or children’s panga rides). There are options for all: the active, families, underwater enthusiasts, nature lovers, and others.

 The Expedition Leader, Onboard Expedition Photo Specialist, and 7 or more licensed Naturalist Guides form the heart of our Galapagos Travel Team. All will delight guests with diverse natural history explanations, superb on-board talks, and eye-catching lectures regarding natural history issues. Their multimedia presentations will complement the day’s activities. Together with the Captain, they will plan the day’s programme, ensuring maximum coverage of fascinating Galapagos Big15 wildlife. Soon enough, our Naturalists will become the highlight of your voyage on Santa Cruz II. At night, in the midst of pitch-dark starry skies, the journey of discovery continues with amazing stargazing opportunities in equatorial skies beautifully arranged with exuberant constellations.

 These activities, combined with the crew’s deep sense of service, lead our guests to return home enriched, revived and inspired.

Highlights

Bartolome (Pinnacle Rock), Santa Cruz (Charles Darwin Research Station), Floreana (Post Office Bay), San Cristobal (Kicker Rock), Santiago (Buccaneer Cove), Isabela (Darwin Lake), Isabela (Urbina’s Upheaval), Española (Española Blowhole), Genovesa (Darwin´s Bay Crater Anchorage), San Cristobal (Giant Tortoise Reserve at Cerro Colorado)

Highlighted species

Galapagos Sea Lion, Galapagos Giant Tortoises, Marine Iguanas, Blue-Footed Boobies, Nazca Boobies, Red-Footed Boobies, Galapagos Hawks, Galapagos Albatrosses (From April to January), Greater & Magnificent Frigatebirds, Galapagos Doves, Galapagos Mockingbirds, San Cristobal Mockingbirds, Española Mockingbirds, San Cristobal Lava Lizard, Española Lava Lizard, Darwin Finches, Short-Eared Owls, Swallow-Tailed Gulls, Lava Gulls, Lava (striated) Herons, Greater Flamingoes, Brown pelicans, Galapagos penguins, Lava gulls, Española mockingbirds, Land Iguanas, Marine Iguanas, Santa Fe Land Iguana, Flightless cormorant, American flamingos, Galapagos Penguins, Short eared Owls.

Itinerary

Monday: Baltra Island: Baltra Airport / PM Santa Cruz Island: Las Bachas Beach

Tuesday: AM James-Santiago Island: Buccaneer Cove / PM Santiago Island: Puerto Egas

Wednesday: AM Jervis-Rabida Island: Red Beach / PM Bartolome Island: Bartolome

Thursday: AM Tower-Genovesa Island: Prince Philip´s Steps / PM Genovesa Island: Darwin Bay

Friday: AM San Cristobal Island: Puerto Baquerizo Moreno Tortoise Breeding Center / Airport

Baltra Island

We land at Baltra Island by plane in the morning and transfer to the dock to board the Santa Cruz II, where we receive a welcome introductory briefing and lunch.

Las Bachas (Santa Cruz Island)

This beautiful visitor site is located on the north shore of Santa Cruz Island, a glorious white beach with several brackish lagoons only a few steps away from the sea. These lagoons are the feeding grounds of various wading birds, including stilts and flamingos. This is a great opportunity to get acquainted with snorkelling gear and techniques. Welcome cocktail, expedition plan for Tuesday and dinner.

Buccaneer Cove (Santiago Island)

After breakfast, we explore the coastline along the impressive cliffs of Buccaneer Cove, learning about the area’s distant and recent history. The cove is home to a large number of marine birds, sea lions, and inter-tidal organisms. Enjoy fantastic natural formations such as the “Elephant Rock”, “The Bishop” and an impressive natural cave. This is a great site for snorkelling or a panga ride along the coast.

Puerto Egas (Santiago Island)

Once we disembark at the beach, we can enjoy a swim or snorkel along a rocky shoreline, usually in the company of marine turtles. From here, we head off to our walk, a great opportunity to see land and marine birds amid a landscape of tuff-stone layers and lava flows. At low tide, marine iguanas graze upon the algae beds and we can also observe a colony of Galapagos fur seals. Non-snorkelers can enjoy a longer walk.

Rabida Island

After breakfast, we land on Rabida Island’s red-coloured beach, coloured by the unusually high content of iron in the volcanic material. Our walk brings us close to a large colony of sea lions, marine iguanas, mockingbirds, yellow warblers and several species of Darwin’s finches. Very close to the beach, a salt pond hosts American flamingos at certain times of the year. This is a great place to snorkel from the beach, both for beginners and experienced snorkelers, due to the unique combination of underwater species and submarine landscapes. Non-snorkelers will enjoy a ride on the glass bottom boat or a panga ride. During navigation to our next island, dolphins are often spotted!

Bartolome Island

We land at Bartolome for a hike to the summit of this diminutive island that boasts fantastic views of the archipelago. This is a moderately steep climb aided by a wooden staircase with handrails and rest platforms. The view from the top is worth the effort! Following our walk, we take to the pangas and the glass-bottom boat for a ride around the colossal Pinnacle Rock, and then land at the beach to enjoy some swimming, snorkelling or just relaxing (possibly with Galapagos penguins in attendance).

Prince Philip’s Steps (Genovesa Island)

The morning starts with a panga ride along the cliffs of this dramatic island, followed by a landing with a steep climb (90 feet) up some stairs to reach a flat plateau. Along our walk, we can observe large colonies of Nazca boobies, red-footed boobies, great frigate birds and storm petrels. Those not wishing to disembark can enjoy a longer panga ride along the cliffs (depending on weather conditions). After the walk, we can snorkel along the dramatic cliffs where there are chances of spotting a huge variety of fish, and possibly Galapagos fur seals.

Darwin Bay (Genovesa Island)

In the afternoon, we land at this beautiful beach to enjoy some swimming and/or snorkelling.  Following our dip, we take an easy stroll to observe hundreds of birds, mainly frigatebirds, red-footed and Nazca boobies, gulls, herons, finches and mockingbirds. There’s an optional walk over sharp lava and uneven terrain for dramatic views, or else we can return to the beach or enjoy a panga ride.

Puerto Baquerizo Moreno & Tortoise Breeding Centre (San Cristobal Island)

After breakfast, there’s an optional departure to see the giant tortoise breeding programme at Cerro Colorado. Here, we learn about this endangered species and its promising recovery. Following the visit, we return to town and transfer to the airport to take the flight back to the mainland.

Important notes:

  • At your request, we can include the Galapagos National Park entrance fee of US$ 100 and Migration Control Card Fee of US$ 20 (subject to change). However, please note that, due to administrative and operational reasons, these fees can only be included when guests travel on the operation departure date. This service does not apply for guests who travel before a departure date (even if the departure is with us).
  • Please note, we charge guests who wish to bring bottles of wine and/or spirits aboard our vessels a corkage fee of US$ 25+taxes.
  • Internet connections onboard consist in computer stations and wifi in the vessel’s social areas; due to the Galapagos’ remote location, internet connections are intermittent and low-bandwidth.

Horizon Deck – Family Explorer Cabin $ 3388.00
Horizon Deck – Explorer Cabin $ 3604.00
Horizon Deck – Voyager Cabin $ 4156.00
Expedition Deck – Explorer Cabin $ 3748.00
Panorama Deck – Explorer Cabin $ 3860.00
Panorama Deck – Suite Darwin $ 4372.00

**In high season like Christmas and New Year there is a charge of US$ 159 per adult and $117 per child.

**All prices are subject to change without prior notice.

The rate includes:

  • Accommodation
  • All meals
  • Island sightseeing
  • Naturalist guides and lecture services in English/Spanish (guiding in other languages – French, Italian – is available upon request for groups larger than 10 guests and for German groups is a minimum of 4 guests)
  • Snorkelling gear
  • Luggage handling
  • Medical care on board (not including the cost of medication)
  • Taxes
  • Transfers in the islands
  • Shared transfers from main hotels in Quito (Casa Gangotena, Hilton Colon, Sheraton, Marriott, Dann Carlton) and in Guayaquil (Hilton Colon, Oro Verde, Hampton Inn, Sheraton, Unipark) to airport for flights to/from Galapagos are included in these rates. To coordinate these transfers, we must have guests’ hotel contact information.
  • Wet Suits: Available for rent, NET rate US$ 15 + VAT per guest for 5- or 6-day expeditions
  • Air transportation to / from Galapagos and airport taxes (subject to change without previous notice)
  • Galapagos National Park entrance fee (US$ 100 subject to change without previous notice)**
  • Migration Control Card (US$ 20 subject to change without previous notice)**
  • Fuel surcharge
  • Alcoholic ***- and non alcoholic beverage
  • Internet / Wi-Fi ****
  • Gratuities
  • Gifts and additional items
  • Travel insurance

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