Experience Guayaquil with your private guide before you fly and embark to the enchanted Galapagos Islands on your cruise.Situated about 1000 km (625 miles) west of the Ecuadorian mainland, the islands are bleak, barren and rocky. Made famous by Charles Darwin’s scientific voyage in the ‘Beagle’ during the 19th century, the islands’ unique wildlife – which includes giant tortoises, lizards and iguanas – remains the most interesting feature for the modern-day visitor. Some 50 per cent of the islands’ species are found nowhere else in the world. In 1978, UNESCO declared the Galápagos to be ‘the universal natural heritage of humanity’.
Cruise departures every Saturday, year-round.
Guayaquil airport transfer with private vehicle and driver.
Conveniently placed in Ecuador, a strategic point in South America, the Hilton Colon Guayaquil hotel combines excellent service and a laid-back resort feel with a convenient location only few minutes from José Joaquín de Olmedo International Airport. With 294 fully renovated rooms and suites, you can enjoy your spacious guest room and stay connected with wireless internet access. Get to work at the desk or just relax with a movie on the flat screen TV. Connecting rooms are perfect for those travelling as a family. Step up to an Executive Room or suite and benefit from extra space, a range of special touches and exclusive access to the Executive Lounge where complimentary snacks and refreshments are served.
Enjoy half day tour of scenic Guayaquil. Centennial Park honors the heroes of Guayaquil’s independence. Beside the park is the neo-gothic Metropolitan Cathedral. Then visit Malecon 2000, a waterfront, running parallel to the River Guayas and featuring historical, cultural and entertainment areas. To the north is the oldest neighbourhood of Guayaquil, the 19th century neighbourhood of Las Peñas, which has been beautifully restored with brightly colored art galleries.
Enjoy a private transfer from your hotel in Guayaquil to the airport.
Fly from Guayaquil to Galapagos on a direct flight. The flight duration is approximately 2 hours. Please note that flight rates are subject to change without prior notice.
Upon arrival to Baltra, a group transfer awaits, for your transportation to the ship.
Take some time to get settled in to your stateroom, and to explore the ship. Your expedition begins shortly.
Your mandatory Galapagos National Park entrance fee & tourist card are included in your itinerary pricing.
Please note: the itinerary is a guideline only - the route and program vary according to National Park policies and regulations, weather conditions, seasonal changes, safety precautions and wildlife encounters.
The tiny Mosquera Islet is home to a huge population of sea lions, as well as many shorebirds. Keep your eyes peeled, since there are occasional reports of dolphins and orca around Mosquera.
The 16-passenger Athala II provides a cozy small yacht atmosphere, comfortable accommodations, personalized service, a dedicated cruise director, and more, all for your Galapagos expedition cruise adventure. This motor catamaran was specifically designed and built to cruise the Islands providing comfort and excellent stability for those looking for a Galapagos adventure cruise in style. The Athala II's upper deck features a bar and a beautiful open area for relaxation and al fresco dining. The sundeck is great for whale and dolphin watching or to simply relax in the Jacuzzi. In the evenings there is no better place for star gazing. The dining area can be found on the main deck, along with a really comfortable lounge. All meals are served as a buffet style with all soft drinks included.
Sullivan Bay is known for its spectacular volcanic formations and unique geological scenery. Few plants have been able to take root here, much less be successful, so pay particular attention to the low-lying pioneer plant known locally as "mollugo", as well as the lava cactus.Bartolome is a small island with two very different visitor sites: on the beautiful beach you can hang out with the sea lions and snorkel, while the hike up to the peak offers jaw-dropping scenery.
Located in Western Isabela, at the foot of Alcedo volcano, the site of Urbina Bay is famous for its large land iguanas, as well as the frequent Galapagos tortoise, flightless cormorants and penguins.
Tagus Cove was historically used as an anchoring place for pirates and buccaneers. The trail up from Tagus Cove goes through an area of vegetation, leading to a spectacular view of Darwin Volcano Lake. Enjoy snorkeling, kayaking and dinghy ride.
Fernandina Island is one of the most pristine and dynamic ecosystems in the entire world. La Cumbre Volcano last erupted in April 2009. Punta Espinosa is home to very unique Galapagos species such as the Galapagos penguin, flightless cormorants, and huge marine iguanas.Vicente Roca Point is a wonderful snorkeling site, and for those who don't snorkel, a dingy ride will give you the opportunity to study the Galapagos' spectacular geography. Nazca boobies, marine iguanas, flightless cormorants and penguins are often seen in the area.
The trail at Puerto Egas leads to tidal pools which are home to a variety of invertebrate organisms, including sea urchins, octopus and starfish. You will also see marine iguanas, finches and the Galapagos hawk, as well as the less common Galapagos fur sea lion. There will be an opportunity to swim or snorkel off the beach.
In addition to a beautiful beach, there is a Palo Santo forest that has some of the tallest specimens of the islands. Later, Buccaneer Cove's awe-inspiring scenery will take your breath away. Activities include kayaking, snorkeling, and dinghy rides.
On your visit to the Charles Darwin Research Station, you will gain insight into the great preservation efforts being made by scientists, guides, and rangers. You will see the famous Galapagos tortoises that are the islands' namesake. After the visit, you drive up to the lush highlands of Santa Cruz, where you will search for giant tortoises in their natural surroundings. In the afternoon you will have free time for shopping and mingling with the locals, or you can simply relax on board.
El Barranco or Prince Philip's Steps, is a steep path with stairs carved into the rock which leads to a plateau full of bird life amongst a Palo Santo forest. You will see Nazca boobies, Galapagos doves, mockingbirds and petrels. With some luck, you might spot a short-eared lava owl.Darwin's Bay's soft, coralline white sand is only the beginning of a spectacular excursions. The trail takes you into lush mangroves where red footed boobies nest. Other locals include sea lions, swallow-tailed gulls and frigatebirds. Kayaking and snorkeling are a must here, since sharks, colorful reef fish, rays and sea turtles are often seen.
North Seymour Island may very well be the perfect way to say goodbye to the Galapagos Islands. Although the island is characterized by arid vegetation, fauna abounds and you will soon find yourself surrounded by sea lions, blue footed boobies, marine iguanas, frigatebirds and more.
This morning you'll disembark from your ship and bid farewell to the crew.
A coach awaits to transfer you to the airport for your outbound flight.
Fly from Galapagos to Quito via Guayaquil. The flight duration is approximately 4 hour.
Experience unmatched elegance at the JW Marriott Quito Hotel in Ecuador, the gateway to the Galapagos Islands and Andean Mountains. Located in the heart of the city, the JW Marriott is located on the famous Amazonas Avenue and features an amazing atrium lobby where you can enjoy a martini or espresso while enjoying the view. Amenities include spacious guest rooms and suites with magnificent views, high-speed Internet access, in-room safe and luxurious bedding. On-site restaurants offer innovative Ecuadorian and international cuisine while the tropical gardens and resort-style pool offer the perfect backdrop for some relaxation. There is also a fitness centre as well as full spa onsite.
Enjoy a private airport transfer in Quito with a professional driver.
A departure tax must be paid upon departing Ecuador through the Quito airport. The payment must be made in cash and the cost is of USD$44.30 per person. Subject to change without notice.
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