ISLAND HOPPING – 8 DAYS

SANTA CRUZ – SANTA FE – ISABELA – PLAZAS- SEYMOUR

(5 NIGHTS SANTA CRUZ + 1 NIGHT ISABELA)

[popuppress id="7904"]

DAY 1: Arrive in Baltra – El Chato Reserve
DAY 2: Visit Santa Fe Island – Beach landing
DAY 3: Transfer to Isabela – Flamingo Lagoon – Tintoreras
DAY 4: Sierra Negra Volcano – Chico Volcano – Return to Santa Cruz
DAY 5: Visit La Lobería – Punta Estrada – Grietas
DAY 6:
Visit Plazas Islands – Punta Carrión

DIA 7: Visita Isla Seymour Norte* – Bachas ó Isla Bartolomé – Bahía Sullivan***
DAY 8: Gemelos Craters – Airport

12705197_1669682476639213_5330384714916360753_n

ITINERARY DESCRIPTION

DAY 1: BALTRA –EL CHATO RESERVE

At the Baltra airport, our Ninfa Tour staff will meet you and transfer you to Hotel Ninfa, located on Santa Cruz Island. After lunch we will have the first visit, to El Chato Reserve.

The highlands of Santa Cruz Island provide important attractions due to its climate and vegetation. This is a tropical rain forest offering a very different landscape than that of the lowlands.

In the Santa Rosa sector we will visit the El Chato Reserve, a reserve where the famous “Galapagos” giant tortoises live in the wild. You can watch the tortoises relaxing in El Chato lagoon. Also, this is where many of the island’s wild birds nest, such as finches, Vermilion Flycatcher, Cattle Egret and sometimes Galapagos Crake.

Our journey lets you see the huge Galapagos tortoises in their natural state. During the visit to this reserve we’ll also see a natural lava tunnel, which you can go through thanks to the soft lighting installed by the ranch’s owners.

DAY 2: SANTA FE ISLAND – BEACH LANDING

After breakfast, we sail an hour to Santa Fe Island. From the yacht, we see on its huge cliffs a forest of giant cacti endemic to this island. In the calm, turquoise waters of the bay are colonies of sea birds, including pelicans, boobies and gulls, and a large number of sea lions. Snorkeling is ideal. You can swim with rays and tropical fish, and occasionally observe sea turtles. We will have lunch on board and then land on a beautiful, white-sand beach where we will have a relaxing time taking pictures and enjoying the Galapagos sun, before returning to the hotel.

DAY 3: TRANSFER TO ISABELA –FLAMINGO LAGOON –TINTORERAS ISLET

Departure at 7:30 a.m. After breakfast, we board the yacht bound for Isabela Island, two hours navigation away. After arriving in Puerto Villamil, we visit the Flamingo Lagoon and have a moment to enjoy Isabela’s beautiful beach. From there, we head to the port for lunch at a local restaurant. Afterwards, we continue our journey aboard a fiberglass boat that will take us to visit the white-tip sharks (tintoreras), and the marine iguana and penguin colonies. Then we snorkel in the sector to observe tropical fish, sea turtles and sharks. Dinner.

DAY 4: SIERRA NEGRA VOLCANO / CHICO VOLCANO – RETURN TO SANTA CRUZ

On Isabela Island at 8:00 a.m., after breakfast, we climb Sierra Negra Volcano. It is the largest and one of the most active volcanoes of the islands. Its northern edge is usually covered with clouds and fog, allowing the growth of vegetation. This is one of the most important biological reserves in the world, and includes tortoises, iguanas and birds. The naturalist Charles Darwin studied them in the nineteenth century to write “On the Origin of Species.” Chico Volcano is located to the northeast of Sierra Negra Volcano, at an altitude of 860 m.a.s.l. There is a clearly marked footpath. From there, we head to the port for lunch at a local restaurant. Then we return to Santa Cruz.

DAY 5: LOBERIA – PUNTA ESTRADA – GRIETAS

La Lobería is perfect for snorkeling. In the company of our guides, you can swim with a colony of playful sea lions and colorful fish. Occasionally sea turtles and manta rays appear.

At Punta Estrada, we will visit the cliff to observe a small colony of blue-footed boobies and pelicans. After disembarking at the pier and a short walk, we reach the 14-meter-high lookout point of the canal to observe sharks. Later, we visit Playa de los Perros, upon whose rocks you can observe a colony of marine iguanas, zayapas (crabs) and sometimes lava herons. Afterwards we will go to Las Grietas, a paradisiacal, clear-water lagoon where we will swim. On the return, we will visit Playa de los Alemanes where you can enjoy the sun and sea of Galapagos.

 DAY 6: PLAZAS ISLANDS – PUNTA CARRIÓN

At 7 a.m., a bus will pick us up at our hotels and take us to the dock at Itabaca Canal where we’ll board the boat that will take us to Plazas Islands. After navigating two hours, and just upon landing, we can see one of the largest colonies of sea lions in the archipelago. A few meters beyond the landing dock, a group of land iguanas are always observed. The trail then leads to the other side of the island, which is very small and rectangular. We walk along a cliff, where you can observe land iguanas, some marine iguanas, and birds – such as blue-footed and masked boobies, nesting swallow-tailed gulls, Galapagos’ shearwaters and tropicbirds – on the cliff or soaring above it. As well, frigatebirds and pelicans often fly over the bluff.

Despite its small size, this is home to a large number of species and is famous for its extraordinary flora. This island is very popular with domestic and foreign visitors because of its attractive, beautiful thorn trees, cacti and of course the large colony of Galapagos land iguanas. Depending on the season, the vegetation changes color from intense green in the rainy season to orange and purple in the dry season!

DAY 7: NORTH SEYMOUR – BACHAS

At 07:00 am will go a bus to pick them up by their respective hotels for transfer to Itabaca Canal dock to board the boat that will take us through our journey. North Seymour Island is a great place for hiking. There is a visitor or circular path of about 2 km long that crosses the interior of the island and takes him to explore the rocky coast path. This trail takes you through some of the largest seabird colonies in the Galapagos Islands.

Here you will have the opportunity to observe the nesting sites of Blue-Footed Booby bright and colorful frigates that are visible throughout the year. Which they are one of the biggest attractions of Galapagos. These birds inflate their huge red swish hanging from their necks as they try to attract or draw attention to a couple, the frigates are also well known to steal food from the blue-footed boobies. A fascinate you definitely comical mating dance or ritual performed by blue-footed boobies.
After lunch, we will snorkeling with green sea turtles and the famous Galapagos sharks, you will also appreciate the mischievous sea lions playing and surfing in the sea. Visit Bachas Beach where we can enjoy the wonderful sun and sea Galapagos. Finally we will be back at 5pm for transfer to your hotel.

or BARTOLOME – SULLIVAN BAY

At 06:00 am will go a bus to pick them up by their respective hotels for transfer to Itabaca Canal dock to board the yacht that will take our tour of this island of turquoise waters and fine white sand beaches.

We will take breakfast on board and after 2 hours of sailing arrive at Bartholomew. Once arrived, we have to climb a staircase and from the top you will see a spectacular landscape of two beautiful bays and fascinating formations of lava and volcanic cones. Here is the famous Pinnacle. This is a huge black lava formation that has eroded over time and is the most representative image of the archipelago. Near Pinnacle Rock you can also see two beautiful beaches in the form of a crescent.

This island offers some of the most beautiful landscapes of the archipelago. The island is an extinct volcano and has a variety of red soils, orange, green, black, shiny volcanic formations. After practice snorkel with sea turtles, sharks, white tip reef, tropical fish, sea lions and many other unique marine species. Also, this is the perfect territory to observe Galapagos penguins. After lunch, we visit Sullivan Bay, here you can see some amazing lava formations, the product of a volcanic eruption in 1903. This is an excellent example of typical colors and shapes that contrast with lavas from older types.

Bartolome Island also is the breeding place of green sea turtles. They come to the shores of the island to nest during the months of January and March of each year. We will be back at 5pm for transfer to your hotel.

DAY 8: GEMELOS CRATERS – AIRPORT

After breakfast, we will take a bus or taxi back to the airport. On the way, we will make a last stop to visit the Gemelos Craters, twin geological depressions in the middle of a forest of scalesia (native vegetation) on the highest part of the island.