Ecuador & the Galapagos Islands

  1. 2019
    Thursday, February 21, 2019 to Friday, March 1, 2019
    Tour Duration: 
    9 days
    Tour Price:
     $6,495 USD
    Tour Starts/Ends: 
    Guayaquil, Ecuador
Highlights
  • Snorkel and swim with sea lions, sea turtles, penguins - and even sharks
  • Watch the mating dance of the blue footed booby
  • Explore Isabella Island in the west of the archipelago, with its famous volcanos
  • Visit the Charles Darwin Foundation and learn about their tortoise breeding centre
  • Enjoy first-class accommodation and meals aboard La Pinta
  • Enjoy interpretive hikes on the islands with expert guides, educated in the Galapagos
Overview

Galapagos: an earthly paradise! The archipelago that inspired the insights of Charles Darwin remains a peerless glimpse of life in all its wonder. Here we'll experience an abundance and diversity of life - at breathtaking proximity.

This island world in the Pacific Ocean was only recently created by the titanic tectonic upheavals of our Earth's crust. Yet, Galapagos teems with life. From plodding tortoises, to diving boobies; from land iguanas to sea lions. Travel in comfort with noted experts, learning as you go. Daily expedition stops by zodiac bring you closer than you ever imagined to nature at its most splendid.  

Itinerary Hide Full Itinerary

Day 1: Guayaquil Arrival 

Guests will arrive independently in Guayaquil.

Our group will gather for dinner in our hotel at the Wyndham Guayaquil.

Day 2: Flight to Galápagos and North Seymour Island

We begin with a morning flight to Galápagos, landing on Baltra Island. From there we’ll board the La Pinta for an introductory briefing, boat drill and cabin assignment.

Along the coast and interior of North Seymour Island we’ll observe numerous bird colonies, sea lions and land iguanas. There are opportunities for coastal exploration by panga (Zodiac). 

Day 3: Punta Vicente Roca, Isabela Island and Punta Espinoza, Fernandina Island

We’ll explore the coast by Zodiac, viewing wildlife, and geology with interpretation from our guide. Depending on the conditions of the ocean, we hope to snorkel along the cliffs, looking for green sea turtles among many other marine animals.

We will also visit the youngest and most pristine island of the archipelago, Fernandina. Punta Espinoza has an amazing combination of barrenness and abundant wildlife. Highlights include hawks, Galápagos penguins, flightless cormorants and astounding views of the surrounding volcanic landscapes.

Day 4: Urbina Bay and Tagus Cove, Isabela Island

We disembark at Urbina Bay, on western Isabela Island. Here you can see corals, shells, Galápagos land iguanas, and (occasionally) giant tortoises. In Bolívar Channel, there are good chances of spotting several species of whale. 

On the northwest of Isabela Island, secluded Tagus Cove provided a favourite anchorage for pirates and whalers. We can snorkel or kayak before a hike to salt water-filled Darwin Crater.

Day 5: Rabida Island and Cerro Dragón-Dragon Hill, Santa Cruz Island

Today we disembark at Rábida Island’s red-coloured beach. Here we may observe marine iguanas, mockingbirds, yellow warblers and several species of Darwin’s finches. Snorkeling from the beach is an option, or cruise in our glass-bottom boat.

On the north shore of Santa Cruz, we find Cerro Dragón (Dragon Hill). We’ll walk around a brackish lagoon frequented by birds, then hike inland for a beautiful view of the bay and the western islands of the archipelago.

Day 6: Puerto Ayora & Charles Darwin Research Station, Santa Cruz Island

Today’s stop features a visit to the Charles Darwin Research Station with its giant tortoise pens in a prickly-pear cactus forest. A delicious lunch is served poolside at the Finch Bay Eco Hotel. 

For a further excursion, we will head up to the highlands of Santa Cruz Island by vehicle. This is a great place to look for the emblematic Darwin’s Finches and the endemic Scalesia trees. Among the exuberant vegetation of the highlands, giant tortoises roam wild. 

Day 7: Post Office Bay and Punta Cormorant, Floreana Island

Today we’ll take a panga ride along Floreana’s north shore, continue to Baroness Cove and land at Post Office Bay.

We’ll go kayaking, snorkel, or ride our glass-bottom boat at Champion Islet. Later, we visit Punta Cormorant for an easy walk by a brackish lagoon where bird species such as greater flamingos may be observed. On the other side of the island, we’ll visit a white-sand beach frequented by sea turtles. 

Day 8: Baltra and Guayaquil

Our journey ends at Baltra Island, where we transfer to the airport for our flight back to the mainland. Baltra's flat substrate is the reason the island was chosen for the airport back in the 1940s. 

In the afternoon we will explore the boardwalk near our hotel in Guayaquil. More ambitious guests can climb the famous Las Peñas steps before our farewell dinner. 

Day 9: Guayaquil

You may transfer at your leisure for your flights home. The Guayaquil airport is only about a fifteen-minute drive from our hotel on the river. 

 

Map
Featured Wildlife
Past Tour Checklists
Vessel
Ship Info

A sophisticated, upscale travel experience for 46 guests in 24 cabins that combines modern design, spacious rooms, and gourmet cuisine with and amazing wildlife experience.

La Pinta boasts among the largest cabins of any Galapagos ship/vessel with floor-to-ceiling windows in all cabins. Its social areas have almost permanent visual contact with the islands through panoramic windows, while its outside deck areas are also wonderful havens for observation and relaxation. 

The La Pinta offers a wide variety of aquatic activities, including snorkelling, kayaking, and a glass-bottomed boat.

  • Capacity: 46 passenger
  • Registry: Ecuador
  • Length: 64 metres (209 ft.)

 

Ship Images
Deck Plan

La Pinta deckplan

Pricing

Category 1: $6,495 USD (Triple - Two twin berths and a sofa bed - approx. 230 sq. ft.)

Category 2: $7,595 USD (Luxury cabin - One queen bed or two twin berths, approx. 189 sq. ft.)

Category 3: $7,995 USD (Luxury plus cabin - One queen bed or two twin berths, approx. 247 sq. ft.)

Category 4: $8,995 USD (Single Occupancy - One queen bed, approx. 189 sw. ft.)

Additional internal flight $495 USD