Day 1 – Guayaquil/Quito to Galapagos.
Flight to Baltra on the Galápagos Islands from where we will take a short ride through the narrow straits of Itabaca by the ferry and cross the highlands of the Island Santa Cruz to Puerto Ayora by a private taxi (guided transfer). In the afternoon visit of the Charles Darwin Station: The famous „Lonesome George“, the last male-tortoise of its kind is an obligatory stop for all passengers, mostly connected with shopping and a coffee break on the Charles Darwin Avenue water front. Welcome lunch and overnight stay at the very pretty and comfortable Hostal Mainao Inn just a few steps from Academy Bay. Dinner at your own expense, we will give some good hints. Includes: (B).
Day 2 – Galapagos, Santa Cruz.
In the morning a private tour to the giant-tortoise reservation El Chato in the tropical green highlands of Santa Cruz island. Here you can observe Charles Darwin´s favorites in their natural habitat. We also pay visit to an amazing lava tunnel and enjoy the panoramic views of the islands. Box-Lunch around midday. In the afternoon swimming, sea kayaking and relax at the beautiful white sandy beach at Tortuga Bay. Dinner at your own expense. Overnight stay at Hostal Mainao Inn. Includes: (B), (L).
Day 3 – Galapagos, Isabela.
Lunch menue in Puerto Ayora. At about 2 p.m. ride with a fast “Lancha” (boat) to Puerto Villamil on Isabela Island. With some luck we can not only observe lots of seabirds but also dolphins and exhausted sea turtles during the two-hour transit. The wonderful rock-islands of Los Cuatro Hermanos and the enchanted Isla Tortuga can be seen in the blue Ocean as well. The relaxed fishing village is home for about 1.500 persons and thus home for nearly all inhabitants of the island, which are mostly descendants of the former detention center “Alemania”. With a size of 4.500 square kilometers, the isolated island of Isabela occupies more than half of the Galapagos area. Overnight stay underneath palm trees at the very intimate Casa Sol beach hotel, from your bed barefoot just straight to the beach (best available room with sea view). Includes: (B), (L).
Casa Sol is one the most attractive little hotels on the island. Nevertheless there is no breakfast service at the hotel itself. The policy of the owner, an Ecuadorian art painter, is that the people in the village should also profit from tourism and that the clearing of dishes and tables in an intimate beach hotel like this might interrupt unnecessarily the natural sounds of ocean waves and swinging coconut palms. So we will hand out to our guests a special morning break bonus, which they can use at any hour and in any kind of nearby restaurant in order to choose their preferred breakfast.
Day 4 – Galapagos, Isabela.
In the morning we will visit the famous „Wall of Tears“, an 8 meter high fortress built out of basalt-rocks, which is the last sad testimony of the former detention center, that was built by punished prisoners in shackles. The detention center was broke down in 1953, after a revolution. Today there are just running lots of lava saurian on the stones. Going up to the observation-rock El Mirador, detour into a lava tunnel, and straight through the mangrove-everglades (Wetlands), to the flamingo-lagoon and later on to the “monster” breeding station: Here are living the biggest Elephant-turtles of all. In the afternoon a short boat-trip to Las Tintoreras: Sleeping sharks, blue-foot boobies, pelicans, penguins, sea lions and marine iguanas. Overnight stay at Casa Sol. Includes: (B).
Day 5 - Galapagos, Isabela.
Hiking- or if you wish riding excursion in the highlands along the 1.400 meter high crater of the Sierra Negra, which is one of the biggest active volcano-craters of the planet with a diameter of 10 km. Going down through moon-like and cold down lava-fields to reach the smoking side-crater of the Volcán Chico. Fantastic island- and ocean panorama with picnic. Versified drive back to Puerto Villamil, going firstly through tropical plantations, then through lava fields. Overnight stay at Casa Sol. Includes: (B), (L).
Day 6 - Galapagos, Isabela.
In the morning very spectacular private boat trip to a rarely visited mangrove bay called Los Tuneles, a hot tip and one of the must Galápagos highlights, even though we don´ t like to tell everyone about. Here you can snorkel among sunken lava bridges in transparent waters, with coltish sea lions, sea turtles, rays, sharks, marine iguanas and colorful ornamental fish. In the afternoon swimming in the Pacific Ocean at Puerto Villamils´ long sandy beach and swinging in hammocks among palm trees. This is just the right spot to let yourself go. Overnight stay at Casa Sol. Includes: (B).
Day 7 – Galapagos to Guayaquil/Quito.
We head back via lancha to Puerto Ayora in Santa Cruz. Going through the highlands via taxi to the Itabaca Canal and further on to the airport to Baltra. Flight to Quito at around one p.m. Includes: (B).
Price per person USD 2600 in double bedroom from/to Guayaquil or Quito.
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South America Ecuador Nature & Wildlife National Parks Marine Biology