Galapagos Island Cruise - Pacific

  • Water temp 21 - 24 C
  • Air Temp 24 - 29 C
  • Visibility 5 - 30m
  • Good for... unique Galapagos fauna
  • Suitable for beginners Yes
  • Highlights Explore eight islands with their volcanic vistas, giant tortoises, marine iguanas and bird colonies during the Island Cruise. Follow up with the classic dive itinerary for the trip of a lifetime

About Galapagos Island Cruise

The Galapagos Island Cruise itinerary is tailored to give you the most out of your once-in-a-lifetime adventure. The pace of the tour takes into account the needs of photographers and natural history enthusiasts. We strive to provide you with more extended island visits than most operators and land on shore earlier in the day for best photographic opportunities.

You will be accompanied by the Naturalist Guide required by the Galapagos National Park. Additionally, Josef Litt, author of GALAPAGOS and your Expedition Leader will share with you the intriguing history of the island, point out often naughty animal behaviour and help you to bring home the best photographs you can get.

The days usually start early with a morning excursion to a visitor site to be back on the boat before it gets too hot on land. The time before lunch can be spent snorkelling. Depending on the location, lunch is followed by a zodiac cruise or, again, snorkelling. Afternoon excursion to land will end by 6 pm when the National Park closes. The expedition leader will give an evening talk before or just after dinner, followed by the Naturalist Guide's briefing for the next day.

Trips to the Galapagos belong to the more active holidays. The trails on land are about a mile to a mile and a half in length ranging from a "walk on the beach" to traversing uneven lava rock or climbing stairs to a viewing platform 144 m above sea level. Crew members are always there to assist with stepping off the yacht down into the inflatable boat and from the boat to a lava dock or on the beach for wet landing.

Snorkelling on Galapagos is unlike anywhere else in the world. Inquisitive animals often come close to the snorkellers to play and explore. Close encounters with sea lions, sea turtles, pelicans, marine iguanas and sometimes even penguins and flightless cormorants make for a fantastic experience and excellent photographic opportunities. Bring your underwater camera!

You should be in good physical condition to enjoy this trip to the fullest. However, anyone is free to opt-out from a part of the programme be it a landing, snorkelling or an evening talk, and to enjoy some quiet time.

Majestic Explorer

Launching in August 2018, Majestic Explorer builds on the Explorer Ventures Fleet and all their years operating in the Galapagos. We welcome this modern, elegant liveaboard to one of the top diving destinations in the world. Your ... MORE

The itinerary of the Galapagos Island Cruise includes:

A remarkable black lava flow created by an eruption in 1889 (Bahía Sullivan), the sea turtle nesting beach (Playa Espumilla) and bizarre volcanic creations that served as a sheltered site for buccaneer ships in the 16th and 17th centuries (Caleta Bucanero) on the island of Santiago.

Red beach (Playa Rojo) with a sea lion colony and cliffs hosting blue-footed and Nazca boobies on Rábida.

Playa Las Bachas on Santa Cruz, a turtle nesting site with lagoons hosting flamingos and other wading birds.

Plaza Sur is an island with the highest concentration of wildlife on Galapagos, including sea lions, marine iguanas and cliffs full of nesting seabirds. Plaza Sur is also the only island where it is possible to encounter a hybrid between marine and land iguana.

The view of the Pinnacle Rock from the top of the Bartolome island is the most beautiful scenery of the archipelago. The island featured in the 2003 movie Master and Commander.

The size of the colonies of marine iguanas at Punta Espinosa on Fernandina is unrivalled in the whole archipelago.

Bahía Urbina is a 6 km long and 1 lm wide stretch of coral reef that was raised up to 5-10 m in 1954 in a geological uplift on the cost of Isabela. The trail leads into the arid zone of the island with giant tortoises and land iguanas.

Bahía Elizabeth on Isabela is surrounded by red and black mangroves and serves as a resting and feeding area for green turtles. Visitors may encounter golden cownose rays, flightless cormorants and Galapagos penguins.

The lava flow at Punta Moreno is very young and dotted with lagoons supporting a variety of life, such as flamingos, paint-billed crakes and white-cheeked pintails.

Caleta Tagus on Isabela is an excellent place for viewing land birds above the Darwin Lake, which is a nine-metres-deep salt lagoon in a crater of a tuff cone.

Punta Vicente Roca on Isabela is solely visited by panga and can be experienced while scuba diving and snorkelling. The fauna encountered on shoreline includes fur seals, marine iguanas, flightless cormorants, Galapagos penguins and blue-footed boobies. The snorkellers may find schools of rays or sunfish basking in the sun just below the surface.