MC PETREL 8D 7N GALAPAGOS

Itinerary A – Day by Day

Day 1 – Friday

AM: Baltra Island Airport: Arrival and Transfer to the boat
PM: North Seymour Island

Day 2 – Saturday

AM: Isabela: Vicente Roca Point
PM: Fernandina: Espinosa Point

Day 3 – Sunday

AM: Isabela: Tagus Cove
PM: Isabela: Urbina Bay

Day 4 – Monday

AM: Isabela: Elizabeth Bay
PM: Isabela: Moreno Point

Day 5 – Tuesday

AM: Isabela – Sierra Negra Volcano
PM: Isabela – Wetlands / Isabela – The Wall of Tears

Day 6 – Wednesday

AM: Santa Cruz – Charles Darwin Station
PM: Santa Cruz – Los Gemelos

Day 7 – Thursday

AM: South Plaza Island
PM: Santa Fe Island

Day 8 – Friday

AM: San Cristobal – Isla Lobos
PM: Transfer to the Airport

Arrival / Departure

When arriving at the Galapagos airport, you must first pass through the Galapagos National Park entrance and then onto baggage claim. Continuing through the airport with your baggage you will scan your belongings once more and then finally pass through.  

Just outside the doors will be your Guide waiting with a sign to greet you.  Once all those who will be boarding are together, the guide will escort everyone to the vessel to be welcomed by the crew and Cruise Manager.

At the end of your cruise, your guide will transfer you and the rest of the group to the airport specified in the itinerary with assistance at the check-in area.  

Special Note: The following itinerary includes all necessary details on each day’s activities.  If you have further questions please contact your Account Manager or Travel Agent.  

Day 1 - Friday

AM: Baltra Island Airport: Arrival and Transfer to the boat

  • Briefing onboard about the boat and the island.

PM: North Seymour Island

  • Galapagos Sea Lions, Blue-footed Boobies and Magnificent Frigatebirds are abundant on North Seymour Island. The island was formed by a series of submarine lavas containing layers of sediment that were uplifted by tectonic activity. The island is characterized by its arid vegetation zone.
  • Highlights: Land & marine iguanas, frigatebirds, Blue-footed Boobies, sea lions; snorkeling: Rays, reef shark, fish, garden eels.
  • Possible Activities: Snorkeling, dinghy ride & hiking (1.5 mi/2.5 km)
  • Type of Landing: Dry landing
  • Difficulty: Moderate / Difficult

Day 2 - Saturday

AM: Isabela: Vicente Roca Point

  • The largest in the archipelago, this seahorse-shaped island is also one of the youngest and most volcanically active. The morning visit is to Vicente Roca Point. Comprised of two separate coves, this site is a large bay with spectacular sea life. Keep an eye out for seahorses, sea turtles, and the strange yet fascinating Mola-mola (sunfish).
  • Activities: Snorkeling & panga ride
  • Difficulty: Easy /moderate
  • Type of Landing: No landing
  • Highlights & Animals: Penguins, Blue-footed Boobies, terns, Nazca Boobies, two types of sea lions. Snorkeling: sea turtles, rays and puffer fish.

PM: Fernandina: Espinosa Point

  • No foreign species have ever invaded Fernandina Island and therefore it is one of the world’s most pristine island ecosystems. The volcano “La Cumbre” dominates the landspace with lava fields reaching the ocean. The island´s highlight features the Flightless Cormorant nesting site. This area provides a great opportunity to see the Galapagos Hawk.
  • Highlights: Flightless Cormorant, marine iguanas, AA lava, sea lions, penguins, active volcano “La Cumbre”
  • Activities: Hike (1.2 mi/2 km)
  • Type of Landing: Dry and slippery at low tide
  • Difficulty: Moderate

Day 3 - Sunday

AM: Isabela: Tagus Cove

  • Tagus Cove is located across from Fernandina Island, near the Bolivar Channel dividing the two islands. This spot has been frequented by ships since the 1800s, using the area as an anchorage site. Trails winding by Lake Darwin up to a ridge display wonderful views. Punta Tortuga, just north of Tagus Cove, is another lovely beach surrounded by mangroves.
  • Highlights: Penguins, Flightless Cormorants, Darwin Volcano & Lake
  • Activities: Long hike, snorkeling, dinghy ride
  • Type of Landing: Dry landing
  • Difficulty: Moderate/ difficult

PM: Isabela: Urbina Bay

  • Urbina Bay is located at the base of Alcedo Volcano on the west coast, between Tagus Cove and Elizabeth Bay. This area experienced a major uplift in 1954, causing the land to rise over 16 feet. The coast expanded half a mile out, leaving marine life stranded on the new shore. This area is also a great place for snorkeling.
  • Highlights: Land iguanas (the biggest in Galapagos), hawks, coral reef, giant tortoises; snorkeling: turtles, rays, tropical fish
  • Activities: Snorkeling, dinghy ride & hike, 2 trails: short (0.6mi/1 km), long (1.9mi/3km)
  • Type of Landing: Wet landing
  • Difficulty: Easy /moderate

Day 4 - Monday

AM: Isabela: Elizabeth Bay

  • Elizabeth Bay is located on the east coast of Isabela Island. The bay contains many islets, which can be visited by dinghy. Penguins and Blue-footed Boobies can be spotted on the rocky islets. With an abundance of marine life and clear water, the area is perfect for snorkeling and viewing schools of colorful fish, sea lions, and perhaps even sharks.
    Highlights: Mangrove forest (unique in Galapagos), sea turtles, penguins, rays, herons, sea lions.
  • Activities: Two-hour dinghy ride
  • Type of Landing: No landing
  • Difficulty: Easy

PM: Isabela: Moreno Point

  • Moreno Point is located near Elizabeth Bay on the west coast of Isabela Island. The plethora of birds seen during a dinghy ride along the striking rocky shores or a hike along path through lava rock leading to tide pools and mangroves create a birdwatcher’s delight. In the tide pools green sea turtles or white-tip sharks can be spotted.
  • Highlights: Flamingoes, gallinules, Pintail ducks, turtles, whitetip reef sharks.
  • Activities: Snorkeling, dinghy ride & hike (1.2mi/2km)
  • Type of Landing: Dry landing
  • Difficulty: Moderate/difficult

Day 5 - Tuesday

AM: Isabela – Sierra Negra Volcano

  • The Sierra Negra Volcano boasts the largest basaltic caldera in Galapagos at 9 x 10km. The site offers impressive views and the opportunity to observe up to 7 species of finch and a rich display of vegetation. The north side of the caldera provides evidence of its most recent volcanic activity in 2005.
  • Highlights: Basaltic caldera, stunning views, finches
  • Possible Activities: Hiking, horseback riding, walking
  • Type of Landing: Dry landing
  • Difficulty: Moderate

PM: Isabela – Wetland

  • The Wetlands of Isabela Island are located just outside of Puerto Villamil. The Wetlands consist of lagoons, swamps, and mangroves and are home to a variety of unique bird species such as Common Stilts, Whimbrels, White-Cheeked Pintails, and Gallinules. The Wetlands can be visited on foot via a path that winds through the swamps.
  • Highlights: Giant mangroves, Shore Birds
  • Possible Activities: Hicking
  • Type of Landing: Dry landing
  • Difficulty: Easy

PM: Isabela – The Wall of Tears

  • From 1945-1959, a penal colony hosted prisoners who were forced to build this wall, stone by stone, in isolation. This now historical site (El Muro de las Lagrimas), towering at 65 feet (25m) high, took the lives of thousands during its construction. Locals claim to hear cries emanating from the heavy energy surrounding the site.
  • Highlights: Historic site
  • Possible Activities: Hicking
  • Type of Landing: Dry landing
  • Difficulty: Easy

Day 6 - Wednesday

AM: Santa Cruz – Charles Darwin Station

  • The Charles Darwin Research Station is home to turtles ranging from 3-inches (new hatchlings) to 4-feet long. Sub-species of turtles interact with one another and many of the older turtles are accustomed to humans, stretching out their heads for a pet. The babies are kept until they are about four years old and strong enough to survive on their own.
  • Highlights: Giant Tortoises in captivation
  • Possible Activities: Walking
  • Type of Landing: Dry landing
  • Difficulty: Easy

PM: Santa Cruz – Los Gemelos

  • You’ll also visit the highlands. A place you can walk along a path, observing the hills, ferns, volcanoes, and rich wildlife. This area is home to giant tortoises, forest, mockingbirds, Bahama ducklings, White-cheeked Pintail ducklings, Darwin finches, and many other species. You will come upon the underground lava tubes, which are more than one kilometer (half a mile) long. Local guides are will provide information and flashlights. Walking through the lava tubes is a unique and surreal experience.
  • Highlights: Pit craters, Scalesia Forest
  • Possible Activities: Short hiking
  • Type of Landing: Dry landing
  • Difficulty: Moderate

Day 7 - Thursday

AM: South Plaza Island

  • In the morning, you will head to South Plaza Island. This small island with steep cliffs was formed by rising lava and is now covered by Opuntia cacti. It is also home to one of the largest sea lion colonies as well as colorful yellow and red land iguanas. The most characteristic plant is the Sesuvium. During the rainy season its color is a greenish to yellowish tone and in the dry season (end of June through January) a bright red.
  • Highlights: Land iguanas, sea lion colony, Audubon´s shearwaters, Swallow-tailed Gulls, Nazca Boobies, amazing landscape with cliffs
  • Possible Activities: Hike (2 ½ km /1.5 mi)
  • Type of Landing: Dry landing
  • Difficulty: Moderate

PM: Santa Fe Island

  • Santa Fe (Barrington) is home to the small picturesque bay and anchorage on the island’s northeast coast. The bay has two visitor trails, one leading to a scenic viewpoint atop a cliff, and the other spanning from a small beach to a tall prickly pear cactus forest.
  • Highlights: Land Iguanas, giant tunas
  • Possible Activities: Hiking
  • Type of Landing: Dry landing
  • Difficulty: Moderate

Day 8 - Friday

AM: San Cristobal – Isla Lobos

  • Isla Lobos or Lobos Island is named after the sea lions that rest and play on its rocky shores. It is also home to blue-footed boobies, great frigate-birds, brown pelicans, lava gulls, common noddies, yellow warblers and small and medium ground finches. There is good snorkeling in the clear waters of the channel and this is one of the best sites at which to swim with sea lions underwater.
  • Highlights: Snorkeling with sea lions, frigatebirds, Blue-footed Boobies
  • Possible Activities: Short hike (less than 0.6 mi/1 km), dinghy ride, snorkeling.
  • Type of Landing: Dry landing
  • Difficulty: Easy/moderate

PM: Transfer to the Airport

  • Please keep in mind that on departures days, your morning visit will be early and short since we need to be prepared before heading back toward the airport for your returning flight to Ecuador’s mainland.

Experiences

Facilities, flora, fauna, activities

Interpretations and definitions

These types of landings mean that you will have to step out of the panga by the shore onto a beach or another type of wet surface. Guides will give instructions on how to disembark safely and whether your footwear should be removed or not. Once ashore, guides will provide special towels in order to dry off before putting on your footwear.

On dry landings guests will disembark the pangas onto a dry surface. This could be a man made dock or boat landing. On these types of landings it is not necessary to remove your footwear.

If there is no landing, you will either do the excursion via panga ride or enter the water for a snorkeling activity straight from the panga.

This is the small boat or zodiac used in order to transport guests to and from the boat to visitor sites and ports.

These are merely suggestions by experts on items that can help you enhance your visit to create a more enjoyable experience.

We cannot guarantee a 100% chance of observing the wildlife listed in these sections. It is based on guide knowledge and what has been seen before. The animals in the Galapagos Islands are wild and come and go as they please. You may even see wildlife that is not listed.

Activities rated easy means no great efforts are required and the excursion will be very easy going.

These activities may require some effort on your behalf, depending on your physical conditions but nothing extreme or intense.

Activities categorized as difficult will include more intense hikes or uneven terrain. Examples may be climbing over small/medium sized boulders, walking uneven or slippery surfaces. Breaks may be needed, make sure to tell your guide if you need assistance. One should be in good overall health and physical conditions. Nevertheless, guides will always keep the pace of the slowest person and will be aware of the entire groups physical abilities in order for everyone to enjoy the activity.

Please take into consideration that each visitor site is allowed specific activities authorized by the Galapagos National Park Authorities. Your guide will explain the different activities available at each site and may even give provide two different options.

The use of Jacuzzi is subject to weather conditions, itinerary and the sea conditions. Please talk to the Cruise Manager if you are interested in using the Jacuzzi during your stay on any vessel.

Reservations

Make your reservation and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can to confirm it

Write us +593 99 972 5394

Pick a tour

Number of people

Name*

Email*

Telephone*

Additional information