Western Galapagos Day by Day

Day 1


Day 2


Day 3


Day 4


Day 5


Galapagos Itineraries

The Santa Cruz II’s excellently-crafted itineraries allow for some of the best-in-class wildlife and island coverage in Galapagos. Around 99% of excursions take place at exclusive visitor sites too, meaning guests will often have entire areas to themselves.

Multiple naturalist guides on the Santa Cruz II also means that guests have the added freedom to choose from a wider range of activities on each day of their itinerary. Safety and sustainability are both at the forefront of the Santa Cruz II, with a 24-hour onboard Medical Officer onboard and its own water treatment plant.

This is also one of the few vessels in Galapagos that comes equipped with plenty of definitive exploration tools (dinghies, kayaks, snorkeling gear, paddleboards, etc.) that you’ll need to experience Galapagos properly, including a glass-bottom boat!

Day 1

Baltra Island

  • Guests land at Baltra Island by plane in the morning and then transfer to the dock to board the Santa Cruz II. After an introductory briefing onboard, guests will partake in an emergency boat drill, be assigned to their cabins and then be invited to lunch.

Cerro Dragón (Dragon Hill) (Santa Cruz Island)

  • The north shore of Santa Cruz hosts the fascinating landscapes of Cerro Dragón (Dragon Hill). The first part of the walk here passes by a brackish-water lagoon that’s frequented by shorebirds, ducks and American flamingos. Further inland, the trail offers a beautiful view of the bay and the western islands of the archipelago, as well as a chance to check out some land iguanas.

Day 2

Punta Vicente Roca (Isabela Island)

  • After breakfast, guests will get to explore the coast by dinghy, all while naturalist guides explain the dramatic geology of the surrounding area. This site is also a nesting place for several Galapagos highlights, such as: flightless cormorants, Galapagos penguins, fur seals, and boobies. Weather permitting, guests will get the chance to snorkel alongside the cliffs of this area that are rich in marine life, often times visited by green sea turtles and oceanic sun fish (Mola mola).

Punta Espinoza (Fernandina Island)

  • The afternoon is dedicated to exploring Fernandina, the youngest island in the archipelago. The complete absence of introduced animals is one its biggest features, as Fernandina boasts a very unique environment with a very high density of marine iguanas. Other creatures found here include sea lions, Sally lightfoot crabs, hawks, penguins and flightless cormorants.

Day 3

Puerto Ayora and the Charles Darwin Research Station

  • In the morning, guests disembark (dry landing) in Puerto Ayora to visit the Charles Darwin Research Station. The Station consists of a giant tortoise Breeding Center and an impressive giant prickly-pear cactus forest that is home to many land birds. The Station also serves as the headquarters for scientific investigation, conservation and the National Park administration. Following this visit, guests will board a private transport to head up and enjoy lunch in the cooler highlands of Santa Cruz Island, which is an entirely different ecosystem.


  • Guests will have several options to choose from in the afternoon, these of which can be discussed in advance with your Expedition Leader. At the end of the afternoon’s activities, guests will return to Puerto Ayora and hop aboard the Santa Cruz II.

Day 4

Baroness Tower + Post Office Bay

  • After breakfast, a dinghy ride along the maze of channels on Floreana’s north shore can be enjoyed. Afterwards, guests will get to experience Baroness Cove with its breathtaking views of Floreana Island. Later on, guests will land at Post Office Bay to visit the historic barrel that has served as a post office in the archipelago for over two centuries. It is here that guests will be invited to leave their own postcard and/or take postcards that have been left by other vessels (to hand-deliver to their addressee!). Snorkeling activities are offered right off the beach. Afterwards, guests will head back aboard for lunch.

Champion Islet + Cormorant Point

  • Following lunch and a break, guests will be invited to hop aboard the dinghies (for snorkeling) or the glass-bottom boat to explore the underwater wonders around Champion Islet – an extinct shield volcano that’s regarded as one of the best snorkeling spots in the archipelago. From there, it’s onwards to Cormorant Point, beginning with a wet landing on an olivine-crystal beach for a leisurely walk that includes a brackish-water lagoon where bird species such as American flamingos, pintail ducks, common stilts, herons, sandpipers, and other birds tend to gather. After this, guests will continue their walk over to a white-sand beach, where sea turtles emerge from the sea at night to nest (from December to May).

Day 5

Baltra Island

  • Guests disembark at Baltra Island in order to transfer to the airport to take their flight back to the mainland.

Departure Dates

Santa Cruz II departure dates 2019 2020 Magic Ecuador Quito Galapagos 2

Santa Cruz II departure dates 2019 2020 Magic Ecuador Quito Galapagos

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The Vessel

The Santa Cruz II was conceived for operations in remote areas (as it was originally commissioned for expedition cruises in Patagonia/Chile). This vessel offers the perfect mix of comfort, style and safety for a remote area like the Galapagos Islands. As one of the newest vessels in Galapagos, the Santa Cruz II is capable of welcoming up to 90 guests with the optimal means for exploring the islands in contemporary style. Flexible cabin arrangements are available for any type of group –including solo travelers – and its intelligent and ample social areas give guests room to find their own space on their Galapagos journey. Guests will also get to enjoy all Park-approved aquatic activities, including a proper glass-bottom boat! Dine inside or grab a quick BBQ snack on the outdoor terrace. The crew aboard the Santa Cruz II loves to indulge guests with exceptional onboard service!


Santa Cruz II’s modern, generous social areas – laid out with choice contemporary materials – are found on four of its five decks. With an intelligent layout, including wide hallways and broad stairwells, guests will immediately know their way around this vessel. From dining areas indoors and out, the fitness room and hot tubs, to the elegant bar and lounge, not to forget the well-stocked library, the ship is designed to please with its sophisticated simplicity. Each passenger will find their own special space aboard, as the ship offers one of the top 5 (3:2) guest-space ratios of all Galapagos passenger vessels, guaranteeing quality individual attention.

Sky Deck

Panorama Deck

Expedition Deck

Horizon Deck

Ocean Deck


Facilities, flora, fauna, activities


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