Galapagos Islands Voyage - Central & East
7 days from £1,567 (was £1,959)
- Explore historic Quito and visit the middle of the world
- Tour the Galápagos Islands by sea on your own private yacht
- Snorkel with schools of exotic fish and playful sea lions
- Visit the flamingos and nesting turtles of Santiago Island
- Take a trip to the Charles Darwin Research Station
- Make lifelong friends with likeminded animal lovers
Tour the Galápagos Islands, in style, aboard your very own private yacht. You'll ride the crystalline waves from one exotic destination to another as you cruise from San Cristóbal, to Santiago Island, and then on to Santa Cruz, stopping at numerous distinctive places along the way. You'll discover nature at its best and most undisturbed, where huge schools of exotic fish and inquisitive sea lions swim around snorkelling groups, and flamingos and giant tortoises allow you to get close enough for ample photo opportunities. Let yourself get swept up in the uniqueness and charm of this barely developed animal utopia and experience a place like no other in the world.
Interested and want to find out more? Download more trip information and detailed itinerary HERE!
Day 1: Quito
Arrive in Quito any time today. If you arrive in the morning or during the day, you'll have time to yourself to explore the area, so why not go on a Quito city tour and visit the 'middle of the world' where you can straddle both sides of the Equator? How about taking a ride on the Teleférico sky tram up Volcán Pichincha? In the evening meet the rest of your group at a welcome meeting and get to find out more about the week ahead.
Day 2: San Cristóbal
We'll take a morning flight from Quito to San Cristóbal arriving before lunch and then visit the Jacinto Gordillo Breeding Centre to see the incredible giant tortoises and, if we're lucky, baby giant tortoises. We’ll then board our beautiful private yacht, which is our home for the next 3 nights! Settle into your cabin and then watch the stars appear on deck.
Please note: the national park charges a visitor fee of 100USD, which isn't included in the cost of your trip, and is payable on arrival. Please ensure you allow for this in your budget and have the money on you in cash.
Day 3: Punta Pitt
In the morning, we'll get to do some proper wildlife watching at a quiet cove on the eastern tip of San Cristóbal. Afterwards we'll visit Cerro Brujo to learn about the history of the area, whilst spotting more wildlife, stopping off for a swim in the turquoise waters, and then take a short walk to a freshwater lagoon to see the flamingos. In the afternoon, we'll head to Kicker Rock, a beautiful Galápagos landmark for an exhilarating snorkelling experience.
Day 4: Santiago Island
Today, we'll make our way to one of the most idyllic beaches in the Galápagos Islands - Playa Espumilla, where, through the thick mangroves, we might just see some flamingos and turtle nesting sites. We'll continue on to Buccaneer Cove to cruise by the towering cliff faces, and then round off our day with a trip to the black lava shoreline of Puerto Egas. Enjoy a chilled evening with dinner and drinks on board.
Day 5: Santa Cruz Island
Waking up in beautiful Santa Cruz, we'll make our way onto dry land at Puerto Ayora and take a stroll to the Charles Darwin Research Station, to find out more about the Galápagos ecosystem. You'll even have the opportunity to go and have a look at the tortoises and iguanas on site. Later in the day we'll step aboard a boat and ride the waves around Academy Bay. We’ll stop for a snorkelling session with huge schools of exotic fish and inquisitive sea lions. We’ll then cruise around to Punta Estrada and Playa de los Alemanes, spotting marine iguanas and lava lizards. Dropping anchor, we’ll hike along a volcanic path through a cactus forest and take a dip in a beautiful salt water lagoon.
Day 6: Santa Cruz/Quito
Today we’ll venture into the stunning highlands of the island and seek out the iconic Galapagos giant tortoise in its natural habitat. Hiking through lush green hills, we’ll get up close to these mighty but gentle creatures. We’ll also explore the vast lava tunnels that are carved into the island, and keep our eyes peeled for the resident barn owls who sometimes make their home here. Then, it’s back to the airport for a short return flight to Quito. Enjoy your last night here!
Day 7: Quito
There are no planned activities on the last day, so you're free to leave any time. Please make sure you allow plenty of time to catch your return flight home, or have arrangements and accommodation in place if you're continuing your travels.
Please note activities and itineraries are subject to change.
- 6 nights accommodation
- 6 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 3 dinners
- All transport between destinations
- Internal flights between Quito and Baltra
- 3 nights on board our Xavier III yacht
- On board crew and expert guide
- Onboard snorkelling equipment and wetsuits
- Visit to the Charles Darwin Research Station
- Visit to a wildlife interpretation centre
- Snorkelling at La Loberia and Kicker Rock
- 24/7 emergency support
- Flights to/from Quito, Ecuador
- Travel insurance
- National Park entrance fees - 100USD payable locally in cash (amount is subject to change)
- Transit Control card - 20USD payable in cash locally (amount is subject to change)
- Drinks and tips on board
- Some meals (allow 105USD-140USD for food and drinks during the week)
- Optional activities
You'll spend the first and last night of the itinerary in a basic but comfortable hotel in Quito, in shared rooms with other members of your group. The fifth night of the itinerary will be spent in similar accommodation in Puerto Ayora on Santa Cruz Island.
3 nights will be spent on a beautiful private yacht. The Xavier III is a modest, but fully modern two-level yacht with sun deck, indoor bar, lounge, and dining room, and spacious cabins. You'll be sharing an air-conditioned cabin comprising twin beds and en suite with one other member of your group - either on the lower or upper deck. As well as having access to all areas on the yacht, you'll have full use of snorkelling equipment and wetsuits as well as sun loungers and towels, not to mention constant ocean views. The yacht is manned by seven members of crew, and your expert naturalist guide will be on board with you during the entirety of your trip.
The prices displayed are based on a lower deck cabin, if you wish to stay in a cabin on the upper deck, please contact us for details.
All your food on board the Xavier III is included in the cost of your trip. Meals are made using fresh, local ingredients, there will be a selection of meals for you to choose from, with vegetarian options available, too. Let us know if you have any special dietary requirements at the time of booking, so we can cater to your needs. Coffee, tea and water are all provided free of charge; all other drinks (alcoholic and non-alcoholic) can be bought at the onboard bar.
You will need to arrange your flight to arrive in Quito on the first day of your itinerary. There are no activities planned for the first day, but please make sure you arrive in time for the welcome meeting (usually around 5pm/6pm).
Please note, we can arrange an airport transfer for you when you arrive. Please contact a Travel Advisor for more information.
You can arrange your return flight or onward travel from Quito any time on the last day of the itinerary.
The minimum age for this trip is 18 years.
British passport holders do not need a visa to enter Ecuador for stays of up to 90 days. You must, however, have six months' validity remaining on your passport from the date you enter the country and might even be required to provide an explanation for travel to Ecuador or proof of onward travel or return home.
Do I Need Any Vaccinations?
We’re not qualified to offer you medical advice, so you should visit your GP well ahead of time to find out what inoculations you might need. Remember to tell them exactly where you’re travelling to as vaccination and medication requirements vary between different Indian regions. You’ll also need to make sure you have enough of any prescribed medication to see you through the duration of your trip.
How Much Spending Money Should I Bring With Me?
This will depend on the sorts of activities you want to try out during your trip, but as a rough average, meals coast between 5USD-20USD/£4-£16 and drinks cost between 1USD-5USD/80p-£4, so allow 130USD-195USD/£100-£150 for the basics, making sure you budget 100USD/£79 (and have the cash on you) for entry to the National Park (amount is subject to change), and add extra to account for activities and souvenir shopping (it's worth doing a bit of your own research into this).
How Many People Will Be In My Group?
The group size on this trip is capped at 16 people, but on average you’ll be one of 12.
What's The Average Age Range Of People On This Trip?
This trip welcomes travellers of all ages, so it's difficult to put an average age to a group. You might have a mix of people your own age or some much older or younger than you.