Galapagos Islands Voyage - North & Central
7 days Call to Book!
- Cruise the Galápagos islands on your own private yacht
- Enjoy hikes to Tortuga Bay, Bartolomé's summit, and Genovesa Island's caldera
- Visit the Charles Darwin Research Station
- Go kayaking and snorkelling and spot some incredible marine life
- Visit the giant tortoises, iguanas, sea lions, and rare birds that reside on the islands
- Spend time exploring and getting to know Quito
Take a gentle cruise on your own private yacht through the bright, clear waters surrounding the Galápagos Islands. You'll get to trek through some of the most unusual and fantastic terrain in the region, experience snorkelling through clear waters with some of nature's most playful marine creatures, and get up close and personal to giant tortoises, land iguanas, sea lions, and rare birds like the red-footed booby and frigatebirds. This unique place will transfix you, unlike anywhere else in the world, you'll get to experience nature in its most untouched state, and feel like a superstar on your own yacht at the same time. Discover a world few are lucky enough to explore, and take home some incredible memories and experiences.
Want to find out more?
Download more trip information and detailed itinerary
Day 1: Quito
You can arrive in Quito any time on day one, just make sure you're in time for this evening's welcome meeting to meet the rest of the group and find out more about the week ahead. If you arrive during the day, take the opportunity to explore Quito with a city tour and visit the 'middle of the world' where you can stand on both sides of the Equator at the same time.
Day 2: Santa Cruz
On day two we'll fly from Quito to Baltra, Santa Cruz, arriving before lunch time. Once we've checked into our hotel and had a bite to eat, we'll head off on an afternoon hike to beautiful Tortuga Bay and spend a bit of time kayaking in the mangrove forest.
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: Isla Bartolomé
Today we'll be boarding our yacht, but not before paying a trip to the Charles Darwin Research Station - a great place to observe the tortoises and iguanas that reside there. Afterwards, we'll set sail on our private yacht to Bartolomé Island where we'll get to enjoy a trek to the island's summit for spectacular views of the volcanic terrain.
Day 4: Genovesa Island
Sailing during the night, you'll wake up to the shores of unspoilt Genovesa Island. After breakfast, we'll take a morning stroll up the caldera to see the nesting frigatebirds, gulls, and red-footed boobies. In the bay we'll get a chance to go snorkelling and get to visit El Barranco (Prince Phillip's steps) for some more fantastic wildlife watching opportunities.
Day 5: South Plaza and Santa Fé Island
Waking up to another beautiful sight this morning, you'll step off the yacht onto the shores of South Plaza Island, where you'll get to tread the path through the unusual cactus forest and discover the incredible mix of vegetation and wildlife unique to this part of the world. Later on we'll make our way south to Santa Fé Island for more animal spotting and an optional snorkelling trip.
Day 6: Santa Cruz
Back in Puerto Ayora, Santa Cruz, we'll take a morning trip to the El Chato Reserve, in the island's highlands, to get up close to the incredible giant tortoises. We'll also take a tour of the reserve's lava tunnels and lagoon. The huge lava tunnels run underground and across much of the island, with some extending several kilometres. Later, we'll hop on a plane back to Quito and enjoy a few post-adventure drinks with the rest of the group before parting company tomorrow.
Day 7: Quito
There are no planned activities on the last day, so you're free to leave any time. If you're staying in Quito for a day or two more, there are some brilliant day trips to places like the Mindo Cloud Forest. Your tour leader can recommend places to stay locally, or help you book transport back to the airport If you're heading home straight after your trip.
Please note activities and itineraries are subject to change.
- All accommodation
- 6 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 3 dinners
- All transport between destinations
- Internal flights between Quito and Baltra
- 3 nights on board our Estrella yacht
- On board crew and expert guide
- Hike and kayak excursion to Tortuga Bay, Santa Cruz
- Visit to the Charles Darwin Research Station
- Hike to Bartolomé Island viewpoint
- Excursion to see the red-footed boobies
- Highlands and wild tortoise excursion
- Onboard snorkelling equipment and wetsuits
- 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 second night of the itinerary will be spent in similar accommodation in Puerto Ayora on Santa Cruz Island.
The Estrella is a modest, but fully modern two-level yacht with sun deck, indoor bar, lounge, and dining room, and deceptively spacious cabins. You'll be sharing an air-conditioned cabin, on the lower deck, comprising bunk beds and en suite with one other member of your group. 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, including your guide.
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 Estrella 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.
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.