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Passion: 5-Day Tour to Española & Central Islands

Galapagos – Luxury

5-Day Galapagos Tour to Española & Central Islands

On this 5-day tour you will spend 3 nights aboard the luxury yacht Passion, and your final night on dry land in one of the top hotels in the islands, the Hotel SolyMar in Puerto Ayora on the island of Santa Cruz.

Visit numerous islands and witness the habits and remarkable mating rituals of their inhabitants. Depending when you go you may even spot neon‐colored marine iguanas and the giant Waved Albatross!


This itinerary begins as soon as you arrive to the islands. If possible, please wear clothes comfortable enough ready for your visit to the Charles Darwin Research Station. You will be reunited with your luggage at around 5pm in the afternoon when you board the Passion in Puerto Ayora.

Please also note that the itinerary below is dependent on the Galapagos National Park regulations, weather and sea conditions, wildlife behavior, and accessibility to locations, so may vary. All times indicated are approximate, and are also subject to change.


PM: Santa Cruz Island, Charles Darwin Research Station – dry landing

Activities: hiking

We will enjoy lunch in the ranch to then head back to Puerto Ayora for our second visit of the day, the Charles Darwin research station and the Fausto Llerena breeding center. Here, we will see tortoises from different islands. The animals are found in large semi natural pens for their protection, but also to ensure an easy view for the tourists. The pens are divided according to four different stages: eggs, neonates, juveniles (held here until they are mature enough to be "repatriated"), and adults. After this visit, we will have some time to explore the town of Puerto Ayora and its many souvenir shops, before boarding the M/Y Passion for dinner and the usual briefing.

Land Iguana


AM: South Plaza Island – dry landing

Activities: hiking

One of the oldest docks of the Archipelago, colorful Plaza Sur is home to vibrant green prickly pears, deep red Sesuvium and coppery-orange land iguanas; impressive seaward cliffs are excellent for a variety of coastal birds. This is also a great place to observe the adult and pup sea lions swimming along the shores.

PM: Santa Fe Island – wet landing

Activities: hiking, kayaking, panga exploration, snorkeling

After a wet landing onto a white beach where sea lions are usually resting, on Santa Fe, we will be looking for the endemic species of land iguana, larger and yellower than land iguanas on other islands. The largest prickly pear cacti in the Galapagos are also found here.

Sealions kissing in the Galapagos


AM: Española Island, Suárez Point – dry landing

Activities: hiking

Punta Suárez is a spectacular walk into the intimacies of life at sea, with nesting sites of Blue-footed and Nazca Boobies, as well as the fascinating breeding rituals (April to December) of Waved Albatross. Lined with neon-colored marine iguanas (January), and lazy Galapagos sea lions, we walk up to an amazing viewpoint of the famous blowhole.

PM: Española Island, Gardner Bay – wet landing

Activities: snorkeling

We will spend the day in fantastic Española, starting with Gardner Bay, an outstanding beach with sea lions, marine iguanas, and the intrepid Española Mockingbird.

Galapagos Flights


AM: Santa Cruz Island, Tortuga Bay – wet landing

Activities: swimming, snorkeling

After breakfast we will disembark in Puerto Ayora and say goodbye to the M/Y Passion, which will continue on. In Puerto Ayora we will hop on our transport, a speedboat, which will take us to the day´s adventure: Tortuga Bay. This beautiful white sand beach has its name for being a nesting site for sea turtles. Once we have disembarked on this magical site, it’s up to you to decide among the alternatives: swim or snorkel, observe the marine iguanas and other wildlife, explore the coves surrounded by mangrove trees or simply lay back and relax while enjoying the magical landscape. Our speedboat will pick us at noon to return to Puerto Ayora and our beach front hotel, where our luggage will be waiting in our rooms as we enjoy a hearty lunch while contemplating Academy Bay.  

PM: Baltra Island, Puerto Ayora

Our last afternoon on the island is free for you to explore the many highlights in and around Puerto Ayora still to be discovered. (Our cruise director can inform you about the different options for the afternoon). After this leisure time, we will gather to cross the bay to enjoy a final farewell dinner at the exclusive Angermeyer Point, a restaurant located at the historic house of Karl Angermeyer, Galapagos’ first artist and true pioneer of the archipelago. After dinner, our transport will take us back to our hotel for a well‐earned rest.  

Galapagos Sunset


AM: Santa Cruz Island, Lava Tunnels – dry landing

Activities: hiking

This is our last day on the islands. After breakfast we will disembark in Puerto Ayora to take our transport to Baltra Airport, doing a short stop to visit the Lava tunnels found in the highlands. These intriguing tunnels were formed b y a lava flow that hardened on the outside while still maintaining its fluid scolding state on the inside, leaving hollow tunnels where it passed. We will walk inside one of this tunnel (that are artificially illuminated to help visitors) to have a close look at the formations and learn more about the origin of these very volcanic archipelago. 

AM: Baltra Island, Transfer to the Airport

Be assisted to Baltra airport for your flight to the Ecuador mainland.

  • Please note that all cruise itineraries are subject to change due to seasonal weather conditions (and resultant variations in ocean cruising conditions) affecting accessibility to locations. Thus navigation routes, times and excursions may need to be modified at the cruise captain’s discretion.
  • Passengers should also be aware that animal sightings cannot be guaranteed due to the unpredictability of wildlife behavior. 

About Rainforest Cruises

Rainforest Cruises is a boutique travel company specializing in Amazon river cruises and tours, providing you with the finest collection of cruises in Peru, Brazil, Ecuador, the Galapagos Islands and Panama. As South American travel experts we have all the advice you need to help you find and book your dream cruise and an unforgettable adventure of a lifetime.


Geri Daniel loved her vacation with Rainforest Cruises.
We had an absolutely fabulous time on the cruise. Thank you again for the trip of a lifetime.
— Geri Daniel, Austin, TX
The Johannson family encounter a sloth on their rainforest cruise.
We had a wonderful time. We were all impressed with the efficiency and organization of the trip from start to finish.
— Jeanette Johannson & Family, USA