Experience a Galapagos Islands Tour aboard the luxurious Alya Galapagos Catamaran. Cruise to a total of 5 islands on this breathtaking itinerary.
You will visit: North Seymour, Genovesa, Santiago, Bartholomew and Santa Cruz Island.
Please 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.
Day 1: Thursday – Baltra and North Seymour Islands
AM: Baltra Island Airport: Arrival and Transfer to the boat
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 lava 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.
Activities: Dinghy ride & hiking (1.5 miles / 2.5 km)
Type of Landing: Dry landing
Difficulty: Moderate / difficult
Day 2: Friday – Genovesa Island
AM: Darwin Bay
This white sand coral beach heads a half mile trail (0.75km) that winds through mangroves filled with land birds. Nazca boobies, red-footed boobies, and swallow-tailed gulls can be spotted here. Further down the path are tidal pools where sea lions swim playfully. At the end is a spectacular view off a cliff.
Highlights: Nazca boobies, red- footed boobies, swallow-tailed gulls, mangroves, coral pebbles beach, snorkeling: rays, colorful reef fish and hammerhead sharks
Activities: Hiking (0.9 miles/1.5 km), snorkeling, kayaking & dinghy ride
Type of Landing: Wet landing.
Difficulty: Easy / Moderate
PM: El Barranco
Also known as Prince Phillip's Steps, El Barranco’s steep, rocky paths leads up to a high cliff-face. A marvelous view can be appreciated from here. This site is also home to palo santo vegetation as well as red-footed boobies, short-eared lava owls, Galapagos swallows, and Galapagos doves.
Highlights: Red-footed boobies, short-eared lava owls, storm-petrels, Galapagos doves
Activities: Hiking (0.9 miles/2 km)
Type of Landing: Dry, difficult landing
Day 3: Saturday – Santiago and Bartholomew Islands
AM: Sullivan Bay
A coral beach landing leads you towards a lava field as far as the eye can see. Hunt and peck over the two distinguished types of lava, pahoehoe and 'a'a, for signs of plant life that have managed to emerge over the past 100 years since the most recent volcanic explosion. A truly amazing volcanic experience…up close and personal!
Highlights: Variety of lava formations and landscapes, pahoehoe lava which is found primarily in Hawai'i and the Galapagos islands, 'a'a lava, and pristine coral sand beach
Activities: Walk, snorkel, swim
Type of Landing: Wet landing
Difficulty: Easy to moderate. Be sure to wear good solid walking shoes or boots as the 'a'a lava is very sharp and pointy
PM: Bartholomew Island
Home of the famous Pinnacle Rock, Bartholomew consists of an extinct volcano with a variety of red, orange, black and even green volcanic formations. A trail of stairs leads to the summit of the volcano, boasting one of the best views of the islands. The beach is perfect for snorkeling and possible sightings of the Galapagos penguin.
Highlights: Pinnacle rock, panoramic view, moonlike landscape, penguins, pioneer plants, lava cactus; snorkeling: penguins, reef sharks, rays, and great colorful fish.
Activities: Dinghy ride, snorkeling & hiking (1.2 miles/ 2 km)
Type of Landing: Dry and wet landings
Difficulty: Moderate/difficult. Walk up to the top of volcano 114 meters, 375 wooden steps
Day 4: Sunday – Santa Cruz Island
AM: Dragon Hill (Cerro Dragón)
Situated on Santa Cruz Island, Dragon Hill is one of the newest visitor sites accessible to tourists in the Galapagos Islands. One of the lengthier Galapagos walking trails will lead visitors along a beach and up a trail to the lagoon lookout where bright flamingos, pintail ducks, and land iguanas can be spotted.
Highlights: Land iguana nesting spot, Galapagos flamingos, common stilts, palo santo trees and cacti forest
Activities: Walking and hiking
Type of Landing: Dry landing
Difficulty: Easy to moderate: the trail may get muddy at times, and there is uneven rocky terrain.
PM: Black Turtle Cove
Black Turtle Cove is situated in the northern part of Santa Cruz. This inlet is surrounded by mangroves and is only accessible by dinghy. The shallow cove is a safe haven for young marine life. Black-tip and white-tip reef sharks, sea turtles, and a variety of rays are often spotted here.
Highlights: Baby hammerhead shark, rays, sea turtles, seabirds
Activities: Dinghy ride
Type of Landing: No landing
Day 5: Monday – Santa Cruz and Baltra Islands
AM: Santa Cruz Highlands
Reached by bus from Puerto Ayora, the highlands of Santa Cruz are a deep green contrasting beautifully with much of the dry, lower islands. The dominant vegetation in the highlands is the forest of Scalesia trees creating the lush green color. The lava tubes, over half a mile long, are underground and walking through them is a unique, surreal experience.
Highlights: Lava tunnels, wild turtles, tortoises breeding center.
Activities: Hike (1.5 miles/ 2 ½ km)
Type of Landing: Dry landing
Difficulty: Moderate (long)
Transfer to Baltra Airport
- 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.