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Galaxy: 6-Day Cruise to Eastern & Central Islands

Galapagos – Superior

6-Day Galapagos Cruise to Eastern & Central Islands

Exotic black, and red sand beaches are highlights of this 6 day Galaxy cruise, as well as the double-bay overhead views at Bartholomew and impressive Chinese Hat.

The Eastern islands are famed for the density and variety of wildlife they host compared to the rest of the Galapagos, and this itinerary lets you see and do it all.

Note:

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.


Galaxy sun deck

DAY 1: THURSDAY

AM: Baltra Island, Embarkation

Arrival in Baltra airport and transfer to the boat. Welcome drink & briefing onboard about the boat and the island.

PM: Santa Cruz Island, Black Turtle Cove – no landing

Activities: panga explorations

After lunch your first visit is to Black Turtle Cove which is situated in northern Santa Cruz. This bay is surrounded by mangroves and is accessible by dinghy only. The superficial cove is a safe refuge for marine life. Black-tip reef sharks, marine turtles, and a variety of rays are often spotted here.

Galapagos species

DAY 2: FRIDAY

AM: Rabida Island – wet landing

Activities: hiking, snorkeling, swimming

This visitor site is located on the east coast of Rabida Island and consists of a red sand beach, coastal lagoon behind the beach, and a loop trail. The approximate distance of the trail is 1.1 kilometers. The color of the rocks and sand on the beach is due to the very porous volcanic material, which with the help of environmental factors (rain, salt water and sea breeze, has acted as an oxidizing agent. The main attraction of the place is the red sand beach, scenery, aside from the vegetation of the arid zone and the presence of native and endemic species.

PM: Sombrero Chino Island– wet landing

Activities: hiking, snorkeling

Sombrero Chino is a small islet located near the southeast coast of Santiago. It is shaped like a Chinese hat when seen from afar and is an island consisting of a "splatter" type cone (lava ejected as it dropped and fells close to where it came from, which forms an indented cone) that forms the summit and many lava tubes that go down to the coast. On the west you can see pillow-type lava formations, which are an indicator that the flows were formed under the sea and have been raised upward, which is why coral heads are found on the lava. This visit provides an excellent opportunity for the interpretation of geological features such as lava tubes and lava flows. The trail is 700 meters (round trip) and the minimum time it takes to embark this trek is half an hour.

Galapagos snorkeling

DAY 3: SATURDAY

AM: North Seymour Island – dry landing

Activities: hiking, panga explorations

This island was formed by the lifting of marine volcanic lava. Marine fossild were found on this island; the fossild date from the Pleistocene Era. In 1932, Capitan Alan Hancock and his crew took 72 land iguanas from Baltra Island and introduced the on North Seymour Island. The reason for this change was because the iguanas could live in better conditions here than in Baltra. The vegetation of North Seymour is bushy and hosts nest of Galapagos frigate birds.

PM: Mosquera Island – no landing

Activities: panga explorations

This islet is located between Baltra Island and North Seymour. Here, find the biggest sea lion colony; also it is possible to observe several species of birds. Enjoy its white sand beach.

Wildlife searching

DAY 4: SUNDAY

AM: Santiago Island, Sullivan Bay – wet landing

Activities: hiking

All the roads and the island overall is composed of lava flows that still exist virtually without erosion and they cover an extensive area. Find lava pohoehhoes, hornitos, and mollugos, a plant that grows in the lava. These are lava colonizers. Snacks and refreshing beverages will be available.

PM: Bartholomew Island – dry landing

Activities: hiking, snorkeling

Walk a path to the top (114 m) and see pioneering plants such as Tiquilia, Chamaesyce, and Scalesia in this place. The island is formed by cones and pipes of lava from where lava flowed. Then take a wet landing path to the south beach through mangrove swamps and dune vegetation. Here, go swimming and snorkeling. From the top of the island Bartolome, you will be able to observe the islands such as Santiago, Rabida, and Isabela in the distance. You might also find penguins at Pinnacle Rock!

Blue footed boobie

DAY 5: MONDAY

AM: Genovesa Island, Prince Phillip’s Steps – dry landing

Activities: hiking 

Here, have a walk on Barranco path. Observe tropical birds, petrels, common frigates, red-foot boobies, mask boobies, doves, and finches.

PM: Genovesa Island, Darwin Bay – wet landing

Activities: hiking, snorkeling

Experience beautiful coral beach! Genovesa is a small island situated to the north of Galapagos. Near the beach we will find a small forest of mangrove swamp where we will discover a colony of Frigates, marine iguanas, red footed boobies and mask boobies, the great terrestrial finch, seagull, herons, and cactus finches. After this land visit, have the option to go swimming in the bay.

Galaxy lounge

DAY 6: TUESDAY

AM: San Cristobal Island, Interpretation Center – dry landing

Activities: hiking

This center is location in the Main Port of San Cristobal Island. It is the most modern and sophisticated architectural space designed for the Galapagos natural interpretation and where you can learn about the volcanic formation of the islands, the evolution of the species, and more. See the history of Galapagos human settlements to come to understand the archipelago’s complex systems and models of management.

AM: San Cristobal Island, Transfer to the Airport

Be assisted to San Cristobal 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.

Testimonials

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