Day 1: You will be met at the Guayaquil airport and transferred to your hotel for a good night’s sleep. Dinner is on your own, typically aboard your inbound flight for most arrivals.
Day 2: Following breakfast, you will be transferred back to the airport to meet your early morning flight to San Cristobal Island some 600 miles off-shore (note the cost of this airfare is not included but The Northwest Passage will arrange). Upon your arrival the park-entrance fee is due ($100 USD), so plan ahead and make sure to have US dollars in cash. Following a short transfer to our hotel, we will have a tour of the beautiful new San Cristobal Interpretive Center, funded by the Spanish government. Then we’ll take a walk to Frigate Hill, followed by a dip in the sea at Carola beach, time permitting. Our evening will conclude with welcome drinks and orientation, followed by dinner in town together. Stroll along the waterfront to experience the unbelievable sight of hundreds of sea lions displaying various behaviors. You’ll learn why the Galapagos are dubbed an “open-air zoo”. (B, D)
Day 3: This morning, our kayaks and support vessel will take us to two offshore islands along the northwest shore of San Cristobal. Boat supported and dependent on sea conditions, our goals are Darwin Bay, then on to two spectacular snorkeling destinations by support boat, Isla Lobos and Leon Dormindo (the "sleeping lion", also known as Kicker Rock). The paddling will lead you along the pristine coastline exploring the array of breathtaking nooks, caves and corners. You may spot seals, marine birds and countless other marine species. The day will be broken up with breaks for swimming, snacking, snorkeling, and otherwise enjoying this photographic paradise. We will conclude our day with dinner in town together. (B, D)
Day 4: After breakfast, we will transfer to the airport for our small aircraft flight to the largest of the islands, beautiful Isla Isabela. Our home for the next 3 nights is Iguana Crossing, a name you will understand almost immediately! Newly opened, this is an exquisite base for our adventure. We will walk to a tortoise breeding center and explore the coastline by snorkel and fins discovering the islet of Tinetoreras. Tinetoreras, the local word for the white tipped shark, is home to a pod of such sharks along with sea lions and a newly-founded penguin colony. (B, D)
Day 5: After a delicious breakfast, we prepare for a full day of adventure on the land. We will transfer to Sierra Negro and hike to Vocan Chicao with breathtaking views of the islands. Our mountain bikes will be nearby for the downhill ride to lunch at Campo Duro, and then back to the hotel for a refreshing swim in the sea or a dip in the new pool overlooking the sea. Don’t miss the opportunity for a rooftop sundowner in the Jacuzzi… (B, D)
Day 6: A restorative sleep is followed by another scrumptious breakfast before leaving from the small harbor for a full-day excursion of snorkeling and exploration. Tunelos is our destination where we will snorkel through a variety of protected rock formations where penguins and sea turtles abound. Returning home, there is time for a siesta and a swim before setting out on bikes along the sea to visit the Wall of Tears. Dinner will be on your own tonight. (B)
Day 7: Early in the morning, we will transfer by fast boat to the more cosmopolitan island of Santa Cruz in the heart of the archipelago. We’ll have breakfast upon our arrival, and then depart for the Highlands of Santa Cruz. We’ll visit the tortoise reserve and explore the lava tunnels that are seemingly frozen in time. We’ll return to the port, and then hike out to Tortuga Bay for an afternoon of kayaking, keeping an eye out for turtles and marine birds. Our evening is just starting with dinner and a walk through Punta Ayora giving you a glimpse of modern day island life. (B, D)
Day 8: We’ll spend the morning kayaking at Garrapatero Beach, followed by lunch in the port. In the afternoon, we’ll explore Academy Bay by kayak. One final celebration dinner will help you capture the essence of island life firmly in your memory. (B, D)
Day 9: After breakfast, we will tour the Charles Darwin Center before transferring to Baltra Island, where we will have a brief moment for souvenir shopping before flying to Guayaquil and transferring to your hotel or airport. The Northwest Passage guides will help with any transfer from airport to hotel after arriving back in Guayaquil. (B)
Beyond your time on the islands: We encourage you to consider additional one-day or multi-day adventure add-ons. Our experience shows that a day walking the open-air markets with a local guide or zip-lining and exploring the jungle forests really round out the Galapagos Islands adventure. Of course Macho Picchu is within reach from Guayaquil and we can help make that a reality. Our office has the knowledge to help plan additional days in and around Guayaquil.
* Note I: This is our intended itinerary. As with any adventure travel, the forces of nature can be unpredictable, forcing us to make adjustments and changes to the itinerary. Rest assured that our many years of exploring have provided us with numerous options if changes need to be made.
**Note II: Our office staff is happy to help discuss the ideal travel options to meet your specific needs. Please call or email for additional information. Travel insurance is strongly encouraged and mandatory for your piece of mind.