Arrival from Mainland, your friendly guides will be expecting you outside customs to begin your wonderful Galapagos adventure.
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 including Black-tip & White-tip reef sharks, Rays and sea turtles.
Also known as “Prince Phillip’s Steps”, El Barranco is a steep, rocky path that 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, Doves, Storm Petrels, Galapagos swallows and short-eared lava owls.
This white sand coral beach heads a half mile trail that winds through Mangroves filled with land birds like Nazca & Red-footed boobies, swallow-tailed gulls and more. Further down the path are tidal pools where sea lions swim playfully. At the end is a spectacular view off a cliff.
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!
Rabida Island (Jervis) is one of the most colorful and volcanically varied islands in the archipelago and a great snorkeling site. Its famous maroon sandy beach and stunning lookouts provide wonderful landscapes. The island is a birdwatcher’s delight. Some of the rarest species are in abundance, such as nine varieties of finches, large-billed flycatchers, Galapagos hawks and brown pelicans.
The Charles Darwin Research Station is home to turtles ranging from 3-inches (new hatchlings) to 4-feet long. Subspecies of turtles interact with one another and many of the older turtles are accustomed to humans stretching out their heads for a photo opportunity. The babies are kept until they are about four years old and strong enough to survive on their own.
our first visit is to “El Chato” Reserve, divided into two areas: Caseta and Chato. The trail begins at Santa Rosa from Puerto Ayora, with the Caseta route being the more challenging. The reserve allows visitors to observe giant tortoises in semi-wild during the dry season and is also a good place to spot Darwin’s finches, yellow warblers, Short-eared Owls, paint-billed crakes and Galapagos rails.
Situated on Santa Cruz Island, is one of the newest visitor sites accessible to tourists in the Galapagos Archipelago. One of the lengthier Galapagos walking trails will lead visitors along a beach and up a trail to the lagoon lookout where you will spot bright Flamingos, Land Iguanas (nesting site) and Pintail Ducks.
Located on the north shore of Santa Cruz, Las Bachas is a picturesque swimming beach. One of the few remnants of the U.S. World War II presence in the Galapagos, a floating pier, can be seen here. You may see flamingos, Sally Lightfoot crabs, hermit crabs, black necked stilts, and whimbrels. Sea turtles also nest off the beach.
In the 18th century whalers passing through the islands placed a wooden barrel on Floreana Island for use as an unofficial mail box. The tradition continues today as visitors leave addressed postcards in the barrel and sort through left mail to deliver at home.
This site hosts a beautiful flamingo lagoon where other birds such as white-cheeked pintails and common stilts can also be seen. The beaches on this island are quite unique: the “Green Beach” named for its greenish color, which comes from a high percentage of olivine crystals in the sand, and the “Four Sand Beach” composed mainly of white coral.
The area is great for spotting Blue-footed & Nazca boobies, Hood Mockingbirds and Tropic-birds and, of course, Waved-Albatrosses. A beautiful site on the ocean front from where the majestic albatrosses use the cliff as a launching pad. The famous attraction is the magnificent blowhole, spurting water high into the air. This site presents wonderful photograph opportunities.
Gardner Bay, on the eastern side of the island, is the breeding site of nearly all of the world´s 12,000 pairs of waved albatrosses. It has an ample white sandy beach with a myriad of sea lions, perfect for relaxing. Its rocky shores make this site a great place for diving and snorkeling.
The Interpretation Center was opened in 1998 as a phase of the project “Interpretation and Environment Education Project.” Visitors enjoy expositions on natural history, human history, and conservation. The conservation efforts represent the movement to protect the wildlife and natural environment through means of population and tourist control. The Interpretation Center has an outdoor stadium, audio-visual equipment, and meeting rooms.
After the morning excursion you will be taken to the airport for your flight to the mainland.