Galapagos kayaking adventure

Galapagos Kayaking Adventure, 8 days

Level: Moderate

A unique program developed for the paddle enthusiast, brings forth the rich wildlife of the Enchanted Islands and its world-class marine reserve. Explore lava channels, coves, turquoise waters, white sand beaches, and a truly unique wildlife experienced, up-close from your kayak. Activities such as, snorkeling, hiking, and horse back riding are also included in this program.

Day 1: Transfer in and kayak in San Cristobal

Morning flight to San Cristobal Island. Once we check-in our hotel, easy hike to nearby Frigate hill to get the vista and the lay of the land. We adjust our kayaks in the bay to go for an initial afternoon paddle around volcanic shores for encounters with sea lions, marine turtles and many types of ocean birds. We’ll paddle back to tranquil Puerto Baquerizo Moreno for a relaxing evening. Overnight in San Cristobal hotel. (L)

Day 2: San Cristobal: Playa Ochoa and snorkel in Leon Dormido

Today we paddle north following the coastline, observing many boobies, terns, pelicans, frigate birds, and playful sea lions that curiously follow and swim with us. The objective is to reach Isla Lobos, a small island that creates a narrow stretch of calm turquoise waters where marine turtles and rays make there home. We walk on the islet in search for abundant birdlife, and relax in Playa Ochoa. We continue on north to visit Leon Dormido (Kicker Rock) for excellent snorkeling, colorful sponges, barnacles and coral formations. This is a great opportunity to see dozens of species of tropical fish and hammerhead sharks. Overnight in San Cristobal hotel. (B, L)

Day 3: Floreana: Devil's Crown and Champion Islet

Morning transfer on a fast boat to Floreana Island that is one of the first visiting sites in the Islands, dating back to 1792, when whalers erected a barrel to serve as a primitive post office. Explore the rich history and legends from buccaneers and pirates. Located between tuff cones Floreana is an excellent site for waders and arid climate plants. Coves, mangroves and lagoons make this Islands one of the premier sites for kayaking in the archipelago. We paddle around “Devil’s Crown” a submerged volcanic half crater known as a superb site for snorkeling and diving. We also paddle around Champion Islet, which is a nesting site for many different sea birds. Overnight at Hostal Wittmer. (B, L)

Day 4: Floreana: Loberia and hike to El Mirador

Early morning hike to El Mirador to observe local birdlife and hike on trails around lava formations as we explore the coastline and its dry forest surroundings. We paddle around the bay to Loberia and Las Cuevas featuring clear waters and curious sea lions and much more. In the afternoon, we transfer on a fast boat to Isabela Island. Overnight in Isabela Island hotel. (B, L)

Day 5: Isabela: Coastline kayaking and hike to Las Tintoreras

Isabela is the biggest island of the archipelago, created by 5 volcano shields, it offers unreal geological formations and stunning volcanic landscapes. We paddle along the coast and around coves, islets and mangroves, home to the unique Galapagos penguin. We can also observe egrets, herons, pelicans, and more. We swim with white tipped sharks, marine turtles and more. Later we hike on Las Tintoreras trail where we can see hundreds of marine iguanas, reef sharks, scenic beaches and lava formations. In the afternoon, we hike to La Galapaguera to meet the giant tortoise, and some nearby lakes in search for flamingos, oyster catchers, stilts, and sunpipers. Overnight in Isabela Island hotel. (B, L)

Day 6: Isabela: Sierra Negra horse back riding and Chico Volcano

From Puerto Villamil, we head up to the highlands to meet our horses for a 6 mile (9 km) ride on irregular terrain to the rim of the Sierra Negra Volcano. Sierra Negra is the second largest caldera in the world. From this viewpoint you have a fantastic panorama of the 6 x 5 mile-wide caldera, and the other the volcanoes from the Perry Isthmus and beyond. Form here we hike to Chico Volcano with its puffing fumaroles and striking lava formations, fascinating examples of the geological events that created the Islands. In the late afternoon, we return to Puerto Villamil for our last evening in Isabela. (B, L)

Day 7: Santa Cruz: Divine Bay and Punta Estrada

Early morning transfer by fast boat to Santa Cruz Island. From Santa Cruz we pick up our kayaks to paddle towards and around Divine Bay and Punta Estrada, through multiple lava channels of calm, turquoise waters. Within the channels, white tipped sharks and rays patrol from beneath, while colonies of blue footed-boobies, tropicbirds, herons and marine iguanas perch among the jagged cliffs. By the day’s end, we find ourselves relaxing in the white sands of Tortuga Bay beach. Overnight in Santa Cruz hotel. (B, L)

Day 8: Transfer out

In the morning, we visit the Charles Darwin research station before our transfer to the Baltra Island airport, and flight back to Quito. (B)


 BOAT TRAVEL TIME:  2-3 hours per day
 PADDLETIME:  2-4 hours each day
 SEASON:  All year
 ALTITUDE:  Sea level to 600 mts.
 WEATHER TEMPERATURE:  December to May: 80ºF to 90ºF / 25ºC to 30ºC. June to  September: 60ºF to 70ºF / 15ºC to 20ºC. October to December:  70ºF to 80ºF/ 15ºC to 25ºC
 WATER TEMPERATURE:  The waters of the Galapagos Islands are a unique mixture of  warm and cold water, ranging between 65ºF and 85ºF
 SUGGESTED:  Water sandals, rain shell, flashlight, water bottle, non-cotton  trekking gear, sun block, hat and mosquito repellent 

Operators offering this trip:

Galapagos Adventure