MILLENNIUM ITINERARY D – 6 DAYS

Wednesday     AM: Baltra Airport

                        PM:Highlands of Santa Cruz

Thursday         AM: Puerto Villamil - Tintoreras / Wetlands / Breeding Center

PM: Wall of Tears or Sierra Negra

Friday              AM: Punta Moreno (Isabela)                                                                                                   

                        PM: Punta Mangle (Fernandina)

Saturday          AM: Punta Espinoza (Fernandina)

                        PM: Tagus Cove (Isabela) 

Sunday            AM: Puerto Egas (Santiago)

                        PM: Chinese Hat

Monday           AM: Black Turtle Cove (Santa Cruz)

                        PM: Baltra Airport

Day 1: Wednesday

AM: Baltra Airport

PM: Highlands of Santa Cruz

Your flight arrives at noon from Quito or Guayaquil to Baltra Airport.

After a short drive you will cross the channel Itabaca and so reach the north of the island of Santa Cruz. Then, we go to the top of the Crocker Hill, over there, on clear days, you can enjoy a wonderful view of the surrounding islands. You will learn about the typical Galápagos vegetation, for example, tree ferns, and visit the famous giant tortoises in El Chato.

Dinner and overnight on board.

Day 2: Thursday

AM & PM: Puerto Villamil (Tintoreras / Wetlands / Breeding Center / Wall of Tears or Sierra Negra)

You can reach the fishing village of Puerto Villamil, located in the southern side of Isabela Island. With an area of 4.588 km ², it is more than half the land area of the Archipelago. Nevertheless, it is comparatively little visited because there is no airport and is 5 hours by boat from Santa Cruz. In the early morning you see on the barrier of the island tintoreras, sea lions and with some luck also white-tip sharks.

Then we continue to the Wall of Tears, a man-made monument. This long stone wall was built in the 1940s by convicts of the penal colony settled here once Ecuador took possession of the Islands. Our hike then leads through a wetland of brackish lagoons where flamingos are often seen.

In the afternoon, we have a visit to a Breeding Center of Galapagos tortoises. Here you will learn more about its intention to protect and safeguard the various species of giant tortoises that inhabit Isabela Island, in order that the population of giant tortoises not decreases. On days with good weather, there will be an afternoon excursion to the crater of Sierra Negra.

Dinner and overnight on board.

Day 3: Friday

AM: Punta Moreno (Isabela)                                                                                                   

PM: Punta Mangle (Fernandina)

Punta Moreno is a bay with small lagoons where flamingos often stay. Other water birds live here, including Bahamian ducks.

In the early afternoon you reach the island of Fernandina, the youngest of the Archipelago. On the south coast is Punta Mangle, one of the best snorkeling sites of all Galapagos, excellent to see penguins.

Dinner and overnight on board.

Day 4: Saturday

AM: Punta Espinoza (Fernandina)

PM: Tagus Cove (Isabela) 

In the morning we will visit Punta Espinoza in the north of Fernandina, which has fascinating lava sceneries with cacti and mangrove vegetation. Penguins, flightless cormorants, sea lions and the largest marine iguanas of the Galapagos are among its attractions.

In the afternoon, we will visit Tagus Cove, on the west coast of Isabela. Located at the feet of Darwin volcano, this was a popular anchorage site for pirates and whalers, some of them have written their ship’s names on the rock walls. After a two kilometer walk, you will reach a small cave, whose inscriptions dating from about 1800. Charles Darwin also visited Tagus Cove on his voyage on the Beagle. Here you will find penguins, flightless cormorants, and other marine birds. A steep path through dry forests and cactus, will lead us to the salty green crater lake, called Darwin Lagoon. During this short hike, you will discover once again the beauty of this island. It also offers the opportunity to snorkel, in order to appreciate the unique underwater world of this place.

Dinner and overnight on board.

Day 5: Sunday

AM: Puerto Egas (Santiago)

PM: Chinese Hat

On Santiago Island, also called James, are still traces of the pirates time . This richly structured volcanic island offers long walks. Puerto Egas, that until the sixties was a salt mine. Some abandoned buildings of that era are still standing. Behind it, begins a natural wonderland. Here we can watch marine iguanas sunning themselves along with the glowing red crabs on the rocks. Three species of Galapagos herons live here with pigeons and oystercatchers. Moreover, this is one of the best places to see migrating shorebirds. At the end of the path will expect us Galapagos fur seals and sea lions. Also you can swim before leaving Puerto Egas.

In the afternoon you will be at Chinese Hat, an island near to the coast of Santiago. Topped by a perfectly formed crater, this island resembles the silhouette of a “chinese hat”. Only specialized plants can hold between the fragile lava. Sea lions inhabit the white coral beach, fringed by bushes adapted to saline soils.

Dinner and overnight on board.

Day 6: Monday

AM: Black Turtle Cove (Santa Cruz)

PM: Baltra Airport

At morning the dinghy will take us to explore the brackish lagoon of Black Turtle Cove with its many sea turtles and schools of gold rays and sharks.

At midday, the return flight to mainland, to Guayaquil or Quito, will be ready to take off from Baltra Airport.

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