Ecuador

Western Galapagos Islands Cruise - ALYA M/Y

6 days | 5 nights
Shared tour
From 4200USD per person
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Cruise Description

This 6-day Alya cruise explores four islands in the Western Galapagos on a luxury 16 passenger catamaran.

Your journey begins with a warm welcome upon arrival at Seymour Airport on Baltra Island, reaching the Highlands of Santa Cruz on your first afternoon. Experience its lush greenery, a contrast compared to the beaches and arid landscape you'll encounter throughout the remainder of the cruise.

The Alya catamaran sails onward to Isabela Island where you'll have the opportunity to visit the breeding grounds of the Galapagos penguins at Elizabeth Bay, then on to Fernandina Island in the remote corners of the west.

At some 640 sq. km, Fernandina holds the title as the third largest island in the Galapagos. The Alya catamaran circles back to Isabela Island before returning to Santa Cruz for your onward journey.

Spend afternoons discovering coastal lagoons, mangrove forests, and golden beaches, indulging in hikes, scenic nature walks, and numerous wildlife-spotting opportunities before retreating to your oceanview cabin onboard the Alya for the evenings.

With an inviting jacuzzi on its sundeck, this six-day Alya cruise through the Western Galapagos combines an in-depth look at the region's rich natural history with luxury-level accommodations.

Destinations

Galapagos

Trip at a glance

Visits

SANTA CRUZ ISLAND: Highlands

ISABELA ISLAND: Moreno Point, Elizabeth Bay, Urbina Bay, Tagus Cove, Vicente Roca Point

FERNANDINA ISLAND: Espinoza Point

SANTIAGO ISLAND: Espumilla Beach, Egas Port

SANTA CRUZ ISLAND: Bachas Beach

Trip details

Itinerary

Day 1 ARRIVAL - SANTA CRUZ ISLAND: AIRPORT – HIGHLANDS

Morning

Arrival at Seymour Airport on Baltra Island (GPS)
Meet and greet your guide at Seymour Airport who will escort you to the Alya Catamaran.
Your captain and crew will welcome you on board the luxury 16 passenger vessel with a refreshing drink. Settle into your new home for the next six days while lunch is prepared.

Afternoon

Following lunch, you will tour the Highlands of Santa Cruz with your knowledgeable naturalist guide and embark on a hike through the lush landscape to observe giant tortoises and Galapagos finches in their natural habitat. In addition to discovering the island's native flora and fauna, you will also be introduced to the lava tubes and volcanic features that make up Santa Cruz (is this part of the tour?). A pair of comfortable runners, long pants, raincoat and hat are recommended for the hike. Return to the Alya after your excursion.

Evening

Enjoy your first dinner and night on board the Alya.

MEALS
  • Lunch onboard
  • Dinner onboard

Day 2 ISABELA ISLAND: MORENO POINT – ELIZABETH BAY

Morning

Visit Moreno Point on the western coast of Isabela Island after breakfast this morning, and explore the tidal lagoons and extensive lava fields, keeping your eyes peeled for sightings of herons, frigatebirds and green turtles. On this island, you will also be rewarded with a dramatic panoramic view of the Sierra Negra, Cerro Azul and La Cumbre - the three most active volcanoes in the Galapagos. Enjoy lunch onboard the Alya as you sail onward to Elizabeth Bay on the eastern coast of Isabela Island.

Afternoon

Elizabeth Bay

Made up of a collection of small islets, coastal mangrove forests and rocky reefs, Isabela Island is a sanctuary for wildlife and the premiere breeding site for Galapagos penguins. View a variety of wildlife on your visit to Red Mangrove Cove, ranging from brown pelicans to spotted eagle rays and sea lions. Dinner.

Evening

Indulge in dinner on board the Alya after an afternoon of wildlife spotting.

MEALS
  • Breakfast onboard
  • Lunch onboard
  • Dinner onboard

Day 3 ISABELA ISLAND: URBINA BAY & FERNANDINA: ESPINOZA POINT

Morning

Urbina Bay 

On the western shores of Isabela Island at the base of Alcedo Volcano, Urbina Bay is an area that was a result of an uplift from the sea in 1954, causing the land to rise some five meters in height. Following a wet landing on the beach, you will follow a 3.2 KM trail with your naturalist guide, observing land iguanas, tortoises and red and blue lobsters. Enjoy lunch aboard the Alya.

Afternoon

Espinoza Point

As the third largest island in the Galapagos, Fernandina is also the region's youngest. This six day Alya cruise will visit only one site on this island in the archipelago's remote west - Espinoza Point, which is home to the flightless cormorant and recognized for its large colonies of marine iguanas. Free of any introduced species, Fernandina is one of the world's most pristine islands, and despite its barren landscape, the lava cacti thrive here. Tread with care between January and June, durin the nesting period of the marine iguana.

Evening

Return to the Alya for dinner and enjoy the remainder of the night on board.

MEALS
  • Breakfast onboard
  • Lunch onboard
  • Dinner onboard

Day 4 ISABELA ISLAND TAGUS COVE – VICENTE ROCA POINT

Morning

Tagus Cove

On the northwestern shores of Isabela Island, Tagus Cove was historically frequented by pirates who left their mark by carving the names of their ships onto the cliff faces that surround the cove. Following a (how long?) trail with your guide, reach Darwin Lake, a saltwater lagoon reaching nine meters in depth contained within a tuff cone. Enjoy lunch aboard the Alya.

Afternoon

Vicente Roca Point

Reach the northern shores of Isabela Island this afternoon on this six-day Alya cruise and visit Vicente Roca Point at the base of Volcán Ecuador. Observe the rich marine wildlife here and spot green turtles, seahorses, schools of barracuda, and the ocean sunfish Mola Mola.

Evening

Enjoy dinner and evening onboard the Alya.

MEALS
  • Breakfast onboard
  • Lunch onboard
  • Dinner onboard

Day 5 SANTIAGO ISLAND: ESPUMILLA BEACH – EGAS PORT

Morning

Espumilla Beach

Reach Santiago Island on Day Five of this six-day Western Galapagos Islands cruise. Take in the island's stunning landscape and see some of the region's tallest Palo Santo trees. Walk along the golden sands of Espumilla Beach, where green turtles come to nest. Following your time on the beach, enjoy lunch on the Alya.

Afternoon

Egas Port 

Reach Egas Port on Santiago Island and disembark on its black sand beach by wet landing. Named after entrepreneur Hector Egar who opened a salt mine here in the late 1920s, the site, which operated briefly, is now home to white-cheeked pintails and flamingos, though it remains closed to visitors. With your guide, learn the factors that made the salt mine business impractical on this island while roaming its scenic shoreline for a chance to see marine iguanas, sea lions and Sally Lightfoot crabs.

Evening

Enjoy your last dinner and night onboard the Alya.

MEALS
  • Breakfast onboard
  • Lunch onboard
  • Dinner onboard

Day 6 DEPARTURE DAY: SANTA CRUZ: BACHAS

Morning

Bachas Beach

Conclude your six-day Alya cruise with a visit to the sparkling white sand Bachas Beach on the northern shores of Santa Cruz. This beach earned its name after World War II when the American army abandoned their barges on the beach. Unable to pronounce "barge" in the English language, "bachas" is the result of a mispronunciation, resulting in the name of the beach. Learn about the flamingos and Sally Lightfoot crabs that inhabit this island, and the role this beach plays as one of the island's main sea turtle nesting sites. Transfer to Seymour Airport for your onward journey.

MEALS
  • Breakfast onboard

Map

Video

Services

What's included

Accommodation

Nights
5 nights onboard M/Y Alya

Meals

Full board plan
5 breakfasts + 5 lunches + 5 dinners

Transportation

Bus
All transfers from/to Baltra Airport

Orientation

Guide
Shared English-speaking naturalist guide

What's not included

  • Entrance Fee to Galapagos National Park (100 Usd/Person)
  • TCT Ingala Migration Card (20 Usd/Person)
  • Domestic Flights
  • International Flights
  • Travel Insurance
  • Wetsuit Rental
  • Extra Meals
  • Drinks
  • Tips

Dates and Prices

Arrival date

Important notes

Each guest must strictly follow the Galapagos National Park Rules: 

  • Remain on marked trails at visitor sites and respect signs at all times for the protection of wildlife
  • Maintain a distance of at least six feet (two meters) from wildlife to avoid disturbing them, even if they approach you
  • Never feed wildlife, as this can cause health problems
  • Flash photography is not permitted when taking photos of wildlife
  • Professional photography and videos recorded for commercial purposes must be authorized by the Galapagos National Park Department
  • It is your responsibility not to introduce food, animals, or plants into the Archipelago. Cooperate fully with all environmental inspection and quarantine officials during your visit.
  • Do not take or buy any products or souvenirs made from banned substances, including black coral, shells, lava rock, animal parts, or any native wood or vegetation prior to leaving Galapagos. This is illegal and must be reported
  • Practice “leave-no-trace” principles in order to maintain the beauty of the environment
  • Pack out all trash and dispose of or recycle it in the populated areas or on your tour boat
  • Smoking and/or campfires are strictly prohibited within the Galapagos National Park
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