Ecuador

Southern Galapagos Islands Cruise - ALYA M/Y

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

Board the luxury 16 passenger Alya Catamaran for a six-day Southern Galapagos Islands Cruise and explore seven pristine islands in five-star comfort. Meet and greet your guide at Seymour Airport on Baltra Island, and sail to North Seymour on your first afternoon where you'll learn how a group of 72 undernourished land iguanas colonized the land.

Next, meet South Plaza Island, a favorite stop on this Southern Galapagos itinerary for its sizable population of 1000 sea lions, and in the same day sail to the 4 million-year-old Santa Fe Island for its incredible bay of turquoise water.

Other than its title as one of the oldest islands in the entire Galapagos archipelago, Santa Fe is characterized by its landscape of large prickly pear cactus which feeds its population of endemic land iguanas.

Dive into the natural and human history of the Galapagos Islands at San Cristobal's Interpretation Center, followed by a panga ride to explore nearby Lobos Island, named after the seals that inhabit this land. At 558 sq. km, San Cristobal is the fifth largest of the Galapagos Islands.

Day four of this six-day Alya Catamaran cruise lands you on Española Island - a classic shield volcano that's estimated to be as old as Santa Fe. Passionate birdwatchers will enjoy watching the large waved albatrosses use Española Island's rugged cliff as a launching pad to soar into the sky.

Then, let the olive green sands of Cormorant Point on Floreana Island awe you, and take one last swim with the fish at Devil's Crown before cruising to the Highlands of Santa Cruz on your final morning on the Alya.

With the luxuries of the Alya Catamaran and bounty of opportunity to encounter wildlife while hiking the islands' pristine trails, this six-day Southern Galapagos Islands itinerary is perfect for outdoor enthusiasts who appreciate the comforts of a five-star hotel.

Destinations

Galapagos

Trip at a glance

Visits

NORTH SEYMOUR ISLAND

SOUTH PLAZA ISLAND

SANTA FE ISLAND: Barrington Bay

SAN CRISTOBAL ISLAND: Interpretation Center, Kicker Rock

ESPAÑOLA ISLAND: Gardner Bay, Suarez Point

FLOREANA ISLAND: Cormorant Point, Devil's Crown, Cerro Alieri

SANTA CRUZ ISLAND: Highlands

Trip details

Itinerary

Day 1 ARRIVAL - SEYMOUR

Morning

Arrival at Seymour Airport on Baltra Island (GPS)
Meet and greet your guide upon arrival at Seymour Airport on Baltra Island and transfer to the Alya Catamaran.
Your captain and crew will welcome you onboard the luxury 16 passenger vessel with a refreshing drink. Tour its sundeck and chic lounge, and settle into your new home for the next six days. Indulge in your first lunch on board.

Afternoon

North Seymour

The island of North Seymour was formed by the uplifting of underwater volcanic lava, which resulted in a small flat island 1.9 sq. km in size. Reach your first stop on the six-day Alya cruise after lunch by dry landing and learn about the 72 land iguanas that were introduced to North Seymour in 1932 to colonize the island. Captain Alan Hancock and his crew transported these undernourished iguanas from Baltra Island in the hopes that they will thrive in better conditions on North Seymour. And in 1934 just two years later, the species was identified to have adapted without issues. Walk the arid landscape with your guide and observe the diversity of birds that inhabit the island, ranging from nesting frigatebirds to blue-footed boobies.

Evening

Enjoy dinner and evening on the Alya.

MEALS
  • Lunch onboard
  • Dinner onboard

Day 2 SOUTH PLAZAS, SANTA FE

Morning

South Plaza

South Plaza Island is half a pair of the Plazas Island off the eastern shores of Santa Cruz. While the North Plaza Island is visited for research purposes only, you will visit the South Plaza Island this morning to see one of the largest sea lion colonies in the Galapagos, which is estimated to be at about 1000. On a hike with your naturalist guide, you'll notice that the land iguanas on South Plaza Island are smaller. You'll also have the opportunity to observe them as they feed on the fruit of the prickly pear cactus as you wind along a rugged cliff where seabirds nest.

Afternoon

Santa Fe

At an estimated four million years, Santa Fe Island is recognized as one of the oldest in the Galapagos archipelago. With a relatively small land area of 24 sq. km, this island situated between Santa Cruz and San Cristobal boasts a diversity of endemic species, namely the Santa Fe land iguana and rice rat. Its landscape is unique for its population of the large prickly pear cactus, Opuntia Echios, which feeds Santa Fe's land iguanas. Following a wet landing at Barrington Bay, enjoy a swim or snorkel in its shimmering waters as hawks fly overhead, keeping your eyes peeled for rays, tropical fish and marine tortoises. Re-energize with snacks and refreshing beverages on the Alya while dinner is prepared.

Evening

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

MEALS
  • Breakfast onboard
  • Lunch onboard
  • Dinner onboard

Day 3 SAN CRISTOBAL ISLAND: INTERPRETATION CENTER / KICKER ROCK

Morning

Interpretation Center

Reach the easternmost island of the Galapagos this morning via dry landing and recount the history of the archipelago with your guide. With displays and exhibits in both Spanish and English, the Interpretation Center in San Cristobal Island's main port of Puerto Baquerizo Moreno is an excellent source of information for visitors who are passionate about the natural and human history of the Galapagos. Discover the volcanic origins of the islands, the evolution and colonization of its species and the history of human settlement in the Galapagos.

Afternoon

Lobos Island

Its name of Lobos Island pays homage to the large population of sea lions that take over the land. Enjoy a panga ride to witness seals, marine iguanas and lava lizards at play on the rocks along the shoreline, then swim and snorkel in the calm waters of the channel that divide Lobos Island and San Cristobal. 

Evening

Enjoy dinner and the remainder of the night on board.

MEALS
  • Breakfast onboard
  • Lunch onboard
  • Dinner onboard

Day 4 ESPAÑOLA: GARDNER BAY, SUAREZ POINT

Morning

Gardner Bay

Following a wet landing at Gardner Bay this morning, go for a short walk along Española Island's pristine stretch of white sand beach and witness lazy sea lions bask in the sun. Hop in the shallow water along the shoreline's rocks for a chance to swim with these playful and curious creatures, and enjoy a morning of snorkeling among tropical fish and sea turtles.

Afternoon

Suarez Point

Reach Suarez Point by dry landing this afternoon, and with a pair of comfortable sports shoes, hat and extra sunscreen, walk among the island's lava rocks to view its lava tubes. As a must-see destination for any passionate birdwatcher, Suarez Point affords the opportunity for visitors to observe its blue-footed boobies and waved albatrosses. Weighing up to four kilograms, these waved albatrosses are one of the largest birds in the Galapagos, with some 12,000 pairs nesting on Española Island. During the walk, you'll see these large birds take flight by using the rugged cliff of Suarez Point as a launching pad. Though a natural spectacle, these waved albatrosses can only be seen during their mating season between March and January. On your excursion to Suarez Point, you will also see colonies of marine iguanas, masked boobies and finches. Return to the Alya for delicious snacks and refreshing beverages.

Evening

Enjoy dinner and evening on board.

MEALS
  • Breakfast onboard
  • Lunch onboard
  • Dinner onboard

Day 5 FLOREANA: CORMORANT POINT, CERRO ALIERI

Morning

Cormorant Point

Situated on the western shores of Floreana Island, Cormorant Point is widely recognized for its olive green sands, thanks to its surplus of olivine crystals. Following a wet landing, join your naturalist guide on a short trek to observe sea lions, frigatebirds and pelicans in their natural habitat. Conclude your visit to Cormorant Point by snorkeling.

Devil's Crown

Situated off the coast of Floreana Island, Devil's Crown is aptly named for its ring shaped assembly of jagged rocks that resemble a crown when seen from afar. Here, enjoy a panga ride around this tiny island, and opt to hop into its enticing waters for a swim among the colonies of small fish and sea lions. With excellent visibility and a diverse population of marine wildlife, Devil's Crown is highly regarded by many as the premier snorkeling spot in the Galapagos.

Afternoon

Cerro Alieri

Situated east of Port Velasco Ibarra on Floreana Island, Cerro Alieri is visited for its characteristic vegetation. With your naturalist guide, embark on a hike as you discover the island's landscape composed of 56% native and 33% endemic vegetation, taking note of the critically endangered Catericola Linum, with the existence of some 40 recorded. As Cerro Alieri sees an annual rainfail of up to 300 mm, prepare for mud and rain by packing appropriate outerwear and footwear.

Evening

Indulge in dinner and enjoy the evening on the Alya.

MEALS
  • Breakfast onboard
  • Lunch onboard
  • Dinner onboard

Day 6 DEPARTURE DAY: SANTA CRUZ: HIGHLANDS

Morning

The final morning of this six-day Southern Galapagos Islands cruise takes you to Santa Cruz where you will trek with your naturalist guide to see giant tortoises in their natural habitat. Be sure to wear comfortable walking shoes, long pants, a hat and sunblock.

Transfer to Seymour Airport on Baltra Island 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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