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Alya Ctamaran 5-Night Itinerary

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“The Samba cruise anyway was great, good boat, good food, amazing guide and friendly staff.”Federica Novellini

Itinerary at a Glance

Day 1: Baltra Island: Airport - Seymour
Day 2: Plazas - Sante Fe
Day 3: Interpretation Center - Lobos Island
Day 4: Garden Bay - Suarez Point
Day 5: Cormorant Point // Devil's Crown - Alieri Hill
Day 6: Highlands
Galapagos Map

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1 - Saturday
Baltra Island: Airport - Seymour

AM: Departure to the Galapagos Islands, arrival at Baltra airport, where our naturalist guide of the National Park will be waiting for you.

PM: This island is home for large colonies of both magnificent and great frigatebirds and you can see them displaying their red balloons to attract a female. Blue-footed boobies nest in the ground and perform their famous dance in the open areas, while swallow-tailed gulls perch on the cliff edges. Land iguanas are common inland while their marine cousins bask in the rocks by the sea, close to sea lions, which often like to body surf in the waves.

Snorkel: This place is a really great snorkeling location, as it has tremendous diversity and amount of fish, but also sea lions, sharks, eels, turtles, rays and many more.

Highlights: Galapagos sea lions, blue footed boobies, magnificent & great frigatebirds, land & marine iguanas, swallow-tailed gulls, shearwaters, Darwin finches.

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Lunch - Dinner
Day 2 - Sunday
Plazas - Sante Fe

AM: Of the two twin islands, only South Plazas is allowed to be visited, while North plazas is kept exclusively for scientific research. This is a small islet, but it packs an impressive amount of wildlife. Right after you land you will see Galapagos land iguanas waiting under prickly-pear cactus feed on their fruits. A large colony of sea lions will give you the opportunity to see playful pups enjoying the tide pools, but also large grumpy males defending their territories. The trail will take you to a cliff where you can observe many sea birds, such as frigatebirds, red-billed tropicbirds, boobies, swallow-tailed gulls and pelicans. A reddish succulent vegetation with scattered cactus covers most of the islands like a carpet, giving this island a unique personality.

Highlights: Galapagos land iguanas, sea lions, tropicbirds, pelicans, boobies, Galapagos shearwaters, swallow-tailed gulls.

 

PM: Giant Prickly-pear cactus and barren lava rocks surround the landing spot at Santa Fe, located inside one of the most beautiful bays in the Galapagos. Turquoise water and white sand beaches make this location a perfect home for a large colony of sea lions which you will see basking in the sand. Inland, look down for endemic Santa Fe land iguanas, but also look up for Galapagos hawks, which often perch at the top of the cactus looking for prey. Darwin finches, Galapagos doves, mockingbirds and lava lizards are also common along the trail. 

Snorkel: After the hike, you will have the option to kayak or snorkel in the sheltered waters inside the bay, where you can swim with sea lion pups and reef sharks. Also look for sea turtles, rays and a large variety of tropical fish including large schools of surgeonfish and parrotfish.

Highlights: Giant cactus, Santa Fe bay, Galapagos sea lions, Santa Fe land iguanas, Galapagos hawks, Galapagos doves, reef sharks.

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Breakfast - Lunch - Dinner
Day 3 - Monday
Interpretation Center - Lobos Island

AM: Located in the outskirts of Puerto Baquerizo, this center is dedicated to the history of human presence in the Galapagos. Since the times of the early Spanish explorers to the present times, including illustrious visitors such as Charles Darwin, this permanent exhibition will take you through the dangers and struggles of the first settlers trying to survive the harsh Galapagos environment.

Highlights: Endemic plants, exhibition on human history

PM: Lobos island is a small islet separated from San Cristobal by a narrow channel, forming a sheltered bay where sea lion pups play in tidal pools. Despite its small size, the island is surprisingly packed with wildlife, especially with “lobos marinos”, the Spanish name for sea lions. Groups of sea lions will welcome you at the landing spot, but as you walk a few steps inland, male frigatebirds displaying their inflated red balloons will be perched on the bushes and trees. A small colony of blue footed boobies, which often nest right on the trail, will give you the opportunity to observe their famous courtship dance.

Snorkel: This is a great snorkeling location as the water are usually calm and the sea lions often play with divers to show off their swimming skills. Sea turtles and rays are often seen resting in the sandy bottoms.

Highlights: Galapagos sea lions, marine Iguanas, magnificent & great frigatebirds, blue-footed Boobies, San Cristobal Lava Lizards.

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Breakfast - Lunch - Dinner
Day 4 - Tuesday
Garden Bay - Suarez Point

AM: Gardner beach is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful and interesting beaches to visit in the Galapagos. Its fine coral sand and turquoise water give it a totally tropical appearance, which contrasts with the presence of sea lions basking in the beach. You will have the opportunity to walk along the beach and learn about the biology of sea lions and other endemic species, such as the Española mockingbird, marine iguanas and Galapagos hawks.

Snorkel: There are several great snorkeling places at Gardner bay. It is a fantastic site to swim with sea lions, reef sharks, rays and many species of fish, including; Angelfish, Parrotfish, Damselfish, Surgeonfish and many others.  

Highlights: Coral sand beach, sea lions, Galapagos hawks, Española mockingbirds, Darwin finches, marine iguanas.

PM: This rocky trail is one the most amazing nature walks you can do in the Galapagos islands.

From the moment you set foot on the island and all the way along the trail the amount and diversity of fauna is truly amazing. Sea lions and marine iguanas will be the first ones welcoming us, followed by large colonies of sea birds, including Nazca and Blue-footed boobies, gulls and tropicbirds. At the end of the trail we will visit a colony of waved albatross (April to January), the largest bird in the islands and one of the most interesting because of its powerful flight and elaborate courtship. Waved albatross only nest at Española, so this is the only place where you will see them at close range.

Highlights: Sea lions, Waved Albatross, Galapagos hawks, Española mockingbirds, Darwin finches, marine iguanas, Nazca & Blue-footed Boobies, Red-billed Tropicbirds, Swallow-tailed gulls, herons, lava lizards, herons.

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Breakfast - Lunch - Dinner
Day 5 - Wednesday
Cormorant Point // Devil's Crown - Alieri Hill

AM: Punta Cormorant is located in the north of Floreana and it is known for its large coastal lagoon with American flamingoes, white-cheeked pintails, black-necked stilts and other shorebirds. There is a beautiful white sand beach which is an important nesting ground for green sea turtles where we can also see rays and reef sharks. In the last years, a small groups of blue footed boobies have started to breed right by the trail. This is also a great trail to look at endemic plants.

Snorkel: It will be done at Devil’s Crown, a heavily eroded little volcano right by Floreana island. This is considered by many as one of the best snorkeling sites in the entire archipelago as the current funnels plankton through the Crown, attracting huge schools of snapper, Creole fish parrot fish, angelfish, reef sharks, sea turtles, rays and a phenomenal amount of marine life.      

Highlights: American flamingo, blue-footed booby, frigatebirds, tropicbirds, Galapagos shearwaters, sea lions, sea turtle nesting site, finches, shorebirds, coral-sand beach. 

PM: Alieri hill is the remnant of an old volcano located in the transition zone of Floreana, 15 minutes away by bus from the town. This is one of the best locations for plant lovers, as the vegetation is largely native, with many endangered endemic species hard to find elsewhere. The views of the northern coast are also superb and there are interesting birds to look for, such as flycatchers, yellow warblers and Darwin finches.  

Highlights: Endemic plants, transition zone, Darwin finches.

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Breakfast - Lunch - Dinner
Day 6 - Thursday
Highlands

AM: Either if you do this visit starting from Baltra or from Puerto Ayora, a bus will take you to the highlands stopping along the way at one of the reserves to visit the lush highland forests where you will look for Galapagos Giant tortoises in their natural environment. This is the best place in the Galapagos to see these gentle giants (reaching over 300 kg / 600 pounds!) casually grazing and resting in freshwater ponds. This is also home for a great diversity of birds rarely found at the lowlands, including finches (tree, woodpecker and vegetarian finches), flycatchers and several species of water birds. You will visit a lava tunnel (depend on the itinerary) and learn how these extraordinary formations where created by ancient volcanic eruptions.

Highlights: Giant tortoises, Darwin finches, barn owls, white-cheeked pintails, Galapagos flycatchers, Lava tunnels.

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Breakfast

Prices

2023 - Price per person
RoomLuxuryious Private Rooms
6 DaysUS$ 4,400 PP
2022 - Price per person
RoomLuxuryious Private Rooms
6 DaysUS$ 3,900 PP
*Price per person based upon double occupancy.
*PP (per person)
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Reviews

“The Galapagos experience was absolutely amazing. Not just the abundant sea life and incredible spots, but also your professionalism and passion for your work turned my trip into an unforgettable holiday.”Jan Bartos