Isolated for thousands of years, the creatures of
the Galapagos Islands evolved into the unique species which inspired
Charles Darwin to develop the Theory of Evolution.
We arrive in the lovely mountain city of Quito, capital
of Ecuador. A former Inca capital, Quito boasts an old town area as well
as a beautiful modern city.
In the morning, we fly from Quito to the island of San Cristobal, where we board the M/C Seaman Journey and begin our Galapagos cruise. After lunch, we visit the Charles Darwin Center.
Today we start with a visit to Galapaguera National Park to observe the Galapagos tortoise in its natural habitat. We then visit Cerro Brujo (the first coast where Charles Darwin walked in 1835), a beautiful beach of white coral sand where we can swim, watch birds and sea lions, and have the opportunity for some excellent snorkeling. In this marvelous lava landscape we can see seabirds like blue-footed boobies, herons and frigate birds, while in the protected bay we can watch young tortoises. Here are also found the Chatham Mockingbird and San Cristobal Lava Lizard, both species found no where else.
This day we explore Española Island, also known as Hood Island. We begin with a visit to Gardner Bay with its excellent beach for relaxing, swimming, snorkeling and kayaking. Sea lions and sharks can be seen in the crystal clear water. The afternoon is spent at Suarez Point, a great location for watching blue-footed boobies, albatrosses and Nazca boobies. The large waved albatross use the cliff as a launching pad while in the background a magnificent blowhole spurts water 150 to 250 feet into the air.
We sail to Floreana Island and land at Point Cormorant. The beach is home to many sea lions and its sand is made up of fine olivine crystals, a glassy volcanic mineral, which gives the beach an olive-green color. We visit a flamingo lagoon—a great place to watch many species of birds. Then in the afternoon we visit Post Office Bay, on the northern shore of the island. In 1793 the British whalers set up a barrel to send letters to and from England. Today, visitors use the barrel to send letters back home—no stamps needed! We continue to the north of the island to an elevated slope and a beautiful vista. From the lookout we have a panoramic view of the coastline from Enderby islet to Post Office Bay, as well as Cerro Pajas, flamingos and the forest of Palo Santo.
In the morning we visit the Van Straelen Exhibition Hall on Santa Cruz Island to learn more about the Galapagos tortoises before going to the airport for our return flight to Quito.
Today we tour Quito, its historical plazas, cathedrals
and colonial government buildings, and visit the Mitad Del Mundo, the
“Center of the Earth,” where we can stand right on the equator.
We transfer to the airport for our flight home, or fly
on to Lima to begin our Peruvian Adventure.
Air travel within Ecuador, transfers, transportation,
accommodations, guided tours, national park
fee and all meals aboard ship.
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*Note: Prices subject to change without notice.