On this journey, you will visit San Cristobal, Española, Floreana and Santa Cruz Galapagos Islands.
About the vessel:
M/Y Corals I and II offer passengers a comfortable and intimate base from which to explore the magnificent Galapagos Islands. Coral I accommodates 36 passengers and Coral II accommodates 20 passengers; all cabins have air conditioning and private facilities. Both vessels have ample sun decks, social areas, Jacuzzi and library for guest enjoyment. Corals cruise include full board, two daily guided excursions with optional activities such as snorkelling, kayaking, dinghy rides and daily diving tours for license-holding divers.
Very early this morning you will be transferred to the airport for your flight to Galapagos.
Your Galapagos Cruise include: Accommodation in selected cabin, all meals, Island sightseeing, Naturalist guides and lecture services in English, Snorkelling gear, shared transfers in the islands and from main hotels in Quito and Guayaquil.
Please remember that the exact route and program may vary according to weather and ocean conditions and the wildlife you will encounter.
There are two types of landings throughout your Galapagos tour:
Dry landing: guests step from the dinghy onto rocks or a dock.
Wet landing: as the dinghy edges onto a sandy beach, guests step into knee-deep water and wade ashore.
On arrival in San Cristobal you will be picked up at the airport by your naturalist guides and taken on a ten-minute bus drive to the pier to board the M/V Corals I & II.
PM: Interpretation Center & Tijeretas Hill (San Cristobal Island)
Dry landing in Puerto Baquerizo Moreno, the capital of the Galapagos Islands. Passengers visit the Interpretation Centre, an excellent place to learn about islands’ history in The Museum of Natural History which displays information about the volcanic origins of the islands, their remoteness from the continent, ocean currents, climate, the arrival of the different species and their colonisation, among other points of interest. The human history is also showcased, chronologically narrating the most significant events related to the discovery and the island’s colonisation.
AM: Cerro Brujo (San Cristóbal)
Wet landing. Cerro Brujo is an eroding tuff cone that at several locations is composed of ‘AA’ lava formations, and a beautiful white sand beach, great for snorkelling and sunbathing. You will visit a lagoon where migratory bird species can be seen: Black-necked Stilts, Ruddy Turnstones, Whimbrels, other sandpiper species and White-cheeked Pintails. Cerro Brujo offers beautiful views of Kicker Rock, the southern part of San Cristobal and the adjacent coast.
PM: Pitt Point & Pitt Islet (San Cristóbal)
Wet landing followed by a high intensity hike on rocky terrain. The trail includes an olivine beach of 90 meters long and a path that climbs to the top of a volcanic tuff, through several magnificent viewpoints. This is probably the only site where the three-booby species of the Galapagos can be seen together: Nazca, Blue-footed, and Red-footed; as well as two species of frigatebirds and a sea lion colony; it is also excellent for dinghy rides and snorkelling, where a good range of sea birds can be observed.
AM: Suarez Point (Espanola Island)
Dry landing. An island of geological interest being one of the oldest in Galapagos, it has a high percentage of endemism because it is also one of the most isolated in the archipelago. This, and the great variety of wildlife found makes this site one of the most attractive in the Galapagos. Explore volcanic formations and a riveting wildlife: large colonies of Sea Lion and seabirds including Española mockingbird, Nazca boobies, and the spectacular Red Billed tropic bird. You will also encounter singular Marine iguanas that have a turquoise colour with red in the breeding season, Lava lizards, and the colourful Sally Light Foot crabs.
A somewhat lengthy hike will bring you among Nazca and Blue-footed boobies, right up to nesting grounds that sometimes overlap the trail. Other birding favourites include Galapagos Dove, Galapagos Hawk, Swallow-tailed gulls and the world’s largest colony of Waved Albatross, an unequivocal highlight during mating season (April- December). Admire the island’s dramatic backdrop, featuring the famous “Soplador”, a seaward blowhole that shoots water at some 23 metres in the air.
PM: Gardner Bay (Espanola Island)
Wet landing in Gardner Bay, on a beautiful white coral sand beach guarded by a colony of Sea Lions. There are no trails, so you will stay along the shore where you can spot Galapagos Hawk, American Oystercatcher, Galapagos Dove, Hood Mockingbird, Yellow Warbler, Lava lizards, Marine iguanas, and three species of Darwin Finches: a subspecies of the Large Cactus Finch, which is similar to the large ground finch, the small ground Finch and the Warbler Finch which is another endemic subspecies. Swimming and snorkelling offer a great variety of Galapagos marine wildlife: King Angelfish, Creole fish, Damsel fish and Parrot fish.
AM: Champion Islet / Devil’s Crown / Cormorant Point (Floreana Island)
Wet landing. Champion is a small Islet located just offshore Floreana Island, offers great dinghy rides or snorkelling along a nice wall filled with a variety of marine wildlife like the endemic Black Striped Salema, the Blue Lobster, Long Nose Hawkfish, Sea Horses, Coral Hawkfish, Sea Lions, and the famous Red lipped batfish. Devil’s Crown is considered one of the best sites for snorkelling; here you can watch Galapagos Penguins, Sea Lions, turtles, sharks, dolphins, and fish diversity. Wet landing on an olivine green sand beach. Hike from the black mangrove beds to a brackish lagoon, which usually holds one of the largest flamingo populations in the Galapagos. This island features some endemic plants such as Scalesiavillosa, White and Black Mangrove, and Holy Stick.
The trail continues to a beautiful white-sand beach, one of the most important nesting sites of Green Pacific Sea Turtles. It is important to avoid walking in the water due to the Sting Rays that may be hiding in the sand, which can stab or wound humans in self-defense if accidentally stepped on. From the beach, one can spot Sea Turtles, Blue-footed Boobies plunging into the water, and small Reef Sharks floating and searching for food along the shoreline. This coral sand-beach marks the end of your trail, and you will head back to the olivine beach where you can snorkel amongst sea turtles, reef fish, sea lions and, on a good day, white-tipped reef sharks. A small colony of Galapagos penguins resides on Floreana and can sometimes be observed as well.
PM: Post Office (Floreana Island)
A wet landing on the north side of Floreana, leading to the bay of Post Office (named like this because, in 1793, Captain James Colnett installed a wooden barrel which served as an informal post office for sailors passing through, who would take letters with them to their destinations. Today, our visitors continue the tradition by placing unstamped postcards inside the barrel that should reach their destinations for free. It can take weeks, months, even years, not arrive at all, or even arrive before you! You will may also encounter Darwin Finches, Yellow Warbler, and Lava Lizards. Great snorkelling opportunities with Green Pacific Sea Turtles and on the main beach among playful sea lions. Moreover, this island is best known for its endemic vegetation: Scalesiavillosa, Lecocarpuspinnatifidus, and Galapagos milkwort.
AM: Highlands Tortoise Reserve (Santa Cruz Island)
Dry landing. In the mountains of Galapagos is possible to admire different kind of birds, such as: tree and ground finches, vermillion flycatchers, paint-billed crakes, yellow warblers, and cattle egrets (usually standing on the tortoises’ shell). The journey to the reserve offers great opportunities to see the contrasts that the island offers in reference to the variety of ecosystems. The road goes from the coast through the agricultural zone and straight up to the dense humid forests. Often, Galapagos Giant Tortoises are also seen on the way, wandering through pastures in the paddocks. This spot is a birdwatchers’ haven, since almost every land bird present on the island lives or migrates here.
Afterwards you will be transferred to the airport to catch your flight back to the mainland.