WESTERN LOOP EXTENSION | 8 Day - 7 Nights
*Minimum 6 passengers
Extend your travel through the western part of Galapagos Islands and get to know Santa Cruz Island where you can have fun with a experimental fishing.
You land on the island of Baltra and you are met by Encantada yacht staff and drive from the island of Baltra to the Itabaca canal where the Encantada is waiting. We aboard the yacht settle in to our cabins and enjoy lunch. Then it’s a short ride to the north side of Santa Cruz Island for a wonderful hike at Dragon Hill. This is one of the longer trails in the Galapagos and offers a good variety of flora and fauna. Then, in the night, we begin our voyage across the sea towards Isabela Island.
Later in the afternoon, we will aboard the yacht and settle in to our cabins. At night, we will sail to Puerto Villamil –Isabela Island.
Isabela is the largest of the Galapagos Islands and also one of the youngest. We anchor in the harbor of the small town of Puerto Villamil and take a dinghy to visit Tintoreras islet. The island is a stark, rocky place with sharp volcanic rocks that shelter hundreds of marine iguanas. Then we will go to the town to visit Wetlands,the Flamingos Lagoon and the Tortoise Breeding Center in Puerto villamil. Then we will return to the Encantada for lunch.
After lunch, we have time to snorkel near the island of Puerto Villamil and go to a natural swimming pool called Concha de Perla, here you will see a variety of fishes and maybe sea lions wile you snorkel.
We wake up near Elizabeth Bay and Moreno Point on the west side of Isabela Island and go ashore for a hike through a lava rock landscape. The mix of mangroves and tide pools make for an area rich in life and diversity. We see a number of birds, sea turtles and perhaps white-tip sharks and flightless cormorants as we explore.
After lunch on the boat we had to nearby Elizabeth Bay that has a number if islets that we visit by dinghy. There are penguins and blue-footed boobies along with other birds and sea life.
We arrive early at Fernandina Island, the youngest and furthest west of all the Galapagos Islands. Fewer boats make it this far and it’s the least-visited of all the Galapagos Islands. For some, Fernandina is the highlight of the trip as there are literally thousands of marine iguanas, along with almost incredulous numbers of other animals. We land to walk along a lava trail on Espinoza Point. Wildlife sightings include the flightless cormorant, hawks, tortoises, herons of varying species, crabs, sea lions (of course) and more! Because it is so remote, this is the most pristine of all the Galapagos Islands and no species of mammals were ever introduced here.
In the afternoon we go to Vicente Roca Point, a unique visitor site where landscape is consider one of the highlights during your visit.
Located on the southwestern area of Ecuador Volcano, just a few kilometer below the equatorial line.
The volcanic tuff cones and cindery slopes were eroded creating a beautiful volcanic landscape. We have a panga panga ride looking for some Galapagos penguins, blue footed boobies, Nazca boobies and brown noddies. While snorkeling we find sun fishes which are fairly common in these waters. When the surf is quiet and calm enough, snorkeling is totally fascinating here.
Underwater, cliffs are festooned with all kinds of invertebrates, corals and algae of different kinds and the best opportunity to watch sea turtles feeding or just lying in the bottom and sometimes floating in mid water almost at touching distance.
We wake up at Santiago Island and Egas Port, also known as James Bay. British buccaneers came to this bay to anchor in the 1600’s and later and found it a good source of firewood, water, tortoises and salt. No people live here now of course, but there are sea lions and brown pelicans among other creatures that offer welcome.
We walk along a lava shoreline with marine iguanas basking, land iguanas saunter along and Sally Lightfoot crabs scatter from us.
We return to the boat for lunch, then head to Rábida, an excellent snorkeling location.
We pass by Daphne Island where Peter and Rosemary Grant have done important research relative to Darwin’s finches (we highly recommend you read the book “The Beak of the Finch) and then head to the Itabaca Channel. Here we say good-bye to our yacht crew and head to the airport on Baltra.
After your last visit on The Encantada, our guide will take you the Giant Turtle Reserve – El Chato: In the Highland part of Santa Cruz giant tortoises can be found wandering freely through the area around the lagoon form the Chato.
Afterwards, we will visit “El Garrapatero” this is a beautiful beach where you can enjoy of paradise turquoise water. Behind the beach is a gap where there are flamingos. The Galapagos finches and migratory birds from the coast are easy to find.
At approximately 6:00 am we will be on our way to the eastern side of Pto. Ayora which is known as one of the best fishing areas in the archipelago, you can expect to catch Striped, Blue, and Black marlin, depending on the season, however since the water temperature in the Galapagos is pretty much constant all year around you can find bill-fish pretty much every month of the year.
After our Galapagos fishing day we will be on our way to Puerto Ayora, to visit the Charles Darwin Station, where we will be able to observe Lonsome George, the last living Giant Tortoise of his species. We will listen about the ongoing conservation efforts directed at preserving the Giant Tortoises, as well as the environment of the archipelago as a whole.
Depending on the time one the flights, we may be able to visit two sunken “holes” similar to craters, known as “Los Gemelos”. These craters were formed by the collapsed of the earth beneath which lava had passed and created giant tunnels, which facilitates the collapse and creation of the craters.
It is an excellent place to observe land birds, especially the woodpecker finch and flycatcher found in large numbers, are curious and quite tame. There are 7 plants in Galapagos endemic among them is the Scalesia giant plants that are relatives of sunflowers. Another plant that notice is guayabillo trees, which have a clean and smooth bark.
On the final day we recommend waking up at 6:00 am to have enough time to prepare ourselves for the transfer from Pto Ayora to Baltra Airport. We will eat breakfast there, and depart for Baltra where you will catch your flight back either to Quito or Guayaquil. End of our services.
MINIMUM 6 PAX, THIS ITINERARY IS SUBJECT TO CHANGE WITHOUT PREVIOUS NOTICE DUE TO SEASONAL CHANGES, OPERATION LOGISTICS, LAST MINUTE WEATHER CONDITIONS AND ADJUSTMENTS OF GALAPAGOS NATIONAL PARK POLICY.
The rate for our 8 Days Live-abord itinerary is $ 2450 USD per person in double occupancy.
• All transfers in Galapagos (if you will be arriving or departing the Galapagos on dates other than your tour dates, you must arrange your own airport transfers, or please let us know in advance and we can arrange airport transfers for you at an extra cost.).
• Navigation on board M/S Encantada.
• Accommodation in double cabins at Encantada and Tourist Hotel Lodging at Pto Ayora.
• Daily land visits and snorkeling activity.
• Certified Galapagos Naturalist Guide.
• Meals on board (Breakfast | Lunch | Dinner) - snacks after morning and afternoon activities.
• Purified water, Coffee and tea.
Services Not Included:
• Flight tickets to Galapagos Islands.
• Galapagos National Park Entrance Fee ($100.00).
• Galapagos Visitor Card ($20.00).
• Isabela Local Tax ($5.00).
• Snorkel Gear (mask, tube and fins).
• Local Water Taxi Cost ( Santa Cruz & Isabela Islands).
• Extra soft and alcoholic drinks.
• Personal Expenses.
• Ecuadorian Taxes IVA 14%.
NOTE: Single cabins are available with an extra single charge