Galapagos Natural Life
Tourist Class - Yachts Galapagos
The Darwin Yacht was built in 1995 in Puerto Ayora, Santa Cruz Island, Galapagos. It has eight big double cabins with air conditioning, private bathroom and hot water.
Capacity: 16 passengers
Crew: 6 members plus a naturalist bilingual guide level III.
Itinerary Discovery (GD 4D/3N) - Itinerary Adventure (GA 4 Days – 3 Nights)
MONDAY: BALTRA – HIGHLANDS PM
Upon arrival at BALTRA Airport, travelers pass through an airport inspection point to make sure that no foreign plants or animals are introduced to the islands, as well as to pay the park entrance fee ($100), Our guide will meet with you, will help you pick up your luggage, and accompany you to the port of Puerto Ayora in a taxi ride, where we set the cruise aboard the Yacht Darwin where the captain and crew will welcome you.
PM, Los Gemelos or The Pit Craters are, geologically speaking, seen as craters and its formation is not directly due to volcanic action. They were created as a result of the collapse or sinking of surface materials into cracks or manholes. In 1989 a circular path around the largest crater was opened, which passes through the interior of the Scalesia forest, an excellent place to observe land birds, especially the woodpecker finch and the vermillion flycatcher. The vermillion flycatcheris the most outstanding terrestrial bird in the upper parts of most of the islands. The Pit Craters is perhaps the best place for observing them, since they arrive in large numbers in the Scalesia forest. They are curious and usually fairly tame. They feed on insects they often trap with their peak in mid-flight. Their nesting season is from January to April; they put 3 eggs in a nest constructed of moss and lichen. The vermillion flycatcher inhabits many areas of North and South America. Another plant that draws attention at the Pit Craters is the Galapagos Guava or guayabillo tree, Psidium galapageium, which have a clean and smooth bark. Its branches are covered with epiphytes and brown liverworts, Bryopteris liebmanniana that many people confuse with moss. Allowed tour: group tour with a naturalist guide; guided walks.
TUESDAY ISLA SANTIAGO Puerto Egas AM – Playa Espumilla /Caleta Bucanero (pr/sn) PM
AM, The visitor site Port Egas is a black sand beach located on the west side of James Bay and northwest of Santiago Island. South of the beach is Sugarloaf Volcano, which has deposits of volcanic tuff, the same that has favored the formation of the black sand beach. The Crater is just north of this site; it has a saltwater lagoon, which during the summer dry season becomes a salt mine. Allowed tour: group tour with a naturalist guide; guided walks: Snorkel.
PM, The Espumilla visitor site is on the northern coast of Santiago Island in James Bay. The main attractions here are a palo santo forest, beach and the landscape. The beach is an important site for nesting marine turtles (Chelonia midas agassizi). Allowed tour: group tour with a naturalist guide; guided walks: Snorkel; Panga Ride.
WEDNESDAY ISLOTE BARTOLOME AM – BAHIA SULLIVAN PM
AM, Bartolome Playa, The Bartolomé visitor site, is a flagship site in the Galapagos Islands because of its wonderful beauty. It possesses masterful landscapes and its main attractions are the beaches, the dunes and Pinnacle Rock. Among the local species, there is the sea turtle (Chelonia mydas), which choose this place as a nesting site and the Galapagos penguin. This site has two beaches: North Beach and South Beach. The north beach is the landing site where you can practice swimming and snorkeling. South beach is accessed by a small path along the mangroves and over the great sand dune. Bartolome Escalera, The top of this hill is about 115 m and the route is performed on a path of 795 meters. No one knows the exact age of this island but according to its geological composition and general characteristics it is quite young. The few plants found on the island are called pioneers because they are the first plants that arrive and settle there. E.g. Tiquilia nesiotes, Tiquilia fusca and Chamaesyce spp. East of the summit there are spatter cones, consisting of thick lava droplets. To the west lie tuff cones (volcanic ash sediment) and their eroded remnants. The Tower or Pinnacle is part of a tuff cone. A small colony of penguins, Spheniscus mendiculus, breeds in the small bay. Bartolomé is one of the best places to see them. Allowed tour: group tour with a naturalist guide; guided walks: Snorkel; Panga Ride.
PM, BAHÍA SULLIVAN, This site is of great geological interest. It is located southeast of Santiago Island; the landing can be performed either in the rocky shore (dry landing) or the white sand beach (wet landing). The length of the trail is approximately 1.5 km; travel time is one hour and a half. The area is covered by Pahoehoe lava flows (solidified lava in corrugated or accordion form). It was very active in the last 25 years of the nineteenth century. The Sullivan lava was formed in 1897. Geologically this flow is very young. The formed magma is flat but the movement of underground lava, the rapid cooling and other eruptions led to the break in many places. These formations have a thickness of 1.5 m and did not cover much of the previous relief forming "kipukas" (Islands of vegetation surrounded by newer lava tides). Allowed tour: group tour with a naturalist guide; guided walks.
THURSDAY AM, North Seymour is located north of Baltra (or South Seymour).
The total distance of the trail is 2 miles. Seymour North, Plaza Sur and Plaza Norte, Baltra, northeastern Santa Cruz, Santa Fe and part of Española, were formed by uprisings of underwater volcanic lavas. They were part of a volcanic lava table deposited in sheet form along cracks located on the ocean floor. The uprisings occurred sporadically and lasted more than a million years to reach its current level. The vegetation is bush and hosts the largest nesting colony of Great Frigatebirds in Galapagos. Importantly, the Galapagos is the westernmost distribution for this species. The common frigate is also present. Permitted Uses: Interpretive Group Tour with a Naturalist Guide; Guided walks: Snorkel Our guide will be checked out at the airport of Baltra. We look forward to a future trip back on our yacht Darwin.
PM, The visitor site Las Bachas is located in northern part of Santa Cruz Island, it consists of two beaches that have a combined length of about 1 km long. The predominant vegetation is of the coastal zone. It represents one of the main nesting sites of sea turtles (Chelonia mydas) on Isla Santa Cruz. It is a good place to see flamingos, as well as migratory and aquatic birds. Allowed tour:Group Tour with a Naturalist Guide; Guided walks: Snorkel.Permitted Uses: Interpretive Group Tour with a Naturalist Guide ; Guided walks: Snorkel
FRIDAY: Punta Pitt AM – Cerro Brujo PM
AM, Punta Pitt is located at the east end of San Cristóbal Island. The trail includes an olivine beach approximately 90 meters and a trail that ascends to the top of a volcanic tuff hill passing through several natural viewpoin. The trip is 1,400 meters with an estimated time of two hours. Punta Pitt is composed of volcanic tuff substrate. High winds present there have led to natural erosion. This is the only site in the Galapagos Islands, where you can watch the three species of boobies and 2 species of frigates nesting in the same area. The reason that there are three species of boobies at Punta Pitt is due to the geographic location; there is enough food so there is no competition between them. The blue footed boobies nests in the interior (rare in the cliffs), red-footed boobies nest on bushes and masked boobies nest in the cliffs. Another added attraction is the presence of sea lion. Permitted Uses: Interpretive Group Tour with a Naturalist Guide; Guided walks: Snorkel; Panga Ride.
PM, Cerro Brujo is located on the north coast of San Cristóbal Island; the trail at this visitors site can be done in about three hours, including the panga ride. Its main attraction is the powder-like sandy beach, other than species of flora and fauna. It is an eroding tuff cone that at several locations is composed of lava type a - a. It is formed by low-viscosity lava that contains little gas and breaks while it solidifies and is pushed by lava continuing to flow from behind. Cerro Brujo offers an excellent landscape, where you can see Kicker Rock (geologic formation), the southern part of Upper San Cristobal and the coast adjacent to Cerro Brujo. Permitted Uses: Interpretive Group Tour with a Naturalist Guide ; Guided walks: Snorkel ; Panga Ride.
SATURDAY: ISLA SAN CRISTOBAL: León Dormido AM - Islas Lobos PM)
AM, Leon Dormido also known as Kicker rock, it is a rocky formation or cone eroded volcanic toba. It is a refuge for many sea birds such as blue-footed boobies and during, as well as for the sea lions. The waters around the rock are home to numerous species of fish, sea turtles, stingrays and hammerhead sharks. It reaches a maximum of 114 meters of height.
PM, Isla Lobos is about an hour by boat from Port Baquerizo Moreno. The length of the trail is 850 meters and the estimated travel time is one hour. There is a small population of blue-footed boobies and common frigate birds nesting on this site. You can observe the two species of sea lions present in the archipelago. During the tour you go through a dry vegetation zone, substrate of volcanic rocks and a sandy area. During the panga tour brown pelicans and several species of shorebirds can be observed; although, snorkeling, it's common to see juvenile sea lions, manta rays and sea turtles. Permitted Uses: Interpretive Group Tour with a Naturalist Guide; Guided walks: Snorkel; Panga Ride.
SUNDAY ISLA SANTA CRUZ Charles Darwin Station AM
AM, CENTRO DE CRIANZA "FAUSTO LLERENA" (Charles Darwin Station) The tour starts at the information booth of the GNP, The trail continues to the Van Straelen interpretation Center, then to the breeding center and from there begins an elevated circular path made of wood, where you can see tortoises of Española Island, ending in the tortoise exhibit corral. Tortoises of this corral are accustomed to humans; it is an excellent spot for visitors to be photographed with them. Always remind your visitors not to touch them and not to step on the platform where they're food is placed. The path continues to the CDRS facilities and then to the town of Puerto Ayora. Permitted Uses: Interpretive Group Tour with a Naturalist Guide ; Guided walks.
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