8 Day Galapagos Multisport Tour
DAY 1: VISIT EL JUNCO LAKE, LA GALAPAGUERA A FREE RANGE TORTOISE BREEDING CENTER AND HACIENDA TRANQUILA
We start our adventure with a visit to El Junco, the only permanent fresh water lake in the islands. It is located at 615 meter above sea level and has an amazing 360 degrees view of the island. The frigate birds from the coast take baths on this lake to clean the salt on their feathers while you hike around enjoying the unique Miconia tree that grows in the area.
After another short drive we stop at “Galapaguera de Cerro Colorado”, a free range tortoise breeding center. We´ll walk the grounds in search of wild Giant Tortoises and learn about the efforts this center does to support their conservation.
We stop at a local agricultural enterprise called Hacienda Tranquila for lunch. We walk the interpretative trails of the Hacienda and learn about the local agricultural practices in the Galapagos highlands. We´ll have a chance to try exotic fruits like oranges, passion fruit, guabas, pomarosa, ovos, guayabas and more.
That same afternoon we drive back to town and head for the beautiful beach of Loberia, where you can swim and snorkel with sea lions and sea turtles until sunset. (B, L)
Optional: If you feel energetic and curious to explore, you can hike to Las Negritas Cliff to spot marine birds and amazing views of the coastal line.
DAY 2: ENJOY SOME OF THE BEST SNORKELING IN KICKER ROCK AND RELAX IN CLEAR WATERS OF THE NORTHERN COAST
After breakfast we take a speed boat to the highlight of San Cristobal and one of the best places in the Galapagos for snorkeling and diving. This is a known feeding area for sharks and a great variety of tropical fish. Amaze yourself in this natural aquarium with its geological beauty and incredible marine life.
We continue our journey and disembark at one of the calm and pristine beaches of the northern coast for a picnic lunch. Relax, walk, swim or snorkel and soak in the natural beauty this place has to offer. (B, L)
Optional: diving for an extra fee. Highly recommended.
DAY 3: BIKE THOUGH WETLANDS, AND SANDY BEACHES. VISIT THE TORTOISE BREEDING CENTER, MANGROVE LAGOONS AND SPOT FLAMINGOS AND ENDEMIC BIRDS
This morning, we board a small plane for a fast inter-island flight from San Cristobal to Isabela Island. Without a moment to spare, we start our biking adventure along the amazing white sand beach that takes us to the historical site known as the “Wall of Tears”. During the 1950´s, Isabela was declared a penal colony by the Government of Ecuador. The prison environment was so isolated that the inmates built this wall from lava rocks just to keep their sanity.
After our historic stop, we cross the wetlands and reach beautiful sandy beaches, pink lagoons and amazing photography spots like Orchilla. In the afternoon, we take a walk through mangrove trails, passing “manzanillo” trees and other native plants. We arrive to the “Arnaldo Tupiza” Giant Tortoises breeding Center and learn about how the Galapagos Park has invested years of research and dedicated patience to the recovery of these giant creatures, promoting their slow population growth. Our day would not be complete without a walk around the salty lakes that are home to the beautiful giant pink flamingos. (B, L)
DAY 4: KAYAK IN TINTORERAS TO SPOT PENGUINS, SEA LIONS AND MORE – SNORKEL IN CONCHA Y PERLA SEARCHING FOR RAYS, SEA TURTLES AND REEF FISH
Get ready for an incredible day of kayaking and snorkeling. We kayak through a maze of rocky mangrove areas at a place called Tintoreras, a group of small islets south of the town of Puerto Villamil. Here we find one of the smallest penguin in the world, also endemic to Galapagos. We´ll enjoy the company of playful sea lions, spotted eagle rays, turtles, iguanas, as well as blue footed boobies and other marine birds, all from your kayak.
Concha y Perla is a favorite local spot for snorkeling and searching for rays, sea turtles and reef fish. This is where we´ll spend the rest of our day. (B, L)
DAY 5: HIKE TO SIERRA NEGRA VOLCANO AND SPEND THE AFTERNOON AT A LOCAL HACIENDA
Our early breakfast sends us full of energy to a splendid 3 hour hike to the rim of one of the most spectacular calderas in the world, the Sierra Negra Volcano. One of the five main volcanoes that form the island of Isabela, it offers different ecological floors as we rise in altitude. The striking Vermilion flycatcher or the famous Galapagos hawk might accompany us during this hike.
Once you reach the edge of this 11 Km bowl of young lava, if you feel up to some more, you may continue to Volcan Chico, a live volcanic area with amazing views of the northern part of Isabela.We take off to enjoy a local “criollo” lunch at one of the best local farms in the highlands. We´ll spend our afternoon visiting the grounds and collecting different fruits and vegetables to sample later on. Agriculture practices, animal farming, coffee plantations, sugar cane products made by the owners await us along with tales and legends of the first settlers. (B, L)
DAY 6: VISIT TORTUGA BAY. IN THE AFTERNOON, KAYAK PUNTA ESTRADA, AND VISIT LOCAL ARTISANS AND WORKSHOPS
Early in the morning, we board a public speed boat for a scenic ride to Santa Cruz Island. Get ready for a hike surrounded by native vegetation to the famous beach of Tortuga Bay. This incredible white sand beach hosts an amazing colony of black and dark marine iguanas, a forests of opuntia cacti and sea turtles swimming in the calm area of the bay while the surfers are enjoying the extreme left side of the beach called “playa brava”.
We leave Tortuga Bay and head back to lunch. The afternoon finds us kayaking along the bay of Punta Estrada, discovering wildlife in the mangroves and skirting walls of lava rocks where hundreds of blue footed boobies, lava herons, masked boobies, brown nodies and yellow crowned night herons perch. At sunset we visit the local Punta Ayora workshops and learn about tempered chocolate, glass art, recycled art and much more. This is an excellent opportunity to purchase souvenirs that make a difference in the local community. (B, L)
DAY 7: HIKE AMONG GIANT TORTOISES, ENJOY LUNCH AT A LOCAL FARM IN THE HIGHLANDS AND SPEND YOUR AFTERNOON SWIMMING AT THE BEACH
After breakfast we leave in our vehicle to the biggest agricultural area of Galapagos: the highlands of Santa Cruz. Our first stop is at “El Chato” Natural Reserve, where we hike in search of the iconic Giant Tortoises in their natural habitat. Spot them taking mud baths at the ponds or trying to cross the forest walking slowly under the vegetation. This is a healthy native forest area that hosts the unique orchid of the islands among other endemic vegetation.
We continue on to a highland farm for a locally prepared lunch with the people of Galapagos. After lunch we drive down to “Garrapatero” beach to swim, enjoy amazing landscape and bird watching at the ponds next to the sandy area. (B, L)
DAY 8: TRANSFER OUT FROM HOTEL TO THE ITABACA CHANNEL
Today you will have a transfer from the hotel in Puerto Ayora to the Itabaca channel. Then continue by yourself to Baltra Island for your flight back to the mainland. (B)
This unique Galapagos Multisport combines the very best of three main islands: San Cristobal, Isabela and Santa Cruz. Sea kayak through marvelous tropical waters with sea turtles, sharks and sea lions surrounded by thousands of colorful reef fish. Hike active volcanoes and relax on white sand beaches with playful sea lions and marine iguanas. Enjoy interaction with local communities and sample local fruits and dishes. This trip is designed for travel enthusiasts, adventure travelers and nature seekers.
• Visit “El Junco”, one of the only freshwater lakes in Galapagos.
• Snorkel with sea lions, sea turtles, marine iguanas and tropical fish at Kicker Rock
• Visit the Giant Tortoise Breeding Center where you’ll find hatchlings and older breeding species.
• Mountain bike a scenic trail to Wall of Tears, a former prison colony.
• Visit organic farms, learn about sustainable agricultural practices and local ways of life.
• Sea kayak in Tintoreras, searching for penguins, marine iguanas, sea turtles, and sharks.
• Hike to Tortuga Bay: a natural paradise for wildlife encounters.
• Walk among giant tortoises in their natural habitat.
2017 Rate per person in double accommodation for fixed dates:
2017 Fixed departure dates: May 2-9, June 24-July 1, July 1-8, Aug. 3-10, Sept. 1-8, Oct. 25-Nov. 1,Nov. 21-28, Dec. 18-25
Accommodations comfort or premium class hotels, meals as listed (B=breakfast, L=lunch), bilingual Galapagos naturalist guide and all sea and land transportation during the tour.
Flights to and from Galapagos, entrance fee to Galapagos National Park, Galapagos transit card, tips, hotel and restaurant beverages.
Comfort: Opuntia, Casita de la Playa and Fernandina Premium: Golden Bay, Iguana Crossing and Angermeyer
This itinerary is subject to change without notice due to seasonal changes, inclement weather conditions, and adjustments of Galapagos National Park policy. All tours are shared with a group. Please enquire about private tour options.
The Weight restriction per person for the Inner Island flight from San Cristobal to Isabela is 25 pounds in one piece of luggage.
IMPORTANT: These itineraries are subject to change without notice due to seasonal changes, last minute weather conditions and adjustment of Galapagos National Park policy.
Level: Moderate to Challenging
BOAT TRAVEL TIME: 2-3 hours per day
PADDLE TIME: 2 to 4 hours each day
SEASON: All year
ALTITUDE: Sea level to 600 m.
WEATHER TEMPERATURES: December to May: 80ºF to 90ºF / 25ºC to 30ºC. June to September: 60ºF to 70ºF / 15ºC to 20ºC. October to December: 70ºF to 80ºF/ 15ºC to 25ºC
WATER TEMPERATURE: The waters of the Galapagos Islands are a unique mixture of warm and cold water, ranging between 65ºF and 85ºF.