Galapagos Eco-Yacht Safari Cruise, Ecuador
CURATED AQUATIC VOYAGES
CURATED AQUATIC VOYAGE - GALAPAGOS ISLANDS ECO-YACHT SAFARI CRUISE
This is an exclusive ThirdHome Group aquatic voyage onboard a world-renowned Eco-Yacht to experience a Galapagos Islands expedition (with maximum attendance of 16 passengers). This journey has a set determined departure date along with specific excursions and regional opportunities that are planned for a private group. NO keys are required for this journey. Please refer to fees section in details below.
*** CAST YOUR VOTE FOR AN EXPEDITION DATE ***
Based on an overall "majority vote" from our members by an RSVP count from those who are interested in joining on a 2018 Voyage with us, we will determine the final voyage departure date. Please cast your vote for your preferred sailing date from below the 2018 options below ***
TENTATIVE THIRDHOME GROUP DATES for 2018:
ADVANCE RSVP NOW! Once a date is solidified, we will then communicate with each member and at that time a DEPOSIT will be required to confirm your cabin on the voyage. Due to the exclusivity of this group expedition & limited availability - please RSVP to Liz Bates by JUL 31, 2017
7 Nights / 8 Days Eco-Yacht Voyage
Experience the Galapagos from the luxury of the M/C Ocean Spray, a 113-foot mega-catamaran that was built in 2011 and designed to cruise the islands in elegant comfort. This high-performance power motor catamaran with a 43-foot beam accommodates a maximum of 16 guests on two decks, plus a third-floor sundeck with 360-degree views. The ship's small size ensures maneuverability and intimacy in your Galapagos exploration. Eight spacious regular cabins and one smaller solo-single cabin each have private balconies with chairs and a table for quiet lingering. A sprawling sundeck offers sumptuous lounge chairs and ample room for socializing, plus a Jacuzzi. Ensuring you're prepared for every possible immersion in the wonders of the Galapagos, the catamaran is equipped with kayaks, snorkel gear and wet suits. From nature interpretation to fine cuisine, eight crew members in addition to the ship's captain and our two leading Naturalist Guides are on board to attend to every detail.
Cabin interiors reflect a crisp, blue and white nautical feel with accents of gleaming woodwork and stunning Galapagos wildlife photography. Each room has a comfortable couch or plush chair, and ample storage space with a closet and drawers. Private en suite bathrooms include a hot-and-cold freshwater shower, toilet and sink, plus robes, fresh towels and bath products. An additional mirror and vanity space is located outside the bathroom.
Enjoy meals next to the picture windows in the comfort of the main floor dining room, or under the shaded outdoor patio near the bar on the upper deck. Bright and inviting, the lounge has giant windows, long lengths of couch spaces and shining wood floors.
Eco-Yacht Galapagos Expedition Itinerary in brief:
SAT - ARRIVAL BALTRA ISLAND
Upon arrival into the Baltra Island Airport, you will be met and transferred to the Ocean Spray yacht; afternoon cruising to Sombrero Chino, named after its shape formed by volcanic rock giving it the name, Chinese Hat. Since it was given a maximum visiting capacity by the National Park Service it offers rare, up close viewing of Galapagos wildlife and well preserved remnants of fragile volcanic rock that can’t be found in such a unique condition anywhere else. The islet is home to a colony of sea lions on the white coral sand beach. Here you can see American Oystercatchers, Galapagos Penguins swimming along the shores, and Sally-Lightfoot Crabs in bright contrast to the dark volcanic rock. An optional hike of 400 meters starting at the beach rising up to160 feet exploring the different volcanic remnants and rare plant life along with amazing views; or perhaps snorkeling among White-Tipped Reef Sharks, tropical fish and other regional aquatic life.
SUN - ISABELA & FERNANDINA ISLANDS
The largest in the archipelago, Isabela is a seahorse-shaped island and one of the youngest and most volcanically active. The morning visit is to Vicente Roca Point. Comprised of two separate coves, this site is a large bay with spectacular sea life. Keep an eye out for seahorses, sea turtles, and the strange yet fascinating Mola-mola (sunfish). Habitat highlights include Penguins, Blue-footed Boobies, terns, Nazca Boobies, two types of sea lions, sea turtles, rays and puffer fish. Afternoon is spent on Fernandina Island. No foreign species have ever invaded this island and therefore it is one of the world's most pristine island ecosystems. The volcano “La Cumbre” dominates the landspace with lava fields reaching the ocean. The island´s highlight features the Flightless Cormorant nesting site. This area provides a great opportunity to see the Galapagos Hawk.
MON - TAGUS COVE & URBINA BAY
The morning is spent venturing into Tagus Cove, which is located across from Fernandina Island, near the Bolivar Channel dividing the two islands. This spot has been frequented by ships since the 1800s, using the area as an anchorage site. Trails winding by Lake Darwin up to a ridge display wonderful views. Punta Tortuga, just north of Tagus Cove, is another lovely beach surrounded by mangroves. In the afternoon, Urbina Bay will be explored. Located at the base of Alcedo Volcano on the west coast, between Tagus Cove and Elizabeth Bay, this area experienced a major uplift in 1954, causing the land to rise over 16 feet. The coast expanded half a mile out, leaving marine life stranded on the new shore. This area is also a great place for snorkeling. Habitat highlights will include land iguanas (the biggest in Galapagos), hawks, coral reef, giant tortoises; snorkeling: turtles, rays and tropical fish.
TUE - ELIZABETH BAY & MORENO POINT
This morning's exploration will be on-board an ocean-going dinghy to Elizabeth Bay, which islocated on the east coast of Isabela Island. The bay contains many islets, which can be visited by dinghy. Penguins and Blue-footed Boobies can be spotted on the rocky islets. With an abundance of marine life and clear water, the area is perfect for snorkeling and viewing schools of colorful fish, sea lions, sea turtles, rays. penguins, herons and perhaps even sharks. Afternoon will be spent venturing into Moreno Point, located near Elizabeth Bay on the west coast of Isabela Island. The plethora of birds seen during a dinghy ride along the striking rocky shores or a hike along the island path through lava rock leading to tide pools and mangroves create a birdwatcher’s delight. In the tide pools green sea turtles or white-tip sharks can be spotted. Habitat highlights also include flamingos, gallinules, pintail ducks, turtles, white-tip reef sharks.
WED - SANTA CRUZ & CHARLES DARWIN STATION
Today's morning exploration will begin with The Charles Darwin Research Station which is home to the Giant Tortoises and turtles ranging from 3-inches (new hatchlings) to 4-feet long. Sub-species of turtles interact with one another and many of the older turtles are accustomed to humans, stretching out their heads for a pet. The babies are nurtured in captivation until they are about four years old and strong enough to survive on their own. In the afternoon, we will journey by bus from Puerto Ayora, to view the highlands of Santa Cruz. This area is extremely fertile and deep green, contrasting beautifully with much of the dry, lower islands. The dominant vegetation in the highlands is the Scalesia trees, creating the lush green color. The lava tubes and tunnels, over half a mile long, are underground where walking through them provide a unique and surreal experience.
THU - SOUTH PLAZA ISLAND & SANTA FE ISLAND
In the morning, we will head towards South Plaza Island. This small island with steep cliffs was formed by rising lava and is now covered by Opuntia cacti. It is also home to one of the largest sea lion colonies as well as colorful yellow and red land iguanas. The most characteristic plant is the Sesuvium. During the rainy season its color is a greenish to yellowish tone and in the dry season (end of June through January) a bright red. Enjoy a guided hike showcasing the habitat highlights of land iguanas, sea lion colony, Audubon´s shearwaters, Swallow-tailed Gulls, and Nazca Boobies. The afternoon will be spent hiking Santa Fe Island (Barrington). This area is home to the small picturesque bay and anchorage on the island’s northeast coast. The bay has two scenic hiking trails, one leading to a scenic viewpoint atop a cliff, and the other spanning from a small beach to a tall prickly pear cactus forest.
FRI - ESPANOLA - SUAREZ POINT & ISLET
Morning spent on an explorative hike along Espanola's Suarez Point. This area is great for spotting Blue-footed Boobies, albatrosses and Nazca Boobies. A beautiful site on the ocean front, the large Waved Albatrosses use the cliff as a launching pad. The famous attraction is the magnificent blowhole, spurting water high into the air. This area presents wonderful photographic opportunities. This afternoon, we will journey to Gardner Bay, on the eastern side of the island. This is the breeding site of nearly all of the world´s 12,000 pairs of Waved Albatrosses. It has an ample white sandy beach with a myriad of sea lions, perfect for relaxing. Its rocky shores make this site a great place for diving and snorkeling or enjoying a hike. Habitat highlights of the day include sea lions, mockingbirds, colorful fish, sea lion nursery, Hood Mockingbirds, Nazca Boobies, Waved Albatross, Red-billed tropicbirds, lava lizards, Galapagos Hawk, and more Blue-footed Boobies.
SAT - SAN CRISTOBAL & INTERPRETATION CENTER
This morning we will visit and walk through The Interpretation Center. The Center opened in 1998 as a phase of the project “Interpretation and Environment Education Project" for the Galapagos Islands preservation research. Visitors enjoy various expositions and important sites on natural history, human history, and conservation. The conservation efforts represent the movement to protect the wildlife and natural environment through means of population and tourist control. In the afternoon you will be transferred to the San Cristobal Airport for your departing flight onward to connect (OR) extend your stay further in the region.
** OPTIONAL Add-Ons will be offered and available to those who wish to extend their journey experience further in Ecuador either pre or post cruise. **
TO INQUIRE FOR MORE DETAILS & CAST YOUR DATE VOTE ON THIS EXPEDITION - please contact:
Liz Bates - Director of Travel & Concierge Services
* Images and photography are courtesy of Natural Habitat *
Single Family Home with 1 level
1 bedroom, 1 bath, 1 square feet
1 guest maximum
Additional FeesPLEASE NOTE:
In lieu of the normal ThirdHome exchange fees, this private group expedition journey is a full-pay travel option and the monetary cost will be quoted to the member upon inquiring. This journey does not require a specific number of keys.
Activities of Interest
Places of Interest
- Quito & Otavalo
- Andean Highlands
- Galapagos Islands
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- Concierge Service