Our Southern Galapagos cruise itinerary begins on Santa Cruz Island, the most populated island in the archipelago, where we meet giant tortoises face to face. We first explore the highlands of this island with its lush vegetation before venturing down to the world-famous Charles Darwin Research Station.
After hopping aboard Yacht Isabela II at the end of the day, we sail south to the island of Floreana, where we disembark at Post Office Bay the following morning and then Cormorant Point in the afternoon – both of which are full of life and history.
We then head west to Española Island, with its remarkable visitor site (a favorite of many guests): Punta Suarez. Here, we’ll wander along the rugged coastline, home to hundreds of marine iguanas, sea lions, marine birds, and even albatrosses (at certain times of year).
In the afternoon, Gardner Bay provides a wonderful setting for a combination of beach-time, swimming, snorkeling or exploration aboard the glass-bottom boat. San Cristobal Island is next, which is the capital of the Galapagos Province.
We explore the northern shores of the island, visiting the fascinating sites of Punta Pitt and Cerro Brujo, taking us back down the steps of Charles Darwin’s visit in 1835. We end our journey at Puerto Baquerizo Moreno to round out our Southern Galapagos itinerary.
Southern Galapagos Highlights
Southern Galapagos Wildlife
Southern Galapagos Itinerary Map
Day by Day
Day 1 - Baltra & Santa Cruz Islands
We arrive at Baltra Airport and hope aboard an airport transfer bus to the Itabaca Channel. From here, we’ll take a ferry across to Santa Cruz Island. A 30-minute bus ride takes us to a restaurant in the Highlands of Santa Cruz Island to enjoy lunch.
Charles Darwin Research Station (Santa Cruz Island)
After lunch, you will head down to the town of Puerto Ayora to visit the Charles Darwin Research Station and get a chance to check out the breeding program for giant tortoises. The Station will also give you a good sense of the efforts and progress that the Foundation and National Park have made in terms of conservation. After this, we’ll take a transfer dinghy from the town’s port to board Yacht Isabela II. Once aboard, guests will check in, partake in the Captain’s welcome cocktail and then have dinner.
Day 2 - Floreana Island
Post Office Bay
After breakfast, guests will disembark at Post Office Bay to visit the historic “Post Office Barrel” that has functioned as a post office in the archipelago for over two centuries! There’s great swimming and snorkeling from the beach here as well.
Cormorant Point & Champion Islet
Later on, we will visit Cormorant Point, which has an olivine-crystal beach and a brackish-water lagoon where bird species like American flamingos can be spotted. A brief walk to the other side of the island rewards guests with a beautiful, white-sand beach that is often the spot for sea turtles to come and nest. Afterwards, at Champion Islet, guests can choose to snorkel, ride along the coast in dinghies or observe the underwater world from the comfort of Yacht Isabela II’s glass-bottom boat.
Day 3 - Española Island
The morning outing at Punta Suarez provides an exciting walk across lava terrain to visit the unique seabird colonies that populate this area. Waved albatrosses (visible from April until January), boobies, swallow-tailed gulls, and the famous “blowhole” geological formation await! Also, you will definitely want to keep an eye out for the red-green-black marine iguanas! Many regard this site as one of the best in all Galapagos. Afterwards, we will head back onboard for lunch.
In the afternoon, we will disembark at this beautiful, white coral beach for a short walk to observe the sea lions, mockingbirds and finches. You can also choose to simply enjoy the beach. There is great snorkeling in this area. Alternatively, you can opt to kayak or take a ride aboard our glass-bottom boat.
Day 4 - San Cristobal Island
We land at the eastern tip of San Cristobal Island on this morning. The trail that ascends from the beach provides spectacular views of the shoreline, allowing us to observe frigatebirds plus a colony of bachelor sea lions. After the walk, there is a chance to swim along the beach and snorkel or take a ride aboard the dinghy, weather permitting.
After lunch, a dinghy ride along the shores will take us over to Cerro Brujo’s expansive, white coral beach. This is a great site for walking, with rewarding birdwatching opportunities that feature plenty of seabirds and shorebirds. Galapagos sea lions will also be present. History Fact: These are the same shores that Charles Darwin walked along back in September of 1835.
Day 5 - San Cristobal Island
Puerto Baquerizo Moreno
After breakfast, we will depart to the pier and then assist you with your transfer to the airport for your flight back to the mainland. Safe travels!
Friday to Tuesday
Friday to Tuesday
Prices Per Person
- All meals
- Bilingual naturalist guides
- Conferences and lectures
- Visits to the islands mentioned in the itinerary
- Transportation to/from the airport in Galapagos on cruise arrival and departure dates
- Snorkeling equipment
- Internet (via Computer Station, low-bandwidth)
- Onboard Medical Assistance
- Luggage handling
- Airline tickets to/from Galapagos*
- Galapagos National Park entrance fee (US$100 USD per person)**
- Transit Control Card for Galapagos (US$20 USD per person)**
- Wetsuits (available for rent)
- Alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages*** (you can also ask your destination expert to include a drinks package in your quote. Ask us about all the available options we have for you!)
- Gifts and additional items
- Fuel surcharge
- Wi-Fi internet (Intermittent and low-bandwidth. Available for an additional fee)
*Upon request, airline tickets can be included. Metropolitan Touring guarantees availability of these flights. Airfare is subject to change.
**Upon request, we can include the Galapagos National Park and INGALA Transit Control Card fees (US$100 and US$20 respectively and subject to change without prior notice). However, due to logistical reasons, these fees can only be included when guests travel on the operational departure date and not before.
***Guests may bring their own wine or spirits; however, there is a corkage fee of $25 USD + tax.
- During peak season dates, Metropolitan Touring reserves the right to prioritize reservations taking into account factors such as payment and confirmation dates. A peak season supplement also applies.
- We reserve the right to limit the number of twin/double cabins for single use dependent on availability.
- Twin/Double Cabins for single use incur a 100% surcharge of the price per person.
- Regardless the number of cabins occupied, the ship’s authorized maximum operating capacity cannot exceed 40 guests.
- Galapagos Itineraries are subject to change due to weather, logistical, or operational reasons.
- All rates are subject to change. If fuel prices increase, additional charges may apply.
- All credit card payments are exempt from additional fees.