Quito and 4 Day Coral I & II Cruise – Eastern Galapagos Islands
7 Days/6 Nights
From $2,629 per person
(Dbl. Occupancy, Not Incl. Airfare)
Discover the wildlife and landscapes of the Eastern Galapagos Islands while traveling aboard the Coral I & II. Beginning in Quito, you will have a city tour and visit the Middle of the World complex. Highlights include observing giant tortoises at the Charles Darwin Research Center on Santa Cruz Island and at the Cerro Colorado reserve on San Cristobal Island, spotting blue-footed boobies and frigate birds on North Seymour Island, hybrid iguanas on South Plaza Islet, and sea lions on Lobos Island.
Lodging and Meals: This tour includes accommodations for 6 nights (3 nights in Quito and 3 nights aboard the Coral I & II) and 12 meals (6 breakfasts, 3 lunches, and 3 dinners).
Best Time to Go: Year-Round.
Destinations: South America, Ecuador, and Galapagos.
Interests: Adventure, Culture & History, Expedition Cruising, Sea Kayaking, Snorkeling, and Wildlife Viewing.
Places Visited: Quito, the Galapagos Islands, Baltra Island, Mosquera Islet, North Seymour Island, San Cristóbal Island, Santa Cruz Island, Santa Fe Island, and South Plaza Island.
Note: The route and program may vary according to National Park policies and regulations, weather conditions, seasonal changes, safety reasons and wildlife encounters.
Dry Landing: Guests step from the dinghy directly onto rocks or a dock.
Wet Landing: As the dinghy edges onto a sandy beach, guests step into knee-deep water and wade ashore.
Day 1 (Fri): Quito.
Depart to Quito. After passing through immigration and customs, proceed to the reception area, where our representative will be holding a sign with your name on it. You will be greeted and then transferred to your hotel.
Day 2 (Sat): City Tour of Quito-Middle of the World.
In the morning, you will have a city tour of Quito. You will explore the bustling streets and squares of the largest historical centre in the Americas, and visit some of its most important churches such as the majestic La Compania and iconic San Francisco, guardians of a stunning multi-ethnic artistic and cultural heritage. You will drive through the traditional neighborhood of San Juan and finish the morning at the Panecillo hillside, with its breathtaking views of the old and modern parts of the city.
Following the city tour, you will be driven to the “Middle of the World City” complex, which is located 11 miles north of Quito. Here, you will see the monument of the equatorial line, a 98 ft high stone trapezoidal monument with a brass globe on top. The monument forms the focal point of a park and leisure area with gift shops and restaurants. Overnight in Quito. (B)
Day 3 (Sun): Quito-Baltra Airport-North Seymour.
Departure from Quito to Baltra Airport (2.5-hour flight). Arriving in the Galapagos, passengers are picked up at the airport by the naturalist guides and taken on a ten-minute bus drive to the pier to board the M/Y Coral I or M/Y Coral II.
North Seymour (Dry landing). This is one of the busiest tourist destinations on the archipelago. Off of Baltra Island (where the airport is located) and not far from Santa Cruz, North Seymour is the most accessible for day trips out of Santa Cruz’s main port, Puerto Ayora. You will have an approximately two-hour walk amidst large nesting colonies of blue-footed boobies, magnificent and great frigatebirds, and swallow-tailed gulls for an in-depth encounter with sea bird breeding cycles as well as sea lions. You will also encounter sea lions, land iguanas, and on a lucky day, you might even come across a Galapagos Snake. (Duration: 2-hour walk/30-minute snorkeling). Overnight aboard the ship. (B,L,D)
Day 4 (Mon): Charles Darwin Research Station (Santa Cruz)-Mosquera Islet.
Charles Darwin Research Station (Dry landing). We visit the Charles Darwin Station and Fausto Llerena Breeding Center where the Galapagos giant tortoise breeding program takes place as part of our efforts to preserve the fragile Galapagos environment and where the famous Lonesome George (the last surviving specimen of his species) lived for decades. Here you will be able to see tortoises through all their stages including hatchings, juveniles, and full-grown individuals. The breeding project began in the 1970’s and has been an incredible success in helping repopulate the Galapagos Giant Tortoise population. Out of the eleven species that were once considered to be endangered species 10 subspecies of Galapagos Tortoise have been brought up to guarded levels. The most successful story is the one of the Espanola Tortoises. When the program began, it consisted of a total population of 3 males and 11 females. As of 2008, these 13 tortoises are the parents of over 1,000 young tortoises that now roam free on Espanola. The Darwin Station also works providing environmental education to communities and schools within the islands and to tourists visiting the Galapagos Islands. (Duration: 1.5-hour walk)
Mosquera Islet (Wet landing). Mosquera Islet is a tectonic uplift of sands, coral reefs, and rocks, located between North Seymour and Baltra Islands. This flat 0.022 mi (0.06 km) white sand island has one of the largest colonies of sea lions. Because of this, there are occasional reports of killer whales seen around the islet. It is also an excellent site for observing shorebirds such as herons and Lava Gulls. You can also spot marine iguanas, blue-footed boobies, and sally light food crabs. There is no trail on Mosquera Islet, so any visitor can enjoy an open area. Most of the islet is covered with sand and barren lava rock. Very little sesuvium portulacastrum grows on the sand. It is a fun snorkeling site, just swimming off of the beach. There’s a good chance snorkelers will be joined by one or several of the numerous sea lions who live at this Island, especially the playful young ones. An easily accessed scuba diving site, Mosquera’s maximum depth for this dive site is 30 m and currents are generally mild. This site is famous for the sea lions that come and play during the dive. Sharks, turtles, rays, barracudas and tropical fish are common in this area. (Duration: 1.5-hour walk and snorkeling). Overnight aboard the ship. (B,L,D)
Day 5 (Tue): South Plaza-Santa Fe.
South Plaza (Dry landing). There are two Plaza Island (north and south) located east of Santa Cruz Island. On the northern part of the Island, visitors begin the journey along an impressive cactus forest where colorful yellow and red land iguanas live. The population is around 300 animals: during the dry season they survive on fruits and flowers of the opuntia cacti. A peculiar thing to see in South Plaza is the hybrid iguana (sea and land). When reaching the highest point, tropicbirds can be seen. During the dry season June-January, the usually greenish and yellowish vegetation changes color, creating a bright red landscape (sesuviumedmonstonei plant). (Duration: 2-hour walk).
Santa Fe (Wet landing). Santa Fe shows white sand beaches surrounded by sea lion colonies: through the island path, an endemic cactus forest is passed, home of the Santa Fe land iguanas (the largest in the islands). This island is the habitat for a number of species including the Galapagos hawk, Galapagos snake, rice rat (one of the few endemic Galapagos rodents), a variety of finches and one of the four mockingbird species of the archipelago. (Duration: 1.5-hour walk, 1-hour deep water snorkeling). Overnight aboard the ship. (B,L,D)
Day 6 (Wed): Lobos Island-San Cristobal Airport-Quito.
Lobos Island (Dry landing). Lobos Island is approximately 20-minutes by boat from Puerto Baquerizo Moreno. Once on the island, the trail is about 850 meters and there will be a rocky trail and a nice and easy sand trail too. There is a small population of blue-footed boobies and great frigatebird nests at this site. You can also find a colony of sea lions. During the boat ride, you can see brown pelicans and several species of shorebirds. (Duration: 1.5-hour walk)
After the visit, you will go to San Cristobal Airport for your flight to Quito. Upon Arrival, you will be transferred to your hotel. Overnight in Quito. (B)
Day 7 (Thu): Quito.
Transfer to the airport for your return flight to your final destination. (B)
B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner
Prices & Dates
Price per Person
|Standard Plus Cabin||$4,589||$2,629||n/a|
- The above prices are valid until December 10, 2022.
- Single sharing is not available.
- Hotel upgrades are available upon request.
Alternating Friday departures throughout the year.
- South American Vacations’ expert pre-departure planning services and documentation.
- Airport/hotel transfers including baggage handling.
- Hotel accommodations including service fees and taxes.
- Accommodations on board the M/Y Coral I & II.
- All meals scheduled on board and others as indicated on the itinerary.
- Excursions to the islands conducted by English-speaking naturalist guides.
- Evening briefings.
- Use of snorkeling equipment.
Price Does Not Include
- International airfare.
- Domestic airfare Quito-Galapagos-Quito ($495).
- Galapagos National Park Entrance Fee ($100).
- Transit control card ($20).
- Fuel surcharge for the ship ($50).
- Meals not indicated on the itinerary.
- Gratuities to ship crew and guide ($20/day for the crew, $10/day for the naturalist guide).
- Alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages.
- Gifts and personal items.
- Travel insurance.
We will be happy to quote the cost of international airfare and travel insurance, and to make these arrangements for you.
Quito & Galapagos
Group Private: All services included in this tour are operated on a group basis.
Elevations: Quito is 9,350 feet above sea level.
IGTOA’S Galapagos Traveler Conservation Fund: South American Vacations is an active member of IGTOA (International Galapagos Tour Operators Association). In support of IGTOA’s Galapagos Traveler Conservation Fund, we contribute $20 for each passenger that we send to the Galapagos Islands. You’ll travel knowing that you support the lasting protection of Galapagos Islands.
Sixty percent of the funding of this program goes directly to the Charles Darwin Foundation for science, conservation, and education. Their work, carried out through the Charles Darwin Research Station and Galapagos National Park, is vital to the preservation of the islands. You can visit their web site to learn more www.darwinfoundation.org. The remainder goes toward IGTOA’s mission of creating a model of responsible and sustainable tourism.
Passport/Visa: For Ecuador, U.S., Australian, Canadian, and EU citizens require a passport valid for at least six months from date of entry and return ticket for stays of up to 90 days. Citizens of other countries are advised to contact the Ecuadorian embassy in their country before traveling.
Travel Insurance: In order to protect your travel investment from unforeseen circumstances that may arise before or during your trip, we strongly recommend that you purchase travel insurance. We offer Allianz Global Assistance’s Classic Comprehensive and other plans. The Benefits and Coverage Limits are summarized on our Travel Insurance page. Call your travel counselor if you have any questions or to purchase a plan.
To Book This Trip: We require a non-refundable deposit of $1,000 per person plus the cost of the international airfare (if we make the arrangements for you). The balance of the trip cost is due 60 days prior to departure.
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