Yacht La Pinta – 5 days / 4 nights – Eastern Galapagos – Thursday to Monday
Eastern Galapagos Itinerary
We’re delighted to have you on board for this journey of discovery to some of the most beautiful islands in the Galapagos. Our itinerary together begins on Baltra Island, a former military base during World War II, and now an Ecuadorian naval and air force station. Once all formalities are completed, we venture east along the volcanic shores of North Seymour and Santa Cruz Islands, until we reach the Plazas Islands. Our adventures start with a dry landing at a manmade jetty on South Plaza Island. During the next day, we will explore Santa Fe Island and San Cristobal Island, home to the provincial capital of the Galapagos province. Then, we sail south to Española Island, with its remarkable visitor site (a favourite of many visitors): Punta Suarez. Here, we’ll wander along the rugged coastline, home to hundreds of marine iguanas, sea lions, marine birds, and even albatross (during much of the year). In the afternoon, Gardner Bay provides a wonderful setting for a combination of beach-time, swimming, snorkelling or exploring aboard the glass-bottom boat. We end on Monday with a visit to the world-famous Charles Darwin Research Station on Santa Cruz Island, the most populous in the archipelago. Wherever we sail, whatever we do, the entire crew aboard La Pinta will do our utmost to ensure your Galapagos experience is truly deeply moving and memorable.
- South Plaza
- Santa Fe
- San Cristobal
- Santa Cruz
- Charles Darwin Research Station
- Kicker Rock
- Punta Suarez
- Punta Pitt
(Highlighted species are Big15)
- Galapagos albatross (From April to December)
- Blue-footed booby
- Nazca booby
- Red-footed booby
- Great & magniﬁcent frigatebird
- Galapagos hawk
- Land iguana
- Marine iguana
- Santa Fe land iguana
- Galapagos sea lion
- Galapagos giant tortoise
- Galapagos dove
- Galapagos mockingbird
- San Cristobal mockingbird
- Española mockingbird
- Darwin’s ﬁnches
- Brown pelican
- Swallow-Tailed gull
- Lava gull
- Lava (striated) heron
Note: * Big15
Day by Day
Important Note: Yacht La Pinta operates on a 15-day cycle (to cover each separate region of the archipelago), meaning that not all Thursdays of the year will serve as departure dates for this specific itinerary. Please refer to our Sailing Dates table for exact departure dates for Thursdays of the year.
Our adventure begins with a morning flight to Baltra Island and immediate transfer to the dock to board Yacht La Pinta. There’s a welcome introductory briefing, boat drill, cabin assignment and then lunch. We weigh anchor and start sailing for our first afternoon outing.
South Plaza Island
The turquoise waters of the channel here contrast brilliantly with the white sand and black lava of the shoreline, while a carpet of scarlet sesuvium succulents serves as groundcover for a grove of luminescent green prickly-pear cactus beyond, populated by yellow-grey land iguanas. Along the coastline one finds sea lion colonies, while sea birds play with the thermals that form along the cliffs of this small but spectacular island.
Santa Fe Island
We take the dinghy over to this idyllic sandy-white beach populated by colonies of sea lions. Galapagos hawks are often easily observed, perched atop salt bushes. The Santa Fe land iguana, unique to just this island, may be spotted during the walk. Following the walk, we can snorkel and swim along a natural wave barrier or ride the glass-bottom boat.
Cerro Colorado Tortoise Habitat.
After lunch, we disembark at Puerto Baquerizo Moreno, the island’s capital, and drive 40 minutes to the island’s southern shore. At Cerro Colorado, we visit the breeding centre for highly endangered giant tortoises in the midst of a fantastic deciduous forest, home to dozens of bird species, including the San Cristobal mockingbird, and the San Cristobal lava lizard, both island endemics.
Punta Pitt (San Cristobal Island)
We land at the eastern tip of San Cristobal Island this morning. The trail that ascends from the beach provides spectacular views of the shoreline; we can observe frigates, plus a colony of bachelor sea lions. After the walk, if conditions are favourable, there is a chance to swim from the beach and snorkel.
In the afternoon following lunch on board, a dinghy ride along the shores of tuff-stone layers takes us to Cerro Brujo’s expansive, white coral beach, great for walking, with rewarding bird-watching featuring seabirds and shore birds. Also, look out for Galapagos sea lions. These are the same shores that Charles Darwin walked upon, back in September 1835.
Our morning outing at Punta Suarez provides an exciting walk on lava/boulder terrain to visit its unique sea bird colonies, including the Galapagos albatross (April – January), boobies, swallow-tail gulls, and the famous “blowhole” lava formation. Also, look for red-green-black marine iguanas. Many regard this site as the best in the Galapagos. Back on board for lunch.
In the afternoon, we set down at this beautiful, white coral beach for a short walk to observe the sea lions, mockingbirds, finches, or enjoy the beach. There is great snorkelling in this area, or else there’s time to kayak or ride the glass-bottom boat.
Charles Darwin Research Station (Santa Cruz Island)/ Baltra Airport
Disembarking in the morning, we visit the Charles Darwin Research Station and the captive rearing programme for the giant tortoises. Here we witness the efforts and results of Galapagos fieldwork and study done in the name of science. We transfer via bus across Santa Cruz Island and a short ferry ride to Baltra. Our journey ends at Baltra Island, where we transfer to the airport to take the flight back to the mainland. Baltra’s flat substrate (due to its uplifted origin) is the reason why the island was chosen back in the 1940s as the construction site for an airport.
Sailing Dates & Prices
*This itinerary departs every second Thursday. If a Thursday does not appear in the list below, it is either because we are fully booked for that Thursday departure period or simply because we do not operate this specific itinerary on that Thursday departure period due to our 15-day sailing cycle (to cover each separate region of the archipelago).
Thursday to Monday*
Jan 02 to 06
Jan 16 to 20
Jan 30 to Feb 03
Feb 13 to 17
Feb 27 to Mar 02
Mar 12 to 16
Mar 26 to 30
Apr 09 to 13
Apr 23 to 27
May 07 to 11
Jun 04 to 08
Jun 18 to 22
Jul 02 to 06
Jul 16 to 20
Jul 30 to Aug 03
Aug 13 to 17
Aug 27 to 31
Sep 10 to 14
Sep 24 to 28
Oct 08 to 12
Oct 22 to 26
Nov 19 to 23
Dec 03 to 07
Dec 17 to 21
Dec 31 to Jan 04
- All meals
- Soft drinks *
- Island sightseeing
- Naturalist guides and lecture services in English/Spanish only
- Wet suit rental and snorkelling gear
- Internet *
- Taxes and transfers in the islands. Transfer from main hotels in Quito (Casa Gangotena, Hilton Colón, Swissôtel, Marriott, Dann Carlton) and in Guayaquil (Hilton Colón, Oro Verde, Wyndham, Sheraton) to airport for flights to / from Galapagos are included in these rates. To coordinate these transfers we must have guest’s hotel contact.
* Please note: Soft drinks include juices and carbonated drinks, not “virgin” cocktails.
* Internet connections aboard consist of 2 computer stations in the library and Wi-Fi in the yacht’s social areas; due to the Galapagos’ remote location, internet connections are intermittent and low-bandwidth.
- Airfare to/from Galapagos
- Galapagos National Park admission fee (US$ 100 per person, subject to change without notice)
- Transit Control Card for Galapagos (US$ 20 per person, subject to change without notice)
- Alcoholic drinks
- Gifts and additional items
Ask our Galapagos Experts Last Minute Prices!
|Cabin||Max. Guests Capacity||2019 pp (US $)||2020 pp (US $)|
|Luxury Cabin||2||$ 4,490||$ 4,666|
|Luxury Plus Cabin||3||$ 4,490||$ 4,666|
* twin/double cabins have a 100% surcharge when used as singles
- Tickets & printed itineraries
- Travel insurance
- Health insurance information
- Credit/debit cards
- Cash (US Dollars)
- Personal medication
- Light-weight hiking shoes
- Water-resistant, closed-toe sport sandals
- Anti-slip sandals for onboard
- Hiking shorts
- Lightweight hiking pants
- Casual pants and shorts (men)
- Casual dress, skirt, shorts or pants (women)
- Short-sleeve T-shirts
- Long-sleeve shirts or rash guards for sun protection
- Socks (normal and for hiking)
- Bathing suits (minimum 2)
- Sunglasses (optional: neck strap)
- Wide-brimmed hat or cap
- Windbreaker jacket
- Warm sweater or fleece
- Toiletry kit
- Sun block & lip balm (waterproof + SPF 50 or higher)
- Insect repellent
- Small backpack/daypack (preferably waterproof)
- Video camera
- Extra memory cards and batteries
- Tripod (optional)
- Appliance chargers & adaptors if necessary (plugs in Ecuador are US-style A & B, 2 flat pins, 110 V)
- Prescription snorkelling mask or specialized snorkel equipment*
- Sealable plastic bags of various sizes
* All normal snorkeling equipment is available onboard and at the Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel. Some charges may apply.
Eastern Island Itinerary
All About the Galapagos
* Please note: soft drinks are considered juices and carbonated drinks, not “virgin” cocktails.
** Internet connections onboard consist in computer stations and wifi in the vessel’s social areas; due to the Galapagos’ remote location, internet connections are intermittent and low-bandwidth.
*** At your request, we can include the Galapagos National Park entrance fee and migration control card fee. However, please note that, due to administrative and operational reasons, these fees can only be included when guests travel on the operation departure date. This service does not apply for guests who travel before a departure date (even if the departure is with us).
**** Please note, we charge guests who wish to bring bottles of wine and/or spirits aboard our vessels a corkage fee of $27+taxes.