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Destinations we visit in the cruise vacations

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Destinations we visit with the Galapagos Odyssey Yachts cruise vacations

Gran Natalia Cruise Yacht Galapagos Islands Itinerary of all tours beach excursionSanta Cruz Island
Highlands
The route from Puerto Baquerizo follows the signs marked for El Progresso. This small town was established as a penal colony in 1888 by Manuel Cobos. The prisoners were treated as slaves and developed a sugar cane and coffee plantation. The steep road narrows as it climbs the sides of the extinct volcano. At the summit visitors are treated to a spectacular view of the El Junco Lagoon. destination galapagos island cruise vacation package for your next vacationsRainwater and condensation have collected in the caldera for hundreds of years creating this haven for frigatebirds. The lake supplies water both for the people of the island and for many of the tourist boats. Hiking around the lake offers views of practically the entire island including San Joaquin Hill the island’s highest
point.

Bachas Beach
These two small beaches are found to the West of Turtle Cove. Their sand is made of decomposed coral, which makes it white and soft and a favorite nesting site for sea turtles. Behind one of the beaches there is a small brackish water lagoon, where occasionally is possible to observe flamingos and other coastal birds, such as black-necked stilts and whimbrels. The other beach is longer, but it has two old barges that were abandoned during the Second World War, when the USA used Baltra Island as a strategical point to protect the Panama Channel.
destination galapagos island cruise vacation package for your next vacations

Plazas
Plazas is located at the east of Santa Cruz Island and forms part of two islands known as Islas Plazas. Despite its small size, some of the most interesting and outstanding species of the Galapagos are found here. The Plazas land iguanas
are smaller than its relatives found on other islands. Throughout the island there are several hybrid iguanas, a result of crossing a male marine iguana and a female land iguana. They are recognizable at first glance by their black/gray color, with a land iguana’s crest but face and tail of the marine iguana. The big population of iguanas is due to the presence of tunas, their favorite food. Swallow tailed gulls nesting in the rugged cliffs are seen along with other sea bids as: Audubon shearwaters, red-billed tropicbirds, frigatebirds and brown pelicans.

Santa Fe
Santa Fe located in the southeastern part of the Galapagos, this island was formed from an uplift instead than a volcanic origin and this is why it is mostly flat. There are some theories which assure destination galapagos island cruise vacation package for your next vacationsus this could be the oldest island in the Archipelago. Santa Fe is the home of a number of endemic species like the Galapagos hawk, Galapagos snake, Galapagos mockingbird, rice rats and one of the two species of lands iguanas of the islands. After disembarkation in the beautiful and clear waters you will be in contact with one of the many sea lion colonies. Along the trail many salt bushes can be seen as well giant prickly pear cactus, gigantism is a characteristic of oceanic islands. There are great possibilities
of snorkeling with playful sea lions and tropical fishes.

Genovesa Island Darwin Bay
This bay has its origin when the crater of this island collapsed below sea level. The wet landing is on a beautiful white coral sandy beach. This is a favorite island for birdwatchers: red footed-booby, masked boobies, wandering tattlers, lava gulls , whimbrels, yellow-crowned and black-crowned lava herons and yellow warblers can be seen in the area.
destination galapagos island cruise vacation package for your next vacationsContinuing on the trail, visitors climb gradually to the edge of the cliff seeing red-footed boobies nesting in the mangrove trees below. Bird watching includes sightings of sharp-beaked finches, large cactus and ground finches, Galapagos doves and swallow-tailed gulls. Reaching the end the trail at the cliff’s edge offers an incredible view of the island and the many birds living there.

El Barranco
The visitor site of El Barranco is located in the southern part of Darwin Bay on Genovesa Island. The trail is on volcanic rock that has a length of 1.5 km and the tour can be done in about 2 hours. The youngest area of the island, from a geological point of view, lies in this area. The cliffs located in the south are composed of very fragile lava. The natural erosion that has occurred in these lava flows has become the ideal place for nesting storm petrels. You can see two species of petrels that nest in cavities and holes in the lava. One of its main predators is the destination galapagos island cruise vacation package for your next vacationsshort-eared owl. The red-footed booby nests only in the outer islands of the archipelago, Punta Pitt, Gardner (Floreana), Wolf, Darwin and Genovesa. Also present on this island is the masked booby. During the panga rides along the cliffs fur sea lions can be seen and several
species of seabirds.

Santiago Island Puerto Egas
The excursion to Puerto Egas with its black sand beaches leads to one of the more rewarding visits of the Galapagos. The island was the site of a small salt mining industry in the 1960s, one of several unsuccessful attempts to commercialize
the Galapagos. A hike inland to the salt crater is an excellent opportunity to see land birds such as finches, doves and hawks. A walk along the rugged shoreline, especially at low tide, will allow us to observe many marine species as iguanas bask on the rocks and sea lions laze in the tide pools. At the end of the trail there is a series of grottoes or sea caves where fur seals and night herons are regularly found resting on the shady ledges. For many, this is the only opportunity to see the Galapagos fur seal, once thought destination galapagos island cruise vacation package for your next vacationsto be on the verge of extinction.

Chinese hat
This is a small islet (1 sq km) located just off the southeastern tip of Santiago Island. It is a recent volcanic cone, shaped like a Chinese hat when seen from north side. On the west you can see lava formations, formed under the sea and raised upward, this is why coral heads are found on the lava. This is an excellent visit for interpretation of geological features such as lava tubes and lava flows. The landscape is covered by sea lions colonies, marine iguanas and Galapagos penguins.

San Cristobal
Pitt Point
This place is on the north of San Cristobal. Here there are endemic species such as lava lizards and red-footed boobies. The view is impressive when you walk up to the high part of the island. You may be lucky to see the red footed booby - the least seen of the bunch. It’s also the home of the Chatham mockingbird, only found here on San Cristobal island.destination galapagos island cruise vacation package for your next vacations

Kicker Rock (Leon Dormido)
Also known as the Sleeping Lion because of its resemblance, it is located of the coast of San Cristobal. The remains of a lava cone eroded by the sea, the two vertical rocks rising 500 feet from the ocean form a small channel that is navigable by small boats. This Galapagos Islands natural monument has become a favorite sight for cruises due to the many tropical birds, frigates and boobies that fill the surrounding air. Beneath the sea the nearly crystal waters offer a brilliant show of colorful tropical fish and invertebrates.

Lobos Island
Isla Lobos is about an hour by boat from Port Baquerizo Moreno. The length of the trail is 850 meters and the estimated travel time is one hour. There is a small population of blue-footed boobies and common frigatebirds nesting on this site. You can observe the two species of sea lions present in the archipelago.
destination galapagos island cruise vacation package for your next vacationsDuring the tour you go through a dry vegetation zone, substrate of volcanic rocks and a sandy area. During the panga tour brown pelicans and several species of shorebirds can be observed; although, snorkeling, it’s common
to see juvenile sea lions, manta rays and sea turtles.

Interpretation Center
The Interpretation Center’s lush gardens and sweeping ocean views are a strong contrast to the 1960’s style buildings at the Charles Darwin Center. Visitors to the Interpretation Center can learn about both the geological and human history of the islands, conservation issues and natural history. The older Museum of Natural History attempts to preserve the natural history of the islands.

Tijeritas Hilldestination galapagos island cruise vacation package for your next vacations
The trip to Tijeretas Hill takes approximately 20-40 minutes. Once there, visitors are treated to a spectacular view of the white beaches on one side and the roofs of Puerto Baquerizo on the other. The hill is named after the frigatebirds who frequent the area. Here you will be able to see both the magnificent frigate birds and great frigatebirds in the same colony so this is the perfect place to compare and learn to distinguish them.

La Loberia
This small islet, located only an hour by boat from Puerto Baquerizo Moreno, is separated from the main Island by a narrow stretch of calm water. Upon its rocky shores blue-footed boobies nest and sea lions rest. The atmosphere is one of tranquility and primitive beauty and reveals a very typical Galapagos environment.


destination galapagos island cruise vacation package for your next vacationsEspañola
Punta Suarez
This rocky land spot sustains one of the most impressive and varied colonies of sea birds in the Galapagos. Along its southern shore, high cliffs rise up from the sea affording the visitor spectacular views of soaring birds and of the blow hole where water spouts up to 50-75 feet into the air according to the intensity of the surf.


Gardner Bay
Located on the north-eastern coast of Hood, Gardner Bay provides an excellent
beach for relaxing, swimming, snorkeling, kayaking, and the opportunity to observe sea lions. Here we can also observe sharks in the crystal clear ocean waters.

destination galapagos island cruise vacation package for your next vacationsLa Loberia
This small islet, located only an hour by boat from Puerto Baquerizo Moreno, is separated from the main Island by a narrow stretch of calm water. Upon its rocky shores blue-footed boobies nest and sea lions rest. The atmosphere is one of tranquility and primitive beauty and reveals a very typical Galapagos environment.

Española
Punta Suarez
This rocky land spot sustains one of the most impressive and varied colonies of sea birds in the Galapagos. Along its southern shore, high cliffs rise up from the sea affording the visitor spectacular views of soaring birds and of the blow hole where water spouts up to 50-75 feet into the air according to the intensity of the surf.

destination galapagos island cruise vacation package for your next vacationsGardner Bay
Located on the north-eastern coast of Hood, Gardner Bay provides an excellent
beach for relaxing, swimming, snorkeling, kayaking, and the opportunity to observe sea lions. Here we can also observe sharks in the crystal clear ocean waters.

Floreana
Cormorant Point
This site offers probably the best flamingo lagoon in the Galapagos; it is also one of the largest in the islands. It’s situated between two tuff lava cones that give the area a special atmosphere. There are various species of shorebirds
to observe besides flamingos; the most frequent are common stilts, white-checked pintail ducks and other migratory birds. It is very interesting to see the two distinct beaches: “The Green Beach” (due to its high percentage of olivine crystals in the sand) and the “Flour Sand Beach” which is made up of coral.

Devil’s Crown
The Devil’s Crown, located just off Punta Cormorant, offers some of the best snorkeling in the Galapagos. In fact, the only way to see the Crown is by water; it is termed a Marine Visitor Site and no landings are allowed. Sometimes referred to as Onslow Island, this is an almost completely submerged volcano, and erosion has transformed the cone into a series of jagged peaks; as a result, this site really does look like a devil’s crown.

Post office bay & Baroness Lookout
Historically, this site is the location of a wooden barrel that was placed in the 18th century by the crew of a whaling ship. It has been used since this time by mariners and tourists as a post office. The idea is to carry letters or postcards to their destination by hand. Apart from being the Post Office Barrel, this site was the landing area for some of the first colonists. We will continue to the north of the island and destination galapagos island cruise vacation package for your next vacationswill ascend to an elevated slope to enjoy a beautiful vista at the Baroness lookout. It is said that Baroness Eloisa Von Wagner loved this place and spent several hours watching the horizon. Within walking distance (30 m) are the ruins of what is known as her house. From this lookout, the landscape covers the coastline from the Enderby islet to Post Office Bay, as well as Cerro Pajas, the pool of flamingos and wide forest of Palo Santo.
Isabela Island

White Tipped Reef Shark Canal
A delightful place reached by a nice zodiac ride. “Tintoreras” are small islands
in front of Puerto Villamil coast. There is Heron lava on the lookout on mangrove branch, and Galapagos penguin and sea lion often pop out on shore. White-tipped reef sharks are fairly common in the archipelago. Their name in Spanish is Tintorera, therefore this site is named after them as they are always found here resting in the shallow waters.

Wall of Tearsdestination galapagos island cruise vacation package for your next vacations
The Wall of Tears is a historic site in Isabela. Between 1946 and 1959 Isabela was a penal colony, where prisoners built a wall with huge blocks of lava as punishment. The wall is 100 meters long and 7 meters high. Due to the arduous labor and harsh conditions in which the prisoners lived, this site is known as the wall of tears. A set of stairs provides a bird’s eye view of the wall and the surrounding landscape. You can still see the cement foundations of the USA base dating back to the Second World War.

Sierra Negra Volcano.
Isabela Island is the largest and one of the youngest islands in the Galapagos archipelago. We land in Puerto Villamil, which has the second smallest populated island in Galapagos with approximately 3,000 habitants. We head up to the highlands from Puerto Villamil to Sierra Negra slope and later we will do some hiking on uneven terrain until we arrive to the Sierra Negra volcano rim. Sierra Negra is the second widest crater in the world. From this viewpoint, you have fantastic sights to the 6 x 5 mile wide crater, the rest of the volcanoes and Perry Isthmus, a 12Km wide lava field. From here we can hike to Chico Volcano to watch the striking lava formations, examples of the geological occurrences that have created the Galapagos Islands.

galapagos cruise adventure vacationsPunta Moreno
Punta Moreno is located on the north coast of Isabela Island between the volcano Sierra Negra and Cerro Azul volcano. The trail runs along a lava flow Pahohoe (solidified lava in the form of corrugated iron or an accordion) into a complex of coastal lagoons, its main attraction are several species of birds which can be found around the lakes and mangroves.

Elizabeth Bay
This is a marine visitor site, the excursion is carried out in a zodiac and so there is no landing point. Your zodiac ride starts with a visit to the Marielas islets where there is the largest and most important penguin colony in the Galapagos Islands. The excursion continues into the cove that is surrounded by red mangroves where you can admire their red roots and green leaves. It is here that you are able to observe sea turtles, flightless cormorants, spotted eagle rays, golden rays, brown pelicans and sea lions. Frequently visitors have been able to see Galapagos hawks soaring overhead while schools of pompano and dorado fish swim below.

Urbina Bay
South from Tagus Cove and still on the west coast is Urbina Bay. It is an easy wet landing on a gentle sloping beach. This area is very interesting in that it is a perfect example of the geological activity of the islands. The waters of the bay are a good place to see turtles and rays and ashore is a short trail leading to a coral reef, which is evidence of uplift from the sea which occurred in 1954.
From here it is easy to reach the Alcedo and Darwin volcanoes. You can see large colored land iguanas here and the possibility of seeing giant Galapagos turtles, flightless cormorants, blue-footed boobies, Galapagos penguins, pelicans
and marine iguanas is excellent.

Tagus Cove
Tagus Cove, a tour along the cliffs in a zodiac will give the visitors a good chance to see the Galapagos penguin, the flightless cormorant and other sea birds. From the landing dock it is about a 30 minute hike along the trail up to the top of the cliff from where you can view Darwin Lake, an uplifted ultra saline lake saltier than the sea. You can also see several volcanoes from this location.
Look carefully at the graffiti on the surrounding cliffs of the cove, it has been written by pirates, whalers and buccaneers in past centuries.

Espinoza Point
Fernandina is the third largest island in the archipelago and has a single visitor site: Punta Espinoza located at the northeastern tip of the island. Just across Tagus Cove, is a visitor site where some of the unique species of Galapagos can be seen. Marine iguanas conglomerate here in larger groups than on any other island. They bask around in the sand, swim near the shore and sometimes block the way at the landing dock. Among the unique species found here is the flightless comorant. A bird that due to the lack of predators had to adjust their way of survival and perfect their skills of finding food in the ocean. Their wings, tails and feet progressively adapted for swimming. To see these birds is to witness evolution happening right in front of you.

Vicente Roca PointGran Natalia Cruise Yacht Galapagos Islands Itinerary of all tours beach excursion
Located at the ‘mouth’ of the head of the sea horse, which forms the northern part of the Galapagos Islands, is Punta Vicente Roca. Here the remnants of an ancient volcano form two turquoise coves with a bay well protected from the ocean swells.
The spot is a popular anchorage from which to take panga rides along the cliff that are the remains of the volcano or explore a partially sunken cave at the water’s edge. Masked and blue-footed boobies sit perched along the point and the sheer cliffs, while flightless cormorants inhabit the shoreline.

The upwelling of coldwater currents in this part of the Galapagos, give rise to an abundance of marine life which, in combination with the protection of the coves, make Punta Vicente Roca one of the archipelago’s most sought after dive spots.
One cove is only accessible from the sea by way of an underwater passage. The passage opens to calm waters of the hidden cove where sea lions like to laze on the beach having traveled along the underwater route. The entire area of Punta Vicente Roca lies on the flank of 2,600 foot Volcano Ecuador. This is the Galapagos Island’s sixth largest volcano.

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