Galapagos Islands – Santa Cruz & San Cristobal

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Please Note: Our website packages are here to provide you with a guide on what we can offer. If this package does not suit your requirements we can easily cutomise your trip to suit your needs and preferences.

Falling in love with a destination is different for every traveler. Maybe it's a discovery of food, the excitement of getting off the beaten path or meeting and getting to know locals. For those that crave an insider's track to local life, we're excited to introduce our newest Galapagos itinerary, ‘The Mountain and The Sea,' a Galapagos love story.

Polo and Jacqui live in the Galapagos; he on Santa Cruz at his Giant Tortoise Reserve and Camp, she on San Cristobal at her beautiful and artistic Casa Blanca B&B. He loves his highlands home just as she loves her residence on the shore. Yet they share a deep love for the Galapagos...and each other. Our new 'The Mountain and The Sea' itinerary gives travelers the chance to fall in love with the Islands, as well as with the locals like Polo and Jacquie who inhabit them.

Polo and Jacqui will host your guests and help them get to know the Islands through their eyes. On Polo’s island, the Galapagos’ most populous, visitors will be guided on adventures that range from kayaking to underground exploration. In the evenings, they will settle into Polo’s highlands retreat and get a feel for why he loves his mountain and Santa Cruz Island so much.

After active days on Santa Cruz, travelers will journey to Jacqui where the pace slows to ‘island time,’ and they can enjoy the luxury of toes-in-the-sand relaxation. On San Cristobal, visitors get a glimpse of Jacqui’s artistic spirit and create their own adventures around Jacqui’s favorites. She will recommend and guide their journey, making for a totally personalized experience.

'The Mountain and The Sea' will allow travelers to embrace the romance of exploration and discovery in the Galapagos with a true local flavor. We promise they'll fall head over heels.

  • Day 1

    BALTRA ISLAND - SANTA CRUZ ISLAND

    Arrival in the Galapagos
    Today we arrive in Baltra Island, the gateway to the Galapagos. This tiny island was a military base during the Second World War and hosts the Islands’ principal airport. The airport was built using the most advanced environmental techniques to reduce emissions and energy use, some of which you’ll notice as you walkthrough the facility. This was the first ecological airport in the world.

    We dive into our adventure as soon as we arrive! We enter the airport through a special VIP lounge where you will have a chance to change clothes, put on some sunscreen and get a cool drink before we transfer to the Itabaca Channel to explore its spectacular turquoise waters. We will have a chance to kayak, snorkel and stand up paddleboard (SUP), as well as encountering some of the most famous Galapagos wildlife such as blue-footed boobies, sea lions, brown pelicans, a variety of herons and white-tipped reef sharks.

    There’s no better introduction to the Galapagos than to get on the water as soon as possible! We will glide through beautiful red mangrove forests and along lava rock cliffs on water so clear we can see the marine life in the shallows. Our ocean (sit on top) kayaks come in doubles or singles, and life jackets are provided. A support boat will escort us throughout our water activities to ensure safety and to provide water, snacks and towels between activities.

    From the Itabaca Channel we head up to the Santa Cruz highlands to a private reserve that borders the Galapagos National Park, where we can see the famous Giant Tortoises roaming in the wild.

    We drive to our exclusive giant tortoise reserve where our tented camp is located. Perched high on a hillside overlooking the ocean, Galapagos Magic Tented Camp will be our home for the next two nights. The sounds of nature will serenade us in the evenings, and the Milky Way will be our night-light. We’llbe able to feast our eyes on the mountains and forests surrounding the Camp, and enjoy the peace of having the entire hillside for us, with the exception of seasonal residents giant tortoises.

    Watching the colorful sunset from Magic’s western perch is the perfect segue into evening. Dinners are sumptuous three course affairs, prepared by expert chefs in an open-air kitchen in the main lodge. (L. D.) (Semi-Private Transfer) (Shared Guide)

    Technical Details:
    Difficulty: Easy to moderate

    Kayak:1.5-2 hours depending on fauna activity and skills of kayakers

    Means of Transportation: boat, kayak, stand up paddleboard and private transportation to Galapagos Magic.

    ACCOMMODATION: Galapagos Magic

  • Day 2

    SANTA CRUZ ISLAND

    Early in the morning we will visit Garrapatero Beach, where we will paddle from the beach along the bay for about 45 minutes. We can also take a short walk to the brackish lagoon where there is a good chance of seeing pink flamingos.

    We then drive to an off-the-beaten-path area of Santa Cruz Island, the Cerro Mesaview point, from where we can admire the whole southern shore of Santa Cruz. We then continue on towards one of the Galapagos’ iconic formations, Cerro Mesa where we will hike downhill for about 30 minutes to the bottom of this collapsed crater. We’ll explore the fascinating crater floor and then relax fora while before beginning the hike back uphill (45 minute - 1 hour). During our hike, we will have excellent opportunities to see endemic bird species such as the woodpecker finch, or if we are very lucky, giant tortoises.

    After a delicious lunch we will visit ‘El Trapiche’ (Trapiche is the Spanish word for sugar cane mill) where we will get a glimpse into the daily lives of the local people, finding out how they produce sugar cane. Here you can see how this rustic, mule-driven sugar cane press operates. You will also learn about different cane alcohol distilling techniques as well as some traditional coffee roasting tricks.

    We finish the day with the visit to Los Gemelos (the twins), two large craters that were once underground magma chambers. When the magma chambers caved in they left two huge, impressive craters. (B. L. D.) (Shared Guide)

    ACCOMMODATION: Galapagos Magic

  • Day 3

    SANTA CRUZ ISLAND

    After breakfast we will head to Puerto Ayora and walk to the beautiful Tortuga Bay beach where we will be able to spot marine iguanas, go for a swim, snorkel or just relax on the pristine sand. Turtle Bay is a beautiful white sand beach, so named because it’s a Black Turtle nesting site.

    After a delicious lunch we will visit The Charles Darwin Research Center, the hub of all scientific research on the Galapagos Islands. It is from these head quarters that the most sensitive conservation projects are directed; the conservation and preservation of giant tortoises and marine iguanas are some of the examplesof the Center’s important work.

    Walking through the core of the Research Centerwe will find the corrals where the giant tortoises are housed for breeding projects, and where land iguanas are being studied. The Research Center has abrand new Interpretation Center with some of the most important samples of the Darwin Center’s collection.

    We then head to Chocolápagos where we will meet owner Juan Daniel Navarro, who will explain the history of cocoa in Ecuador and around the world. He was born in Galapagos and started this sweet business with his family a few years ago.Juan Daniel will demonstrate the tempering process and how to make a delicious chocolate tortoise. You will have the chance to choose between two types offilling for your chocolate, the toughest decision of the day! There will be time for questions and then you’ll get to indulge yourself with yourhandmade chocolate. (B. L. D.) (Shared Guide)

    ACCOMMODATION: Galapagos Magic

  • Day 4

    SANTA CRUZ ISLAND - SAN CRISTOBAL ISLAND

    Early in the morning we will head to the Puerto Ayora dock to take the public speedboat to San Cristobal.

    Transfer to hotel.
    Balance of the day at leisure. (B.) (Semi-Private Transfer)

    ACCOMMODATION: Casa Blanca (standard room)

  • Day 5

    SAN CRISTOBAL ISLAND

    Today enjoy a full day at leisure.
    Several supplementary activities like Kicker Rock Tour, Interpretation Center, Cerro Tijeretas, El Junco & La Loberia can be arranged independently from any of the local tour operators on San Cristobal Island at extra cost. (B.)

    ACCOMMODATION: Casa Blanca (standard room)

  • Day 6

    SAN CRISTOBAL ISLAND

    It is time to say goodbye to the enchanted islands, but before taking your flight to the continent you will have the chance to explore the town and buy some souvenirs. (B.) (Semi-Private Transfer)

Hotel Galapagos Magic, Santa Cruz, Galapagos Islands

Galapagos Magic is a million miles from the world’s hustle and bustle. Set in the highlands of Santa Cruz (and away from the waterfront crowds), this totally unique property surprises and delights. All six safari tents have gorgeous views, and guests are surrounded by nature as they sleep. Galapagos Magic is a place to relax, walk the beautiful mountainside, turn your gaze to the beautiful heavens and to admire nature. Giant tortoises call Galapagos Magic their home much of the year, and guests might see a handful slowly moving through the grounds or many dozens dotting the meadow.

Sunsets from Galapagos Magic are, well, magic! Enjoying the last light of day with a cocktail on the meadow deck is a relaxing pastime, as is sharing stories of the days’ adventures in front of the open-air main lodge’s crackling fire. Magic serves sumptuous, three course dinners. The chefs use their culinary skills in the open kitchen to turn local ingredients into creative and elegant dishes. An after dinner stroll to the ‘Lava Lounge’ for a nightcap is the perfect way to end the day.

Capacity – 20 people 4 elevated tree houses 6 raised, walk-in tents Hot water
Wireless Internet Laundry service

Please Note: your accommodation is based on standard tents, they are comfortable raised, ensuite walk-in tents with local artwork and stunning Galapagos views.

 

Hotel Casa Blanca, San Cristobal, Galapagos Islands

Hotel Casa Blanca is located in the main street of Puerto Baquerizo Moreno – San Cristobal Island. The hotel has an incredible ocean view.

Each room offers a cozy atmosphere, as they were decorated by her owner Jacqui Vasquez who got her inspiration by the Islands ambiance.
Jacki and her 3 daughters started the business 13 years ago, when the hotel had just 2 rooms, but with their efforts they now have the perfect option for your staying.

Hotel Casa Blanca has 7 comfortable rooms, located in 2 floors, each room has its own style.
All the rooms has private bathroom, hot water, air conditioning and fan, TV cable, frigobar, WiFi.

It is located close to the pier, restaurants and souvenier shops

WHAT’S INCLUDED:

  • Accommodation
  • All meals
  • Airport VIP services on arrival
  • Transfers & ground transportation
  • Boat excursions with snorkeling on a sharing basis
  • Speed boat transfer on a sharing basis
  • Kayak, SUP and snorkeling equipment
  • English- speaking naturalist guide
  • Activities and visits detailed in the itinerary

WHAT’S NOT INCLUDED:

  • Flights (all flights from mainland Ecuador to the Galapagos Islands can be arranged upon request)
  • Galapagos National Park entrance fee (US $100 per adult /$50 per child under 12 years old)
  • Tourist transit card (US $20 per person)
  • Beverages
  • Laundry service
  • Insurance (prior to your journey please ensure your travel insurance is valid in your country of origin)
  • Gratuities

NOTES:

  • Daily arrivals
  • All rates are per person, based on double occupancy.
  • Rates are not valid during Certain Holidays and blackout periods.
  • (B.)= Breakfast
  • (L.)= Lunch
  • (D.)= Dinner
  • (Semi-Private Transfer) = transport provided by the hotel or lodge to their guest only
  • (Shared Guide) = Meet other likeminded travellers and share the services of a guide / vehicle during the plan activity.

 

 

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