Tuesday to Tuesday
Day 1 - Arrival & Santa Cruz Islands
AM: On arrival at Baltra Airport all visitors pay their entrance fee to the Galapagos National Park. You will then be met by The Beagle's naturalist guide who will assist you with your luggage collection and accompany you on a short bus ride to the harbour to board the Beagle.
PM: After a light lunch the Beagle will navigate to Las Bachas. Located on the northern shore of Santa Cruz Island, Las Bachas is a white sand beach that is a major nesting site for the green sea turtles. The name Las Bachas ("potholes") refers to the indentations left in the sand by laying turtles or departing hatchlings. On the shore there are marine iguanas, and in the lagoon area flamingos are common. Visitors are welcome to swim from the beach.
Day 2 – Genovesa
AM: After a dry landing you climb up the fairly steep Prince Philip's Steps that take you onto a lava rock trail leading you through Palo Santo forest full of nesting birds. There's a good chance of seeing the unique short-eared owl at this site.
PM: After lunch and a snorkel along the amazing cliff sides, you visit the beach area of Darwin Bay, home to frigate birds, red-footed boobies, Nazca boobies, flycatchers, lava gulls, storm petrels and Darwin finches, to mention some of the birds found in this bay, formed from a caldera collapse.
Day 3 – Santiago
AM: After a wet landing at James Bay onto a black beach, an easy stroll takes you near the coast line to observe tidal pools, marine birds, iguanas and sea lions, and often migratory birds are present in this area. This is also a good place to observe the Galapagos hawk. The trail ends at the fur sea lion grottos and, being nocturnal feeders, the fur seals sleep in and around the grottos during the day. On returning to the beach visitors may snorkel or swim.
PM: Navigation - After lunch we will start navigating to the west side of Isabela Island.
Day 4 - Isabela & Fernandina
AM: Punta Vicente Roca offers a dinghy ride, excellent for marine life observation, to a snorkel area where underwater wildlife take full advantage of the nutrient-rich Cromwell current that upwells in this area. Fernandina is the youngest island of the archipelago.
PM: As you disembark at Punta Espinoza, you must be careful not to step on the marine iguanas piled up together to retain body heat. This visiting site is rich in wildlife, sea lions, flightless cormorants, penguins, herons, Sally light-foot crabs and much more, all living side by side on this small point with its mangrove forest.
Day 5 - Isabela
AM: The 30 minute hike at Tagus Cove takes you to the top of a cliff to view the volcanic landscapes of Darwin Volcano and Darwin Lake, the latter an uplifted ultra-saline lake saltier than the sea. Historically used as an anchorage site by pirates and whalers, this site is again an excellent place for marine and land birds.
PM: Located to the south at the foot of the western side of Alcedo Volcano, Urbina Bay was uplifted in 1954 from the seabed leaving coral heads sitting out of the water. There is a large colony of land Iguanas, which has grown since the feral dogs and goats have been controlled through Project Isabela. It also affords an opportunity to see the Alcedo Volcano tortoise in its natural habitat.
Day 6 – Isabela
AM: Elizabeth Bay is a marine visitor site so the excursion is made by dinghy to the Mariela Rocks, where there is an important colony of Galapagos penguins. The dinghy ride takes you into a cove surrounded by red mangrove. Here in these quiet lagoons there may be green sea turtles, spotted eagle rays, golden rays, brown pelicans, small shark and flightless cormorants. A lava walk takes you to a series of lagoons with plenty to see along the way. Darwin's finches, Galapagos doves, penguins, blue-footed boobies, mockingbirds and flightless cormorants are some of the abundant wild life.
PM: Still on Isabela, the largest island in Galapagos, you will explore Punta Moreno, a desolate and pristine landscape of impressive black lava flows affording good views of Alcedo and Sierra Azul volcanoes.
Day 7 – Isabela
AM: After breakfast you will head off to Sierra Negra volcano, the world's second largest volcanic crater. It's located in the southern part of Isabela Island. Transport will take you to within an hour of the crater rim, and for good walkers there is a hike to Volcano Chico to view active fumaroles! Otherwise a shorter walk can be done along the same trail.
PM: Lunch is served back on the Beagle, and the afternoon is spent in Puerto Villamil with its long, white sandy, palm-lined beaches and several brackish water lagoons, where pink flamingos, common stilts, wimbrels, white-cheeked pintails, and gallinules are usually spotted. The beaches and lagoons are home to the best migratory bird viewing in the Galapagos Islands. The afternoon also includes a visit to the Arnaldo Tupiza Tortoise Breeding Centre to see Isabela's giant tortoises.
Day 8- Santa Cruz & Departure
AM: A bus ride will take you to visit the Gemelos, located in the highlands of Santa Cruz Island. These pit craters are just off the main road that crosses the island to the airport. After this visit you will be transferred to Baltra Island to take your flight back to the continent.