A comfortable and spacious motor yacht accommodating up to 16 people. Lots of deck space for relaxing.
Enjoy the small ship experience of cruising from island to island, getting close to the shore, feel the breeze and listening to the sea. After the morning and afternoon landings ashore, you can enjoy the spacious sundeck areas, sunbathe and admire the sea lions playing around you.
The Cachalote Explorer accommodates up to 16 passengers in 8 air conditioned double cabins, all with private bathroom facilities. There is a crew of 9 including your Galapagos Naturalist Guide that will take you on daily excursions.
Special offer - 7- night cruises 2020 - save up to £750 per person on following departures:
2020 - 25 March, 22 Apr, 20 May, 10 June, 17 June, 8 July, 5 August, 12 August, 30 September, 14 October, 11 November, 2 December and 16 December.
Speak with a Specialist
Each of these cruises itineraries can be built into a personalised tour.
Contact us for first-hand advice & inspiration in planning your next trip.
Focus on the Western and Central Islands
Day 1 (Wednesday): Arrive at Baltra Airport / Santa Cruz Island
Arrive at Baltra Airport and transfer to the Cathalote Explorer for your 7 night cruise.
Santa Cruz Island
- Highlands of Santa Cruz: Galapagos giant tortoises can be seen in the wild in the highlands of Santa Cruz
- Charles Darwin Station: Visit the Charles Darwin Station is a research facility and National Park Information center. The Charles Darwin Station has a giant tortoise and land iguana breeding program and interpretation center.
Day 2 (Thursday):Sombrero Chino Island / Rábida Island
Sombrero Chino: Sombrero Chino is a small volcanic island just off the southeast tip of Santiago. The name of the island describes the shape of the island. Fauna includes Sea lions, marine iguanas and the Galapagos penguin.
Rábida Island: Rábida is a small island with a dark red coral sand beach. Highlights include the lagoon with flamingoes, pelican nesting site, sea lion bachelor colony, and a snorkeling site at the end of the beach.
Day 3 (Friday): Isabela Island
Isabela Island (Albemarle): Isabela is the largest of the Galapagos Islands formed by five active volcanoes fused together. Wolf Volcano is the highest point in the entire Galapagos at 1707m.
- Sierra Negra : Volcan Sierra Negra has a caldera with a diameter of 10km. View recent lava flows, moist highland vegetation, and parasitic cones.
- Puerto Villamil: Puerto Villamil is a charming small town on a white sand beach. Highlights include the Tortoise Breeding Station and the flamingo lagoon. Other visits (depending on conditions) are the Tintoreras or Los Humedales.
Day 4 (Saturday): Isabela (Albemarle) Island
- Punta Moreno: Punta Moreno is located in the central southwestern coast of Isabela Island. The site has spectacular views of volcanoes Alcedo, Sierra Negra and Cerro Azul. Some highlights include impressive lava flows, desolate and pristine landscape, varied and unusual arid zone vegetation.
- Elizabeth Bay: This spot is only accessible by dinghy. It is possible to see penguins on the small islets in the bay. The end of the bay is long and narrow surrounded by three species of mangroves. Galapagos Sea Turtles and rays can usually be seen in the water.
Day 5 (Sunday): Isabela (Albemarle) Island
- Urbina Bay: Urbina Bay is located at the central-west coast of Isabela Island at the foothills of Alcedo and Darwin volcanoes. Highlights include the colourful land iguanas, Galapagos Giant tortoises and the coral uplifting from 1954.
- Tagus Cove: Tagus Cove is a natural harbor where centuries ago whalers and pirates left their ship’s names painted or carved on the rocks. A walk uphill to Darwin’s Crater salt-water lake will provide an excellent view.
Day 6 (Monday): Fernandina Island / Isabela Island
Fernandina Island: Fernandina is the youngest volcanic island and is still active.
- Punta Espinoza: Punta Espinoza is a place famous for its large colonies of marine iguanas and as the habitat of unique species like the flightless cormorant, Galapagos penguin, Galapagos hawk, Galapagos snake, among others.
- Punta Vicente Roca: This site is visited by dinghy rides along the cliffs or the partially sunken cave at the water’s edge. Nasca boobies, blue-footed boobies and flightless cormorants inhabit the shoreline.
Day 7 (Tuesday): James (Santiago) Island / Bartolome Island
James (Santiago) Island: This Island is located between Isabela and Santa Cruz Islands. This Island offers a wide variety of seabirds, marine iguanas and fur seals.
- Puerto Egas: A walk along the rocky coast line that will you show you a view of some of Galapagos’ best tide pools. Some highlights include: Sugar loaf volcano, fur seals, oystercatchers, marine iguana colony, and old salt mine
Bartolome Island: A hike will take you to the highest point on Bartolome for a spectacular view. Sea lions and penguins can be seen around Pinnacle Rock. There is a sandy beach with great swimming and snorkeling.
Day 8 (Friday): North Seymour Island / Baltra for return flight to Quito or Guayquil
North Seymour Island: This flat piece of land originated after an uplifting event thousands of years ago. The island is home to endemic Palo Santo trees, colonies of blue-footed boobies, swallow tailed gulls, and magnificent frigate birds.
Transfer to Baltra Airport for your flight back to the mainland and onward connections.
Focussing on the Central, Southern and Northern Islands
Day 1 (Wednesday): Arrive at Baltra Airport / Santa Cruz Island
Arrive at Baltra Airport and transfer to the Cachalote Explorer for your 7 night cruise.
Santa Cruz Island
- Highlands of Santa Cruz: Galapagos giant tortoises can be seen in the wild in the highlands of Santa Cruz.
- Charles Darwin Station: Visit the Charles Darwin Station is a research facility and National Park Information center. The Charles Darwin Station has a giant tortoise and land iguana breeding program and interpretation centre.
Day 2 (Thursday): South Plaza Island / Santa Fe Island
South Plaza Island: Plazas consists of two very small islands that were uplifted from the sea, separated by a channel. Only South Plazas has a visitor site. The highlights include tall Opuntia cactus, land and marine iguanas, rocky cliff that looks out towards open ocean which is also a nesting site for red-billed tropic birds and gulls, and a seal lion bachelor colony.
Santa Fe Island: Santa Fe is a smaller island of 24 km2. The visitor site Santa Fe is located on the northeast end of the island. Highlights include Santa Fe land iguanas, pelican nesting site, sea lion colony, mockingbird, and Palo Santo trees.
Day 3 (Friday): San Cristóbal Island
San Cristóbal Island (Chatham): San Cristóbal is the easternmost island of Galapagos and also one of the oldest.
- Witch Hill: Witch Hill (Cerro Brujo) is a volcanic cone that looks over a beautiful white sandy beach which has plenty of sea lions, pelicans, blue-footed boobies, waders and marine iguanas.
- Galapaguera and el Junco: The lagoon is the only fresh water reservoir in Galapagos and has great views from its altitude of 700m in the highlands of San Cristóbal. Rainwater has collected in the caldera for hundreds of years and formed this lagoon.Galapaguera is a good area to see tortoises in their natural environment.
Day 4 (Saturday): Española (Hood) Island
Hood Island (Española): Hood is the oldest of the Southern Islands and is the southernmost in the archipelago. Because of its remote location a unique range of endemic species evolved here
- Gardner Bay: Located on the northeast of the island, the site has a long and beautiful white sand beach inhabited by sea lion colonies.
- Islote Garnder and Islote Osborn: These islets are snorkeling sites where visitors will see an abundance of tropical fish, reef sharks, and turtles.
- Punta Suarez: The wildlife at Punta Suarez is plentiful and varied. Along the cliff visitors can enjoy the blowhole where seawater is forced about 20m into the air. The highlights are the Waved albatross (April-Dec) that are only found on Hood, Galapagos Hawks, blue-footed boobies, Ñasca boobies, and Española lava lizards.
Day 5 (Sunday): Floreana Island
Floreana Island: Floreana is best known for its colorful history of buccaneers, whalers, convicts, and early colonists.
- Punta Cormorant: Punta Cormorant has two contrasting beaches and a large inland lagoon where pink flamingoes can be seen.
- Devil’s Crown: This is a snorkeling site located just off Punta Cormorant. The site is a completely submerged volcano that has eroded to create the appearance of a jagged crown.
- Post Office Bay: This is one of the few sites visited for its human history. Visit the wooden mail barrel where letters are dropped off and picked up and remains of the Norwegian fishing village.
Day 6 (Monday): Santa Cruz Island / James Island
Santa Cruz Island
- Dragon Hill: Cerro Dragon has hypersalinic small lagoon behind the beach, often frequented by flamingoes
James Island (Santiago)
James Island is located between Isabela and Santa Cruz Islands. This Island offers a wide variety of seabirds, marine iguanas and fur seals.
- Sullivan Bay: This site is of great geological interest. Highlights: 100 hundred year old lava flow field, pahoehoe formations, and lava bubbles.
Day 7 (Tuesday): Tower (Genovesa) Island
Tower Island (Genovesa): Tower is an eroded flat volcanic island, with a natural harbor, which is actually the submerged caldera of this volcanic island.
- Darwin Bay: The steep cliffs of this area dominate the island. This area is home to thousands of frigate birds, red-footed boobies, Noddy terns, lava gulls, tropicbirds, doves, storm petrels and Darwin’s finches.
- El Barranco: There is a good possibility of seeing the unique “Short eared owl” at this site. During the dinghy rides along the cliffs fur seals and several species of seabirds can be spotted.
Day 8 (Wednesday): Santa Cruz Island / Baltra for return flight to Quito or Guayaquil
Santa Cruz Island
Caleta Tortuga (Turtle Cove): Turtle Cove is a red mangrove lagoon on Santa Cruz and a perfect example of how mangroves alter the marine environment to create a rich and unique habitat.
Transfer to Baltra Airport for your flight back to the mainland and onward connection.
A former fishing boat built in Vancouver, Canada that was converted to a passenger yacht in 2000. The rugged structure of the ship ensures a smooth and comfortable passage around the Galapagos Islands - she is very stable.
For a small yacht, the decks are a good size, offering good opportunities for al fresco dining and lots of space to relax on a sun lounger or deck chair.
The Cachalote Explorer offers excellent value for a choice of two 7 night itineraries.
- Transfers from Baltra Airport to/from the ship
- All meals
- Purified water throughout
- Daily excursions with your on board naturalist guide
- Evening talks and briefings from your naturalist guide
- Use of kayaks, wet suits and snorkelling equipment
Special offer - 7- night cruises - save £1000 per person on following departures:
2019 - 6 Nov and 11 Dec
2020 - 29 Jan, 26 Feb, 25 Mar, 22 Apr, 20 May, 10 Jun and 8 Jul
Length - 88ft
Beam - 24ft
Salon size - 17.5ft x 35ft
Type - motor vessel, Steel hull
Cruising speed - 8 knots
Mechanical Equipment - 1 main Caterpillar Engine, 3 Generators (110v), 2 reverse osmosis water makers, sewage treatment plant
Safety Equipment - VHF (DSC) & HF (DSC) radios. EPIRB, SART, Hunter satellite tracking device, 2 GPS’s, 2 radars, depth sounder, flares, basic first aid kits, 2 tenders with outboards, fin keels for extra stability, flotation rings, life rafts with surplus capacity for all passengers and crew, fire alarm system.
Guest Accommodation - 8 cabins each with private bathroom. Hot and cold water showers. Combination of Queen, double and twin sized mattresses.
Crew - All crew are fully trained and certified. Captain, multilingual naturalist guide, cook, engineers, barman, and 4 sailors.
Deck plan & cabins
Cabin 1 (upper deck): lower queen size bed / lower single / upper single
Cabin 2 (upper deck): lower double / upper single
Cabin 3, 4 & 7 (lower deck): lower double / upper single
Cabin 5 & 6 (lower deck): lower queen size bed only
Cabin 8 (lower deck): lower single / upper small single
All cabins are air-conditioned with private bathroom.