Saturday to Saturday
DAY 1 Arrive Baltra, Charles Darwin Research Centre (Santa Cruz)
We start with a visit to the Charles Darwin Research Centre and the Fausto Llerena Breeding Centre, to see tortoises from across the different islands. We then board the Mary Anne with a welcome dinner and introductory briefing.
DAY 2 Punta Cormorant & Post Office Bay (Floreana)
The second day is spent on Floreana Island, starting with the beautiful beach at Punta Cormorant and the chance to see greater flamingos, sting rays and sea turtles nesting grounds. A panga ride then follows to Devil's Crown, where we have our first snorkelling opportunity.
In the afternoon we visit Post Office Bay, where you can take one of the letters or postcards to hand-deliver to someone near your home and perhaps live one in the hope someone does the same.
DAY 3 Black Beach & Whales/Dolphin Watching (Floreana)
We start the day on the black beach of Floriana to learn about the history of human inhabitants in the archipelago and then the Asilo de la Paz fresh water source and caves, once used as pirate hideouts. The afternoon is then dedicated to exploring the marine reserve waters of the Galapagos, looking for different species of whales and dolphins, whilst travelling between Floreana and the volcanic landscapes of Isabella.
DAY 4 Punta Moreno & Elizabeth Bay (Isabela)
Disembark at Punta Moreno and admire the spectacular lava flows, surrounded by volcanoes. We undertake a short hike to a nearby lagoon to look for the flamingos, herons and pelicans that frequent this beautiful area.
Later that day we take a panga ride around Elizabeth Bay, another picturesque lagoon, fringed by the archipelago's largest red mangroves. Sea turtles, flightless cormorants, blue-footed boobies and penguins are commonly seen around here and it is possible to see humpback whales breaching.
DAY 5 Urbina Bay (Isabela) & Punta Espinoza (Fernandina)
Our tour continues at Urbina Bay, which experienced a major geological 'uplift' about sixty years ago, leaving behind interesting coral and marine fossils for us to admire. There is also a black sand beach here that is a nesting site for green sea turtles, whilst inland we can see land iguanas and giant tortoises (depending on season). The waters here afford some great snorkelling.
In the afternoon we make the short crossing to Fernandina, the archipelago's youngest island. We disembark at Punta Espinoza to spot flightless cormorants, sea lions, penguins, hawks, marine iguanas and Sally Lightfoot Crabs.
DAY 6 Tagus Cove & Punta Vicente Roca (Isabela)
The morning is spent exploring Taguas Cove, another former pirate hideaway, where the names of their boats are inscribed in the cliff face. The highlight here is the beautiful Darwin Lake, a salt-water lagoon which fills a volcano crater.
We then take another panga ride around the coastline and enjoy some of the best snorkelling in the Galapagos. The underwater cliffs are brought to life by the dazzling colour of the marine life below.
DAY 7 Espumilla Beach & Puerto Egas (Santiago)
The penultimate day is spent exploring Santiago island, starting at the golden sands of Espumilla beach, another green sea turtle nesting site. From here, we follow a forest trail to spot yellow warblers, Darwin finches and the Galapagos flycatcher.
The afternoon brings a visit to Puerto Egas, a volcanic beach populated by Galapagos fur seals, Sally Lightfoot crabs and marine iguanas. The shore is home to an abundance of marine and bird life and features an impressive natural lava arch.
DAY 8 North Seymour & Depart Baltra
The cruise ends at the small island of North Seymour, a haven for frigatebirds, blue-footed boobies and swallow-tail gulls, who have their largest nesting sites here. Return to Baltra to disembark and transfer to the airport.