Dreaming about your next vacation? The perfect Galapagos itinerary


If you are at home, you are probably missing the last time you went on vacation and dreaming about the moment when you go on the next one. We would like to take you to an adventure through this itinerary so that you can escape for a while to a paradisiacal island filled with adventures and comfort.

Cruising the Galapagos on a yacht takes you to a new horizon each day, giving you access to places in the Galapagos Islands that few people will ever get to know, all in the highest comfort. An adventure on a yacht will allow you to enjoy unparalleled attention to detail and personal service. A cruise is the perfect opportunity for exploring some of the most beautiful, yet remote parts of the Galapagos Islands. An adventure like this will stay with you for a lifetime.

Visit Black Turtle Cove

Navigate on this large mangrove lagoon, during this quiet navigation. You will see curious pelicans and herons. After a while, if you look into the water, you will have your second encounter of the day, sea turtles and marine rays swimming peacefully next to you. What a way to start a week!

Visit Genovesa Island

This island is a paradise for bird watching enthusiasts. So, if you are one, this is a must during your cruise itinerary. As you walk up the path to the island, you will understand its nickname “Tower Island,” but don’t worry, it will be worth it as soon as you encounter the birds nesting in their natural habitat, not being bothered by human presence. As you keep going further, you will finally find the coast to encounter sea lions as you snorkel along the bay.

Visit Bartolome Island and Sullivan Bay

Prepare to refresh your knowledge in geology, Bartolome is a geological wonder. After walking up the wooden stairs that will take you to the top of this island, take a deep breath because the view will take it away for sure. From Bartolome, it is easy to visit Sullivan Bay which is a fascinating place. You can walk on a recent lava flow of pahoehoe lava, observe the lava bubbles, pioneer plants growing directly from the lava, and of course, don’t miss the endemic Galapagos penguins along the shore!

Visit Rabida and Dragon Hill

Be camera ready when you are going to Rabida, this unique island has red sand. It resembles a Martian landscape. Crazy, right? Well, that is not it. While you slowly explore this island, you will encounter yellow warblers, mockingbirds and the tiny celebrities of the Galapagos, Darwin’s finches. Due to the distance, Rabida is usually complemented with a visit to Dragon Hill, and if you are looking forward to spotting some flamingos, then that is precisely where you will find them.

Visit North Seymour and head back to Santa Cruz

We know all of Galapagos is incredibly special, but North Seymour is simply stunning. This island must be included in your cruise. You will be overwhelmed by its nature from the moment you set foot on this island. You will see sea lion pups and their mothers, magnificent frigate birds, blue-footed boobies, and if you keep walking further you will see marine iguanas and swallowed tail gulls.

After that, get back to Santa Cruz and stay for a day or two in town.

Meet the locals

If you decided to follow my advice and stay for a day or two, then it is time to relax. Head to Tortuga Bay and enjoy the beautiful landscape, swim on its crystal-clear waters, and be one with nature. Go to Las Grietas or the Charles Darwin Station and spend the day at your own pace, dine in a local restaurant and enjoy every second of it.

Carlos Beate is the Commercial Manager at Andando Tours. Andando Tours offers exclusive traveling experiences, specializing in sailing around the Galapagos Islands and overland along the magnificent Avenue of Volcanoes on the Ecuadorian Andes.

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Comments (7)

  1. Marissa Powell says:

    I’ve often thought of the Galapagos in recent years, probably from reading more about it as a holiday destination on here. It gets more and more appealing, as does a yacht charter for the flexibility. I imagine with the coronavirus, less populated transport and private excursions will be more sought after too. Considering how cooped up we’ve been for a few months now, I definitely want to go somewhere more outdoorsy when it’s safe to travel again, somewhere in nature where you can feel free and get a different experience to that of a city stay or a touristy beach holiday. I feel like I’ve done a lot of the well trodden paths already and I’d like to go to places a bit more off the beaten track now, spread my wings a little as they say. The Charles Darwin Station would be really interesting to check out too, that’d make for an interesting conversation when you got back home and it’s the sort of experience with wildlife like this that I’m sure would last a lifetime.

    • Jaime says:

      Great rundown of what’s been going on! It’s helpful to read other people’s point of view when it comes to traveling here. I’m glad that they’ve kept the people safe thee though. As much as I’d love to also travel there, I think preserving a place like this is really important to its future.

  2. Francois says:

    Great article Carlos ! Galapagos is one of the paradise destination everyone wants to discover, and your pictures are very attractive.
    What about hotels there or nearby ?

  3. A. Bennet says:

    Just wow! Bartolome Island and Sullivan Bay look promising. If I ever get the chance to visit Ecuador, I would definitely not miss the chance to see, safely, bubbling lava and lava flows. It might be scary, but it will definitely be an adventure. As I’ve learned during these hard times, we can never ever take anything for granted again. Can you recommend any accommodation in the area?

    • Carlos Beate says:

      There are beautiful hotels in Santa Cruz, Isabela and San Cristobal. However, we highly recommend to visit the Galapagos on a cruise. The main reason is due to the large size of the archipelago. Even getting to the nearest islands can take several hours. For this reason, when we settle on an island we are limited in the number of experiences we can have since most of the time will be lost navigating between one island and another in small boats and returning to the place of origin every day.

  4. Anne Turfrey says:

    I hadn’t realised Bartolome is just a small jump to Sullivan Bay, makes that quite convenient for a day trip. There must be so much to see in the Galapagos and you’ve covered it well. It’s the sort of place where I imagine you really would need an itinerary to try to make the most of your time and see as much as possible. Must be lovely to be among so much nature. I bet a lot of folks come back with thousands of photos. Thank goodness for digital cameras, would cost a fortune in photo processing of traditional film cameras otherwise! ;)

  5. Frank says:

    I’m really enjoying learning about the Galapagos Island whenever I visit this site. I didn’t really know about the rich vibrancy of the place like what I read in this post. It seems like there’s so much to do there that is just once in a lifetime. Really great.

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