Skip to main content

Yolita: Land & Sea - Central & South Islands

Overview

This tour allows you to spend five days exploring the incredible wildlife-rich Galapagos Islands made famous by Charles Darwin, with one night in a hotel in Puerto Ayora followed by 3 nights aboard the Yolita. Learn about the history and wildlife of the central and southern islands as you cruise amongst them. Discover the magical underwater world at Devil’s Crown, a snorkeler’s paradise and home to some of the most impressive marine life in the Galapagos archipelago. Marvel at the vast array of birdlife as you look out for frigatebirds, Darwin’s finches and boobies; encounter ancient giant tortoises and walk amongst colonies of iguanas and sea lions.

Optional Activities :

Trip Code: SEVL07YB

Location: Galapagos Islands - Ecuador

Ship: Yolita II

CRUISE ITINERARY

On arrival into Quito you will be met and transferred to your hotel.

Quito

Sitting at 2,850 metres above sea level high in the Andean foothills lies Quito, the capital of Ecuador. The city, a short distance from the Equator and with an amazing backdrop of snow-capped mountains, is known for its stunning colonial architecture and art-work. Founded in the 16th century on the ruins of an Inca city, Quito has one of the largest, least-altered and best-preserved historic centres in the Americas. It was declared a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site in 1978.

Quito

This morning you will be transferred early to the airport for your flight to the Galapagos Islands. On arrival in Baltra, you will be met by your guide and transferred to the hotel in Puerto Ayora where you will spend your first night in the Galapagos.

Please note that the Galapagos National Park charges a visitor fee of USD100, payable on arrival, which funds park maintenance and supervision in the Galapagos, as well as ecological study and conservation.

The Galapagos Islands are located about 1000 kilometres (620 miles) off the Pacific coast of South America. The archipelago is comprised of 13 major islands and scores of islets that served as a living laboratory for Charles Darwin, the renowned evolution theorist. Long before Darwin arrived in the Galapagos, seafarers knew these isolated islands as home to some of the strangest and most wonderful wildlife imaginable, including birds that could swim but no longer fly, aquatic iguanas, dragon-like lizards left over from prehistoric times and the giant Galapagos tortoises for which the islands were named.

We check into the hotel before having lunch followed by a short afternoon hike to the beautiful white sand beach of Tortuga Bay and a kayak ride amongst the mangroves.

Tortuga Bay (Turtle Bay) is a great place to see sea turtles, sea lions, marine iguanas, pelicans, flamingos and lava gulls which are endemic to the islands and commonly found along the shores. The two beaches at Tortuga Bay are separated by red mangroves. You may see tintoreras sharks, turtles and manta rays in the shallow waters.

There is also the opportunity to explore the mangroves by kayak. As you paddle through the waters, look out for the wide variety of marine life, including colourful reef fish, rays and sea turtles. Afterwards, relax on the beautiful fine white sand beach where you may see iguanas basking in the sun.

Quito/Puerto Ayora

This morning we transfer to the Yolita where you will meet the crew and settle in. This afternoon, we visit the giant tortoises of El Chato Reserve.

El Chato Reserve is located in the highlands of Santa Cruz Island and here it is possible to see giant land tortoises in the wild in their natural environment. We explore the Reserve’s lagoon and lava tunnels, keeping an eye out for owls that often roost in the entrances to the tunnels.

We return to the Yolita with its spacious cabins and large upper deck where you can soak up the sun’s rays and enjoy the scenery. The ship sails overnight so you wake up refreshed and ready to explore the next destination.

Puerto Ayora/Santa Cruz

We land at Punta Cormorant, the only landing site on Floreana Island. The landing site is a green sand beach, coloured by olivine crystals, volcanic-derived silicates of magnesium and iron.

Around the point, Corona del Diablo, or Devil's Crown derives its name from the broken remains of a partially submerged volcanic cone. This is a perfect spot to go snorkelling from the boat, as the waters are home to large schools of colourful tropical fish, rays, reef sharks and sea turtles that make their home among the coral reef. You need to be a strong swimmer to snorkel here as the currents can be intense.

In the afternoon we visit historic Post Office Bay. In the late 18th century, English whaling vessels placed a barrel here to be used as a post office. Today, the box is used mainly by tourists, who drop off and pick up unstamped letters to be carried to far destinations.

Punta Cormorant/Floreana Island

This morning sees us visiting Sombrero Chino (Chinese Hat) to observe the birdlife and sea lions and for snorkelling.

We arrive at the small island of Sombrero Chino, so called due to its unique shape, lying off the southern tip of Santiago. The landscape here is beautiful. It is often possible to see Galapagos penguins and the abundant marine life makes snorkelling here a fantastic experience. There is a large sea lion colony as well as many marine iguanas that can be seen on a guided walk amongst the beautiful volcanic scenery and along the spectacular white coral sand beach.

Next we visit Cerro Dragón (Dragon Hill) on the west coast of Isla Santa Cruz to observe land iguanas and a saltwater lagoon frequented by flamingos and other bird species. We take a short walk from the beach to a hypersalinic lagoon frequented by pink flamingos, common stilts, pintail ducks and other species of birds. We pass through a Scalesia tree forest. This tree is endemic to the area with only 400 specimens of Scalesia trees left in the world.

Chinese Hat/Cerro Dragon

This morning we explore the mangrove lagoon at Black Turtle Cove on the northern end of Santa Cruz Island. We head out in pangas to observe the rich and varied marine life between the fresh and salt waters, including manta rays, sea turtles, pelicans and an abundance of other birdlife. Whitetip reef sharks can sometimes be seen gliding by.

Later we transfer to the airport for the flight back to Quito. On arrival there is a transfer to the group hotel with time to enjoy one last night in Ecuador’s capital.

Black Turtle Cove/Quito

Today is free for you to explore Quito at your leisure until your departure time.

Quito

You will be collected from your hotel at the appropriate time and transferred to the airport for your onward flight.

Transfer to the airport for onward destination
DOWNLOAD ITINERARY PDF

Pricing & date

Departing Ending Duration
04 Jun 2019 10 Jun 2019 7
18 Jun 2019 24 Jun 2019 7
02 Jul 2019 08 Jul 2019 7
16 Jul 2019 22 Jul 2019 7
30 Jul 2019 05 Aug 2019 7
13 Aug 2019 19 Aug 2019 7
27 Aug 2019 02 Sep 2019 7
10 Sep 2019 16 Sep 2019 7
08 Oct 2019 14 Oct 2019 7
22 Oct 2019 28 Oct 2019 7
05 Nov 2019 11 Nov 2019 7
17 Dec 2019 23 Dec 2019 7
31 Dec 2019 06 Jan 2020 7
Enquire Now

Important Information

  • Arrival transfer
    Certified Galápagos National Park Service Guide
    Hotels (3 nts), aboard the Yolita in twin-share cabins (3 nts)
    All meals aboard the Yolita
    Overnight on Santa Cruz Island
    Tortuga Bay hike and kayak (Santa Cruz Island)
    Excursion to see giant tortoises in the wild (Santa Cruz Island)
    Visit to Post Office Bay (Floreana Island)
    Snorkelling at Corona del Diablo
    Onboard snorkelling equipment and wetsuits while aboard the Yolita
    Internal flights
    All transport between destinations and to/from included activities

  • 2 (light adventure)
  • Available upon request

  • Contact us for more details

  • Season and availability

SPEAK TO A SPECIALIST

Talk to one of our Destination Specialists to plan your South American adventure and turn your dream into a reality. With exceptional knowledge and first hand experience, our consultants will assist in every way possible to make your journey the most memorable it can be, matching not only the itinerary, but the accommodation and activities to suit your style of travel and budget.

Sustainability

Chimu Adventures undertakes a number of sustainability measures within its operations including:
1) Only using local guides and office staff to both maximise local employment opportunities and minimise carbon footprints. Local guides also ensure you benefit from the intimate knowledge, passion and culture of the country you’re visiting.
2) Where possible, using locally owned and operated boutique hotels to maximise the return to the local community.
3) Chimu’s “Pass it on” programme has provided funding to hundreds of local community projects in Latin America. Our aim is to empower local communities, helping them to develop their own infrastructure for the future. Since 2006, we have been working with Kiva (a well-known Non-Governmental Organisation), providing hundreds of loans to local businesses all over South America.
4) In our pre tour information we provide a range of tips and advice on how to minimise your impact on both local environments and communities.
5) Chimu Adventures’ offices also take a number of sustainability measures including carbon offsets for company vehicles and most staff travel. Chimu Adventure’s internal processes are also structures to create a paperless office and to reduce waste. There are also internal programmes to help staff minimise their carbon footprint such as our staff bike purchase assistance plan which encourages office staff to commute to work via bicycle. Currently almost half of our office based staff commute to work via bicycle.