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Galápagos Islands - Snorkeling, Sea Lions, & Adventure via M/Y Tip Top III

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Study unique animal and plant species in one of the world’s most extraordinary settings — the Galápagos Islands. Begin in Ecuador’s capital city of Quito, then begin your cruise through the Galápagos to snorkel with sea lions, observe Blue-footed Boobies, and encounter the endemic wildlife of this magical place.

Available Dates
September 4 – 14, 2013
November 27 – December 7, 2013
December 11 – 21, 2013

Dates are subject to availability

Take a guided tour of Ecuador’s colonial capital city, Quito.

Swim and snorkel with the famous wildlife of the Galápagos including sea lions and sea turtles.

See a variety of birds including Waved Albatross, and comical Blue-footed Boobies.

Observe endemic wildlife such as Galápagos Penguins, marine iguanas, and fur seals.

Day 1 - Quito

Upon arrival at Quito International Airport you will be met by our representative and transferred your hotel for overnight. Quito, the second highest capital city in the world, is located at 2,850 meters above sea level and surrounded by snow-capped volcanoes. Listed on the World Heritage List for its fine collection of colonial architecture, Quito is a history lover’s paradise. The old town is an area of preserved colonial churches, monasteries, museums and whitewashed buildings with red-tiled roofs. The modern area reflects the rapidly growing Latin American city, and is a vibrant center of commerce replete with high rises, bustling sidewalks, and traffic. Overnight in Quito

Day 2 - Quito

Today you have your choice of tours. Options include a city tour of Quito with visit to the Middle of the World Monument, or a guided tour to Mindo, Cotopaxi Volcano, Otavalo, or Antisana. Overnight in Quito (BL)

Day 3 - Galápagos

This morning you will be escorted to the airport for your flight to the Galápagos Islands. The flight from Quito (via Guayaquil) to the Galápagos is approximately 1 ½ hours. You’ll be met outside of baggage claim and escorted by bus to the Itabaca Channel. Cross the channel by barge and continue to Puerto Ayora by bus. Board the yacht, M/Y Tip Top III, and meet the crew, enjoy a light snack and receive a welcome orientation. In the afternoon, land at the pier for a visit to the Charles Darwin Research Station and its Interpretive Center. Return to the Port for a walk through the town to appreciate various handicrafts. Tonight enjoy a welcome cocktail with the crew and dinner aboard the yacht. Overnight M/Y Tip Top III (BLD)

Day 4 - Galápagos

After breakfast is a wet landing on Santa Fé Island to visit the cactus forest and a native colony of land iguanas. There will be optional time for those who would like to swim, snorkel, and/or kayak. Return to the yacht for lunch and sail to South Plaza. After a dry landing on the pier, enjoy the antics of the sea lions. Walk through a cactus forest for a chance to observe land iguanas and many species of tropical birds. Return to the yacht for dinner and nightly orientation. Overnight M/Y Tip Top III (BLD)

Day 5 - Galápagos

After breakfast is a wet landing on Chinese Hat (Sombrero Chino), a small island off the Coast of Santiago Island. Along the rocky shoreline, visitors can hope to see Galápagos Penguins, eagle rays, sea lions, and marine iguanas. This is an excellent snorkeling site, with time again for those who would like to swim, snorkel and/ or kayak. Return to the boat for lunch. Later is a wet landing on Rábida to walk and observe marine iguanas, sea lions, pelicans, Blue-footed Boobies, Masked Boobies, and Brown Pelicans. The walk concludes at a small saltwater lagoon, home to pink flamingos. This evening enjoy dinner and orientation aboard the yacht. Overnight M/Y Tip Top III (BLD)

Day 6 - Galápagos

After breakfast, take a panga ride at Black Turtle Cove, a series of mangrove-surrounded coves and inlets where white-tipped sharks, marine turtles, spotted eagle rays, and yellow cow-nosed rays are found. Lunch on the boat. Later is a dry landing on Dragon Hill. In addition to seeing land iguanas, a walk to a hypersalinic lagoon (saltier than the ocean) will give you the chance to observe flamingos, Common Stilts, Pintail Ducks, and other species of birds. Return to the yacht for dinner and orientation. Overnight M/Y Tip Top III (BLD)

Day 7 - Galápagos

Begin the day with a wet landing on Post Office Bay, a historic site where whalers presumably placed a wooden barrel to use as a post office in the 18th century. Take a panga ride on La Lobería of Post Office to observe sea lion rookeries (the main attraction) on the beach and in the bay, sea turtles, and marine iguanas. Return to the yacht for lunch. This afternoon visit Devil’s Crown, a submerged volcano, for optional snorkeling, followed by a wet landing on Cormorant Point for a short walk to the Flamingo Lagoon. Continue the walk until reaching the beach, La Picona, to see marine turtles and their spawning grounds. Dinner and orientation on the yacht. Overnight M/Y Tip Top III (BLD)

Day 8 - Galápagos

Make an early dry landing on Punta Suarez to walk along lava beds, home to unique colonies of marine birds including Waved Albatross (May - December). After lunch on the yacht is a wet landing at Gardner Bay. Walk on the beach and observe a colony of sea lions, which inhabit the beach in great quantity during the breeding season. This is also an important nesting area for sea turtles. Next is a panga ride around the Osborn Islet and the islets of Gardner. Overnight M/Y Tip Top III (BLD)

Day 9 - Galápagos

After breakfast is a dry landing at San Cristobal, where you will visit the Interpretation Center to tour through the geological and human history and conservation of the islands. Lunch aboard the boat. This afternoon, cruise around Kicker Rock (León Dormido), a massive tuff-rock that juts abruptly almost 500 feet straight out of the ocean. Kicker Rock serves as a nesting place for many sea birds. Next is a wet landing on Cerro Brujo to walk on a white sand beach and observe sea lions, Brown Pelicans, marine iguanas and Blue-footed Boobies. Return to the yacht for dinner and nightly orientation. Overnight M/Y Tip Top III (BLD)

Day 10 - Quito

After breakfast is an early dry landing for a walk along the coast and the interior of North Seymour Island, where colonies of birds, marine iguanas, and sea lions can be seen. Return to the yacht and disembark on the pier at 9:00 a.m. Take a bus transfer to the airport for your flight back to Quito. Upon arrival you will be transferred to the hotel. Overnight in Quito

Day 11 - Farewell!

This morning our representative will meet you in the reception area of the hotel to transfer you to the international airport. Check in is 3 hours prior to departure. (B)


Starting at $3,949 per person

Price based on four travelers in double occupancy. Program includes accommodations and hotel taxes in mainland Ecuador and cabins aboard the M/Y Tip Top III, English speaking naturalist guides for all Galápagos tours, meals as mentioned, round-trip internal air between the mainland and Galápagos, Galápagos Park fee, and tourist card.
Program does not include international airfare, meals not mentioned, beverages other than water/coffee/tea, snorkeling and wet suits, items of a personal nature, optional travel insurance, departure taxes, and tips/gratuities. Wet suit rental is approximately $50 per week.

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