Discover some of the most beautiful islands in the Galapagos on board of Yacht La Pinta. Yacht La Pinta offers four- and six-night through the Eastern, Northern, and Western regions of the Galapagos Islands. The carefully designed itineraries get you to see as much wildlife coverage as possible in each area. On each route, incredibly insightful Naturalist Guides will accompany and lead each excursion group. Furthermore, Yacht La Pinta has a Le-Cordon-Bleu gastronomic director onboard.
The 5-day Northern Islands journey begins on Santa Cruz Island where you’ll see the famous giant tortoises in the wild. Then, venture to the shores of Eden Islet and hop over to the lovely crescent bay of Chinese Hat. You will then visit one of the most iconic sites of the archipelago: Bartolome Island. Close-by, Sullivan Bay gives you a great introduction to the volcanic origins of the islands. Afterwards visit an exciting sunken caldera at Genovesa, far up in the northeast of the archipelago. This is a privileged place to visit amid thousands of marine birds including the red-footed booby.
On the 5-day Eastern Islands itinerary, your 1st visit is to South Plaza Island and it’s iconic yellow-grey land iguanas. Then, explore Santa Fe, home to the unique Santa Fe land iguana. Continue to the tortoise breeding centre at San Cristobal Island. Punta Suarez on Española Island is the next stop and it is a favourite of many visitors. You’ll wander along the rugged coastline, home to hundreds of marine iguanas, sea lions, birds, and even albatross. Moreover, Gardner Bay provides a beautiful setting for a combination of beach-time, swimming and snorkelling. Finish your expedition with a visit to the world-famous Charles Darwin Research Station on Santa Cruz Island.
Its 6-night Western journey will take you to the true origins of the archipelago. Fernandina Island is regarded as one of the most pristine island environments anywhere in the world. Here, life has evolved in its natural state, far from the intervention of man. Next, land at the intriguing red beach of Rabida and seeking out the land iguanas of Cerro Dragon. Then, visit the Charles Darwin Research Station and get up close to giant tortoises in their natural environment. Then, at Champion Islet, spot flamingos and snorkel at one of the best sites in the archipelago.
La Pinta yacht provides a sophisticated, upscale travel experience for 48 guests. It has 24 outside cabins that combine modern design, spacious rooms, and gourmet cuisine with top adventure. All cabins have air conditioning and private facilities. Three public decks include an ample bar-salon, dining room, natural history library, the sky bar and sundeck. A Jacuzzi and gym complete the onboard amenities. Additionally, it’s eight connecting cabins make it an ideal yacht for families.
During your outings, scout the island sites in search of the ‘Big 15’ –most iconic Galapagos wildlife. You can explore not only on a zodiac, but also on a glass-bottom boat, kayaks, snorkelling, or swimming. A highlight is their small groups – on average just 12 guests or fewer per guide.
Upon arrival at Baltra airport you will be driven to the Itabaca Channel to take a ferry across to Santa Cruz Island. A 30-minute bus ride takes you to a restaurant in the highlands of Santa Cruz Island to enjoy lunch, after which you will continue to Puerto Ayora. Depending on local weather conditions up in the highlands, you will undertake a short hike which will be a great introduction to Galapagos wildlife.
There are two types of landings throughout your Galapagos tour:
Dry landing: guests step from the dinghy onto rocks or a dock.
Wet landing: as the dinghy edges onto a sandy beach, guests step into knee-deep water and wade ashore.
Please note that the exact route and program may vary according to weather and ocean conditions and the wildlife we encounter.
On arrival, you will be met at Baltra airport and transferred to the dock to board Yacht La Pinta. There’s a welcome introductory briefing, boat drill, cabin assignment and then lunch. You will start sailing for your first-afternoon outing.
PM: South Plaza Island- The turquoise waters of the channel contrast brilliantly with the white sand and black lava of the shoreline. While a carpet of scarlet Sesuvium succulents serves as ground cover for a grove of luminescent green Prickly-pear cactus beyond, populated by yellow-grey land iguanas. Along the coastline, there are Sea Lion colonies, while sea birds play with the thermals that form along the cliffs of this small but spectacular island.
AM: Santa Fe Island- Take a dinghy over to this idyllic sandy-white beach populated by colonies of sea lions. Galapagos hawks are often easily observed, perched atop salt bushes. The Santa Fe land iguana, unique to just this island, might be spotted during the walk. Following the walk, you can snorkel and swim along a natural wave barrier or ride the glass-bottom boat.
PM: Cerro Colorado Tortoise Habitat- After lunch, disembark at Puerto Baquerizo Moreno, the island’s capital, and drive 40 minutes to the island’s southern shore. At Cerro Colorado, visit the breeding centre for highly endangered giant tortoises amid a fantastic deciduous forest, home to dozens of bird species, including the San Cristobal Mockingbird, and the San Cristobal Lava Lizard, both island endemics.
AM: Punta Pitt- Land at the eastern tip of San Cristobal Island this morning. The trail that ascends from the beach provides spectacular views of the shoreline; you can observe Frigates, plus a colony of bachelor Sea Lions. After the walk, if conditions are favourable, there is a chance to swim and snorkel.
PM: Cerro Brujo- In the afternoon following lunch on board, a dinghy ride along the shores of tuff-stone layers will take you to Cerro Brujo’s expansive, white coral beach, great for walking, with rewarding bird-watching featuring seabirds and shorebirds. Also, look out for Galapagos Sea Lions. These are the same shores that Charles Darwin walked upon, back in September 1835.
AM: Punta Suarez- Your morning, outing at Punta Suarez, provides an exciting walk on lava/boulder terrain to visit its unique sea bird colonies, including the Waved Albatrosses (April to January), Boobies, Swallow-tail gulls, and the famous “blowhole” lava formation. Also, look for red-green-black Marine Iguanas. Many regard this site as the best in the Galapagos. Back on board for lunch.
PM: Gardner Bay- In the afternoon, set down at this beautiful, white coral beach for a short walk to observe the Sea Lions, Mockingbirds, Finches, or enjoy the beach. There is great snorkelling in this area, or else there’s time to kayak or ride the glass-bottom boat.
AM: Charles Darwin Research Station- Disembarking in the morning and visit the Research Station and the captive rearing programme for the Giant Tortoises. Witness the efforts and results of Galapagos fieldwork and study done in the name of science. After the tour transfer to the airport to take the flight back to the mainland.