5 days – Central Islands - Isabela II Expedition Ship - Galapagos Cruise

5 days – Central Islands - Isabela II Expedition Ship | Isabela II | Galapagos Tours 5 days – Central Islands - Isabela II Expedition Ship | Isabela II | Galapagos Tours
Embark on a captivating 5-day exploration of the Central Galapagos Islands aboard the Isabela II Expedition Ship. Encounter giant tortoises in the lush highlands of Santa Cruz, marvel at unique wildlife on Santa Fe and South Plazas Islands, explore North Seymour's bird colonies, and visit Bartolome Island for iconic views. Conclude your adventure with a visit to Sullivan Bay on Santiago Island before departing with unforgettable memories of the Galapagos.

5 Day Galapagos Itinerary

Day 1: Baltra Airport & Santa Cruz Island: Highlands

Following our morning arrival at Baltra Airport, we transfer to the Itabaca Channel, taking a small ferry across the channel to the north shore of Santa Cruz Island. We board our bus to the highlands, where we’ll learn about Santa Cruz’s unique ecosystems and biodiversity. Lunch is served at a local restaurant.

After lunch, we continue by bus to reach a reserve that is one of the best places in the archipelago to see giant tortoises in their natural habitat. The tortoises are easy to spot, lumbering around, eating grass and leaves and wallowing in the small pools. There are several lava tunnels in the reserve, too. A short bus ride takes us down to Puerto Ayora to board Yacht Isabela.


Day 2: Santa Fe & South Plazas Islands

A stunning anchorage provides our jumping-off point for our visit to Santa Fe Island, this sandy white beach with many sea lion harems. Galapagos hawks are often easily observed. The endemic land iguana, unique to this island, may be spotted during the walk. Snorkelling and swimming from the beach, kayaking or a ride in our glass-bottom boat.

 The turquoise waters of the South Plaza Island channel contrast brilliantly with the white sand and black lava of the shoreline, while a carpet of scarlet sesuvium succulents serves as groundcover for a grove of luminescent green prickly-pear cactus beyond, populated by yellow-gray land iguanas.


Day 3: North Seymour & Santa Cruz Island: Bachas Beach

The morning starts with an enjoyable walk along the coast and the interior of North Seymour Island, observing numerous bird colonies as well as sea lions and marine iguanas. There are opportunities for snorkelling, coastal exploration or glass-bottom boat for great views of the underwater world.

After WWII, US military barges were beached and abandoned here. Today it is an important nesting area for the east Pacific green sea turtle. Located on the north shore of Santa Cruz Island, Bachas is a glorious white beach, with several brackish lagoons only a few steps away from the sea. These lagoons are the feeding grounds of various wading birds, from stilts to flamingos. We can swim and/or snorkel from the beach.


Day 4: Bartolome Island & Santiago Island: Sullivan Bay

This morning, a Galapagos icon awaits for us: Bartolome Island. A great way to start the day, with a steep climb up a wooden staircase: the view from the top is worth the effort! Following the walk, we take the dinghies for a ride around colossal Pinnacle Rock.

After lunch, we get on board the inflatable dinghies to land at Sullivan Bay on the east coast of Santiago, a white coral sand beach great for swimming, and with a trail over a lava field that flowed here less than 100 years ago. This is the perfect place to see and feel the volcanic origin of Galapagos.


Day 5: Baltra Airport & Departure

After breakfast, we leave for the airport to take the flight back to the mainland.

Itinerary Map

Click on the map to navigate the itinerary
5 days – Central Islands - Isabela II Expedition Ship | Galapagos Map

5 Day Galapagos Itinerary Highlights

  • See the Giant Tortoises on semi-wild state on the very first day of your journey.
  • Spot Frigate Birds, Hawks, Sea lions and more at Plaza and Santa Fe.
  • A perfect place to snorkel and observe bird-life, Bachas Beach.
  • Catch the perfect sunset from your boat’s ample sundeck surrounded by birds.
  • Another great spot for snorkeling lovers is Sullivan Bay.

Meals Included

  • Breakfast Served Daily
  • 4 Dinners
  • 5 Lunches
Santa Fe  | Galapagos Islands
Bahía de Ballenas | Whale | Galapagos Islands
Monte Crocker | Vermillion flycatcher | Galapagos Islands


Mind-blowing experience
- Catherine Pyron
The entire experience was mind-blowing! The crew was knowledgeable, kind and friendly. The boat was charming and comfortable. The number of travelers was also just right for one to meet new, and interesting fellow travelers. I loved this ship

More information about the Galapagos Islands you visit in this 5 day itinerary:

5 days – Central Islands - Isabela II Expedition Ship
5 Days (5N)
From $4,132.00 per person

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