Monday: Arrival / Baltra
PM: Santa Cruz Highlands
AM: Eden Islet
PM: Chinese Hat Island
The small island of Sombrero Chino gets its name from its appearance, reminiscent of a Chinese hat. This islet, formed only fairly recently, makes a beautiful visit as one explores the wildlife along its 400-metre long trail, which begins at a crescent-shaped white sandy beach. The cove offers excellent swimming and snorkeling opportunities amid endemic Penguins and white-tipped reef sharks.
Landing at the eastern part of San Cristobal Island, the trail that ascends from the beach provides spectacular views of the shoreline; we can observe frigate birds and a colony of juvenile sea lions. After the walk, if conditions are favorable, there is a chance to swim from the beach and snorkel.
PM: Sullivan Bay
In the afternoon, a relaxing dinghy ride along the shores of tuff-stone layers takes us to Cerro Brujo’s expansive, white coral beach, great for walking, with rewarding bird-watching featuring seabirds and shore birds. Also, look out for Galapagos sea lions. These are the same shores that Charles Darwin walked upon, back in September 1835
AM: Darwin Bay
PM: Prince Philip’s Steps
Our afternoon starts with a very interesting panga ride along the cliffs before we disembark for a short, yet steep climb up a wooden staircase. Once at the top, the land is flat, allowing for a captivating walk of about a mile to the other side of this small island, observing large colonies of Frigate birds, Nazca boobies, storm petrels and the elusive short eared owl.