Tunnels | Isabela

Central & Southern Isabela Loop - Galapagos Tour

8 Day Galapagos Itinerary

Day 1: San Cristobal Island

Arrival to Galapagos. Transportation from airport to hotel. Lunch at a local restaurant. Visit the San Cristobal Interpretation Center. Here, the guide will explain the history of the Galapagos Islands, including the formation, the migration of animals and the evolution.

Visit “Cerro Tijeretas”, or “Frigate Hill”. Here we can encounter marine animals and also do some snorkeling to see colorful fish species, starfish, sea urchins, or to simply enjoy the cristal clear waters. Visit Playa Carola, where you will enjoy the gorgeous beach.


Day 2: Kicker Rock

The guide will pick you up from your hotel to go to the pier for the kicker Rock Tour. This Galapagos side is an eroded volcano, now 2 rocks rising 500 feet up out of the sea and resembling what locals called a ‘sleeping lion’, thus it’s other name, Leon Dormido.

Wildlife: Hammerhead Sharks, Galapagos shark, Manta Rays, Flying Rays, Green Sea Turtles, Reef Fish, Stingrays, Eagle rays, Eels, Barracudas, as well as a variety of invertebrates including Octopuses. The currents are mild and the water depth is between 8 and 35mts. ( 25- 120 ft).

B/Box Lunch/D

Day 3: Santa Cruz Island

Wake up at 5:30 a.m. Prepare to go to the dock. Take the speedboat, which leaves at 7:00 a.m. (subject to change), to Puerto Ayora (2 hour estimated travel time).
Crossing Puerto Ayora’s bay, you can reach the other side of town. In this part of town you can rest at the German’s beach or walk for 20 minutes until you reach The Grietas.
The grietas are formed because of the underground filtering of sea water, forming a beautiful, deep pond where you can enjoy great kayaking and swimming. You can also dive into the water from 7 and 8 meter natural rock platforms. Around noon return to Puerto Ayora for lunch. The afternoon is at leisure, you can enjoy the hotel facilities or explore the small city of Puerto Ayora on your own.

Day 4: Bartolome Island, North Seymour & Plazas Island

After breakfast at the hotel, the guide will meet you at the hotel to take you to the dock and start the tour, lunch on board In the afternoon return to the port. According to boat availability, ty you can choose one of these options:

North Seymour Island is a spectacular place to hike, swim, and enjoy snorkeling. The main attractions are: the frigates, boobies, gulls, hawks, green sea turtles and the famous Galapagos Sharks.

Bartolome Island is the most attractive landscape of the archipelago. This island is undoubtedly the most photographed in all the Galapagos Islands. You can appreciate a spectacular view of two beautiful bays and observe the fascinating formations of lava and volcanic cones.

Two islands form Plazas. The turquoise waters of the channel contrast brilliantly with the white sand and black lava coast. It is a wonderful spot to observe marine life, including manta rays. Coasts are a perfect spot for snorkeling activity.


Day 5: Santa Cruz Island

Early in the morning depart Tortuga Bay Beach which is considered by the majority of visitors as one of the most beautiful beaches in Galapagos. Is also a favorite place for sea turtles (which gave the name to the beach), sea lions, marine iguanas, pelicans, flamingos and lava gulls which are endemic to the Islands and are commonly found along the shore of most beaches. It takes around an hour walk to get to the beach. You’ll be able to see beautiful birds including the famous Galapagos finches as you walk. The trail to the beach is paved and marked.

A short walk over to Playa Mansa brings you to a tranquil lagoon where you can swim, snorkel and kayak. Between Tortuga Bay Galapagos beach and Playa Mansa there is short trail along a rocky stretch of coastline and through a beautiful cactus forest where you can see marine iguanas, brown pelicans and blue footed boobies.
The kayak excursion will last and hour around Playa Mansa Bay, along the mangroves marine turtles, Tintoreras sharks, rays and multicolor fishes are often seen.

After lunch, you will go to the port in order to embark on a public speedboat that will take you to Isabela Island (approximately 2-2.5 hour navigation). Upon arrival, you will be met and taken to your hotel for check in. Afterwards, you will visit the Lake of the Flamingos.


Day 6: Tunnels tour , Wall of tears

It takes 45 minutes to an hour to reach “Los Tuneles” from Puerto Villamil. The backdrop begins with Volcan Sierra Negra looming in the background and, as you approach the Roca Union, the boat will slow down for you so you can take in the Nazca Boobies, Blue-Footed Boobies perched side by side and sea lions taking time out. In the water you are often able to see many tropical fish and giant mantas on the surface, waiting to be ¨cleaned¨ by the wrasse. Also, turtles are a common sight.

Entering Los Tuneles can sometimes be tricky, but when the sea is calm it almost feels like you are surfing in by boat along the breakers.
Inside the breakers, the water is calm, shallow and crystal clear. It is to be compared to snorkeling in an aquarium! First, you pass through the labyrinth of lava tubes that have spilled over into the sea as time and the ocean has created a maze of these tubes, many of which are now lava arches with narrow passes above the sea. Some are still intact and you are able to land and walk for a short time, whilst viewing 2 active volcanoes in the background. To the south is Cerro Azul which and to the north is Sierra Negra. While walking above the water you are often able to see white-tipped reef sharks. In places, you can swim under the water and through an arch into something similar to a cave without a roof, open to the sky, an area that many colorful angelfish favor.

In the afternoon you will bike to the Wall of Tears; the wall has a length of 100m and a height of 7m. The name is derived from the difficult and painful nature of the conditions in which the prisoners were forced to work. Visit a Lava Tunnel near the Wall, as well as visits to Mirador Orchilla, Estero de Isabela, and Playa del Amor.

B/Box Lunch/D

Day 7: Volcanoes tour

Approximately at 7:30 am, the trip to Sierra Negra Volcano will start. Passengers will be transferred (45 minutes ride) to the Galapagos National Park checkpoint site to register for the visit. Then, we will begin a trek to the Sierra Negra and Chico Volcano. During the trek, a box lunch would be provided. In the afternoon, we will return to the hotel.

B/Box Lunch/D

Day 8: Baltra

At 05:30 am, you will be transferred to the Port for embarkation. At your arrival at Santa Cruz around 08:30, a guide will be waiting for the transfer to the airport in Baltra, so you can take your flight back to Quito or Guayaquil. On the way, we will make a brief stop in order to visit two sunken “holes”, similar to craters, known as “Los Gemelos”.

Itinerary Map

8 Day Galapagos Itinerary Includes

  • Transportation between islands
  • Bilingual tour guide
  • Detailed meals
  • Hotels

8 Day Galapagos Itinerary Does not Include

  • Tips
  • Personal Expenses
  • Airfare tickets
  • Aditional activities
  • Snorkeling equipment

Meals Included

  • Breakfast Served Daily
  • 7 Dinners
  • 8 Lunches
Tunnels | Isabela
Volcanoes Tour | Isabela
Baltra | Galapagos

More information about the Galapagos Islands you visit in this 8 day itinerary:

Central & Southern Isabela Loop
8 Days
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