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Day 1: Quito or Guayaquil – Santa Cruz

redmangrovefacThe adventure starts since the moment you flight from mainland touches down at Baltra,  Seymour Airport, the first ecological airport in the World.  This terminal was built in 2013,  working with solar panels in order to keep the balance in this fragile ecosystem. Baltra Island used to be an old US Air Force Base during the Second World War in which it was established to control the Panama Channel, after the war the US forces left the island leaving some of their military constructions and a runway,  which was why the airport was built there.

After a very short bus ride, you will head to the Itabaca Channel,  with clear blue waters which divides Baltra Island from Santa Cruz Island, it will take around 5 minutes to cross it into a ferry, taking a glance of water, and you may have the chance to see some sharks, sea lions and sea turtles.

Once in Santa Cruz you start a ride to cross the Island from north to south to get to the Lodge.  Around 45 minutes, in this trip,  you will be able to experience a variety of micro climates, looking how they change from desert in the low lands to tropical forest in the highlands.  The highlands represent the agricultural resource of the island; some other supplies are shipped from  mainland.

 While driving down to the south side of the island, we will pass through Santa Rosa a very small town inhabited by the local farmers from the area. Going down the road, we will realize that the weather is changing again turning drier and hotter as we are getting closer to the seaside until we arrive in Puerto Ayora the main town in the Island, where Red Mangrove is located,

Once you are in Puerto Ayora, after a long day of traveling, make sure to relax watching some sea lions and marine iguanas basking in the sun at the Red Mangrove Aventura 

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Depart to Garrapatero beach, a 25 minutes bus ride to the right spot were an easy trail start to lead you to the beach in only 15 more minutes. This beautiful white sandy beach is known and finches and a place where you can relax and enjoy the beautiful surroundings.  This is one of Santa Cruz’s most peaceful and tranquil settings, the 3 kilometers (1.8 miles) of sand t(12.5 miles) northeast of Puerto Ayora. Surrounded by beautiful mangrove trees, the beach is home to an incredible array of birds and mockingbirds. You can also find marine iguanas, shrimp, Galapagos penguins, oystercatchers, and patillos amongst the white sands and clear blue water. There’s also a freshwater lake nearby that is home to even more tropical animals, such as herons, grebes, and many of shore birds.

Diver´s Briefing at Aventura Lodge.

(Ask for Le Carte Dinner special price for our tour guests)
Overnight at Aventura Lodge.

Day 2: Santa Cruz

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slide showw (151)Diving in Santa Cruz. with opportunities to see Eagle Rays, Manta Rays, Hammerheads, White-Tipped Reef Sharks, Galapagos Shark, Stingrays, Marbled Rays, Tiger Snake Eels, Moray Eels, Garden Eels, Sea Stars, Sea Turtles, Jacks, Blue and Gold Snappers, Flag Cabrilla, Creolefish, King Angelfish, Barracuda, Heiroglyphic Hawkfish, Frogfish, Yellowtail Surgeonfish, Spotfin Burrfish, Scorpionfish, Cardinalfish, Nudibranch and more!

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Darwin center Enjoy a fascinating guided tour of the Charles Darwin Research Station. Founded in 1964 with the purpose of studying and preserving the natural wonder that is Galapagos. The station is supported by over 100 scientists and researchers from around the world, instrumental in the conservation efforts of the islands.The Charles Darwin Research Station is much more fascinating natural history at this amazing center.

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Day 3: Santa Cruz – Isabela

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Padi Galapagos DiveDiving in Santa Cruz. with opportunities to see Eagle Rays, Manta Rays, Hammerheads, White-Tipped Reef Sharks, Galapagos Shark, Stingrays, Marbled Rays, Tiger Snake Eels, Moray Eels, Garden Eels, Sea Stars, Sea Turtles, Jacks, Blue and Gold Snappers, Flag Cabrilla, Creolefish, King Angelfish, Barracuda, Heiroglyphic Hawkfish, Frogfish, Yellowtail Surgeonfish, Spotfin Burrfish, Scorpionfish, Cardinalfish, Nudibranch and more!

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Enjoy a short navigation to your next destination, Isabela Island. Depends on the season rides might be a little bit rough but chances to see marine life such as whales, dolphins, whale shark, and manta rays among others increases.

Upon Arrival check in at the lodge to then enjoy of a welcome cocktail at our deck located in front of this white sand beach where complimentary wine and local beer will be served with a wide variety of snacks and beverages. Our Naturalist Guides will share with you features of their culture and the islands history.

Dinner, Briefing & Overnight at our Lodge.

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Day 4 : Isabela

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After breakfast you will depart for Isla Tortuga for 2 dives where you will have a chance to see Mantas, Stingrays, Sea Turtles, White-Tipped Reef Sharks, Hammerheads, King Angelfish, Yellowtail Surgeonfish, Barberfish, Blue-Chin Parrotfish, Bumphead Parrotfish, Galapagos Groupers, Galapagos Sheephead, Harlequin Wrasse, Grey Grunts, Tuna, Barracuda, Corals, Tubes and more. Possibility of Sunfish and Orcas.

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aves-tintorerasWe will departure to “Las Tintoreras” and Bay Tour.
At the main dock, we will board a smaller craft to head out across the port, slowing down to view blue-footed boobies and Galapagos penguins sharing the same rocky sunbathing space, before turning a bend and docking.
From there, we take an intriguing walk through a jagged lava field, passing abundant colonies of nesting marine iguanas and sea lions, to see a small canal of shallow waters, full of resting white-tipped reef sharks.
The views from here are something you will take with you for the rest of your life! The black, treacherous lava field, the emerald green sea, the green mangroves, and the cloud-capped volcanoes of Isabela, create an afternoon backdrop you are not likely to ever forget.
Once you finish the walk, you can snorkel in this warm, shallow bay surrounded by mangroves, for an opportunity to see white-tipped reef sharks, sea lions, sea turtles, and, of course, the mystery of the mangrove below the surface. Don’t worry; white-tipped reef sharks are not aggressive, but merely fascinating.
Back to the lodge for lunch.

 

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Day 5: Isabela

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IMG_0110Departure for Sierra Negra Volcano. Vehicles of local providers will drive us up through the humid highlands of Isabela, to the slopes of Volcan Sierra Negra, considered the oldest of the volcanoes on Isabela. Then we hike to arrive at the caldera (crater) of Sierra Negra, from where the views are breathtaking!. With 4 miles across (10km), it is the second largest caldera in the world (The largest is Ngorontgoro in Tanzania).
On October 22, 2005 an eruption, that lasted one week, occurred in the northeast side of the caldera of Sierra Negra volcano. The lava flow covered much of the interior of the caldera and in some places rose more than two meters.
After bordering the caldera some 5 kms on and easy trail, will relax a bit and have a snack at a nice resting site under a jaboncillo tree.
For the hardiest of the group, there is the option to continue on an especially difficult one-hour walk to Volcan Chico, just northwest of the caldera where fumarole activity is abundant, and again, the views are spectacular.
This is not an easy hike, however, because it is mostly across sloping lava fields.
After returning from Sierra Negra, we will have lunch at a local farm

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IMG_8736-2This place is owned by one of the first families in Isabela, they prepare the food with vegetables and fruits grown locally at the farm.
In liaison with the Galapagos National Park, this property also takes care of giants tortoises under a special “patronage” program that your guides will carefully explain to you.
Back to the lodge, you will have time to discover Isabela on your own. Enjoy snorkeling, swimming or simply relax or walk the town to discover the typical Galapagos life style.
Briefing and dinner at the Lodge.

Day 6: Isabela – Quito or Guayaquil

35GPS_IGUANASWake up for early departure by boat to Santa Cruz then a short drive to the airport at Baltra, Breakfast.
Ask for Private transfer to the airport

(Ask for private transfers details).

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