Explore the Galapagos Islands, one of the world’s most extraordinary destinations, onboard the La Pinta, one of the archipelago’s most extraordinary yachts. Designed to give you a luxury experience, the La Pinta takes your Galapagos Islands vacation to the next level in every way. With some of the largest cabins to be found on any Galapagos expedition vessel and floor-to-ceiling windows, you can relax in comfort immersed in stunning island views. The onboard Cordon-Bleu gastronomy director also ensures that each meal is a culinary delight comprised from locally sourced food such as freshly caught fish.
The La Pinta’s naturalist guides who lead your island expeditions enrich your time discovering the islands’ natural wonders. Every moment of your Galapagos Islands adventure is designed to give you a connection with the islands. Snorkel with a wealth of marine life, hike through lunar landscapes carved by the archipelago’s active volcanic past and find your path through a shifting black sea of marine iguanas. Aboard, with the outdoor terrace for dining and observation deck perfect for stargazing or whale watching, that connection to the island never ends. Discover the luxury of adventure onboard La Pinta for your Galapagos Islands vacation.
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5 Day A Cruise Overview:
Experience the fascinating wildlife and volcanic landscapes of Santa Cruz, Santiago and Genovesa on this 5-day itinerary aboard La Pinta. See giant tortoises in their natural habitat in the highlands of Santa Cruz, spot marine iguanas and lava lizards on the tiny islet of Sombrero Chino and go hiking across the spectacular volcanic landscapes of Bartolome Island and Sullivan Bay.
Day 1 - Baltra & El Chato
Fly into Baltra Island where you will be met by one of our representatives and transferred to the Itabaca Channel to take a small ferry to the northern shore of Santa Cruz Island. From here you’ll board a bus and travel into the highlands to explore its unique montane ecosystems and biodiversity before enjoying lunch at a local restaurant.
In the afternoon, we’ll continue to a reserve where giant tortoises can be seen in their natural habitat, lumbering around and wallowing in the small pools. Explore the lava tunnels in the reserve while keeping an eye out for cattle egrets, mockingbirds and flycatchers, then return to Puerto Ayora to board La Pinta for your welcome dinner.
Day 2 - Eden Islet & Sombrero Chino
After breakfast on board, we’ll take a panga to Eden Islet, which lies just off the coast of Santa Cruz and is a great spot for watching blue-footed boobies diving into the water. Admire the spectacular volcanic setting that includes cinder cones and semi-eroded lava flows and opt to go snorkeling or ride the glass-bottom boat.
In the afternoon, we’ll visit the tiny island of Sombrero Chino, which nestles off the southeastern tip of San Salvador Island and resembles a Chinese hat. Follow your naturalist guide along the 400-meter-long trail to spot marine iguanas, lava lizards and Galapagos penguins, with plenty of time to go swimming or snorkeling amidst white-tipped reef sharks and Galapagos penguins.
Day 3 - Bartolomé Island & Sullivan Bay
Begin the day with a visit to Bartolome Island to make the steep climb up its wooden staircase and through spectacular volcanic landscapes to the summit. Take in the panoramic views before enjoying a panga ride around colossal Pinnacle Rock, followed by time to go snorkeling or ride the glass-bottom boat off the coast.
After lunch on board La Pinta, we’ll travel by panga to Sullivan Bay on the east coast of Santiago Island whose white coral sand beach is ideal for swimming and snorkeling. Then walk over its impressive lava flows while learning about the volcanic origins of the Galapagos Islands.
Day 4 - Darwin Bay & Prince Philip's Steps
Begin the day with an excursion to Darwin Bay where frigatebirds, finches, mockingbirds, red-footed and masked boobies can all be spotted. Embark on a guided walk across the uneven volcanic terrain for dramatic views or enjoy a leisurely morning swimming and snorkeling in the beautiful natural harbor.
In the afternoon, we’ll embark on a panga ride beneath the towering cliffs of Genovesa Island before landing at the base of Prince Philip’s Steps. Climb the steep trail to the flat plateau at the top where large colonies of Nazca boobies, frigatebirds and storm petrels can be seen, together with the elusive short-eared owl.
Day 5 - Baltra & Return to Quito
After breakfast on board, you’ll be transferred to the Baltra Island airport for your flight back to mainland Ecuador.
5 Day B Cruise Overview:
Discover the magnificent eastern islands of the Galapagos on this action-packed 5-day itinerary from Baltra on board La Pinta. Get up close to giant tortoises at the Cerro Colorado Breeding Center, spot boobies, swallow-tail gulls and waved albatrosses at Punta Suarez, then witness the archipelago’s fascinating marine life while snorkeling or on a glass-bottom boat tour at Gardner Bay.
Day 1 - Baltra Airport & South Plaza Island
Fly into Baltra Island where you will be met by one of our representatives and transferred to the La Pinta yacht. Enjoy lunch on board and an introductory briefing before setting sail for South Plaza Island.
We’ll cruise through a channel between the North and South Plaza Islands whose turquoise waters contrast dramatically with the white sand and black lava along the shoreline. Then follow your naturalist guide through a carpet of scarlet succulents and green prickly-pear cactus while keeping an eye out for yellow-grey land iguanas, sea lions and seabirds playing on the thermals.
Day 2 - Santa Fe Island & Cerro Colorado Tortoise Habitat
Begin the day with a dinghy ride to the white sands of Santa Fe Island, which is populated by a colony of sea lions. Keep an eye out for endemic Santa Fe land iguanas as we explore the island on a short hike, then go snorkeling from the beach or witness the underwater world aboard our glass-bottom boat.
After lunch back on board, we’ll disembark at Puerto Baquerizo Moreno, the capital of San Cristobal Island, and drive to the island’s southern shores to visit the Cerro Colorado Giant Tortoise Breeding Center. Wander through the deciduous forest to get up close to giant tortoises, together with San Cristobal lava lizards and mockingbirds, both of which are endemic to the island.
Day 3 - San Cristobal & Cerro Brujo
After breakfast on board, we’ll land on the eastern tip of San Cristobal Island where a trail ascends for spectacular views along the shores. Observe frigatebirds and the colony of bachelor sea lions before going swimming and snorkeling from the beach.
In the afternoon, we’ll take a dinghy ride along the shores of tuff-stone layers before landing at the white coral beach of Cerro Brujo. There are excellent bird watching opportunities here, including sightings of both seabirds and shorebirds, as you follow in the footsteps of Charles Darwin who landed on the beach in September 1835.
Day 4 - Punta Suarez & Gardner Bay
Begin the day with an excursion to Punta Suarez, following your naturalist guide on an exciting walk across its volcanic terrain to spot boobies, swallow-tail gulls and waved albatrosses (April to January). Keep your eyes peeled for red-green-black marine iguanas and witness the famous “blow hole” as it spurts water high into the air.
In the afternoon, we’ll disembark on the beautiful white coral beach at Gardner Bay where you can relax on the sands or enjoy a short stroll to visit a sea lion colony. Spot mockingbirds and finches, then opt to go snorkeling, kayaking or on a glass-bottom boat trip to explore the surrounding waters.
Day 5 - Charles Darwin Research Station & Baltra Airport
Your final morning in the Galapagos begins with a visit to the Charles Darwin Station to get up close to giant tortoises at all stages of development and explore the surrounding prickly-pear cactus forest. Learn about the ongoing conservation efforts to preserve the unique wildlife and landscapes of the Galapagos Islands, as well as studies being conducted in the name of science.
Then it’s time to board the ferry that will transport you to Baltra Island for your flight back to mainland Ecuador.
7 Day Cruise Overiew:
Gain a comprehensive insight into the natural landscapes and wildlife of the Galapagos on this action-packed 7-day itinerary. Spot marine iguanas, sea lions and flightless cormorants at Punta Espinoza, witness giant tortoises in the wild while trekking through the highlands of Santa Cruz and discover the fascinating marine life while snorkeling or aboard a glass-bottom boat at Tagus Cove and Rabida Island.
Day 1 - Baltra Island & North Seymour
Fly into Baltra Island where you will be met by one of our representatives and transferred to La Pinta. Enjoy lunch on board and an introductory briefing before heading out on your first excursion to North Seymour Island.
Enjoy a walk along the coast and interior of this flat island to witness its colonies of blue-footed boobies, frigatebirds and swallow-tailed gulls, as well as spot sea lions and marine iguanas basking in the sun. You’ll also have time to explore the coast on a dinghy ride before returning to La Pinta for a welcome cocktail and dinner.
Day 2 - Punta Roca & Punta Espinoza
Begin the day with a panga ride along the coast of Punta Roca while learning about the dramatic geology of the area as you explore its lava flows and tuff stone layers. Keep an eye out for flightless cormorants that can sometimes be seen diving into the waters, then opt to go snorkeling beneath the cliffs to (hopefully) spot green sea turtles.
In the afternoon we’ll visit the youngest and most pristine island in the archipelago, Fernandina, which is always a visitors favorite. After landing at Punta Espinoza, we’ll embark on a short walk across its barren lava landscapes to spot the island’s high density of marine iguanas, together with flightless cormorants, hawks and Sally Lightfoot crabs.
Day 3 - Urbina Bay & Tagus Cove
Enjoy a leisurely breakfast on board before disembarking at Urbina Bay, which is located on the western side of Isabela Island. Keep your eyes peeled for giant tortoises in the wild, as well as large numbers of colorful land iguanas, then return to La Pinta for lunch as we navigate the Bolivar Channel where whales can sometimes be spotted.
In the afternoon we’ll land at secluded Tagus Cove on the northwest of Isabela where pirate and whaler graffiti dating to the late-18th century adorns the cave walls. An uphill trek takes us to the back of Darwin Crater from where there are spectacular views across the archipelago, followed by plenty of time for swimming, snorkeling and kayaking around Tagus Cove.
Day 4 - Rabida Island & Cerro Dragon
After breakfast on board, we’ll disembark on the red sand beach of Rabida Island to observe its marine iguanas, mockingbirds and several species of Darwin’s finches on a short walk. It’s also a great spot for snorkeling or you can opt to discover the island’s incredible marine life aboard our glass-bottom boat.
After lunch on board, we’ll land on the northern shore of Santa Cruz Island and hike past a brackish lagoon that’s frequented by stilts, pintail ducks and sandpipers. Continue to the top of Cerro Dragon (Dragon Hill), from where there are beautiful views across the western islands of the archipelago, together with a large number of land iguanas.
Day 5 - Puerto Ayora & Santa Cruz Highlands
Begin the day with a visit to the Charles Darwin Station to see their resident giant tortoises and explore the impressive giant prickly-pear cactus forest that surrounds. Learn about the National Park’s ongoing conservation efforts to preserve the unique wildlife and landscapes of the Galapagos Islands before enjoying a delicious lunch served poolside at the Finch Bay Eco Hotel.
We’ll then travel into the highlands of Santa Cruz Island to see giant tortoises in wild as you explore an impressive Scalesia forest. Your naturalist guide will also help you spot Darwin’s finches and a myriad of other bird species in this lush environment.
Day 6 - Post Office Bay & Punta Cormorant
Begin the day with a wet landing at Post Office Bay where a wooden barrel has served as the Galapagos Islands’ makeshift post office for more than two centuries. Enjoy a panga ride through the maze of channels on Floreana Island’s northern shores, then soak up the sweeping vistas from La Lobería and the Baroness Viewpoint.
In the afternoon you may opt to either snorkel or ride our glass-bottom boat along the coast of an extinct cone known as Champion Islet before visiting the olivine-crystal beach of Punta Cormorant. Follow your naturalist guide to a brackish water lagoon where greater flamingoes can be seen feeding, then continue to the other side of the island and a white sandy beach where sea turtles come out at night to nest.
Day 7 - Depart Baltra
After breakfast on board, you will be transferred to the Baltra Island airport for your flight back to mainland Ecuador.
Dates & Rates
- Luxury Cabin - $4666
- Luxury Plus Cabin - $4666
- Luxury Cabin - $6516
- Luxury Plus Cabin - $6516
- All meals
- Soft drinks *
- Island sightseeing
- Naturalist guides and lecture services in English/Spanish only
- Wet suit rental and snorkelling gear
- Internet *
- Taxes and transfers in the islands. Transfer from main hotels in Quito (Casa Gangotena, Hilton Colón, Swissôtel, Marriott, Dann Carlton) and in Guayaquil (Hilton Colón, Oro Verde, Wyndham, Sheraton) to airport for flights to / from Galapagos are included in these rates. To coordinate these transfers we must have guest’s hotel contact.
* Please note: Soft drinks include juices and carbonated drinks, not “virgin” cocktails.
* Internet connections aboard consist of 2 computer stations in the library and Wi-Fi in the yacht’s social areas; due to the Galapagos’ remote location, internet connections are intermittent and low-bandwidth.
- Airfare to/from Galapagos
- Galapagos National Park admission fee (US$ 100 per person, subject to change without notice)
- Transit Control Card for Galapagos (US$ 20 per person, subject to change without notice)
- Alcoholic drinks
- Gifts and additional items
Reconstructed & refitted: Callao, Peru, 2007
Capacity: 48 guests
Length Overall: 63.87 m (209.49 ft)
Breadth: 12.50 m (41 ft)
Maximum Draft: 4.00 m (12 ft)
Gross Tonnage: 1,438.32 tons
Cruising Speed: 10 knots
Cabins: 24 outside cabins on the same deck with twin or queen-size beds
Double Cabin Size: 16 m2 (175 sq ft)
Tripe Cabin Size: 22 m2 (236 sq ft) with sofa bed
Decks: Three public decks include an ample bar-salon, dining room, natural history library, sky bar and sundeck
Wellness: Hot tub, fitness room
Type of vessel: Motor yacht
Electricity: 110-220 volts 50Hz
Engines: 2 DEUTZ Model SBA 8M 1275 hp
Navigation Equipment: Gyrocompass, automatic pilot, radar and GPS
Communications Systems: Inmarsat C, Satellite Internet
Safety Certificates: SOLAS, STCW, MARPOL, ISM CODE 12
Fire Detector: Automatic with control from the bridge
Life Jackets: In each cabin
Inflatable Life Craft: 2 x 50-man and 6 x 25-man
Landing Craft: 4 Pumar inflatable craft + glass bottom boat
Owner: ETICA-Metropolitan Touring
Decks (3): Sun Deck, Cabin Deck, Main Deck
Crew (27): Including officers
Naturalist Guides (4): Including Expedition Leader)
Medical Officer: Permanently on
189 sq ft / 17.6 m2
Luxury Plus Cabin
247.75 sq ft / 23.04 m2
FAQ & More
The Galapagos Islands (or Archipelago de Colon) are a Province of Ecuador located about 500 miles (800 kilometers) west of the Ecuadorian coast and are located directly on the equator. Learn more about the Galapagos Islands in our Galapagos Travel Guide.
If you're planning a trip to the Galapagos Islands, be sure to check out our Galapagos Weather Overview. We've included a seasonal snapshot as well as a month by month break down of both weather and wildlife trends to help you pick the very best time to visit the Islands. For those who are more visual, we have a great Galapagos weather and wildlife info-graphic.
If you're planning a trip to the Galapagos Islands, be sure to check out our Galapagos Weather Overview. We've included a seasonal snapshot as well as a month by month break down of both weather and wildlife trends to help you pick the very best time to
For most of our tours we book the necessary round-trip flights from Ecuador mainland to the Galapagos Islands. Please refer to your reservation materials for specific details regarding flights.
We do not book any International flights to Ecuador; however we do have a great air travel specalist that we would be happy to refer you to. Please ask your Adventure Consultant for details.
Yes! However, be sure to bring cash bills in good condition because bills with markings or tears won’t be accepted. There are also ATM machines in the larger towns. It’s a good idea to alert your bank that you’ll be traveling to Ecuador so they don’t stop the transactions.
Please check out our Galapagos and Ecuador currency resource for additional details.
There are no special requirements or vaccines to go to Ecuador or the Galapagos Islands. Please visit the CDC Website for further details.
There is an opportunity for snorkeling almost every day on this trip and the underwater life is a true highlight of visiting the Galapagos. Our trip offers more opportunities than most, and on some days we stop at two or three locations to snorkel.
If you’ve never been snorkeling we highly recommend you practice before the trip. It's not necessary but you will enjoy the experience much more!
Yes. On this trip, all of the equipment is on board!
Ecuadorian Immigration regulations state that, every foreign passenger entering the country must have a passport with a time validity of at least 6 months beginning from the day of your departure from Ecuador. If you have questions or concerns please contact the nearest Ecuadorian embassy for the latest visa requirements.
The local currency in The Galapagos Islands and throughout Ecuador is the US dollar. In the Islands, most major credit cards (Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Diners) are accepted at hotels and restaurants. In the local stores and cafes sometimes cash is the only way to pay. Try to carry smaller denomination notes, typically nothing bigger than a $20.
The Galapagos Islands are GMT -6 hours and do not change their clocks for Daylight Savings (because they are on the equator). This means that in the summer months they are the same time as Mountain Daylight Time but in the winter months they are the same time as Central Standard Time.
In Galapagos, leaving a gratuity for the guide and crew separately is the custom. Tipping is NOT a requirement and should be given at the guest's sole discretion based on the level of service received and each guests beliefs. If a guest wishes to leave a tip, please use the the envelopes marked "CREW" and "GUIDE" that will be left in the accommodations on your last day. Please put the envelopes in the gratuity box that will be left in the dining area on the day of your departure. All the money in the "CREW" envelope will be shared equally among the crew members. Based on past experience we suggest: If service was excellent, the average tip has been $22 per person per day for the entire ship's crew and $10 per person per day for the guide. Please understand that this is just a suggestion: tipping/gratuities are a very personal matter and it entirely depends on the value of the service you received.