16-20 square meters, windows or portholes. All cabins with private bathrooms, hot water and air-conditioning
Enjoy the optimum experience in the Galapagos Islands. Sail the islands aboard specially designed yachts and explore a unique archipelago unlike any other on Earth. The majesty of Galapagos awaits you! Galapagos sea lions, marine iguanas, blue-footed boobies and magnificent frigatebirds are some of the wildlife highlights as we visit the islands of San Cristobal, North Seymour, Santa Fe, Santa Cruz, Bartholomew, Santiago, South Plaza, Rabida, Genovesa Activities: snorkeling and dinghy rides, panga rides, kayaking, swimming, hiking, walking and scape viewing. Please Note: Christmas and New Year supplement - 25%
Morning flight from Quito or Guayaquil to San Cristobal, Galapagos Islands. You will arrive at San Cristobal Island in the morning. After passing through immigration and baggage claim, you will be met by the Natural Paradise staff and transferred to the yacht. You will be shown to your cabin where you will have some time to settle in before lunch and a welcome briefing. In the afternoon, you will visit Kicker Rock. This striking rock formation is located a couple hours off the western shore of San Cristobal. Jutting out of the water, the rocks stand vertically at hundreds of feet above the ocean divided by a small channel. Although there are no landing areas, kayaking and scuba diving allow visitors to spot a variety of marine life.
Galapagos sea lions, blue-footed boobies and magnificent frigatebirds are abundant on North Seymour Island. The island was formed by a series of submarine lava containing layers of sediment that were uplifted by tectonic activity. The island is characterized by its arid vegetation zone. In the morning, you will head to South Plaza Island. This small island with steep cliffs was formed by rising lava and is now covered by Opuntia cacti. It is also home to one of the largest sea lion colonies as well as colorful yellow and red land iguanas. The most characteristic plant is Sesuvium. During the rainy season its color is a greenish to yellowish tone and in the dry season (end of June through January) a bright red.
Rabida Island (Jervis) is one of the most colorful and volcanically varied islands in the archipelago and a great snorkeling site. Its famous maroon sandy beach and stunning lookouts provide wonderful landscapes. The island is a birdwatcher’s delight. Some of the rarest species are in abundance, such as nine varieties of finches, large-billed flycatchers, Galapagos hawks and brown pelicans. Home of the famous Pinnacle Rock, Bartholomew consists of an extinct volcano with a variety of red, orange, black and even green volcanic formations. A trail of stairs leads to the summit of the volcano, boasting one of the best views of the islands. The beach is perfect for snorkeling and possible sightings of the Galapagos penguin.
A coral beach landing leads you towards a lava field as far as the eye can see. Hunt and peck over the two distinguished types of lava, pahoehoe and 'a'a, for signs of plant life that have managed to emerge over the past 100 years since the most recent volcanic explosion. A truly amazing volcanic experience…up close and personal! Situated on Santa Cruz Island, Dragon Hill is one of the newest visitor sites accessible to tourists in the Galapagos Islands. One of the lengthier Galapagos walking trails will lead visitors along a beach and up a trail to the lagoon lookout where bright flamingos, pintail ducks, and land iguanas can be spotted.
Reached by bus from Puerto Ayora, the highlands of Santa Cruz are a deep green contrasting beautifully with much of the dry, lower islands. The dominant vegetation in the highlands is the forest of Scalesia trees creating the lush green color. The lava tubes, over half a mile long, are underground and walking through them is a unique, surreal experience. Los Gemelos, or the Twin Craters, are located opposite each other on both sides of the road leading from Puerto Ayora to Baltra. The name is only figurative; not real craters, these formations were created by the collapse of surface material in underground fissures and chambers. The view is breathtaking. The Charles Darwin Research Station is home to turtles ranging from 3-inches (new hatchlings) to 4-feet long. Subspecies of turtles interact with one another and many of the older turtles are accustomed to humans stretching out their heads for a photo opportunity. The babies are kept until they are about four years old and strong enough to survive on their own.
In the morning, you will visit El Barranco which is also known as Prince Phillip’s Steps. It is a steep, rocky path that leads up to a high cliff-face. A marvelous view can be appreciated from here. This site is also home to palo santo vegetation as well as red-footed boobies, short-eared lava owls, Galapagos swallows, and Galapagos doves. In the afternoon, you will visit the white-sand coral beach of Darwin Bay which heads a half mile trail (0,75km) that winds through mangroves filled with land birds. Nazca boobies, red-footed boobies, and swallow-tailed gulls can be spotted here. Further down the path we’ll find tidal pools where sea lions swim playfully. At the end is a spectacular view of a cliff.
In the morning, visit is to Espumilla Beach where marine iguanas lounge and the Sally Lightfoot crabs attract the hunting herons performing the dance of predator and prey right before your eyes. Snorkeling is highly recommended as you could and yourself face to face with an octopus, moray eel, shark and a variety of other species of tropical fish. In the afternoon, you will go to Egas Port, also known as James Bay, on Santiago Island which is home to the curious Galapagos hawks and quick-footed Galapagos lava lizards. The trail leads to the coastline with gorgeous tide pools and grottos full of fauna. Here the Galapagos fur sea lions bathe in the sun. This is also a great snorkeling site.
The morning visit, Bachas Beach, is located on the north shore of Santa Cruz which is a swimming beach. One of the few remnants of the U.S. World War II presence in the Galapagos, a floating pier, can be seen here. You may see flamingos, Sally Lightfoot crabs, hermit crabs, black-necked stilts, and whimbrels. Sea turtles also nest on the beach. After this final visit, you will be transferred to Baltra’s airport in time for your flight back to the mainland.
Itineraries are unlikely to change significantly but are subject to change. Weather, wildlife breeding, safety concerns, instructions from the Galapagos National Park, specific abilities and interests of passengers as well as operational matters may cause your guide or captain to change the time or nature of visits. Your guide and captain will always endeavor to select the best itinerary within these limits.
Vessel Type: Yacht Length: 34 metres Passenger Capacity: 16 Built: 2016 Natural Paradise is a new luxury yacht for those travelers with discerning tastes. This intimate, customized vessel transports 16 passengers through the enchanted Galapagos Islands on eight-, five- and four-day excursions. To help you explore the archipelago’s underwater world, snorkeling gear, wetsuit and underwater camera are available for your use. After a day of exploring the Galapagos’ unique environment, relax with a cocktail from the bar in the main deck sitting area, or up on the spacious sundeck which has chaise lounges and a Jacuzzi, as well as an al fresco dining area. If you have one of the four upper deck double cabins, you will enjoy a private balcony from where to watch the moonlight slither across the waves. Other double cabins are on the main and lower decks, while a well appointed suite is on the main deck. All accommodations have comfortable beds, safety deposit boxes, air-conditioning, private bathrooms with hot water, and plenty of space for your belongings. Natural Paradise’s 10 crewmembers are attentive to their guests’ needs. An official, bilingual naturalist guide will lead you on your exploration.
• Islands you will visit: San Cristobal, North Seymour, Santa Fe, Santa Cruz, Bartholomew, Santiago, South Plaza, Rabida, Genovesa • Activities: snorkeling and dinghy rides, panga rides, kayaking, swimming, hiking, walking and scape viewing.