Photo by Ramiro Salizar
A Master Suite on the Boat Deck. Photo by Francisco Caizapanta
The Master Suite balconies afford unparalleled views on board. Photo by Ramiro Salizar
A Junior Suite on the Boat Deck. Photo by Francisco Caizapanta
A Superior Double cabin on the Boat Deck. Photo by Francisco Caizapanta
A Superior Twin cabin on the Boat Deck. Photo by Francisco Caizapanta
A Standard Plus cabin on the Boat Deck
A Boat Deck cabin bathroom aboard Santa Cruz. Photo by Ramiro Salizar
A Standard Double cabin on the Boat Deck.
A Standard Single cabin on the Boat Deck. Photo by Francisco Caizapanta
The Upper Deck Twin Standard cabin
A twin cabin on the Main Deck. Photo by Francisco Caizapanta
A Triple cabin on the Main Deck. Photo Francisco Caizapanta
A Quad cabin on the Main Deck. Photo by Francisco Caizapanta
Plated cuisine is served at dinner in the dining room. Photo by Francisco Caizapanta
Cassava bread and other regional cuisine are highlights of the buffet. Photo by Francisco Caizapanta
Breakfast and lunch are served buffet style. Photo by Francisco Caizapanta
A carving station at a lunch buffet. Photo by Francisco Caizapanta
A full bar is available aboard Santa Cruz. Photo by Ramiro Salizar
Photo by Francisco Caizapanta
The Santa Cruz lounge and bar are at the ship's center. Photo by Francisco Caizapanta
Santa Cruz's reception area. Photo by Francisco Caizapanta
The Santa Cruz library offers books and computers with internet. Photo by Francisco Caizapanta
The Santa Cruz Jacuzzi is a popular spot post-snorkeling. Photo by Francisco Caizapanta
The Sun Deck bar has plenty of shaded seating as well as sun loungers. Photo by Pete Oxford
Enjoying the view aboard Santa Cruz. Photo by Pete Oxford
Farewell cocktails at sunset aboard Santa Cruz. Photo by Francisco Caizapanta
Numerous zodiacs on board make shore access fast and easy. Photo by Sergio Zagier
Year Built: 1979
52 crew members
Length: 237.3 feet
Beam: 38.86 feet
Cruising Speed: 13 knots
The 44-cabin, 90-passenger M/V Santa Cruz was built exclusively for Galapagos Island cruises. The Santa Cruz has gained worldwide recognition for her excellent standards including superb service, expert crew, safety and highly knowledgeable, multilingual naturalist/guides. She is also known for her chef and menus that feature the very best international cuisine and celebrated Ecuadorian dishes.
Santa Cruz Review
AdventureSmith Explorations’ M/V Santa Cruz review includes a detailed description of the small ship including deck plans and a photo gallery. Our crew has traveled aboard the Santa Cruz in the Galapagos Islands, so feel free to ask us any questions about this ship. Please read our M/V Santa Cruz review below then contact our Galapagos cruise experts to compare the Santa Cruz with other Galapagos yachts and cruises.
A November 2011 remodel outfitted the Santa Cruz with new carpeting throughout the ship, renovations in the reception area, new armchairs in the bar/salon, renewed décor and furniture in the dining room, plus new crockery and cutlery, a revamped library-internet room and new sun loungers on the Sun Deck. In the cabins, new wallpaper and blinds, replaced desk tops and new off-white sheets, pillow cases and blankets give a lighter, more spacious feel. As an alternative to snorkeling, the Santa Cruz carries a glass-bottom boat to observe the Galapagos marine life without getting wet. Snorkel equipment is provided free of charge and wetsuits are available for rental.
Common Areas Aboard Santa Cruz
The Santa Cruz offers plenty of room on board with four spacious decks. The dining room, lounge and bar are elegantly appointed, as is the well-stocked library/reading room with two computers with internet access (extra charge). WiFi is available via satellite in the lounge only, and can be purchased for one device.
The wide open Sun Deck is where you will spend most of your time and features a bar and Jacuzzi. The observation platform on the Sun Deck is the place to be while cruising to view birds, whales and dolphins. At night, when pitch-dark starry skies are seen, stargazing is an amazing nocturnal activity. The Upper Deck features common areas including a large lobby, spacious view lounge, gift shop/boutique and dining area.
Expedition Team & Crew Aboard Santa Cruz
The Santa Cruz features an Expedition Team consisting of seven Galapagos Naturalists and a Chief Galapagos Naturalist. All will delight guests with diverse natural history explanations and superb on-deck talks and lectures regarding Galapagos natural history and conservation issues. Group size is 16 maximum, so any questions and comments regarding the Galapagos can be addressed. Their multimedia presentations and recaps will complement each day's activities. Together with the Captain, they will plan each day's program of Galapagos exploration. They are masters of Galapagos knowledge and inevitably become the highlight of your voyage.
Additionally there is a doctor permanently on board, giving free consultations and adding a level of safety and security to your Galapagos voyage.
Family Activities Aboard Santa Cruz
The Santa Cruz features a "Young Pirates" family program for young Galapagos explorers. This program is aimed at children ranging between ages 7 to 12 years old and features an attractive kit full of materials showcasing a fun and exciting way of experiencing theGalapagos Islands. Children's meals and meal schedules available, as are panga rides and bridge visits with the captain. An introduction to snorkeling for kids and parents is guided by a naturalist.
Cabins Aboard Santa Cruz
All cabins aboard the Santa Cruz open to an interior passageway and feature a private bathroom, air conditioning and 110-volt electrical outlets. Locking safety boxes are available in each room.
The Boat Deck is the uppermost cabin deck and its spacious stern cabins are part of an exclusive Darwin Elite program offering a new level of service and comfort with numerous special amenities. Travelers booked in a Darwin Elite cabin receive the following special services and amenities in addition to the Santa Cruz's standard offerings: complimentary wines and beers at dinner; free soft drinks served throughout the ship; use of the VIP lounge at departure airport in the Galapagos Islands; turn-down service delicacy; in-cabin national and international magazines, plus library books about the Galápagos; expedition CD of photos and videos; specially-designed explorers’ kit; free Internet access (low-bandwidth and intermittent, currently only available in reception and bar/saloon area); inset Tablet in each cabin; L’Occitane en Provence amenities in the bathrooms; bathrobes; deluxe high thread-count sheets and pillows; special edition take-home coffee table book; and wetsuit rental included, with superior quality snorkeling gear.
Boat Deck Master Suite Double
There are two Master Suites with double beds (plus a sofa bed for a child) and private balconies. 250 square feet. Part of the Darwin Elite program including extra upscale amenities and services.
Boat Deck Junior Suite Twin
Two Junior Suites have twin beds plus a sofa bed for a child, and large floor-to-ceiling view windows. 235 square feet. Part of the Darwin Elite program including extra upscale amenities and services.
Boat Deck Superior Twin/Double
Six Superior-class cabins have twin or double beds and large floor-to-ceiling view windows. 165 square feet. Part of the Darwin Elite program including extra upscale amenities and services..
Boat Deck Single Standard
1 cabin is available for single use aboard Santa Cruz.
Boat Deck Standard Plus Twin
Standard Plus cabins feature twin beds and large porthole windows. 129 square feet. Part of the Darwin Elite program including extra upscale amenities and services.
Boat Deck Twin Standard/Double
2 double matrimonial cabins and 4 twin cabins are available on the Boat Deck. 125 square feet.
Upper Deck Twin Standard
12 twin cabins on the Upper Deck feature view windows and twin beds. 125 square feet.
Main Deck Twin Standard
13 twin cabins on the Main Deck feature portholes and twin beds. Can be arranged for triple occupancy. 125 square feet.
Santa Cruz Deck Plan