kayakers off port bow of santa cruz ii galapagos islands small ship cruise
Booby on rock in Galapagos Islands with Santa Cruz II small cruise ship in distance
sea lions underwater near santa cruz ii galapagos small ship cruise
large iguana surrounded by crabs on large rock in galapagos islands
large iguana in the water on santa cruz ii galapagos cruises
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South America Galapagos Islands Cruise

Santa Cruz II Galapagos Cruises

The 90-guest Santa Cruz II expedition ship sails the Galapagos Islands and features first-class amenities, daily naturalist-led hikes and panga rides, snorkeling and a glass-bottom boat. A wide variety of cabins, many of them interconnected, and ample space on five decks make the Santa Cruz II a great option for Galapagos family cruises

The Santa Cruz II operates three Galapagos cruise itineraries (two 5-day cruises and one 7-day cruise), which can be combined in various ways to create longer 9-, 11- or 15-day cruises. Contact our Galapagos small ship cruise experts for the inside scoop on which route is best for you. AdventureSmith Explorations’ award-winning crew has personal experience sailing in the Galapagos Islands and can recommend the best options to suit your travel interests and timeline.

Santa Cruz II itineraries are designed by guides who are passionate about wildlife and have created the best combination of wildlife viewing per route. No matter which Santa Cruz II itinerary you choose, expect a tailored experience that prioritizes the best of what the Galapagos has to offer.

Daily activity levels are chosen by the guests aboard Santa Cruz II. Your cruise can be as active as you want it to be, with several levels of excursions offered each day and a highly organized crew to keep all passengers on board engaged and enjoying the Galapagos Islands. A 1-to-1.5 guest-to-crew ratio ensures that no one is ever left behind and that each individual finds the right activity level to experience the Galapagos Islands.

On the Eastern Galapagos Islands itinerary, highlights may include Mosquera Islet, a small volcanic uplift perfectly situated as a sea lion rookery; Punta Pitt, an eroded tuff cone and the only site where Nazca, blue-footed and red-footed boobies can be found together; Suarez Point where the famous blowhole spouts and waved albatross nest; the perfectly white sandy beach of Gardner Bay; the Charles Darwin Research Station, headquarters for scientific investigation; La Galapaguera, where endangered giant tortoises are bred and returned to the wild; and North Seymour Island, a small, flat island covered in silver grey palo santo trees that wait for rains so they can burst into bloom.

On the Western Galapagos Islands itinerary, visit Floreana, one of the oldest islands in the Galapagos that’s rich with marine life and human history, and experience the youngest volcanically active western islands of Isabela and Fernandina.

On the Northern Galapagos Islands itinerary, swim in the company of sea turtles and discover the impressive cliffs and natural rock formations like Elephant Rock and The Bishop on Santiago Island. Leave footprints along the beaches of Rabida island where sea lions, marine iguanas, mockingbirds, yellow warblers and Darwin’s finches contrast with the iron-rich, red sandy shores. Spot playful dolphins on the way to Genovesa, a true birder’s island, where Prince Philip’s Steps lead to a rocky plateau and a colony of Nazca boobies, red-footed boobies, great frigatebirds and storm petrels. Enjoy time beneath the orchids and bromeliads on Santa Cruz Island in search for giant tortoises roaming in the wild.

The Santa Cruz II offers active itineraries, with numerous options. Enjoy active as well as mellow hikes, options for Zodiac or glass-bottom boat rides, plus swimming and snorkeling for all levels. There is ample time to relax on board after meals or opt out of activities, but note that this is an expedition-cruise style itinerary, so you will be kept busy if you choose!

Read on for details about this trip, or learn more about AdventureSmith’s Galapagos Islands cruises



Itinerary

7-Day East Itinerary

Visit San Cristobal, Santa Fe, South Plaza, Santa Cruz, Espanola, North Seymour, Baltra, Mosquera and Eden Islets, as well as key sites like the Charles Darwin Research Station, Punta Pitt, Punta Suarez and Gardner Bay. Eastern Galapagos is known for its land tortoises and lizards, and its older, greener landscape.

Santa Cruz II small ship cruise 7-day eastern route map with visits to San Cristobal, Santa Fe, South Plaza, Santa Cruz, Espanola, North Seymour, Baltra, Mosquera and Eden Islets.
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Day 1
FRI - Embark Baltra to Mosquera

Arrive in the morning by plane to Baltra Island and transfer to the dock to board the Santa Cruz II, where you will receive an introductory briefing, boat drill and lunch. After lunch, the Santa Cruz II cruises only four nautical miles to Mosquera Islet, a small volcanic uplift between Baltra and North Seymour. The island is a long and narrow sand bank surrounded by lava reefs. Approach the island from its western shore, a long shallow reef and the perfect rookery for young sea lions. After a wet landing, walk past the sea lion colonies to learn more about the fragile marine and terrestrial ecosystems of the Galapagos Islands. The walk is easy, as it is restricted to a few hundred meters of flat sandy dunes.

Accommodations

Santa Cruz II

Meals

lunch, dinner

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Day 2
SAT - Puerto Baquerizo Moreno & Punta Pitt (San Cristobal)

After breakfast, disembark at Puerto Baquerizo Moreno, the capital of San Cristobal Island, and take a bus 40 minutes to the island’s southern shore. At Cerro Colorado, visit the La Galapaguera Breeding Center and spot endangered giant tortoises roaming in the deciduous forest, home to dozens of bird species, including the San Cristobal mockingbird and the San Cristobal lava lizard, both island endemics.

In the afternoon, make a wet landin on the eastern tip of San Cristobal Island at Punta Pitt, an eroded tuff cone with a trail that provides spectacular views of the shoreline. This is the only site in the Galapagos where the three species of boobies can be found together. Walk or enjoy a panga ride along the coast, as well as the opportunity for snorkeling, swimming and kayaking.

Accommodations

Santa Cruz II

Meals

breakfast, lunch, dinner

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Day 3
SUN - Santa Fe & South Plaza

This morning, take the dinghy to a wet landing on an idyllic sandy-white beach populated by many sea lions. The endemic land iguana, unique to Santa Fe Island, may be spotted during the morning walk amid the giant prickly pear cactus. Snorkeling and swimming from the dinghy rounds off this rewarding experience. Those who prefer not to snorkel may ride in the glass bottom boat or go kayaking.

Following lunch and a rest, make a dry landing on South Plaza Island, where turquoise waters contrast brilliantly with the white sand and black lava of the shoreline. Beyond, a carpet of scarlet sesuvium succulents serves as groundcover for a grove of luminescent green prickly-pear cactus. Yellow-grey land iguanas sit beneath, waiting patiently for pears to drop. Along the coastline watch sea lion colonies lounge, as well as frigatebirds, swallow-tailed gulls and shearwaters gliding overhead, playing in the thermals.

Accommodations

Santa Cruz II

Meals

breakfast, lunch, dinner

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Day 4
MON - Darwin Research Station & Optional Activities (Santa Cruz)

In the morning, make a dry landing and visit the Charles Darwin Research Station’s giant tortoise Breeding Center, located within an impressive giant prickly-pear cactus forest and home to many land birds. These are the headquarters of scientific investigation, conservation and the National Park administration. Then board a transportation vehicle to enjoy lunch in the cooler highlands of Santa Cruz Island, a completely different ecosystem.

There are several options available for this afternoon, which can be discussed in advance with the expedition leader. Options include beach walks, kayaks, walks along the tortoise reserve and more. At the end of the afternoon’s activities, return to Puerto Ayora and the ship.

Accommodations

Santa Cruz II

Meals

breakfast, lunch, dinner

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Day 5
TUE - Punta Suarez & Gardner Bay (Espanola)

Begin today with a dry landing and an exciting walk to observe Espanola Island’s unique seabird colonies, including waved albatross (April-December), Nazca boobies, blue-footed boobies and swallow-tailed gulls. Near Suarez Point, take in the view of Galapagos’s famous “blow-hole.” Be sure to look out for red-green-black marine iguanas before returning aboard for lunch.

In the afternoon, make a wet landing on the picture-perfect white coral beach of Gardner Bay. The nearby Osborn Islet provides a beautiful setting for observing sea lions, mockingbirds and finches. Expect great snorkeling in this area when weather allows, as well as the opportunity for swimming and kayaking.

Accommodations

Santa Cruz II

Meals

breakfast, lunch, dinner

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Day 6
WED - Eden Islet & North Seymour

After breakfast, enjoy a dinghy ride to Eden Islet, a small islet located off the coast of Santa Cruz, to observe blue-footed boobies diving into the water, reef sharks and frigatebirds. There’s a chance to snorkel and, if weather conditions permit, a ride in the glass-bottom boat or kayak.

In the afternoon, explore North Seymour Island, which was lifted from the ocean floor by a volcanic event; its origins as a seabed give the island its low, flat profile. A tiny forest of silver-grey palo santo trees stands just above the dry landing, usually without leaves, waiting for the rains to burst into bloom. This is a great site to see wildlife, bird colonies of blue-footed boobies, two species of frigatebirds, swallow-tailed gulls, as well as sea lions and marine iguanas.

Accommodations

Santa Cruz II

Meals

breakfast, lunch, dinner

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Day 7
THU - Disembark Baltra

Disembark at Baltra Island and transfer to the airport to take your flight back to the mainland.

Accommodations

n/a

Meals

breakfast

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Details
Inclusions, Terms & Notes

Included

Accommodations; all meals; island sightseeing; naturalist guides and lecture services in English/Spanish (guiding in other languages upon request for groups larger than 10 guests: German, French, Italian); snorkeling gear; luggage handling; medical care on board (but not the cost of medication); taxes and transfers in the islands; shared transfers from main hotels in Quito (Casa Gangotena, Hilton Colon, Mercure, Sheraton, Marriott, Dann Carlton; for Casa Gangotena, a further feeder service is provided to/from Hilton Colón, this service does not have additional cost) and in Guayaquil (Hilton Colon, Oro Verde, Sheraton, Wyndham) to airport for flights to/from Galapagos. Internet/Wi-Fi, as well as soft drinks (2021), is included only for guests staying in cabins on the Panorama Deck.

Exclusions

Air transportation to/from Galapagos; airport taxes (subject to change without previous notice); Galapagos National Park entrance fee (US$ 100); TCT-Galapagos Transit Control Card (US $20); fuel surcharge; alcoholic beverages (there is a corkage fee of US $27+taxes for guests wishing to bring their own bottles of wine and/or spirits); non-alcoholic beverages, gratuities, laundry or valet services, gifts and additional items; wetsuit rentals (US $17 + VAT per guest for 5- or 7-day expeditions); peak season/holiday surcharges; insurance of any kind; internet/Wi-Fi (internet can be purchased for fee of US $40 + taxes. Due to the Galapagos Islands’ remote location, internet connections are intermittent and low-bandwidth and connections onboard consist in computer stations and Wi-Fi in the vessel’s social areas).

Payment & Cancellation

In order to confirm this trip, a deposit of 15% of the total trip cost is required per person at time of booking. The balance of the trip price is due 90 days before the departure date. Special holiday payment and cancellation terms may apply. Guests who must cancel their trip for any reason must do so in writing. Standard cancellations are subject to the following per-person penalties, based on number of days prior to departure:
Up to 61 days – 100% of deposit
60 to 0 days – 100% of total trip cost

Terms & Conditions

This trip is subject to AdventureSmith Explorations Terms and Conditions. Please read this information carefully and call us if you have any questions. A Traveler Information Form, which includes a release of liability, must be completed and signed by all travelers. Your Adventure Specialist will send you a unique link to complete this form along with a packing list and extensive pre-departure and travel insurance information upon booking confirmation.

Arrival & Departure

Most flights to the Galapagos will depart Quito or Guayaquil between 6:00am and 11:00am on day 1 and return between 2:00pm and 6:00pm on the final day. We highly recommend travelers arrive to Ecuador two days prior to their Galapagos cruise. If you would like assistance with international flights, please visit our Booking Flights resource page.

Internal Flights

Flights from mainland Ecuador (Quito or Guayaquil) to the Galapagos are not included in the cruise price, but are arranged for you by AdventureSmith Explorations through your ship. Your Adventure Specialist will book these flights for you on the scheduled Galapagos flight for your particular departure. Airfares vary by departure; your Adventure Specialist will detail these for you in their proposal and on your invoice. On flights from mainland Ecuador to the Galapagos Islands, baggage weight limits are currently 50 pounds for checked items, and 17 pounds for carry-on plus a small personal item. Subject to change.

Activities

There are numerous opportunities to hike, kayak, ride in a glass-bottom boat, swim and snorkel. The underwater experience is an integral part of any Galapagos cruise. We encourage all travelers to try snorkeling. Snorkeling gear (mask, snorkel, fins, floating vest and net bag) are provided. Wetsuits are available, either free of charge or to rent for a fee, and are recommended from June to December.

Daily excursions from the boat to the islands will be made in pangas (inflatable skiffs). Trip members will hike from the landing point to specific areas for wildlife observation. Hiking time for most landings will be a couple of hours round-trip with lots of time to stop to study, photograph and enjoy the flora and fauna. Some landings are dry but many are “wet,” requiring cautious footing on slippery rocks. The boat staff will be on hand to assist.

Room Configuration

In addition to listed Single cabin rates, select double-occupancy cabins may be available for single occupancy with a single supplement fee. Single travelers wishing to book a double-occupancy cabin may do so at a 100% supplement of the per-person listed rate in select cabins upon availability. Select Explorer Cabins may be booked for single occupancy with a surcharge of 15%, based upon availability. Explorer Family Cabins for twin/double use incur a 50% surcharge per person.

Families & Children

Kids 6 years and older are welcomed aboard the Santa Cruz II. Kids under 12 years old at the time of sailing receive 10% off when sharing the cabin with 2 adults (applies only to one child per adult paying full fare). No discounts apply on Peak Season dates, when an additional fee of $122 (2020) or $131 (2021) per child is incurred. Galapagos family cruises are available, call for details.

Travel Insurance

Protect your travel investment with insurance. Our partners at Travelex Insurance offer a variety of plans and policies to fit every trip and budget. You must purchase your travel insurance policy within 15 or 21 days of booking (depending on plan) for it to cover pre-existing medical conditions; refer to plan details. Learn more about travel insurance or get a free quote.

Itinerary Notes

Use the itinerary as a guide only. Itineraries may be altered due to weather, wildlife, national park regulation or at the captain’s discretion. Due to the active nature of volcanoes in the Western Galapagos, alternate excursions may be offered. The ability to be flexible makes this type of small ship cruising unique.

5-Day North Itinerary

Adventure to the famed northern Galapagos Islands, including Baltra, Santa Cruz, Santiago, Rabida, Bartolome and Genovesa.

Santa Cruz II small ship cruise 5-day North route map with visits to Baltra, Santa Cruz, Santiago, Rabida, Bartolome and Genovesa islands.
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Day 1
MON - Embark Baltra to Las Bachas (Santa Cruz)

In the morning, arrive to Baltra Island by plane and transfer to the dock to board the Santa Cruz II for an introductory briefing, boat drill and lunch. In the afternoon, explore Las Bachas, a glorious white beach with a couple of brackish lagoons only a few steps away from the sea on the north shore of Santa Cruz Island. These lagoons are the feeding grounds of various wading birds, like stilts and flamingos. Enjoy swimming and snorkeling before returning to the ship for a welcome cocktail and dinner.

Accommodations

Santa Cruz II

Meals

lunch, dinner

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Day 2
TUE - Buccaneer Cove & Puerto Egas (Santiago)

After breakfast, explore the coastline along the impressive cliffs of Buccaneer Cove, learning about the area’s distant and recent history. The cove is home to a large number of marine birds, sea lions and intertidal organisms. Enjoy fantastic natural formations such as Elephant Rock, The Bishop and an impressive natural cave. There are opportunities for snorkeling and a ride on the dinghy or glass-bottom boat.

After lunch, disembark at the beach of Puerto Egas, to swim or snorkel along a rocky shoreline, usually in the company of marine turtles. From here, take a walk and search for land and marine birds amid a landscape of tuff-stone layers and lava flows. At low tide, marine iguanas graze upon the algae beds and a colony of fur seals rests here. After, there is time for more swimming and snorkeling.

Accommodations

Santa Cruz II

Meals

breakfast, lunch, dinner

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Day 3
WED - Rabida & Bartolome

This morning, some guests may go for a fascinating dinghy ride along the shores while others will choose to disembark on Rabida Island’s red-colored beach. The color is caused by the unusually high content of iron in the volcanic material. A lovely walk brings offes close encounters with a colony of sea lions, marine iguanas, mockingbirds, yellow warblers and several species of Darwin’s finches. Very close to the beach, a salt pond occasionally hosts American flamingos. This is a great place to snorkel from the beach, both for beginners and experienced snorkelers, due to the unique combination of underwater species and submarine landscapes. Return to the ship and while cruising to the next island, be on the lookout for more wildlife, especially dolphins.

Begin the afternoon with a wet landing on the golden beach of Bartolome Island, dominated by the imposing Pinnacle Rock. There’s great snorkeling and swimming from the beach plus the chance to ride the glass-bottom boat. After returning to the ship, two groups will be formed: the first group will hike to the summit of this diminutive island that boasts fantastic views of the archipelago. It is a moderately steep climb aided by a wooden staircase, resting platforms and handrails, with a view from the top that is worth the effort. The second group will take to the dinghies to explore the rugged and volcanic shoreline. Then, the groups will swap so every guest may experience the full beauty of this island.

Accommodations

Santa Cruz II

Meals

breakfast, lunch, dinner

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Day 4
THU - Prince Philip’s Steps & Darwin Bay (Genovesa)

This morning begins with a steep climb of about 90 feet up a set of stairs, Prince Philip’s Steps, to reach a flat rocky plateau. Walk and observe large colonies of Nazca boobies, red-footed boobies, great frigatebirds and storm petrels. Those not wishing to disembark can enjoy a longer dinghy ride along the cliffs depending on weather conditions. Kayaking is also an option.

In the afternoon, land at a beautiful beach to enjoy swimming and snorkelling at Darwin Bay. Next, take an easy stroll to observe hundreds of birds, mainly frigatebirds, red-footed and Nazca boobies, gulls, herons, finches and mockingbirds. Enjoy the opportunity to go snorkelling, kayaking or swimming again later this afternoon.

Accommodations

Santa Cruz II

Meals

breakfast, lunch, dinner

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Day 5
FRI - Tortoise Reserve (Santa Cruz) & Disembark Baltra

Begin this morning at the north shore of Santa Cruz Island. After breakfast, your luggage will be taken to the airport, while you visit the Tortoise Reserve. A dry landing at a passenger’s wharf and a bus ride to the loftier region of the island will provide the last highlight of the cruise: giant tortoises in the wild! The windward slopes of the island are home to two species of giant tortoises. These lush highlands include dense forests of Galapagos daisies, orchids and bromeliads and several endemic land birds. After this visit, be transfered directly to Baltra airport for your flight back to the mainland.

Accommodations

n/a

Meals

breakfast

Read More
Details
Inclusions, Terms & Notes

Included

Accommodations; all meals; island sightseeing; naturalist guides and lecture services in English/Spanish (guiding in other languages upon request for groups larger than 10 guests: German, French, Italian); snorkeling gear; luggage handling; medical care on board (but not the cost of medication); taxes and transfers in the islands; shared transfers from main hotels in Quito (Casa Gangotena, Hilton Colon, Mercure, Sheraton, Marriott, Dann Carlton; for Casa Gangotena, a further feeder service is provided to/from Hilton Colón, this service does not have additional cost) and in Guayaquil (Hilton Colon, Oro Verde, Sheraton, Wyndham) to airport for flights to/from Galapagos. Internet/Wi-Fi, as well as soft drinks (2021), is included only for guests staying in cabins on the Panorama Deck.

Exclusions

Air transportation to/from Galapagos; airport taxes (subject to change without previous notice); Galapagos National Park entrance fee (US$ 100); TCT-Galapagos Transit Control Card (US $20); fuel surcharge; alcoholic beverages (there is a corkage fee of US $27+taxes for guests wishing to bring their own bottles of wine and/or spirits); non-alcoholic beverages, gratuities, laundry or valet services, gifts and additional items; wetsuit rentals (US $17 + VAT per guest for 5- or 7-day expeditions); peak season/holiday surcharges; insurance of any kind; internet/Wi-Fi (internet can be purchased for fee of US $40 + taxes. Due to the Galapagos Islands’ remote location, internet connections are intermittent and low-bandwidth and connections onboard consist in computer stations and Wi-Fi in the vessel’s social areas).

Payment & Cancellation

In order to confirm this trip, a deposit of 15% of the total trip cost is required per person at time of booking. The balance of the trip price is due 90 days before the departure date. Special holiday payment and cancellation terms may apply. Guests who must cancel their trip for any reason must do so in writing. Standard cancellations are subject to the following per-person penalties, based on number of days prior to departure:
Up to 61 days – 100% of deposit
60 to 0 days – 100% of total trip cost

Terms & Conditions

This trip is subject to AdventureSmith Explorations Terms and Conditions. Please read this information carefully and call us if you have any questions. A Traveler Information Form, which includes a release of liability, must be completed and signed by all travelers. Your Adventure Specialist will send you a unique link to complete this form along with a packing list and extensive pre-departure and travel insurance information upon booking confirmation.

Arrival & Departure

Most flights to the Galapagos will depart Quito or Guayaquil between 6:00am and 11:00am on day 1 and return between 2:00pm and 6:00pm on the final day. We highly recommend travelers arrive to Ecuador two days prior to their Galapagos cruise. If you would like assistance with international flights, please visit our Booking Flights resource page.

Internal Flights

Flights from mainland Ecuador (Quito or Guayaquil) to the Galapagos are not included in the cruise price, but are arranged for you by AdventureSmith Explorations through your ship. Your Adventure Specialist will book these flights for you on the scheduled Galapagos flight for your particular departure. Airfares vary by departure; your Adventure Specialist will detail these for you in their proposal and on your invoice. On flights from mainland Ecuador to the Galapagos Islands, baggage weight limits are currently 50 pounds for checked items, and 17 pounds for carry-on plus a small personal item. Subject to change.

Activities

There are numerous opportunities to hike, kayak, ride in a glass-bottom boat, swim and snorkel. The underwater experience is an integral part of any Galapagos cruise. We encourage all travelers to try snorkeling. Snorkeling gear (mask, snorkel, fins, floating vest and net bag) are provided. Wetsuits are available, either free of charge or to rent for a fee, and are recommended from June to December.

Daily excursions from the boat to the islands will be made in pangas (inflatable skiffs). Trip members will hike from the landing point to specific areas for wildlife observation. Hiking time for most landings will be a couple of hours round-trip with lots of time to stop to study, photograph and enjoy the flora and fauna. Some landings are dry but many are “wet,” requiring cautious footing on slippery rocks. The boat staff will be on hand to assist.

Room Configuration

In addition to listed Single cabin rates, select double-occupancy cabins may be available for single occupancy with a single supplement fee. Single travelers wishing to book a double-occupancy cabin may do so at a 100% supplement of the per-person listed rate in select cabins upon availability. Select Explorer Cabins may be booked for single occupancy with a surcharge of 15%, based upon availability. Explorer Family Cabins for twin/double use incur a 50% surcharge per person.

Families & Children

Kids 6 years and older are welcomed aboard the Santa Cruz II. Kids under 12 years old at the time of sailing receive 10% off when sharing the cabin with 2 adults (applies only to one child per adult paying full fare). No discounts apply on Peak Season dates, when an additional fee of $122 (2020) or $131 (2021) per child is incurred. Galapagos family cruises are available, call for details.

Travel Insurance

Protect your travel investment with insurance. Our partners at Travelex Insurance offer a variety of plans and policies to fit every trip and budget. You must purchase your travel insurance policy within 15 or 21 days of booking (depending on plan) for it to cover pre-existing medical conditions; refer to plan details. Learn more about travel insurance or get a free quote.

Itinerary Notes

Use the itinerary as a guide only. Itineraries may be altered due to weather, wildlife, national park regulation or at the captain’s discretion. Due to the active nature of volcanoes in the Western Galapagos, alternate excursions may be offered. The ability to be flexible makes this type of small ship cruising unique.

5-Day West Itinerary

Visit the islands of Isabela, Fernandina, Santa Cruz, Floreana and Baltra, as well as key sites like the Charles Darwin Research Station, Post Office Bay, Champion Islet, Cerro Dragon and Baroness Tower. Western Galapagos is known for its volcanic landscape and penguin spotting in the cooler waters surrounding these islands.

Santa Cruz II small ship cruise 5-day West route map with visits to Isabela, Fernandina, Santa Cruz, Floreana and Baltra islands.
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Day 1
THU - Embark Baltra to Cerro Dragón (Santa Cruz)

Arrive in the morning by plane to Baltra Island and transfer to the dock to board the Santa Cruz II where you will receive an introductory briefing, boat drill and lunch. In the afternoon, visit the north shore of Santa Cruz, which hosts the fascinating landscapes of Cerro Dragón (Dragon Hill). Walk past a brackish-water lagoon frequented by shorebirds, ducks and flamingos. Farther inland, the trail offers a beautiful view of the bay and the western islands of the archipelago, as well as the chance to observe land iguanas.

Accommodations

Santa Cruz II

Meals

lunch, dinner

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Day 2
FRI - Punta Vicente Roca (Isabela) & Punta Espinoza (Fernandina)

After breakfast, explore the coast by dinghy with a naturalist guide explaining the dramatic geology of the area. Punta Vicente Roca is a nesting place for several Galapagos highlights: flightless cormorants, Galapagos penguins, fur seals, boobies and more. Depending on weather conditions, you may snorkel along the cliffs rich in marine life, seasonally-visited by green sea turtles and oceanic sun fish (mola mola).

The afternoon is dedicated to exploring the youngest island of the archipelago, Fernandina, which has no introduced mammals and boasts a very unique environment with a very high density of marine iguanas, sea lions, Sally Lightfoot crabs, hawks, penguins and flightless cormorants.

Accommodations

Santa Cruz II

Meals

breakfast, lunch, dinner

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Day 3
SAT - Darwin Research Station & Optional Activities (Santa Cruz)

In the morning, disembark (dry landing followed by a brief bus ride) for a visit to the Charles Darwin Research Station’s giant tortoise Breeding Center, located within an impressive giant prickly-pear cactus forest and home to many land birds. These are the headquarters of scientific investigation, conservation and the National Park administration. Following your visit, board a transport vehicle to enjoy lunch in the cooler highlands of Santa Cruz Island, a completely different ecosystem.

There are several options available for this afternoon, which can be discussed in advance with your Expedition Leader. Options include beach walks, kayaks, walks along the tortoise reserve, etc. At the end of the afternoon’s activities, return to Puerto Ayora and the ship.

Accommodations

Santa Cruz II

Meals

breakfast, lunch, dinner

Read More
Day 4
SUN - Baroness Tower, Post Office Bay, Champion Islet & Cormorant Point (Floreana)

After breakfast, enjoy a dinghy ride along the maze of channels on Floreana’s north shore. Continue to Baroness Tower with its breathtaking views of Floreana. Land at Post Office Bay to visit the historic barrel that has served as a post office in the archipelago for over two centuries and where postcards are traditionally left for guests from other vessels to hand-deliver to their destinations. Enjoy snorkeling off the beach before heading back on board for lunch.

Following lunch and a siesta, take the dinghies and glass-bottom boat to explore the underwater wonders around Champion Islet, an extinct shield volcano regarded as one of the best snorkelling spots in the archipelago. Next make a wet landing at Punta Cormorant onto the olivine-crystal beach for an easy walk that includes a brackish-water lagoon where bird species such as greater flamingos, pintail ducks, common stilts, herons, sandpipers and others gather. Continue your walk over to a white-sand beach, where sea turtles emerge from the sea at night to nest (December to May).

Accommodations

Santa Cruz II

Meals

breakfast, lunch, dinner

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Day 5
MON - Disembark Baltra

After breakfast and a farewell from the crew, disembark at Baltra Island. Transfer to the airport and take the flight back to the mainland.

Accommodations

n/a

Meals

breakfast

Read More
Details
Inclusions, Terms & Notes

Included

Accommodations; all meals; island sightseeing; naturalist guides and lecture services in English/Spanish (guiding in other languages upon request for groups larger than 10 guests: German, French, Italian); snorkeling gear; luggage handling; medical care on board (but not the cost of medication); taxes and transfers in the islands; shared transfers from main hotels in Quito (Casa Gangotena, Hilton Colon, Mercure, Sheraton, Marriott, Dann Carlton; for Casa Gangotena, a further feeder service is provided to/from Hilton Colón, this service does not have additional cost) and in Guayaquil (Hilton Colon, Oro Verde, Sheraton, Wyndham) to airport for flights to/from Galapagos. Internet/Wi-Fi, as well as soft drinks (2021), is included only for guests staying in cabins on the Panorama Deck.

Exclusions

Air transportation to/from Galapagos; airport taxes (subject to change without previous notice); Galapagos National Park entrance fee (US$ 100); TCT-Galapagos Transit Control Card (US $20); fuel surcharge; alcoholic beverages (there is a corkage fee of US $27+taxes for guests wishing to bring their own bottles of wine and/or spirits); non-alcoholic beverages, gratuities, laundry or valet services, gifts and additional items; wetsuit rentals (US $17 + VAT per guest for 5- or 7-day expeditions); peak season/holiday surcharges; insurance of any kind; internet/Wi-Fi (internet can be purchased for fee of US $40 + taxes. Due to the Galapagos Islands’ remote location, internet connections are intermittent and low-bandwidth and connections onboard consist in computer stations and Wi-Fi in the vessel’s social areas).

Payment & Cancellation

In order to confirm this trip, a deposit of 15% of the total trip cost is required per person at time of booking. The balance of the trip price is due 90 days before the departure date. Special holiday payment and cancellation terms may apply. Guests who must cancel their trip for any reason must do so in writing. Standard cancellations are subject to the following per-person penalties, based on number of days prior to departure:
Up to 61 days – 100% of deposit
60 to 0 days – 100% of total trip cost

Terms & Conditions

This trip is subject to AdventureSmith Explorations Terms and Conditions. Please read this information carefully and call us if you have any questions. A Traveler Information Form, which includes a release of liability, must be completed and signed by all travelers. Your Adventure Specialist will send you a unique link to complete this form along with a packing list and extensive pre-departure and travel insurance information upon booking confirmation.

Arrival & Departure

Most flights to the Galapagos will depart Quito or Guayaquil between 6:00am and 11:00am on day 1 and return between 2:00pm and 6:00pm on the final day. We highly recommend travelers arrive to Ecuador two days prior to their Galapagos cruise. If you would like assistance with international flights, please visit our Booking Flights resource page.

Internal Flights

Flights from mainland Ecuador (Quito or Guayaquil) to the Galapagos are not included in the cruise price, but are arranged for you by AdventureSmith Explorations through your ship. Your Adventure Specialist will book these flights for you on the scheduled Galapagos flight for your particular departure. Airfares vary by departure; your Adventure Specialist will detail these for you in their proposal and on your invoice. On flights from mainland Ecuador to the Galapagos Islands, baggage weight limits are currently 50 pounds for checked items, and 17 pounds for carry-on plus a small personal item. Subject to change.

Activities

There are numerous opportunities to hike, kayak, ride in a glass-bottom boat, swim and snorkel. The underwater experience is an integral part of any Galapagos cruise. We encourage all travelers to try snorkeling. Snorkeling gear (mask, snorkel, fins, floating vest and net bag) are provided. Wetsuits are available, either free of charge or to rent for a fee, and are recommended from June to December.

Daily excursions from the boat to the islands will be made in pangas (inflatable skiffs). Trip members will hike from the landing point to specific areas for wildlife observation. Hiking time for most landings will be a couple of hours round-trip with lots of time to stop to study, photograph and enjoy the flora and fauna. Some landings are dry but many are “wet,” requiring cautious footing on slippery rocks. The boat staff will be on hand to assist.

Room Configuration

In addition to listed Single cabin rates, select double-occupancy cabins may be available for single occupancy with a single supplement fee. Single travelers wishing to book a double-occupancy cabin may do so at a 100% supplement of the per-person listed rate in select cabins upon availability. Select Explorer Cabins may be booked for single occupancy with a surcharge of 15%, based upon availability. Explorer Family Cabins for twin/double use incur a 50% surcharge per person.

Families & Children

Kids 6 years and older are welcomed aboard the Santa Cruz II. Kids under 12 years old at the time of sailing receive 10% off when sharing the cabin with 2 adults (applies only to one child per adult paying full fare). No discounts apply on Peak Season dates, when an additional fee of $122 (2020) or $131 (2021) per child is incurred. Galapagos family cruises are available, call for details.

Travel Insurance

Protect your travel investment with insurance. Our partners at Travelex Insurance offer a variety of plans and policies to fit every trip and budget. You must purchase your travel insurance policy within 15 or 21 days of booking (depending on plan) for it to cover pre-existing medical conditions; refer to plan details. Learn more about travel insurance or get a free quote.

Itinerary Notes

Use the itinerary as a guide only. Itineraries may be altered due to weather, wildlife, national park regulation or at the captain’s discretion. Due to the active nature of volcanoes in the Western Galapagos, alternate excursions may be offered. The ability to be flexible makes this type of small ship cruising unique.

Rates & Dates

Galapagos Cruise Rates & Dates

In addition to the rates and dates listed below, longer Galapagos Santa Cruz II itineraries are available by combining the ship’s shorter itineraries. Receive a 10% discount on the Northern or Western Islands itinerary when Eastern Islands is added to create an 11-day cruise. Or receive a 20% discount on the Northern Islands or Western Islands when combining all Santa Cruz II itineraries for a 15-day cruise. Applies only to full-rate bookings; not applicable for promotional rates. Contact AdventureSmith Explorations for pricing and more information.

Oct 26 - Oct 30, 2020
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
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From $3822USD
Per Person
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Oct 30 - Nov 05, 2020
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
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From $5264USD
Per Person
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Nov 05 - Nov 09, 2020
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
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From $3822USD
Per Person
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Nov 09 - Nov 13, 2020
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
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From $3822USD
Per Person
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Dec 11 - Dec 17, 2020
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5264USD
Per Person
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Dec 17 - Dec 21, 2020
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $3822USD
Per Person
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Dec 21 - Dec 25, 2020
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
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From $4025USD
Per Person
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Dec 25 - Dec 31, 2020
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
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From $5467USD
Per Person
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Dec 31 - Jan 04, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
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From $4025USD
Per Person
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Jan 04 - Jan 08, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Jan 08 - Jan 14, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Jan 14 - Jan 18, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Jan 18 - Jan 22, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Jan 22 - Jan 28, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Jan 28 - Feb 01, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Feb 01 - Feb 05, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Feb 05 - Feb 11, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Feb 11 - Feb 15, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Feb 15 - Feb 19, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Feb 19 - Feb 25, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Feb 25 - Mar 01, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Mar 01 - Mar 05, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Mar 05 - Mar 11, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Mar 11 - Mar 15, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Mar 15 - Mar 19, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Mar 19 - Mar 25, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Mar 25 - Mar 29, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Mar 29 - Apr 02, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Apr 02 - Apr 08, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Apr 08 - Apr 12, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Apr 12 - Apr 16, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Apr 16 - Apr 22, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Apr 22 - Apr 26, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Apr 26 - Apr 30, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Apr 30 - May 06, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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May 06 - May 10, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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May 10 - May 14, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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May 14 - May 20, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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May 20 - May 24, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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May 24 - May 28, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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May 28 - Jun 03, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Jun 03 - Jun 07, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Jun 07 - Jun 11, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Jun 11 - Jun 17, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Jun 17 - Jun 21, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Jun 21 - Jun 25, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Jun 25 - Jul 01, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Jul 01 - Jul 05, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Jul 05 - Jul 09, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Jul 09 - Jul 15, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Jul 15 - Jul 19, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Jul 19 - Jul 23, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Jul 23 - Jul 29, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Jul 29 - Aug 02, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Aug 02 - Aug 06, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Aug 06 - Aug 12, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Aug 12 - Aug 16, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Aug 16 - Aug 20, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Aug 20 - Aug 26, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Aug 26 - Aug 30, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Aug 30 - Sep 03, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Sep 03 - Sep 09, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Sep 09 - Sep 13, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Sep 13 - Sep 17, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Sep 17 - Sep 23, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Sep 23 - Sep 27, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Sep 27 - Oct 01, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Oct 01 - Oct 07, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Oct 07 - Oct 11, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Oct 11 - Oct 15, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Oct 15 - Oct 21, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Oct 21 - Oct 25, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Oct 25 - Oct 29, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Oct 29 - Nov 04, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Nov 04 - Nov 08, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Nov 08 - Nov 12, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Nov 12 - Nov 18, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Nov 18 - Nov 22, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Nov 22 - Nov 26, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Nov 26 - Dec 02, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Dec 02 - Dec 06, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Dec 06 - Dec 10, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Dec 10 - Dec 16, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5514USD
Per Person
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Dec 16 - Dec 20, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Dec 20 - Dec 24, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green northern galapagos islands directional icon
From $4112USD
Per Person
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Dec 24 - Dec 30, 2021
Santa Cruz II • 7 days
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon
From $5733USD
Per Person
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Dec 30 - Jan 03, 2022
Santa Cruz II • 5 days
green western galapagos islands directional icon
From $4331USD
Per Person
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green western galapagos islands directional icon West Galapagos Islands
green northern galapagos islands directional icon North Galapagos Islands
olive green eastern galapagos islands directional icon East Galapagos Islands
Accommodation

Learn About the Galapagos Ship on Your Itinerary

Expedition Ship
Santa Cruz II

The 90-guest Santa Cruz II is designed to operate in the remote Galapagos Islands and built to preserve the islands’ delicate ecosystem via the latest in sustainable sailing technologies. Choose the Santa Cruz II for her uniquely low guest-to-guide ratio, her sustainable practices and thoughtful ship design.

Expert Review

Reviews from Our Experts So You Know What to Expect

Lis Larson • April 10th, 2013
Expert Review: Galapagos M/V Santa Cruz Western Islands Cruise

AdventureSmith's Lis reviews her Galapagos small ship cruise aboard the M/V Santa Cruz, visiting North Seymour, Isabela, Fernandina, Santa Cruz and Floreana islands.

Testimonial

Hear It from Travelers Who Have Explored with Us

"So Impressed"

I am just so impressed with how much work you all put in to making these trips special. I was so used to doing it myself on line, etc. but now I won't. We could not have been happier!

Overall
5 /5 Star Created with Sketch.
Accommodations
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Meals
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Book with the confidence that comes from experience.

100+ combined years of experience, 7 continents explored, decades of expedition cruising around the world & here to help you find & book your dream trip.

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