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Galapagos Travel

Grace Eastern Southern

Beyond Darwin's Footprints

from $5,450
8 days

Ship Name

M/Y Grace

Trip Type

Sea

When To Go

Year Round

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Trip Summary

Venture to some of the most remote regions of the Galapagos on a small luxury heritage yacht, the Grace. Stepping aboard the Grace is like stepping into the past, and a fitting vehicle by which to explore the Enchanted Isles- an experience to remember forever. Explore truly stunning landscape and exclusive species in the Galapagos on Espanola, and visit Post Office Bay on Floreana. Opportunities to explore by dinghy, kayak or snorekelling abound and a low guest to guide ratio enhances this trip, along with one of the longest running best Galapagos cruise operators at the helm.

Activities
Snorkeling
Birding
Hiking

Itinerary Day By Day

Day 1

San Cristobal & Kicker Rock

Today we fly to San Cristobal Island in the Galapagos in the morning. Flight time is approximately 1½ hours. Upon arrival we board M/Y Grace where you will have lunch and a quick briefing en route to our first visitor sites: Los Lobos and Kicker Rock.

Lobos Island, across a small channel off the coast of San Cristobal Island, lives up to its name of -Sea Lion Island- with its noisy population of frolicking and barking beasts. This is your first chance to share the water with a playful colony of the "wolves of the sea". From lobos we head to Kicker Rock, a spectacular rock formation that rises 152 meters (500 feet) out of the Pacific. It takes the form of a sleeping lion, but from another angle you can see that the rock is split, forming a colossal tablet and, piercing the sea, a great chisel ready for etching. After this visit you have time for a shower as we get ready for our welcome cocktail and our first formal briefing before dinner.

Day 2

Espanola Island

Hood is the southernmost island of the archipelago, and is one of the most popular due to the breathtaking variation and number of fauna that inhabit the island. In the morning we visit Punta Suarez where you will witness the largest variety of marine iguanas in the Galapagos, masked boobies and blue footed boobies nesting along the cliff’s edge, as well as the famous waved albatross.

In the afternoon we visit Gardner Bay, a magnificent long white sandy beach, where colonies of sea lions laze in the sun, sea turtles swim offshore, and inquisitive mockingbirds boldly investigate new arrivals.

 

Day 3

Floreana Island

Floreana Island: Cormorant Point & Champion Islet
Floreana has had a colorful history: Pirates, whalers, convicts, and a small band of somewhat peculiar colonists—a Baroness among them—who chose a Robinson Crusoe existence that ended in mystery and death. We visit Post Office Bay, where in 1793 British whalers set up a barrel as the island‘s Post Office, to send letters home on passing ships. The tradition continues to this day, simply by dropping a post card into the barrel without a stamp.

Late morning walk to the Baroness Overlook for some striking views of the scenery surrounding Floreana Island. In the afternoon we visit Cormorant Point which offers two highly contrasting beaches; a green-olivine beach and an iron-red beach. Between the two beaches is a salt lagoon frequented by flamingoes, pintails, stilts and other wading birds. In the late afternoon we head to the tiny islet known as Champion, considered one of the top snorkeling sites the Galapagos and offers prime underwater sea lion interactions.

Day 4

Santa Cruz Island

After a dry landing at Dragon Hill, we head up the beach to a trail that takes us to a hyper saline lagoon. This is a seasonal haunt for pink flamingos. You will notice that as we make our way from the coast toward the top of the hill, there is a transition from intertidal vegetation like mangroves to dry zone vegetation including Palo Santo cactus and the silvery leafed Palo Santo trees. Keep your eyes open for the famous Darwin’s Finches and Land iguanas in the bushes. The lava flows that reach out from the shore from Dragon Hill form black reefs where we will enjoy some excellent snorkeling late in the morning.

In the afternoon we are off to the Highlands of Santa Cruz, where the dry coastal vegetation transitions to lush wet fields and forests overgrown with moss and lichens. Our destination is the Tortoise Reserve, where we will have chances see these animals in the wild, walk through lava tubes and see the Gemelos, twin collapsed craters.

Day 5

Santa Cruz Island

In the morning we visit Las Bachas, a sandy white-coral beach that is a major egg-laying site for sea turtles. The name Bachas refers to the remains of landing craft left here at the end of WWII. Ashore marine iguanas mingle with flamingos and other wading birds in another of the many super saline lagoons found in the Galapagos.

Chinese Hat Islet, a fairly recent volcanic cone, has the shape of a down-facing Chinese hat. On the rocky shoreline of nearby Santiago, Galapagos penguins are often seen. There is a small sea lion cove on the north shore, where boats anchor and land at the visitor site. Late afternoon snorkeling with sea lions and penguins and swimming opportunities in the cove. After this visit you have time for a shower as we get ready for our welcome cocktail and our first formal briefing before dinner.

Day 6

Rabida Island

Rabida Island, also commonly known by its English name of Jervis Island, is known for its unique reddish-maroon terrain as a result of the oxidation of lava. It is home to large populations of sea lions, pelicans, flamingoes, as well as a thick forest of Palo Santo trees. A yellow saltwater lagoon is found behind the reddish beach, where vast numbers of brightly colored pink flamingoes can be seen lazying around male sea lions that have been ousted from their groups. Late morning snorkeling opportunity along the rocks with sea lions and tropical fish.

Afternoon visit to Sullivan Bay, one of the most outstanding volcanic sites in the Galapagos. In the nearly 100 years since the Sullivan Bay Flow, only a few plants like Mollugo and Lava cacti have managed to take root in this harsh environment. Oystercatchers can be seen fishing for crabs and mollusks in the tide pools of Sullivan Bay. After exploring the lava flow, there is swimming and snorkeling with playful sea lions off two small coraline beaches.

Day 7

Bartolome & North Seymour Islands

In the morning we visit Bartolome Island, famous for Pinnacle Rock, where we will see Galapagos Penguins and sea lions. We will also hike a trail to Bartolome’s summit where you will be rewarded with spectacular views of Pinnacle Rock and our beach, where the crystal blue waters of the bay cradle your yacht.

Afternoon visit to North Seymour, a good nesting site for frigate birds and Blue-footed boobies. The Island was lifted from the ocean floor by a seismic event, and its origins as a seabed give the island its low, flat profile. This island is teaming with life! You might have to give way to a passing sea lion or marine iguana; blue-footed booby nests sit beside the trail where mating pairs perform their courtship dance. A tiny forest of silver-grey Palo Santo trees stand just above the landing, usually without leaves, waiting for the rain to bring them into bloom.

Day 8

Black Turtle Cove & Santa Cruz

Today our Galapagos cruise comes to an end, but before we bid farewell to the Grace and her crew we pay a visit to Black Turtle Cove, a beautiful mangrove estuary where we quietly drift in our panga to see spotted eagle rays, diamond shaped mustard rays, white-tipped reef sharks, pacific green sea turtles and a large variety of shore birds. Next we head to Baltra Island airport for the flight back to the Ecuadorian mainland. 

Dates & Rates

Please click on a column header to view cabin photos and descriptions.

Departure DateDeluxe StateroomsPremium StateroomSuitesMaster Suite
 Mar 11 - Mar 186390 6750 7150 7650
 Mar 25 - Apr 16390 6750 7150 7650
 Apr 8 - Apr 156390 6750 7150 7650
 Apr 22 - Apr 296390 6750 7150 7650
 May 6 - May 136390 6750 7150 7650
 May 20 - May 276390 6750 7150 7650
 Jun 3 - Jun 106390 6750 7150 7650
 Jun 17 - Jun 246390 6750 7150 7650
 Jul 1 - Jul 86390 6750 7150 7650
 Jul 15 - Jul 226390 6750 7150 7650
 Jul 29 - Aug 56390 6750 7150 7650
 Aug 12 - Aug 196390 6750 7150 7650
 Oct 21 - Oct 285450 5750 6100 6500
 Nov 4 - Nov 115450 5750 6100 6500
 Nov 18 - Nov 245450 5750 6100 6500
 Dec 2 - Dec 85450 5750 6100 6500
 Dec 16 - Dec 236390 6750 7150 7650
 Dec 30 - Jan 66390 6750 7150 7650

View Rate Notes

The above rates are per person, based on double occupancy and in US dollars unless indicated otherwise.

Deposit: 25% of fare per person, higher for Peak Season / Holiday Sailings. Deposits may be paid by credit card (Visa, Mastercard, American Express).

Final Payment: Due 90 days prior to departure.  For Peak Season / Holiday Sailings due 120 days prior to departure.  Final payment is payable by check or wire only.

Additional Costs:

  • Single: Twin staterooms booked as a single incur a 50% supplement, suites a 75% supplement.
  • Triples available, inquire for rate.
  • Christmas &  New Year's surcharges: $500 per person / 100% Single Supplement
  • Child Discount: Children under 15 are 15% off when sharing with 2 full paying adults, maximum of 3 child discounts per family, Fall, Christmas & New Year departures are excluded
  • Galapagos National Park Fee of $100 per adult | $50 per child 11 and under
  • Transit Control Card: $20 per person
  • Airfare to the Galapagos: $530 - $550 per adult / Child rate available.
  • Pre and Post Hotels and Transfers: Package rates available

Child Policy: Children accepted, infants on request. Children under 15 sharing a cabin with their parents or guardians are 15% off with two full fare-paying guests, limit 3 child discounts per family.  Fall, Christmas & New Years departures are excluded from child discounts.

Dry Dock: Vessel is in dry dock from August 19 - October 13, 2017

Included: Accommodations on board, all meals, all non-alcoholic beverages, island sightseeing, naturalist guides and lecture services in English/Spanish, snorkeling gear including wet suits, luggage handling and shuttle transfers within the islands

Not Included: Air to the galapagos, Galapagos National Park Fee ($100 adult / $50 child), Transit Control Card $20, alchoholic beverages, internet / wifi, international air, hotels in Quito or Guayaquil pre and post cruise, transfers (other than indicated above)

Cancellation Policy: Cancellations must be received in writing. All deposits are refundable up to 120 days, less a per person operator fee (varies by operator) ranging from $250 - $500 per person. Reservations cancelled after final payment due date will lose the full cruise fare.

Trip Cancellation Insurance is strongly advised.

ExploringCircle Insurance Provider: TravelEx

ExploringCircle Terms and Conditions

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Ship Information

M/Y Grace - 18 Passengers

Built as a private luxury yacht and owned by a number of wealthy personages, the Grace has a long and storied history and was even once used in several capacities by the British Royal Navy during World War II. In the 1950s, Academy Award winning former actress Princess Grace of Monaco received the luxury yacht as a wedding gift from millionaire Aristotle Onassis. In 2007, the yacht was acquired for Galapagos cruising and rechristened the Grace in honor of its most famous owner.  The small and intimate 18 passenger Grace has been fully refurbished and redecorated to reflect its traditional heritage and guests can enjoy the luxury and glamour of a bygone era with all modern travel comforts. In addition to finely appointed staterooms and suites, the Grace offers 2 sun deck areas for relaxation as well as an outdoor hot tub and an al fresco dining area. Inside there is a dining room, bar and salon area and even a wine cellar. One of the most appealing and useful features is an outer corridor promenade that wraps around the entire vessel, in traditional yacht style. Stepping aboard the Grace is like stepping into the past, and a fitting vehicle by which to explore the Enchanted Isles- an experience to remember forever.

Accommodations

Trip Policy

Included: Accommodations on board, all meals, all non-alcoholic beverages, island sightseeing, naturalist guides and lecture services in English/Spanish, snorkeling gear including wet suits, luggage handling and shuttle transfers within the islands

Not Included: Air to the galapagos, Galapagos National Park Fee ($100 adult / $50 child), Transit Control Card $20, alchoholic beverages, internet / wifi, international air, hotels in Quito or Guayaquil pre and post cruise, transfers (other than indicated above)

Cancellation Policy:  Cancellations must be received in writing. All deposits are refundable up to 120 days, less a per person operator fee (varies by operator) ranging from $250 - $500 per person. Reservations cancelled after final payment due date will lose the full cruise fare.

Trip Cancellation Insurance is strongly advised.

ExploringCircle Insurance Provider: TravelEx

ExploringCircle Terms and Conditions

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