Sea Lion Yacht Experience: North Seymour Island & Las Bachas Beach
This Day Tour is offered on:
Mondays:* Las Bachas, followed by North Seymour | Sundays*: North Seymour, followed by Las Bachas*
*Please note: This blog will examine the Sunday schedule of this Day Tour. Approximate travel times and schedules stay roughly the same for both days, albeit with the order switched.
The Galapagos Islands can be visited in many ways, be it aboard an amazing Galapagos cruise that follows well-thought-out itineraries or through a land-based option. The latter option, such as the Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel, is the perfect choice for those prone to sea-sickness or who wish to have the freedom to manage their time as they see fit.
First Stop: North Seymour Island
Rise and shine for an exciting day of exploration! At 6:30 a.m., a delicious breakfast buffet will be ready for you to enjoy. After you’ve eaten, grab your camera, hat, and sunscreen and be prepared to head out from the hotel at approximately 7:45 a.m.! From the hotel, we’ll head to the town of Puerto Ayora, where we’ll hop aboard a transfer bus that will then take us on a relaxing 45-minute journey up and over the island of Santa Cruz to the Itabaca Channel, where we will board the Sea Lion Yacht.
From the Itabaca Channel to North Seymour, our sailing time is approximately 45 minutes. We will arrive at the small yet gorgeous island of North Seymour at around 10:00 a.m., where we will hop aboard our panga (dinghy) to perform a Dry Landing and disembark.
As we begin our hiking excursion of the island, you will immediately notice that there is a difference between North Seymour and its neighboring big sister – Santa Cruz. The second one displays an uneven terrain, rolling hills, and highlands that are home to a very different kind of vegetation compared to that which grows by the coast. On the other hand, North Seymour resembles a relatively flat slab of terrain! It’s actually the result of underwater uplift rather than volcanic activity. That’s right – North Seymour was actually once ocean floor! There is no known reason for how or why this formation came to be, but it nevertheless became the perfectly flat setting for wildlife that it is today.
This island is packed with wildlife that surrounds visitors as they walk along the island’s trails. Prepare to be greeted by the lounging Galapagos sea lions and some of the most iconic Galapagos birds as they display their feathers and colors. In fact, North Seymour is home to some of the archipelago’s largest colonies of frigatebirds and blue-footed boobies! So birdwatchers, get ready for some serious bird action! If you’re lucky, you might stumble upon blue-footed boobies in the middle of their amusing courtship display.
Harmoniously living in the same space, you will also be able to observe the endemic land iguana, as well as its aquatic relative – the only marine iguana in the world. You’ll also likely encounter the masked cousin of the blue-footed booby – the majestic Nazca booby.
At North Seymour, you’ll most likely be able to check off up to 7 out of 15 of our BIG15 list of iconic species in the Galapagos.
Hours spent at North Seymour: approx. 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
Next Stop: Las Bachas Beach
At around 12:00 p.m., we’ll set sail and head over to Las Bachas Beach on Santa Cruz Island. This journey will take approximately 45 minutes. Once we arrive at Las Bachas Beach, we’ll perform a Wet Landing and disembark.
After WWII, US military barges were beached and abandoned here. Locals referred to the beach as the barges beach, a name that gradually morphed into “las bachas” in Spanish. Today it is an important nesting area for the eastern Pacific green sea turtle. Located on the north shore of Santa Cruz Island, it is a glorious white beach, with several brackish lagoons only a few steps away from the sea. These lagoons are the feeding grounds of various wading birds, from stilts all the way to flamingos.
Fantastic snorkeling, swimming, and/or simply enjoying the soft, white sand beach are some of the activities you can enjoy here.
Lunch will be ready and served at around 2:10 p.m., at which point we kindly invite guests to come back aboard the Sea Lion Yacht to enjoy their meal.
Hours spent at Las Bachas Beach: approx. 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Once we’ve wrapped up our experience here, we’ll set sail and head back to the Itabaca Channel, a journey which will take approximately 30 minutes. Once we’ve arrived at the channel, we’ll disembark and hop on the bus that will take us (a 45-minute journey) back to Puerto Ayora, from where we’ll head back to the Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this wonderful Day Tour!
Keep in mind: Galapagos Day Tours are subject to change due to weather conditions, logistical reasons, guests’ safety and/or Galapagos National Park Regulations.
Ready to stay at the Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel and experience everything it has to offer? Get in touch with one of our Destination Experts, today!