Island-2-Island Hopping

Island-2-Island Hopping

Isabela Island with Scalesia Lodge and Santa Cruz Island with the Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel

Feed your curiosity and let your imagination soar with this once-in-a-lifetime adventure, as you stay in luxury hotels on two of the Galapagos’ most enchanting islands, a trip that illustrates in technicolour the incredible diversity of the archipelago.

 

The Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel (Santa Cruz Island) joins forces with Scalesia Lodge (Isabela Island) to offer a stunning week-long program in the Galapagos, including inter-island flights, day trips on board Yacht Sea Lion, “glamping” in luxury tents up in the highlands of Isabela Island, and visits to remote and mysterious places that no other “island hopping” trip will dare to go. Get ready for one of the most highly anticipated voyages in the Galapagos.

– CLICK OVER THE IMAGES TO ENLARGE –

Highlights

  • Luxury accommodation in Scalesia Lodge
  • Luxury accommodation in Finch Bay
  • Breakfast and lunch included
  • Enchanting sunsets of Puerto Villamil
  • Sierra Negra volcano
  • Tintoreras islets
  • Wall of Tears
  • White tipped reef sharks
  • Boobies
  • Herons
  • Penguins
  • Marine iguanas
  • Mangroves and brackish lagoons
  • Darwin finches
  • Doves
  • Stilts
  • Ducks
  • Flamingos
  • Herons
  • Giant tortoises
  • Tortoise Reserve
  • Lava tunnels
  • Finch Bay’s signature cuisine
  • Two full-day yacht explorations
  • North Seymour
  • Santa Fe
  • Bartolome
  • South Plaza
  • Charles Darwin Research Station
  • Tortoise Breeding Facilities
  • Tortuga Bay

Island to Island Hopping

8 Days / 7 Nights Programme

from $3999 pp

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* Price includes all local taxes!
* Price in Finch Bay Room. Upgrades to Finch Bay Suites available for an additional fee.

Itinerary

Day 1

From Ecuador’s mainland travel by standard commercial plane to the Galapagos Islands and then onward to Isabela Island by spectacular inter-island flight:

Fly from Ecuador’s mainland to the Galapagos Islands (Baltra Island) and take a scenic inter-island flight to Isabela Island. Inter-island flights limit passengers’ check-in luggage to 10 kg (22 lb). If needed, it is possible to send excess luggage directly to the Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel, where you will arrive on DAY 4. Check in at Scalesia Lodge and eat lunch before heading out on your first afternoon of discovery. Familiarise yourself with the youngest side of the archipelago while exploring the rewarding visitor sites of the National Park, wetland lagoons, and the giant tortoise-breeding centre. Wrap up your day at the stunning white beach of Puerto Villamil before returning to the Lodge for dinner.

Day 2 and 3

Each include one of the following programmes, depending on the weekday:

After an early breakfast, set out to explore Isabela Island. Depending on the day and availability, guests will take part in one of these full-day features:

 

Sierra Negra Volcano: Walk along the rim of Galapagos’ largest caldera – one of the largest in the world – and see recent volcanic activity (the last eruption was in 2005) and the resulting fascinating formations. A light snack will be provided along the way while lunch is served back at the lodge. Wildlife focuses on the Darwin finches, flycatchers, mockingbirds, and occasionally the Galapagos hawk and rail. Stroll along the beach at Puerto Villamil or rest in the afternoon.

 

Tintoreras Islets: After breakfast, we drive down to the wharf of Puerto Villamil and board the bay cruiser to explore the maze of reefs and islets off the shores of Isabela. The visit includes a dry landing and a short walk over volcanic terrain (730 m/0.5 mi total distance). Wildlife here includes boobies, herons, penguins, marine iguanas and the white tipped reef sharks in the nearby lava crevasses. Bring your bathing suit to make the most of crystalline waters, beckoning you to snorkel in the shallow reefs. Lunch at Scalesia and later in the day, we explore the wetlands of coastal Isabela. Sunsets at Puerto Villamil are spectacular!

 

Wall of Tears: A rare combination of human and natural history. A majestic coastal trail combines two segments: a first part of mangroves and brackish lagoons (1.3 km/0.8 mi) and the arid Palo Santo forest until we reach the Wall of Tears (an additional 2.2 km/1.4 mi each way). This trail is mostly a flat dirt road (pedestrian and bikes only). Wildlife include coastal Darwin finches, doves, stilts, ducks, flamingos, herons and giant tortoises.
Afternoons include the enchanting sunsets from the beach of Puerto Villamil. Dinner and overnight at Scalesia Lodge.

Day 4

Fly back to Baltra Island and explore the highlands of Santa Cruz Island:

After breakfast, Scalesia Lodge’s staff bring us back to Puerto Villamil’s airport. A short and beautiful flight brings us back to Baltra. Your guide will lead you across the Itabaca Channel to Santa Cruz Island. The day’s visit includes a brief exploration of Los Gemelos, a natural volcanic formation in the upper end of the windward side of the island. Surrounded by a forest of high growing endemic daisies, this area is home to some of the most elusive land birds of Galapagos. Then we will visit the Tortoise Reserve, impressive lava tunnels and enjoy lunch at a restaurant in the highlands. In the afternoon, you will reach Puerto Ayora’s only pedestrian neighbourhood, Punta Estrada, where the Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel is located. Check-in and relax with the hotel’s beachfront facilities. Dinner is up to you: choose from the hotel’s signature cuisine or one of the many options in town. Overnight at the Finch Bay.

Day 5, 6 and 7

Enjoy 2 of these 4 full-day yacht explorations (depending on the weekday and availability):

  • North Seymour
  • Bartolome Island
  • South Plaza Island
  • Santa Fe Island
  • In addition, the programme includes:
    • Coastal Exploration of Santa Cruz
    • Charles Darwin Research Station and Tortoise Breeding Facilities

 

Full-day island yacht exploration:

  • North Seymour. Start the day with the Finch Bay’s generous breakfast, featuring local and international favourites, before leaving for Itabaca Channel, 42 km away on the north shore of Santa Cruz. Board the Sea Lion yacht. Your day includes a dry landing and a 1.5 km/1 mi walk over a mixture of sand and rounded boulders. Experience a live biology lesson with land and marine iguanas, Nazca- and blue-footed boobies, frigates, sea lions and fur seals. The other highlight is Las Bachas, a stunning white beach with dreamy small brackish lagoons, home to various waders, such as plovers, stilts and flamingos. You have a chance to swim or snorkel here.
  • Santa Fe. After breakfast, we board the Sea Lion yacht minutes away from the hotel at Academy Bay. The yacht cruises to Santa Fe, an impressive volcanic island 17 nautical miles away from Puerto Ayora. After a wet landing on a fantastic white sandy beach amongst basking sea lions, we walk along a rocky terrain to find the island’s highlight: the endemic Santa Fe land iguana patiently waiting under the enormous giant cacti for falling fruits and pads. Other species you can expect to see today are pelicans, boobies and the archipelago’s top predator, the Galapagos hawk. Return to the yacht and enjoy one of Galapagos best snorkelling sites. Lunch on board the Sea Lion yacht. Upon the cruise back to Puerto Ayora, we scan the sea surface for pelagic birds and whales.
  • Bartolome. Start the day with the Finch Bay’s generous breakfast, featuring local and international favourites, before leaving for Itabaca Channel, 42 km away on the north shore of Santa Cruz. Board the Sea Lion yacht. A 21-nautical mile sailing stretch is well worth its length. Dolphins or whales are often seen in these waters. A dry landing marks the start of the 1.5 km/1 mi walk. Much of the trail is over a wooden boardwalk with a staircase of 366 steps. There are several observation platforms on the way up to the summit of Bartolome (150 m above sea level). Once atop, you will enjoy one of Galapagos’ most famous views: the tilted Pinnacle Rock, the golden beach of Bartolome and the impressive lava fields of Santiago Island. Upon descending back to the coast, you will have a chance to scan the volcanic shore, in search of flashy Sally Lightfoot crabs and Galapagos penguins, before enjoying a soothing dip at the beach. Lunch on board and a brief exploration of nearby Sullivan Bay before sailing back to the Itabaca Channel for the drive back to the hotel.
  • South Plaza. After breakfast, you will board the Sea Lion yacht (depending on the day, it could be moored in Itabaca Channel or in Academy Bay). Your day includes 2 highlights. One of them, the snorkelling/swimming site known as Punta Carrion, has a name that startles some English speakers, but in this case, it’s merely a reference to a family name. And just 8 nautical miles away, South Plaza Island shocks visitors with the sheer volume of amazing wildlife that greets them right upon arrival: dozens of frolicking sea lion pups, patrolling alpha male sea lions, basking marine and land iguanas, stunning red crabs and various Darwin finches await. The trail is over 1.5 km/1 mi long, over rounded boulders.
  • Santa Cruz Coastal Exploration & Charles Darwin Research Station and Tortoise Breeding Facilities: After breakfast, we leave for Tortuga Bay, a white-sanded paradise voted Ecuador’s best beach. We walk from Puerto Ayora’s western border, 2 km/1.3 mi along a fairly flat and straight paved path, where we explore and understand more about the arid zone’s deciduous forest and its inhabitants. First, we arrive to Playa Brava, a stunning 1 km long snow-white beach, a seasonal nesting site for the green sea turtles. A few minutes further, we reach Playa Mansa, a secluded natural mangrove cove, with clear and tranquil waters, ideal for swimming, snorkelling, paddling on tandem kayaks, or simply enjoying the landscape from the shade of a mangrove. We will board a small yacht to sail back to the hotel’s dock at Academy Bay. Lunch at the Finch Bay. For the afternoon, the grand finale includes strolling around the Charles Darwin Research Station where the highlight is the conservation program for the iconic giant tortoises.Each day you return to the Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel, and enjoy the sunset from its beachfront terraces, lounge or swimming pool. Dinner is up to you: choose the hotel´s signature cuisine or one of the many options in town. Overnight at the Finch Bay.

Day 8

Transfer out to Baltra airport:

Breakfast at the hotel. Transfer to Baltra Island and airport by hotel staff.

 

If you would like to learn more about this fascinating experience, read on in our blog.

 

Itineraries

Itineraries are subject to change without notice. The sequence of visits might be altered depending on arrival of flights to Baltra or Isabela Islands, yacht availability, National Park requirements, weather conditions, or other unexpected circumstances beyond our control.

 

Important baggage notes

If necessary, please separate luggage for the first 3 nights at Scalesia Lodge, since the inter-island flight luggage restriction is half the weight permitted by regular commercial flights to Galapagos:

  • FLIGHTS TO GALAPAGOS: 23 kg (50 lb) for checked bags, 8 kg (17 lb) for carry-on
  • INTER-ISLAND FLIGHTS: 9 kg (20 lb) for checked bags (airline allows an additional 5 lb/pax at US$ 2.00 per pound) and 2.3 kg (5 lb) allowance for carry-on /pax.

 

Upon arrival in Baltra, Scalesia Lodge staff will collect the luggage for transfer to the Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel. On DAY 4, upon check in, you will find this luggage in your room.

More Information

Not Included

  • Air transportation (international and domestic) to/from Galapagos and airport taxes (subject to change without previous notice)
  • Galapagos National Park entrance fee (USD 100 subject to change without previous notice)
  • Transit control card fee (USD 20 subject to change without previous notice)
  • Alcoholic beverages, gratuities/tips, laundry or valet services and additional items
  • Optional activities with extra cost: kayaking, mountain biking, diving and surfing
  • Travel insurance
  • Laundry service
  • Any item not mentioned previously

Packing List

  • 1 small backpack
  • Comfortable walking shoes
  • Sneakers (trainers) with rubber soles
  • Shorts
  • Long pants
  • T-shirts
  • Long and short sleeved shirts
  • Wind breaker
  • Bathing suit (+wetsuit for snorkelling in colder months, April-December)
  • Hat or cap
  • Sunblock and repellent
  • Sunglasses
  • Binoculars
  • Camera & video recorder
  • Any medicine you may be taking
  • Book/Notebook
  • Flashlight (torch) and batteries
  • Sandals for wet landings
  • Plastic bags to protect cameras, binoculars, film, etc. from rain

General Notes

  • Metropolitan Touring guarantees air space for programmes only.
  • The island visited on the day tour will depend on the itinerary approved by the Galapagos National Park Service.
  • All rates are subject to change without prior notice.
  • Galapagos Itineraries are subject to change due to weather conditions, logistical reasons, guests’ safety, or Galapagos National Park regulations.

 

Validity: January 01 through December 31, 2017. Recommended Retail Price (RRP) per person quoted in U.S. Dollars based on double accommodation in Finch Bay Room.

Baggage Important Notes

  • Guests can bring aboard the ship a reasonable amount of clothing and personal effects without charge. Baggage is handled in accordance with the airlines’ regulations and tariffs. Baggage exceeding these limitations is subject to the charges as set forth by the individual operators. Airlines are strict with baggage limitations. The current limits are 23 kg (50.6 pounds) for checked items, 8 kg (17 pounds) for hand luggage and 1 personal item (handbag, camera bag, laptop, etc.)
  • All baggage must be securely packed, and properly and clearly labelled. Liquid, fragile, perishable and other articles not suitably packed are transported at guests’ own risk.
    Metropolitan Touring is not responsible for loss or damage to baggage or any other personal item during air travel.
  • Metropolitan Touring is not responsible for baggage stored in shore-side facilities.
    Under no circumstances may dangerous items (including but not limited to: explosives, firearms, combustible or illegal substances) be taken into the hotel.
  • We recommend that you hand-carry travel documents (passport, visa, cruise tickets), medications and valuables. These items are the full responsibility of the guest at all times. Metropolitan Touring shall not be responsible for the loss of, or damage to, such personal items.
  • Metropolitan Touring reserves the right to charge for the return of personal items left on board or lost and subsequently found.

Restricted Baggage

Local authorities manage the quarantine system of the Galapagos National Park in order to reduce the possibility of foreign species invading the archipelago. All cargo and luggage that arrives to Galapagos National Park or that is transferred from one island to another must be inspected. All aircrafts are disinfected with Permethrin before landing. To preserve human health and the native species of the Galapagos Islands, the following products may not be transferred to Galapagos: fresh vegetables and fruits, animal products and or their derivatives, dairy products, other live animals, pathological samples, dry coffee beans, genetically modified organisms, forest species or their disseminative parts, grass and its disseminative parts, fresh flowers, medicinal plants and their disseminative parts, banana tree leaves, micro-organisms (fungi, bacteria, etc.) soil and sand, and animal vaccines.

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NO MATTER WHAT KIND OF GALAPAGOS VACATION YOU’RE LOOKING FOR, THE OPTIONS AT THE FINCH BAY ARE SURE TO FIT.