Welcome to photographers Paradise! The Galapagos Islands have some of the most interesting birds and reptiles on the planet.
Recommended flight from Europe will be KLM from Amsterdam directly to Guayaquil. There are also other possible flights available. At the airport we will be met and transferred directly to the hotel.
Day One. Fly to Baltra (Galapagos) in the morning. Boarding our ship, which will be our “hotel” for the next 11 days (10 nights). We start shooting 1-2 hours later on the island of North Seymour. Right away we’ll have excellent photo opportunities with Land Iguanas, Blue-footed Booby, Nazca Booby and beautiful Frigatebirds to name a few.
Day Two. During the night we sail north to Tower Island, where we go ashore early morning at Darwin Bay. This is the best opportunity we will have for shooting Red-footed Boobies, and the timing is perfect for breeding behaviour and nest building. In the evening will photograph at a plateau, which is the breeding site for the Elliot’s Storm-petrels. This is a great place to observe and photograph the Short-eared Owl hunting Storm-petrels. At mid-day we will also go for our first snorkelling.
Day Three. During the night, we sail to Santiago Island. In the morning session we will mostly photograph Marine Iguanas, while in the afternoon we will explore a beautiful sandy beach where we’ll have some good opportunities for close-ups of the very curious Galapagos Hawk.
Day Four. During the night we will pass the equator twice, and arrive at the north west section of Isabela Island in the morning. We’ll be snorkelling with Sea Turtles, and perhaps also Marine Iguanas. Evening session will be on Fernandina (the youngest of the islands), surrounded by hundreds of Marine Iguanas and other interesting wildlife.
Day Five. We continue our exploration on Isabela where we will be visiting a “secret” location where we will doing a Zodiac cruise and snorkel with Galapagos Penguins and Galapagos Cormorants ! The evening session will be in Elizabeth Bay, with nice mangrove forest and good photo opportunities at sunset.
Day Six. We are now on the south side of Isabela, where we photograph animals at sunrise on a small island. Around lunchtime we will “climb” to the crater rim of the Sierra Negra Volcano (about an hour’s walk up). This is the only one of the great volcanoes we will visit during our expedition. In the evening we visit the village of Puerto Villamil. We will be offering alternative activities at this location, that will be announced on the boat.
Day Seven. We have now moved to Floreana Island and will spend the morning near a nice lagoon inhabited by Flamingos. Later in the day there will be more opportunities for snorkeling with playful Sea Lions. We will also make an effort to see and photograph the extremely rare and endemic Champion Mockingbird (only approx. 100 individuals left in the world).
Day Eight. This day will be spent on Santa Cruz Island, with a morning session in a nice forest with Giant Tortoises and forest birds. In the afternoon we will visit the small town Puerto Ayora.
Day Nine. In the morning we will visit the rare Waved Albatross that only breed on the island of Espanola. We use the entire morning session here amongst Albatrosses, Boobies and lots of other seabirds. For the evening and at sunset we’ll be on a great white sandy beach where Sea Lions often rest by the hundreds. This is also the place to photograph the endemic bird “Hood Mockingbird”, the only of the four Mockingbirds that Charles Darwin didn’t find on his trip to the islands in 1835.
Day Ten. The second last day of the Galapagos, we will be on the island of San Cristobal, in the eastern most part of the archipelago. We start on Punta Pitt, also with possibilities for snorkelling. On this island we have opportunities to photograph Ghost Crabs and the indigenous San Cristobal Mockingbird. This will also be our last snorkelling opportunity of the trip.
Day Eleven. We end our Galapagos expedition with a sunrise landing on a small but very interesting beach near Baltra. There are plenty of Sea Lions, as well as opportunities to photograph the Lava Gull, Boobies and other seabirds. After the morning session we go ashore at Baltra where we’ll be transferred to the airport. We fly back to Guayaquil and from there to our final destination.