Small ship expedition cruise experts Aurora Expeditions share their top 5 must-do experiences when cruising in the Galápagos Islands.
1. Hike up a 4-million-year old volcano
The Galápagos Islands boast a huge variety of unique geological wonders. On Española Island, hike up a four-million-year old volcano, where unique vegetation grows. Other hiking options include a 600-metre walkway up the hills of Bartolomé Island for stunning views of the sea-cooled hot lava formation of Pinnacle Rock, stroll along Punta Pitt’s green-sand beach on San Cristobal Island, or hop on lava fields colonised by large sea bird colonies.
2. Snorkel with sea lions, marine iguanas and more!
Snorkelling allows for great exploration of the clear and wildlife-rich waters of the Galápagos Islands. On Plaza Sur Island, you’ll share the waters with playful and inquisitive sea lions (who even nibble at your fins!) as well as sea turtles and marine iguanas. On North Seymour Island, swim with technicolour fish, Galápagos penguins and maybe even a black-tipped shark! For those that don’t fancy a dip, you can see it all from our glass bottom boat!
3. Observe spectacular birdlife
From the magnificent squadrons of frigate birds, waved albatross to majestic flamingos or large-billed fly-catchers, the Galápagos are a true birdwatching paradise. One of the highlights: San Cristobal Island’s Punta Pitt is the only place on Earth where three species of boobies nest and cohabit together: the red-footed, blue-footed and the Nazca boobies.
4. Meet the famous Galápagos giant tortoise
Meet the famous Galápagos giant tortoise and learn all about the efforts conservationists have put together to protect the world’s oldest, yet endangered species. Visit Santa Cruz Island’s renowned Charles Darwin Research Station, home to one of the several Galápagos giant tortoise breeding programs and also the place where ‘Lonesome George’, last of the Pinta Island giant tortoises, and icon of the conservationist movement, spent his final days.
5. Walk in the footsteps of Charles Darwin
When Charles Darwin first made landfall on San Cristobal Island in 1835, little did he know that the Galápagos Islands would inspire his theory of evolution, let alone redefine the modern-day understanding of how species came to be. Accompanied by Aurora Expeditions’ team of naturalists, learn all about the unique character of the islands through lectures, talks and shore excursions that will interpret Darwin’s theories and observations.
Aurora Expeditions operate small ship expeditions to the Galápagos Islands offering daily landings at some of the islands’ very best locations. Their expert team of naturalist guides and expedition leaders offer a series of on board educational talks and interpret as you get out amongst it all!
Limited to just 38 passengers, these intimate expeditions of the Galápagos Islands offer a truly wonderful exploration to one of the world’s most diverse and wildlife-rich destinations.
Click here to download your FREE Ecuador & Galápagos Expedition Guide. For more information on Aurora Expeditions’ Galápagos cruises call 1800 637 688 or +61 2 9252 1033.