Galapagos tour operators choice for Adventurous cruises the Floreana yacht
Originally built in 1982, the Floreana Yacht was completely refurbished in 1999 in order to offer passengers comfort, quality and style as they sail around the spectacular Galapagos Islands.
Floreana yacht offers wildlife tour experiences in Galapagos
The interior of the boat is finished in dark mahogany, giving it a rich and luxurious look. Each cabin has a double lower and single upper berth, as well as portholes that light up the room and give you a fantastic view of the islands as you pass by.
As with many Galapagos tour operators, a cruise on the Floreana begins on Santa Cruz, following a short flight from the Ecuadorian mainland.
The seven-night itinerary gives passengers an incredibly in-depth and comprehensive experience of the islands, taking in many of the most impressive highlights of the archipelago.
In fact, your adventure begins almost straight away as you visit the white, sandy beaches of Las Bachas to view a sea turtle nesting area and spot some of the local pink flamingos.
During your cruise you’ll also get the chance to see an inquisitive colony of sea lions on North Seymour, marine iguanas on Santa Fe and, if you’re lucky, some of the giant tortoises that give the islands their name.
Throughout your Galapagos tour operators , the cruise will show you everything that the islands have to offer, from their unique habitat to the animals that call them home.
Bilingual naturalists will help to guide you as you journey through the islands, or you can read up on the local wildlife in the ship’s very own library.
Galapagos tour operators know visitors love nothing better than to relax following a day of exploration and adventure by watching the sunset from one of the ship’s outside decks. After this you’ll be digging in to a delicious buffet in the elegant dining area and discussing your discoveries with your fellow passengers.
Galapagos Floreana yacht photo gallery
|Length:||68.1 ft (22.7m)|
|Beam:||15.51 ft (4.7m)|
|Engines:||Detroit Diesel of 240HP|
|Electricity:||generator Kholer 0.9 K v., 110v|
|Fuel Capacity:||1200 gallons of diesel|
|Navigation Equipment :||Furuno radio 150 watts, radio VHF|
|standard, sonar Horizon DS30, radar SSB furuno|
|(16 miles), 1GPS (Magellan 12 Sat)|
|Safety Equipment:||2 motor dinghies with capacity for 12 guests,|
|2 inflatable life rafts for 12|
|Accommodation:||8 double cabins with private bathrooms, air|
|conditioning, sundeck, comfortable bar and|
|lounge areas, TV and VHS. 2 cabins upper deck|
|and 6 cabins lower deck.|
|Crew:||Captain, naturalist bilingual guide, 2 sailors,|
|chef, mechanic and bartender.|
|and outdoor dining room; snorkeling equipment,|
|solarium, VHS and TV.|
7 night Galapagos cruises
Sample Galapagos cruise itinerary
Baltra airport - Santa Cruz (Bachas)
Fly from the Ecuadorian mainland to the islands on an early morning 90-minute flight. As you prepare to land in Baltra, peer out the window. The landscape below will seem out of this world - and it is for you have come to a place like no other.
The Galapagos Islands are unique to the world and you are about to see why. Your bilingual naturalist guide will greet you at the airport and assist you through customs. During lunch he/she will introduce you to the islands and specifically the flora and fauna you will encounter at our first destination, Las Bachas Beach.
On the sandy white beaches of Las Bachas we will get a close look at a sea turtle nesting area and a lake frequented by leggy pink flamingos and other migratory birds. Afterward, we cool ourselves off with our first dip in the deliciously blue Pacific Ocean.
North Seymour - Santa Fé Island
North Seymour Am. is the perfect place for marine bird watching, like blue footed boobies, frigates, swallow tailed gulls, all of these nesting in season. The sound, the variety of their activities, the colonies sizes, is part of one of the most fascinating experiences in Galapagos. In the other side of the Island, you will be able to see sea lions, playing with the waves, which afterwards crash against the rocks that are covered with marine Iguanas.
After lunch on the yacht, we continue to Santa Fe Island, a sea journey of 2 1/2 hours. Upon arrival to the island, we will be treated to a noisy welcome by the local sealion colony. Following our naturalist guide on the island paths we will come to Santa Fe's main attraction, a towering forest of giant cacti. Scattered around the cacti trees you will see a number of the island's indigenous sun-seekers: marine and land iguanas, the rainbow-streaked lava lizards and, if you are lucky, land tortoises - the namesakes of the islands.
After our walk we will plunge into the salty sea and snorkel in the company of sealions, lion fish and sea turtles. Finally, we will return to the yacht for dinner.
Española Island (Bahía Gardner-Punta Suárez)
Am. Gardner Bay, This is a wet landing on a white coral beach amidst a large colony of Sea Lions.
This site has no trails, therefore hiking, is not possible. But it is considered as open area where you can spot Galapagos Hawks, American Oyster Catchers, Galapagos Doves, Hood Mockingbirds, 3 species of Darwin Finches and Yellow Warblers, Lava Lizards, Marine Iguanas and a great place for swimming and snorkeling, the best place for this spot is by the rock outcropping that looks like a turtle.
Often snorkelers see many of the Galapagos marine species such as King Angelfish, Creole Fish, Damsel Fish, Parrot Fish, Manta Rays, White Tipped Reef Sharks, and many more.
Pm. Punta Suarez, Travelers enjoy a dry landing at Suarez Point. Upon landing visitors will learn more about the lava terrain while crossing the inactive lava fields. Aside from the Sea Lion colonies, this is one of the most important sites for bird watching.
As soon as visitors put foot on this island many species can be spotted and observed closely. Among the many species, the Hooded Mocking bird and Red Billed Tropic After crossing the nesting grounds you will reach the world's largest colony of Waved Albatross (15000 approx.)
Their mating rituals are a highlight of the visit. Nearing the end of this excursion passengers will visit the famous blowhole, where water shoots into the air at almost 23 mts. ( 75 ft .)
Floreana Island: Pta Cormorant - Post Office - Devil´s Crown
Am. Post Office Bay, not the most scenic of the visitor sites, but probably one of the most famous sites in Galapagos. Here is where a post barrel was placed and put into use in the late 18th century by English whaling vessels. You are invited to leave a post card and to pick up any mail from your home area.
Take a short visit to the remains of a Norwegian commercial fish drying and canning operation and a lava tube that extends to the sea.
Pm. Punta Cormorant - Devil`s Crown, Wet landing on a greenish colored sand beach. Passengers will hike a well marked trail beginning in the Black Mangrove beds heading towards the back of the lagoon. The large, brackish lagoon holds one of the biggest populations of flamingos in the Galápagos.
This island is best known for its endemic plant life, such as the Galápagos millwork, Passion flower, and unique button mangrove. Novice snorkelers can practice back on the main beach where the sea lions are playful, while experienced snorkelers can roam the waters around Devils Crown.
Santa Cruz Island: Charles Darwin Center - Highlands
We will visit the station's Tortoise Rearing Center. Here we can find itty bitty tortoises, hand-sized between the ages of one and five, and marvel at how they achieve such a large size as adults (500 lbs. or more!). Galapagos tortoises are believed to have a lifespan of over 100 years, so the young ones have a long life ahead of them as long as they receive the protection they need.
Aside from the Station headquarters, Santa Cruz boasts the largest town and economic center of the Galapagos, Puerto Ayora. In this port-side town we can buy souvenirs of the islands (postcards, t-shirts, books, etc.). Check-out the uniquely Galapaganean ceramic shop near the entrance of the Charles Darwin Station.
After shopping in Puerto Ayora and lunch on the boat (guests may dine in town if they desire), we will explore the upper region ('parte alta') of the island, a moisture-rich area with fertile volcanic soils. We will learn about the vegetation and animal life of this zone, often strikingly different than that found at lower elevations.
Rábida - Puerto Egas
Am. Rabida Island, Dry landing at the dark red colored beach of volcanic origin, frequented by sea lions. It is often considered the geographic center of Galapagos because it has the most diversified volcanic rocks of all the Islands . Here a short trail leads to a salt water lagoon, where we find small colonies of Flamingos feeding. The brown pelican nests in the mangrovesan be found at the far side of the lagoon. Also to be observed are boobies and 9 species of Darwin 's finches. Dinghie ride by the reefs with an excellent snorkeling opportunity.
Pm. Port Egas, Santiago Island
Visit the dark sand beach at Puerto Egas during a wet landing. Most of the landscape are tuff-stone layers and lava flows, the surrounding area is prime for spotting and observing Hunting Herons, Great Blue Herons, Lava Herons, Oyster Catchers, and the Yellow Crowned Night Heron.
Passengers enjoy the sight of Marine Iguanas grazing upon algae beds at low tide and sharing space with Red Sally Light-Foot Crabs. There is a colony of Fur-Seal swimming in deep pools of cool water called “grottos”.
This is an excellent spot for swimming and snorkeling in search of Octopuses, Sea Horses, Star Fish and other sea life caught in the small tidal pools. From a safe distance travelers can admire Moray Eels, Hammerhead Sharks, White Tip and Galapagos Sharks, Golden and White Spotted Eagle Rays, Jacks, Wahoo, Tuna, Groupers, Red-Tailed and Dog Snappers, Sea Lions, and Sea Turtles. All located in the back drop of cold water and warm water corals, fans, and sponge.
Am. Bartolome Island, Dry landing. Arriving on this island, passengers will see volcanic formations including lava bombs, spatter, and cinder cones. After a hike to the summit visitors will have an impressive view of the surrounding islands, including the eroded tuff cone of Pinnacle Rock.
During the ascent travelers will often see a large colony of Marine Iguanas and Lava Lizards. Red Mangroves, Tiquilla, and various cacti all add to the experience. Visitors also enjoy a chance to cool off while snorkeling. Here travelers often see the Galapagos Penguin, Sea Turtles, and White Tipped Sharks from a safe distance.
Pm. Sullivan Bay. The Sullivan Bay lava field is a variety of interesting patterns. The shapes and textures of trees, which once existed there and Hornitos caused when pockets of gas or water trapped under the lava exploded. The Sullivan Bay Lava is known a Panoehoe (Hawaiian for Rope). This thin-skinned lava's molten material cools down after an eruption causing the surface materials to buckle creating a rope like appearance. Panoehoe Lava is rare to the rest of the world, but is common to the volcanoes of Hawaii and the Galapagos Islands.
In the nearly 100 year since the Sullivan Bay Flow only a few plants have managed to take root in this harsh environment. The low-lying Mollugo is commonly the first plant to emerge from a bare lava field. Together with the Lava Cactus (Brachycereus) found here these plants are evidence of life returning to Sullivan Bay.
The walk takes approximately an hour to an hour and a half. Returning to the shoreline black and white Oystercatchers can be seen fishing for crabs and mollusks in the tide pools.
After exploring the lava flow, there is swimming and snorkeling with playful sea lions off two small coralline beaches.
Caleta Tortuga Negra - Baltra
Black Turtle Cove is a salt-water lagoon surrounded by different mangrove species and in its quiet crystal clear waters you can observe marine turtles, sharks and rays. After our visit to the cove we will sail to the docks. Bus transfer to Baltra airport and flight to mainland Ecuador.