The tortoises trail Santa Cruz Island land based program 4D – 3N

Galapagos giant tortoise , santa cruz

This 4-day tour is all about the tortoises and the other beautiful fauna the Galápagos Islands have to offer. During the tour you will be taken to different islands to see their absolute highlights. After each exciting excursion day, you will return to the island of Santa Cruz to stay in a comfortable hotel.

Day 1 : Quito/guayaquil – Baltra – Puerto Ayora

Pelecanus occidentalis

Photo: © inaturalist – Luis Orlando

Flight from Quito or Guayaquil to Baltra´s airport where a naturalist guide will transfer you to Puerto Ayora. On the way, the guide will make a stop in order to visit the highlands and the giant land tortoises. Here, you would have time for lunch, and enjoy the view. Afterwards, you will continue with the transfer to the hotel.

In the afternoon, the guide will take you to enjoy Tortuga Bay. Here, you walk for approximately 45 minutes, through a cactus trail on to the first beach, which is called Playa Brava due to its strong currents. On this beach you would see a lot of marine iguanas, marine birds and pelicans. After visiting Playa Brava, we continue with an additional 15 minute walk to reach Playa Mansa. This second beach is a natural lagoon visited by blue footed boobies and pelicans. It is also a beautiful place for swimming and relaxing on the beach.

You will be walking the same distance to return to the hotel for dinner and accommodation.

Note: To execute this itinerary, it is important to choose an early flight that arrives maximum at 10am to Baltra

Day 2 & 3 : Bartolome Or North Seymour Or Plazas Or Santa Fe

NAVIGATION (Bartolome or North Seymour or Plazas or Santa Fe)

Bartolome island

© Latin Trails

Only one of the islands you will visit this day .After breakfast, the guide will meet you in the hotel´s lobby in order to take you to the dock, and start the tour. Lunch will be included onboard the small yacht. In the afternoon, you would return to the port.

North Seymour Island is a spectacular place to hike, swim, and enjoy snorkeling. The main attractions are: the frigates, boobies, gulls, hawks, green sea turtles and the famous Galapagos Sharks.

Bartolome Island is the most attractive landscape of the archipelago. This island is undoubtedly the most photographed in all the Galapagos Islands. You can appreciate a spectacular view of two beautiful bays and observe the fascinating formations of lava and volcanic cones.

Two islands form Plazas. The turquoise waters of the channel contrast brilliantly with the white sand and black lava coast. It is a wonderful spot to observe marine life, including manta rays. Coasts are a perfect spot for snorkeling activity.

Santa Fe Island (Spanish: Isla Santa Fe), also called Barrington Island after admiral Samuel Barrington, is a small island of 24 square kilometres (9.3 sq mi) which lies in the centre of the Galapagos archipelago, to the south east of Santa Cruz Island.

Geologically it is one of the oldest, since volcanic rocks of about 4 million years old have been found. The vegetation of the island is characterized by brush, palo santo trees and stands of a large variety of the prickly pear cactus Opuntia echios.

Then, you will return to the hotel for Dinner and accommodation.

Island will be chosen according to available spaces

Day 4 : Santa Cruz – Baltra

Early in the morning you will visit the Charles Darwin Station. Here you will see a variety of species of Giant Tortoises. You will also listen about the ongoing conservation efforts directed at preserving the Giant Tortoises, as well as the environment of the archipelago as a whole.

Giant tortoise

© Latin Trails

Afterwards, you and the guide would take the route to the airport, which lasts approximately 1 hour. At the airport, you will take your flight back to Quito or Guayaquil.

Note: To execute this itinerary, it is important to choose a late flight that departs not before 11am from Baltra.

4 Days


  • Accommodation in double rooms
  • All meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner). First day: lunch and dinner. Last day:breakfast
  • Transportation and Maritime timed views
  • Bilingual naturalist guide (English, Spanish)
  • Scheduled Visits
  • Snorkeling equipment
  • Transfers from Puerto Ayora – Isabela Island – Puerto Ayora
  • Shared Sailing tours
  • Navigation tours are shared

Not Included

  • Air Ticket
  • Galapagos National Park entrance fee USD 100.00
  • INGALA Migration Control Card USD 20.00
  • Soft drinks and alcoholic beverages
  • Tips
Additional Information



  • Santa Cruz: Galapagos Suites

Tourist Superior:

  • Santa Cruz: Ikala

First Class:

  • Santa Cruz: Finch Bay