Sail the Galápagos aboard an intimate yacht, encountering incomparable wildlife and volcanic landscapes with a naturalist.

Request a Tailor-Made Itinerary Request Quote or Ask Us A Question or Call 855-215-8690
 Mother and baby seal  Galapagos tortoise  Blue-footed Boobies  Sally Lightfoot Crab  Sally Lightfoot crabs  Iguana on the Galapagos Islands

Sailing the Galápagos: A Tailor-Made Journey by Yacht

10 days from $5,445

Sail the Galápagos aboard an intimate yacht, encountering incomparable wildlife and volcanic landscapes with a naturalist.

Request a Tailor-Made Itinerary

or call 855-215-8690

Overview

Smithsonian Archivist Circle membership. Benefits include:

  • Recognition in the Friends of the Smithsonian Honor Roll displayed electronically on the National Mall in the Membership Reception Center
  • Invitation to a special welcome tour for new members at a Smithsonian venue
  • A Smithsonian Institution annual engagement calendar with full color images of exceptional art and artifacts
  • A complimentary Smithsonian museum guidebook
  • Subscription to the award-winning magazine Smithsonian
  • 20% discount at Smithsonian Museum Stores, 10% discount at selected dining facilities, at SmithsonianStore.com, and Folkways Recordings
  • Special member rate for tickets to the Smithsonian's IMAX® theaters and Einstein Planetarium
  • Admission to Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum in New York City
  • Weekday access to the Friends of the Smithsonian Reception Center

If you are already a member of the Archivist Circle or above, you will receive The Smithsonian's History of America in 101 Objects by Richard Kurin.

Sample Itinerary

Day 1 - Quito, Ecuador

Arrive in Quito and meet your private guide for the transfer to your hotel, about an hour from the airport. Enjoy the rest of the day to relax at your hotel or take a walk along the adjacent shopping streets, where artists come to exhibit their wares on the weekends.

Day 2 - Quito

Surrounded by Andean peaks and built atop Inca ruins, Quito is a delightful mix of old and new with a vibrant contemporary culture. Set off to discover this World Heritage-listed city on a morning walking tour with your private guide. In the Old Town, stroll across lovely plazas and venture into beautifully preserved baroque churches such as the Church of San Francisco, where architectural influences range from the Inca to the Moors. Cap off the tour at a viewpoint overlooking the city. In the afternoon, you're free to keep exploring Quito at your leisure. We recommend visiting one of the city's museums, such as the pre-Hispanic art museum Casa del Alabado or ride the teleférico for extraordinary aerial views of Santiago against a backdrop of Andean peaks.

Day 3 - The Galápagos Islands

A private transfer will take you to the airport in time for your two-hour flight to the Galápagos Islands. Upon arrival, you’ll be met by members of the Yolita II crew who will take you to harbor on Baltra Island where the yacht awaits. Get settled in your cabin and gather with your fellow passengers for a welcome and a safety briefing. Then set sail to Las Bachas, a beautiful beach on the coast of Santa Cruz Island that provides a wonderful introduction to the wildlife of these islands. From here, head out on an excursion with your naturalist guide.  

Days 4 - Genovesa Island

One of the outlying isles of the archipelago, Genovesa Island is a collapsed volcano known as “bird island” for its large populations of frigatebirds and boobies. Keep an eye out for the rare red-footed booby and myriad other species as you explore the trails around Darwin Bay and El Barranco. Then go snorkeling in the sunken caldera, where the volcanic walls harbor all manner of marine life.

Day 5 - Bartolomé Island

Land at Bartolomé Island today and go on a short hike to its summit for phenomenal views of Pinnacle Rock and neighboring Santiago Island. Continue to Sullivan Bay, where Sally Lightfoot crabs scamper over black lava flows and sea lions frolic on a white coral-sand beach.

Day 6 - Isabela Island

Isabela Island is one of the few inhabited islands in the Galápagos. Dock here today and visit the island’s tortoise breeding center to see and learn about efforts to save an protect the rare Galápagos Tortoise. See hatchlings and full-grown adults, and learn about this intriguing ancient species, the largest of its kind, which can live up to 150 years. In the afternoon, take a guided hike to the top of Sierra Negra, a volcano that last erupted in 1979. It’s a steep climb to the rim of the crater—said to be the second largest in the world, but the views stretch from Isabela Island’s volcanoes to Isla Fernandina, the archipelago’s youngest and most volcanically active island.

Days 7 - Isabela Island

Continuing along the western coast of Isabela, the yacht will stop at Elizabeth Bay for a panga ride into the mangroves. Spot sea turtles, penguins, and flightless cormorants along the way. Spend the afternoon at Urbina Bay, where large segment of coral reef was uplifted out of the sea by tectonic movement in the 1950s. Go on a walk in this arid landscape, looking for land iguanas and tortoises, and snorkel among rays and sea turtles in the bay.  

Day 8 - Isabela Island

Land in Tagus Cove this morning, and go for a hike in this former haunt of whalers and pirates, taking in stunning views of Darwin and Wolf volcanoes in the distance. This is a great spot to observe bird species such as finches, hawks, and warblers, and see firsthand how Darwin arrived at his theories on species adaptation. Later, get up close to the archipelago’s largest marine iguana colony at Punta Espinoza, a beautiful and remote part of Isabela.

Day 9 - Rábida Island

On Rábida Island, take a walk along red-sand beaches created by an unusually high level of iron in the lava. Sea lions and marine iguanas are typically abundant here, and blue-footed and Nazca boobies can often be found among the cliffs. Follow trails through palo santo trees to the island’s saltwater lagoon, where flamingos sometimes come to feed. After lunch, you'll be able to relax at Playa Espumilla, one of the Galápagos' most beautiful beaches, and enjoy a final opportunity to snorkel along the coast of Santiago Island.

Day 10 - Depart for home

Enjoy a morning excursion to Daphne Island to catch a final glimpse of blue-footed boobies, frigatebirds, and finches. Then transfer to the airport in time for your flight back to mainland Ecuador and your connecting flight home.

Included meals are denoted as follows: Breakfast (B), Lunch (L), Reception (R), Dinner (D)