Join us on a journey of ecological discovery as we travel from Quito, Ecuador, in Charles Darwin’s footsteps to experience the natural wonders of the incomparable Galápagos Islands.
Explore one of South America’s most charming capitals with us as we show you Quito – a World Heritage city of graceful Spanish-era architecture, cosy restaurants and small artisanal shops. You’ll feel immediately welcome as you try local specialities – including chocolate and other Ecuadorean culinary delights – and visit colourful markets. We also pay a visit to an active volcano and go on a nature walk in stunning surroundings.
When we fly to the Galápagos, step aboard Santa Cruz II – our comfortable and stylish expedition vessel that’s ideally suited to remote adventures. You’ll take part in an unforgettable cruise and experience the very best the UNESCO-protected Galápagos has to offer. The onboard facilities are excellent, and you can look forward to mouth-watering dishes prepared by our chefs, as well as comfortable cabins to relax in after each exciting day of discovery.
When the English naturalist Charles Darwin visited here aboard H.M.S. Beagle in 1835, he discovered that several species, including tortoises and land iguanas, had evolved differently depending on their habitat. His seminal work On the Origin of Species, proved revolutionary. On this science-oriented expedition, we’ll be learning about Darwin’s discoveries, as well as making a few of our own.
You’ll get closer to the natural wonders with the use of our small expedition boats, kayaks, snorkelling gear and paddleboards. There’s a wide range of activities to choose from, and the Expedition Team will guide you on landings. Safety and sustainability are always at the core of our operations, and our aim is to leave the smallest footprint behind wherever we go.
For your safety, we always sail with a Medical Officer onboard.
Day 1Amsterdam/Quito, Ecuador
Flight to Quito
Day 2Quito, Ecuador
Cultural tour of Quito
Day 3Quito, Ecuador
Cotopaxi Volcano trip
Day 4Galapagos, Ecuador
Your cruise begins
Day 5San Cristobal Island
Visiting the giants
Day 6Santa Fe Island & South Plaza Island
Blissful beauty & evolution in action
Day 7Santa Cruz Island
Giant tortoises and island activities
Day 8Española Island
A conservation success story
Day 9Santa Cruz Island & North Seymour
A small slice of Eden
Day 10Baltra Island/Guayaquil, Ecuador
End of the expedition
Arrival in Amsterdam
Current offers on this cruise:
No single supplement on selected departuresSolo travellers who prefer their own space while still travelling with others, have the opportunity to save on select voyages departing in 2022. For a limited time, pay no single supplement if you book one of the below expedition cruises. This offer applies to a selection of departures that you can find on each voyage page.See Special Offer
Included in your voyage
- Three nights in Quito before the expedition cruise, including breakfast and dinner on DAY 2 and 3.
- Return flights in economy class to Quito and back from Guayaquil including all taxes
- Return flights in economy class between Quito and Baltra, and Baltra and Guayaquil
- All transfers in Quito, transfers between Baltra airport and ship
- Full day Cultural Tour of Quito, including lunch
- Full day Nature Tour to Cotopaxi National Park, including lunch
- Galapagos Islands National Park admission fee
- Transit Control Card for Galapagos Islands
- Access to airport lounge at Guayaquil airport upon return from Galapagos Islands
- Expedition cruise in a cabin of your choice
- Breakfast, lunch and dinner including beverages (house beer and wine, sodas, and mineral water)
- Complimentary tea and coffee
- Limited complimentary Wi-Fi for suite guests. Wi-Fi is available for purchase, but be aware that we sail in remote areas with very limited connection. Streaming is not supported.
- Complimentary reusable water bottle to use at water refill stations on board
- German- and English-speaking Expedition Team who guide activities and provide educational information on board and ashore
- Welcome and farewell cocktails
- Use of the ship’s Science Center which has a library, microscopes and samples
- Citizen Science programme allows guests to assist with live scientific research
- Professional onboard photographer gives tips and tricks for the best landscape and wildlife photos
- Use of the ship’s hot tubs and gym
- Landings, hikes, coastal exploration, and activities including kayaking, snorkeling, and our glass-bottom boat
- Complimentary wetsuit rental for suite guests. Wetsuit rental available on request.
Not included in your voyage
- Travel insurance
- Luggage handling
MS Santa Cruz II
|Year of refurbishment||2021|
|Shipyard||ASENAV Shipyard (CHL)|
|Gross tonnage||2664 T|
When you are exploring the Galápagos islands with us onboard the MS Santa Cruz II, you will enjoy a relaxed atmosphere in high quality surroundings. The small size - with a guest capacity of maximum of 90 allows for a cozy yet classy environment. You´ll easily feel at home on board.