Home » Tip Top IV 8 Day North, West & Central Islands
Explore the wonders of Galapagos aboard the spectacular Tip Top IV which offers the highest level of comfort and professionalism. The North, West and Central Islands offers an array of majestic endemic wildlife to meet close-up, including marine iguanas, lava lizards, flamingos and turtles to name a few. This tour will further include expeditions to iconic locations such as Prince Philip's Steps to view the breeding grounds of shorebirds; Sierra Negra Volcano to observe lava flows and fumaroles; and Charles Darwin Station to learn more about geological formations and evolutionary development
Embark on a journey to Darwin Bay to observe frigatebirds, herons, shorebirds, turtles, and marine iguanas to name a few.
Indulge in a session of swimming, snorkeling or kayaking at Tagus Cove.
Admire the uplifted delicate coral reef at Urbina Bay that occurred in 1954.
Visit Champion Islet to see the rare Floreana Charles mockingbird.
Itinerary in Brief
Day 1: Arrive in Baltra Airport - North Seymour Island
Day 2: Darwin Bay - Prince Philip's Steps
Day 3: James Bay- Buccaneer Cove
Day 4: Punta Vicente Roca - Punta Espinosa
Day 5: Tagus Cove - Elizabeth Bay
Day 6: Urbina Bay - Punta Moreno
Day 7: Punta Cormorant - Champion Islet - Baroness Viewpoint - Post office Bay
Day 8: Santa Cruz Island - Departure
Special Itineraries for 3,4 & 10 night cruises are also available, please call us for details
Day 1: North Seymour Island
Arrive into Baltra airport and transfer to the pier by bus to board the comfortable Tip Top IV and meet your bilingual naturalist guide. The
morning will include an orientation with a light
snack before exploring the coast and the interior of North Seymour Island, which is a low, flat island that was uplifted from the sea by underground seismic activity. Meet native blue footed boobies who nest from May to November, marine iguanas, pelicans, frigate birds, shore birds, sea lions and the endemic Palo Santo. If you like you can swim, snorkel or kayak in the tropical waters before returning to the vessel for a welcome cocktail and dinner with the whole crew.
Day 2: Darwin Bay & Prince Philip's Steps (located in Genovesa Island)
After breakfast, disembark onto Darwin Bay to meet a diverse range of wildlife including frigatebirds, herons, mockingbirds, boobies, shorebirds, turtles, and marine iguanas. If you like you can swim, snorkel or kayak in the bay before a delicious lunch on board the vessel. Later in the afternoon, the vessel makes a dry landing on Prince Phillips’s Steps (Barranco), to observe the interesting lives of the birds iving in the crevices of the rock formations. Retire to the vessel for dinner and an informative lecture about the conservation efforts made by scientists, volunteers and researchers to protect the island.
Day 3: James Bay & Buccaneer Cove (located in Santiago Island)
In the morning land on Santiago Island to visit James Bay in Puerto Egas and enjoy an expedition to observe sponges, snails, hermit crabs, a variety of shore birds, barnacles, the endemic four-eyed blenny, marine iguanas and sea lions. Take time out to swim or snorkel to inlets along the coast. Afterwards in the late afternoon, navigate around Buccaneer Cove also known as Caleta Bucanero, to an area of steep cliffs and dark beaches. The cliffs and pinnacle around the area are used as nesting areas by several species of seabirds. This was a popular place for 17th & 18th century buccaneers to careen their vessels. Towards the late afternoon you can choose to spend your time swimming, snorkeling or kayaking just in time for dinner and a nightly informative lecture.
Day 4: Punta Vicente Roca (located in Isabela Island) & Punta Espinosa (located in Fernandina Island)
Enjoy an early morning panga ride towards Punta Vicente Roca which is a great place to observe plenty of sea lions, marine iguanas, blue-footed boobies, masked boobies, and flightless cormorants. Later take a swim or snorkel in this ideal location to catch a glimpse of more marine wildlife and its impressive underwater formations. Climb aboard for a delicious lunch and relax during the journey to Fernandina before making a dry landing on Punta Espinoza to observe a large colony of sea lions, marine iguanas, flightless cormorants and clumps of lava cactus. Return to the comfortable vessel for dinner and a nightly informative lecture.
Day 5: Tagus Cove & Elizabeth Bay
Take a thrilling panga ride towards Tagus Cove, a protected cove between the shoulders of two volcanic craters which protect it from the open sea. Observe spectacular wildlife including penguins, marine iguanas, sea lions and a variety of birds including flightless cormorant and blue footed boobies. Unwind after the ride with a swim, snorkel or kayak session in the tropical waters. After lunch take another enjoyable panga ride around the islets of Elizabeth Bay to marvel at fascinating marine iguanas, penguins, marine turtles, seabirds and shorebirds, herons and blue-footed boobies all in their natural environment. Return to the comfortable vessel for delicious cuisine and a nightly informative lecture.
Day 6: Urbina Bay & Punta Moreno (located in Isabela Island)
Just after breakfast, enjoy a walk to Urbina Bay located at the base of Alcedo Volcano which experienced an uplift from the sea in 1954 and now features an exposed delicate coral reef to be admired. Along the walk get up close to land iguanas, flightless cormorants and giant tortoises. Take some time afterwards to enjoy a relaxing swim or snorkel. Afterwards return to the vessel for lunch and then sail to Punta Moreno, and walk along
shore lagoons located among petrified lava flows where a variety of sea birds can be seen. Along the sloped walk enjoy a panoramic view of the famous
volcanoes Sierra Negra and Cerro Azul as well as the highest portion of
Fernandina Island. Retreat to the vessel for dinner and a lecture.
Day 7: Punta Cormorant, Champion Islet, Baroness Viewpoint & Post office Bay (located in Floreana Island)
After breakfast, the vessel makes a wet landing on Point Cormorant for a short walk to view flocks of flamingos in the lagoon of this island. Then continue the walk until you reach the La Picona beach to see marine turtles and their spawning grounds. Later, hope into a panga to ride towards Champion Islet, a small island off the Coast of Floreana Island and is a great place for snorkeling to view sea turtles, reef fishes, Galapagos penguins and white-tipped reef sharks. The main attraction in Champion Islet is the nearly-extinct Floreana Charles mockingbird. Further glimpse at bird species such as Swallow-tailed Gulls, Nazca Boobies or Brown Noddies. Return for lunch then in the afternoon arrive onto Post Office Bay, which is a historic site that whalers in the 18th century, presumably had placed a wooden barrel to be used as a convenient post office. End the exciting day with a lovely dinner and a nightly lecture accompanied with the group.
Day 8: Santa Cruz Island
Disembark the vessel early int the morning and take a bus to the highlands of Santa Cruz Island for a visit to the native forests and twin craters. The bus then takes you directly to Baltra airport with the accompaniment of your naturalist guide.
Departs - Selected dates (listed below)
Upper Deck Cabin
Private bathroom (toilet, shower, washbasin and vanity)
Locker and drawers
Lower Deck Cabin
Private bathroom (toilet, shower, washbasin and vanity)
Locker and drawers
Ship Deck Plan
The first class Tip Top IV yacht was constructed in 2006 designed to offer the highest level of security and the best experiences of the Galapagos Islands. With room for 16 travellers it offers the highest level of comfort along with a lounge, bar, sundeck and dining room. The vessel has a naturalist bilingual guide and eight experienced crew members that will provide personalised professional service
to each guest. Further the chef will combine Ecuadorian and international
cuisine to create delicious dishes.
Year Built: 2006
Length: 125 feet
Beam: 25 feet
Draft: 6 feet
Cruising speed: 12 knots
Flights to/from the Galapagos
Pre/Post cruise transfers
All meals during voyage
All excursions and activities mentioned in program
Use of kayaking and snorkelling equipment
What's not included?
Arrival/departure taxes or reciprocity fees, visa fees where applicable