Cruise of 8 days
Trip Start Apr 22, 2010
71Trip End Aug 27, 2010
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We wanted first to get a cruise with the north as itinerary but this turned out to be very difficult as the boats going there are more luxury ones and the cheaper ones are fully booked.
Our preferred itinerary was with Fernandina, Genovesa, James or Santiago and Isabela island.
Floreana was one of the cheaper one with our desired itinerary but unfortunately it was fully booked when we decided to take the offer proposed. Just a few hours too late :(
If you want to go for last minute deals you better search the internet which boat are doing the itinerary you want and let the agencies check the last minute prices for you. The agencies have most of the time no idea of last minute prices and they need to start calling the owner or secretaries of the boats to know last minute deals. This is time consuming and as well the agencies don't have a clear idea of all the different boats doing the itinerary you wish to do.
We thought there would be other boats when we got our offer and when we figured out there wasn't any other one with our perfect itinerary it was too late. So we decided to change our plans and do instead the southern itinerary. There were still some offers and we took one we thought it would be good.
It turn out to be a great deal as the normal price is 3 times more than what we paid.
The name of our boat was Millenum. This is a first class boat and it was pretty nice. As well we were very lucky as the last 4 days we passed them in the suite which was 3 times the size of our other room :)
The food was great and the service as well. For our prize I would really recommend it but not for the prize certain passengers paid.
The itinerary is not the best as certain excursions were not really interesting and some places we snorkeled were very poor in fishes. As well the water system wasn't always working and sometimes there wasn't enough vegetables or patatoes for everyone. But I can't say I was hungry and the water problem wasn't that big a problem especially for people backpacking for so long but if you paid 3500 dollars for 8 days you might want something that really meet your expectations.
For the rest you need a bit of chance with your guide and the other people on the boat. We were with really nice americans but a horrible Israelian family and our guide was sometimes a pain in the ass but compared to others we saw he was great.
There are lots of rules to respect in this national park and our guide repeated them at least 50 times and made us read the rules out loud..we were really feeling like small childs being back at primary school :) but the biggest mistake he made was not to allow us to go in the water when at Santa Fe we saw a school of eagle rays of over 100 rays swimming around our boat for at least 2 hours...unforgivable...and for my special friends Russel and Evy I would even say UNBELIEVABLE :)
For the rest it was a good guide that was explaining lots of things and knew what he was talking about.
Santa Cruz: Darwin center
In this center you can see the Galapagos turtles or land turtles. It's an amazing sight to see these turtles walking.
Chinese hat is an island with a hill in the form of a chinese hat. Well that should be but honestly I couldn't see any chinese hat in that.
Here as well we had our first snorkel. The water is very cold in general and therefore we were advised to rent a wet suit of 7mm to enjoy the snorkel instead of freezing like hell in the water. I believe it was a good investment as it was really cold and with the suit you feel quite comfortable in the water. The only problem with such a suit is to get into it and out of it :) After 8 days we were happy to bring that thing back and not to have to wear it again :) As well it is almost impossible to get down under the water as the suit makes you float and you need lots of force to get down.
Isla de los lobos:
Post office bay
Santa Cruz: Highlands
Bueno, finalmente nos embarcamos en el Millennium, un barco catamaran de primera categoria que no hacia el recorrido mas interesante (ver arriba) pero encontramos una buena oferta. El barco aunque era un poco antiguo no estaba mal, durante los primeros dias tuvimos un camarote normal, chiquitin, pero a mitad de crucero nos cambiaron a la suite, que era de pelicula, era casi mas grande que mi casa!!! Como companeros de viaje tuvimos durante la primera parte (los primeros 5 dias) tres familias americanas que eran encantadoras, asi que nos hicimos amigos. Tambien una familia israelita que todos estabamos de acuerdo que eran detestable, no sabian comportarse y no respetaban nada, horrible vaya. Esto nos ha confirmado que no es buena idea viajar con israelitas, muchas veces son para darles de coer aparte...
En la segunda parte se fueron los americanos y llegaron tres espanoles muy simpaticos y unos alemanes y unos daneses. En las siguientes entradas del blog vereis la descripcion de los diferentes sitios donde el barco hizo escala.
Sobre el guia, no explicaba mal, pero era uy pesado en cuanto a las normas de comportamiento basicas ( no acercarse a mas de 2 metros de los animales, no tocarlos, etc) y esto gracias a nuestros amigos los hebreos, asi que nos estaba aleccionando a cada rato como si fueramos parvulitos... Y aparte de eso cometio un gran error, no dejarnos hacer snorkel con una banda de rayas que vimos de mas de cien rayas una vez que ya estabamos en el barco...Eso es una cosa unica de ver y el muy c.... no nos dejo meternos...
Acerca del barco todo muy bien, la comida exquisita, aunque las cantidades no eran enormes pero suficientes como para no engordar un par de kilos durante los ocho dias de crucero. El unico problema era el agua, que no habia agua para ducharse para todos, si habia alguna otra persona en el barco duchandose tu no podias, asi que tenias que esperar. Pero aparte de eso si que habia agua y caliente mas o menos asi que no nos quejamos, menos nosotros que pagamos relativamente poco, pero entiendo que la gente que paga una pasta se frustre.