Quasar's M/Y Grace - Galapagos
There are three levels on which to relax outdoors and under shade while inside, the yacht is fully air conditioned. The main saloon, where your guide will give presentations on each day‘s activities, provides a relaxing environment with a full entertainment centre. An onboard boutique carries both necessities and souvenires.
Grace provides fine onboard dining in both her dining room and al fresco on the rear deck. At sunset, happy hour is a highlight atop the sky lounge bar and is often accompanied by leaping dolphins and rays. Did we mention the yacht‘s sundeck and sizable jacuzzi to warm up after snorkelling?
M/Y Grace’s stellar past includes ownership by millionaire tycoons, royalty and stint in the British Navy. She was commissioned to be built in 1928, during the Great Gatsby era by Camper & Nicholson in Southampton, England. After serving as the personal yacht for high powered industrialists, including Sir George Tilley, chairman of the Prudential Insurance Co., she was conscripted to serve in the British Royal Navy during WWII.
During the war she played an important role at Dunkirk, captured a German torpedo E-boat and even has an unconfirmed sinking of a U-boat to her credit. In 1951 she was acquired by a company owned by Aristotle Onassis who renamed her Arion, and was later given as a wedding gift from Aristotle himself to Prince Rainier and Princess Grace of Monaco.
Rechristened Deo Juvante, it was onboard this vessel where Prince Rainier and princess Grace spent their honeymoon getaway. The ship has begun a new era in her rich history and its best days are yet to come as an icon in the Galapagos Islands.
You will love
- Small, luxurious adventure yacht
- Onboard naturalist guides
- 7-night voyages
- Plenty of space to relax
- Stellar history
8 UNFORGETTABLE DAYS
This example itinerary is based on the sailing ex San Cristobal Island. There are also sailings ex-Baltra Island. Please contact us for further details.
Upon arrival to Baltra airport, transfer to the dock to board the M/Y Grace and cruise to Santa Cruz Island where you head down the south-western coast toward Wreck Bay and Puerto Baquerizo Moreno where you sight Kicker Rock, a spectacular formation that rises 152m out of the Pacific. It takes the form of a sleeping lion, but from another angle you can see that the rock is split, forming a colossal tablet and, piercing the sea, a great chisel ready for etching. Continue east to Isla Lobos, home to a noisy population of sea lion and nesting place for the blue-footed boobie. After viewing sea lion and blue-footed boobie on land change into your snorkel gear and swim with the sea lions.
The quantity and variety of wildlife at Punta Suarez is remarkable. View sea lion colonies and a colourful variety of marine iguana before we follow the trail to the western edge of the island to view masked boobies, blue-footed boobies, Galapagos doves, cactus finch and mocking birds. On the northeastern shore you arrive to Gardner Bay with its magnificent long white sandy beach where you can snorkel with playful young sea lions, schools of tropical fish and white tipped reef sharks.
Florena has a colourful history of pirates, whalers, convicts and a small band of somewhat peculiar colonists. In 1793 British whalers set up a barrel as the island’s post office, to send letters home on passing ships. The tradition continues to this day, simply drop a postcard into the barrel without a stamp but you must collect a postcard from the barrel and see that it gets to its right place. Continue to Punta Cormorant where you follow a trail of very fine white sand known as Flour Beach. Enroute stop at a basin that was formed by the surrounding volcanic cones, which is a hyper-saline lagoon frequented by flamingos, pintails and other wading birds. Continue to Flour Beach where you return to the yacht and don your wetsuits as the boat moves around to Champion Islet, considered one of the top snorkelling sites in the Galapagos.
In the morning visit the Charles Darwin Research Station to see the Giant Tortoise and Land Iguana Breeding and Rearing Program. In the afternoon head to the Highlands, where the dry coastal vegetation transitions to lush wet fields and forests overgrown with moss and lichens and where you will have the chance to see the biggest land tortoise in the world, walk through lava tubes and see the twin collapsed craters.
In the morning visit Las Bachas, a sandy white-coral beach that is a major egg-laying site for sea turtles. Ashore marine iguanas mingle with flamingos and other wading birds in another of the many super saline lagoons found in the Galapagos. In the afternoon head north to Chinese Hat Islet, named for the resemblance its shape has to a traditional Chinese Coolie’s hat. A sea lion colony likes to rest on the warm white sands, while the rockier sections of the coast are alive with fiery colored sally light-foot crabs.
Rabida Island, also commonly known by its English name of Jervis, is known for its unique reddish-maroon terrain as a result of the oxidation of iron-rich lava. It is home to large populations of sea lions, nesting pelicans, flamingoes, as well as a thick forest of Palo Santo trees. A saltwater lagoon is found behind the reddish beach, where brightly colored pink flamingoes can be seen lazing around bachelor sea lions. Late morning snorkeling opportunity along the rocks with sea lions, sea turtles and tropical fish. Afternoon visit to Sullivan Bay, one of the most outstanding volcanic sites in the Galapagos. In the nearly 100 years since the Sullivan Bay Flow, only a few plants like Mollugo and lava cacti have managed to take root in this harsh environment, where the you will find lava formations frozen to resemble fabrics and ropes.
In the morning visit Bartolome Island, famous for Pinnacle Rock, where you will see Galapagos Penguins and sea lions. Also hike a trail to Bartolome’s summit where you will be rewarded with spectacular views of Pinnacle Rock and our beach. Afternoon visit to North Seymour, a good nesting site for frigate birds and Blue-footed boobies. The Island was lifted from the ocean floor by a seismic event, and its origins as a seabed give the island its low, flat profile. This island is teaming with life! You might have to give way to a passing sea lion or marine iguana; blue-footed booby nests sit beside the trail where mating pairs perform their courtship dance.
A morning visit to Mosquera Islet, one of the smallest Islands resulting from an uplift of sand, made up of coral reefs and rocks, and boasts one of the largest sea lion colonies. Disembark on Baltra Island and board your onward flight.
NEED TO KNOW
START: San Cristobal, Galapagos Islands | Finish: Mosquera Islet, Galapagos Islands
- Weekly departures every Saturday
- Itineraries ex-Baltra Island and ex-San Cristobal Island
- Hiking, snorkelling, kayaking and Zodiac trips
- 145 foot yacht
- 18 guests | 9 cabins
- Ensuite cabins with a/c and portholes
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We are so happy we put our trust in CSC, we had an amazing adventure and would recommend them to anyone.Kim & Brad Balance
The trip exceeded my expectations and was the best family holiday I have ever had. Our children simply loved it and now I know more about African wildlife than they do about our own farm animals.Rowntree family
Classic Safari are the people who genuinely know other culture and offer incredible insight to perfectly meet your expectations.Melanie McMillan & Iain Jones
We loved it all. Our son wants to go back tomorrow. We would ALL go back again!Laurence & Remi Cunningham
An amazing experience - the best family holiday we have ever had. We were extremely impressed by the meticulous attention to our itinerary. I can't speak highly enough of all the elements of this exciting journey!Sheryl & Robert Taylor
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The trip of a lifetime, couldn't have dreamt of a better adventure if I tried.Emma Jeffcoat
Absolutely everything was first class & so well organised.Simon & Jackie Adams
Classic Safari Company has done it again! A unique experience that ticked all the boxes - wildlife, culture and dining experience. A dream come true!Ros Wheeler
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