Art Safari to Ecuador and the Galapagos Archipelago

Darwin’s Islands

2 – 16 May 2018

with Mary-Anne Bartlett


When Darwin took this voyage it shaped his theories of evolution through natural selection.  We will see and sketch many of the species he studied, which survive in wonderful and diverse profusion on the unique Galapagos archipelago.

We arrive in Quito, Ecuador on 2nd May and spend one night relaxing after our flights, before our morning flight to the Galapagos Islands.

We begin our Galapagos adventure with three shore based days on Isla Santa Cruz, staying on the waterfront. We settle into island life and begin sketching with fast ‘blink’ sketches and longer relaxing studies of the bay view, marine life, sea turtles, sea lions, sun-basking iguana and colourful birdlife.

We depart Puerto Ayora for our 8 day cruise around the Islands.  Our floating studio is the 79ft Motor Yacht Coral II, with a capacity for 18 guests in 9 guest cabins with lower beds, air conditioning and private bathrooms.  Three decks offer sunbathing and shaded areas, an observatory, a lounge with panoramic windows and comfy sofas, restaurant and bar and a library.  There’s a Jacuzzi and a diving platform for easy access into the water and tenders.  We will be well looked after by a crew of 10, including our knowledgeable Naturalist guide who will accompany us on all our shore excursions, and the ships cooks who will freshly prepare delicious meals. 

Our Island hopping itinerary is full of variation and wonder, white sandy beaches, volcanos, cliffs, lagoons, mangrove forests, coral reefs, unique wildlife and sea life.  Our sketchbooks will fill with images of sea lions, great blue herons, lava gulls, lava herons, flamingos, sea turtles, Giant tortoises, marine and land iguanas, pelicans, lava lizards, Galápagos hawks and mockingbirds. 

The Coral II crew will find safe areas for swimming and snorkelling there is a fascinating underwater world awaiting discovery.

On Espanola Island a lava blowhole spurts water high into the air, Gardner Bay is the breeding site of nearly all the Worlds 12,000 pairs of Waved Albatross. 


 “…by far the most remarkable feature in the natural history of this archipelago…is that the different islands to a considerable extent are inhabited by a different set of beings…I never dreamed that islands, about fifty or sixty miles apart, and most of them in sight of each other, formed of precisely the same rocks, placed under a quite similar climate, rising to a nearly equal height, would have been differently tenanted.”

Charles Darwin The Voyage of the ‘Beagle’.


Our last days are spent at a luxury safari camp in the highlands of Isla Santa Cruise with magnificent views over the Pacific Ocean, as well as the western & northern islands of Isabela, Santiago, Pinzón, Baltra, Rábida, Guy Fawkes & Daphne. 

This is luxury camping on wooden platforms with a hammock and chairs on the elevated deck from which to admire the incredible views.  Our tents ooze style and comfort, with proper beds and private bathroom under canvas.  In the main lodge the elegant dining room serves local and international dishes, created by the camp chef using home-grown produce.

Giant tortoises can be found pottering among the tents.  The area is rich in birdlife – finches, warblers, mockingbirds, Galapagos doves, egrets and owls.  The vegetation is lush and the terrain is volcanic, there is a choice of wonderful viewpoints from which to paint birds and the stunning landscape, review our sketchbooks and finish paintings.


Galapagos cruise itinerary at a glance:


Day Morning Afternoon
1 Baltra Island Santa Cruz Island: Charles Darwin Station
2 Mosquera Island North Seymour Island
3 Santa Fe Island South Plaza Island
4 San Cristobal Island: Leon Dormido, Cerro Colorado San Cristobal Island
5 San Cristobal Island: Cerro Brujo San Cristobal Island: Pitt Point
6 Espanola Island: Suarez Point Espanola Island: Gardner Bay
7 Floreana: Cormorant Point, Devil’s Crown, Champion Islet Floreana Island: Post Office Bay
8 Santa Cruz Island: Highlands Baltra Island


Tour Cost per person sharingfrom £6876

Our price includes:  All transfers, accommodation, meals as stated on the itinerary, excursions, Galapagos Ingala card, art tuition and safari guiding

Our price excludes:  International flights London/Quito return, flights Quito/Galapagos/Quito , Visas, Galapagos Entrance fee of $100 USD pp to be paid in cash on arrival, lunches for land based days, first night and last night supper in Quito, travel insurance, drinks and gratuities, items of a personal nature

Single Supplement for land days only:  from £1340  

Please note that solo travellers would usually be required to share a twin berth cabin aboard the Coral II

The listed activities on your outline cruise itinerary may differ depending of the time of the day of your visit, and National Park regulations and weather conditions


  Contact us NOW!
  Make your booking now on +44 (0)1394 382235
  Email: – info@artsafari.co.uk