Galapagos Sea Star Journey, Ecuador
Galapagos Sea Star Journey
Galapagos Islands, Puerto Ayora
Private (Family) Ownership
Date of Creation
Launched February, 2011 in Guayaquil.
Boat General Manager
Marcel Perkins, Managing Director at Latin Trails a boutique tour operator in Ecuador. A proven career in the tourism industry pioneering experiential and family travel in Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands. The Sea Star is part of a larger dream, to showcase and protect the God-given natural wonders of Ecuador and offer as many jobs as possible to fellow Ecuadorians.
Captain Wladimir Barsola
Licensed captain by Ecuador marine authority. Has been navigating the Galapagos Islands for over 10 years. Has international license and is ISM certified.
Boutique Yacht, Galapagos Archipelago.
We have built 3 yachts over the past 10 years. Each has been an improvement from the last one. Our yachts have been artisan crafted in the city of Guayaquil – Ecuador. Each element on board has been hand made by a local artisan.
Our yacht the Sea Star Journey was designed in partnership with a marine architect, the initial interior design was done by famed designer Adriana Hoyos. We redesigned the yacht in 2015 with the help of Maria Soledad Vaca who enhanced the uniqueness of the yacht.
Our scope of operation is in Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands, we specialize in offering our guests the ultimate wildlife experience, apart from the Sea Star we operate an Amazon lodge and flora reserve, the catamaran Galapagos Seaman Journey and ILLA Experience hotel in Quito.
GALAPAGOS SEA STAR JOURNEY
History & Story
We are a family business, proud to be a small company, we like to keep things intimate and this is projected in how we deliver our trips, our yacht the Sea Star Journey only carries 16 guests allowing for a more personal experience with the wildlife of the Galapagos archipelago.
The yacht was built by hand entirely, the hull is made of steel and the keel is iron. All interior wood on board is Amarillo (local wood from Ecuador known for its resistance) and Teak wood for all decorative areas. The Sea Star was purpose built for cruising the Galapagos Islands and has been serving cruises around the archipelago since it’s launching in 2011.
From the very start of the build we considered the environment and started by recycling iron from an old cement factory to build the yachts keel. We have taken into account many measures to reduce the impact of our operation on the environment. All grey water on board is treated and filtered, we are proud to say the Sea Star is one of, if not the first yacht, to implement this technology. Our crew and guides are committed to conservation of the Islands and value the opportunity to share this consciousness with travelers from around the globe.
As a yacht is “never” finished building and can constantly be improved we will be completing a new overhaul and redesign in August 2017.
• 2015, September – October.
• 2016, September.
Next Dry dock is scheduled September – October 2017
Initial Design, Adriana Hoyos
Designer for Renewals & Improvements, Maria Soledad Vaca
Main Strengths, Special Touch
Custom built for Galapagos, the Sea Star Journey has been the standard bearer in the developing Galapagos cruise industry, many new yachts have taken the origin of their design from this wonderful lady of the seas.
All suite accommodations with private facilities and A/C. Cabins have ocean views and windows can be opened – eco-conscious passengers have the option of not using the air conditioning. Sun deck has both a shade and sun area and 2 hot tubs, the furnishing of the sun deck is with sun beds and loungers. Features both interior and alfresco dining, and a private dining area for couples. Expedition toys include 8 twin sea kayaks, snorkeling equipment, zodiac tenders.
Privately guided excursions to the most important wildlife visitor sites in the Galapagos Islands.
The Sea Star was crafted for the nature traveler in mind, for guests that still don’t have sea-feet, offering ultimate stability and lots of air throughout, with noble materials and well thought areas. The Sea Star Journey offers more guest space than any other yacht in the archipelago. The yacht was also designed for multigenerational families in mind with connecting cabins and sofa beds for optional triple accommodations.
A hotel manager ensures service on board is world class, a total of 14 crew members give the highest crew – guest ratio on any Galapagos yacht. Naturalist guides are trained to offer the ultimate wildlife experience while educating our guests in conservation.
We have purposely left the yacht without internet access, this serves a double purpose, a digital detox and to avoid the frustration of a terrible connection.
Galapagos Islands, 15 days route in 5 and 6 day segments.
• Segment A (6 days):
San Cristobal (Tortoise reserve), Gardner Bay, Punta Suarez (Española Island), Punta Cormorant, Post office bay (Floreana Island), Santa Fe Island, Plazas Island, North Seymour Island, Bachas Beach (Santa Cruz Island), Mosquera Islet.
• Segment B (5 days):
Baltra, Dragon Hill, Black Turtle Cove (Santa Cruz Island), Chinese Hat Island, Genovesa, Bartolome Island, James Bay (Santiago Island), Tortoise Reserve (Santa Cruz Island), Baltra.
• Segment C (6 days):
Santa Cruz (Darwin Station), Tintoreras (White tipped shark channel), Sierra Negra Volcano, Punta Moreno, Bahia Elizabeth (Isabela Island), Punta Espinoza (Fernandina Island), Tagus Cove (Isabela Island), Espumilla Beach, Puerto Egas (Santiago Island), Isla Lobos, San Cristobal Island.
Key sites/activities in the area
• Española Island: World population of waved Albatross
• Isabela Island: Giant tortoises, Tropical penguins, flightless cormorants
• Genovesa Island: Red footed boobies, nazca boobies, bluefooted boobies
• Santa Cruz Island: Giant tortoises, land and marine iguanas
• Fernandina Island: Snorkel with penguins
• Bartolome Island: Panoramic view of Pinnacle rock and several Galapagos volcanos
• North Seymour Island: Blue Footed booby and Frigate bird nesting site
• Floreana Island: Flamingo lagoon and Post office bay
• Amongst other Islands and sites.
• Nature walks, Snorkeling, Kayaking, Zodiac rides are main activities. Nature lectures compliment the Island excursions.
• Permanent assistance by naturalist guide who offers lectures and guided excursions.
• Snorkeling in Galapagos is just as spectacular as walking on the Islands.
• Animals in Galapagos do not fear humans.
• It is possible to observe dolphins, whales and other species from the comfort of the sun deck.
• Galapagos is the perfect digital detox tour, yachts do not have internet on board.
• Wake up with the view of a different volcanic island each day.
• Special meals include: Pizza, Hot Dogs and whatever is requested.
• Video Game console
• Sofa beds in all cabins
• Connecting Cabins for families
• Children sized snorkeling equipment
• Guests Capacity (smallest vessel and biggest): 16
• Crew (positions): 14 – Captain, 1st Mate, 2nd Mate, Mariner 1, Mariner 2, Mechanic, Assistant Mechanic, Chef, Assistant Cook, Waiter, Bartender, Cabin Boy, Hotel Manager + Guide
• 42 meters
• 10 knots avg.
Floor plans can be observed at www.galapagosseastarjourney.com
• 8 cabins with either king size bed or 2 twin beds that can be joined for a faux king.
• Sea Star Suite 35 sq mts. – 377 sq feet, Galapagos Suites 25 sq. mts. – 270 sq feet
• Private bathrooms and shower compartments
• Connecting cabins for families
• Living room with presentation screen for nature lectures
• Inside Dining room and buffet
• Tv Area and Game console
• Small Book Collection (library)
• Private dining area for couples
• Sun deck
• 360 views from all areas
Restaurants & Bars
We have a main Chef on board and an assistant.
Buffet Breakfast, Buffet Lunch, Served Dinner.
Fresh salads and steamed greens, meals have options of Pork, Veal, Poultry, Fish, Shell fish and are varied. Local cuisine with international standards avoiding meals that may be too exotic. Due to the extensive amount of physical activity guests enjoy, meals are more on the hearty and not so much on the gourmet side. Industrial kitchen, allows for all types of cuisine (Kosher, Vegan, and anything under request) or for boarding guest chefs. Interior dining room for 16 guests (1 seating), Outside dining area for 16 guests (1 seating), private dining area for up to 4 guests (by turns). Possible to enjoy meals on sun deck as well.
2 Bars, main bar at dining area and lounge, secondary bar on sun deck.
Corporate & Celebration Events
Yacht is available for charter and it is possible to customize on board activities to guests preferences. Parties and celebrations are possible, chef can bake cakes and cater to special meal requests. On board experiences can include cooking lessons, photo contests, board games, karaoke.
Itinerary is fixed by the Galapagos National Park and Island activities are limited to exploration and wildlife viewing in the GNP areas. Amateur photography does not require permits, commercial video and photos require a special permit.
No illegal drugs or illegal activities allowed.
Extra Notable Features
• Nature Hikes
• Sea kayaking
• Zodiac rides
• Yoga (under request we can board an instructor for the entire cruise, additional pricing)
• Nature lectures by guide
• Ceviche lessons
• Navigate at night to make the most of daytime hours on the Islands.
Boat and restaurant Awards
Nominated as best boutique yacht in South America in the World Travel Awards.
Galapagos Sea Star Journey Listed as Worlds Best Trip for Galapagos in Travel and Leisure Magazine
Latin Trails won a Magellan Awards Gold, hosted by Travel Weekly.
Latin Trails rated one of the best adventure travel companies on earth by National Geographic Adventure.