|The M.C. Athala II will be returning to service on Oct. 15, 2011 after undergoing refurbishments. // (c) 2011 Sanctuary Retreats.|
The previous regulations, which allowed tourism groups to visit locations once every seven days, have been altered in order to reduce footfall on major areas in the islands while providing a larger time frame for tourists to visit more locations then they would have previously been able to.
“The Galapagos Islands is a luxury area with an increasing trend of interest,” said David Spooner, EVP of marketing at Sanctuary Retreats. “The changes that have been recently made to the Galapagos have been done in order to balance conservationism with tourism by opening up more areas while limiting traffic in them.”
The increase in time frame for footfalls will also reduce the number of ships traveling through the Galapagos at any given time, and also opens up new areas for tourists to visit. “People who went through the islands before won’t have seen everything,” said Spooner. “There is much more to be done now.”
To take advantage of the changed regulations, Sanctuary is now offering two seven-night itineraries that comprise different locations of the Galapagos Islands. The first of these itineraries is the seven-night Genovesa cruise, which visits Punta Espinoza, Black Turtle Cove, Rabida Island, Isabela Island, Fernandina Island, Targus Cove, Genovesa Island, Bartolome Island, and Santa Cruz Island.
The second itinerary, the seven-night Espanola cruise, visits North Seymour Island, South Plaza Island, Santa Fe Island, San Cristobal Island, Floreanna Island, Isabela Island, Santa Cruz Island, and Espanola Island.
Sanctuary Retreats is also introducing the M.C. Athala, an eight-cabin ship designed for small, intimate groups, with the M.C. Athala II scheduled to re-launch again Oct. 15 after completing refurbishments. The 48-passenger M.V. Eclipse is also available to accommodate a larger crew.
For more information on Sanctuary Retreats and their voyages to the Galapagos, as well as safari getaways, visit www.sanctuaryretreats.com.