TORONTO — Peregrine Adventures’ very first new-build expedition vessel is officially up and running with voyages sailing the Galapagos.
Considered one of the most sustainable ships operating in the destination, the Grand Queen Beatriz departed on its maiden voyage from Puerto Baquerizo Morena in San Cristobal on July 1. The voyage was a combination of Peregrine’s 10-day ‘Classic Galapagos’ and six-day ‘Galapagos Encounter’, which included a hike on Bartolome, wildlife viewing at Plaza Sur and Santa Fe, and encounters with giant tortoise at San Cristobal.
The custom-built vessel offers sailings as part of the company’s growing small-ship Adventure Cruising program, which according to Peregrine has grown 35% year to date.
According to Filippos Venetopoulos, Peregrine’s Adventure Cruising general manager, Queen Bea, as it’s become known, was launched in response to demand from environmentally conscious travellers in the region. It boasts solar panels to assist with power generation, and was designed by a local boat builder who made use of local materials.
“While we have been cruising the Galapagos for more than 20 years, now that we have our own boat we can offer an even more authentic Peregrine experience at sea, a small group of no more than 16 guests, an immersive experience focusing on discovery and education, comfort and space, insightful and attentive guides, and the newest and most sustainable cruise experience available in the region,” he said.
The 98-foot vessel features nine cabins with outward-facing windows and ensuite bathrooms, which on average are double the size of similar accommodation found on other boats in the Galapagos. The 300-tonne boat is also home to a dining room, two bars, lounge and TV area, as well as a sun deck, Jacuzzi and private balcony room on the upper deck.
Grand Queen Beatriz is offering a combination of six-, 10-, 13- and 17-day Galapagos itineraries departing from Quito with the six-day ‘Galapagos Encounter Central Islands’, priced from $3,514 per person, twin share. It will also offer Peregrine’s new 13-day ‘Treasures of the Galapagos – Western & Central Islands’ itinerary.
All trips are accompanied by Peregrine Adventures’ local leaders and include onboard kayaks, all transfers and excursions and most meals.
Peregrine Adventures is part of the Intrepid Group, and operates small group tours that are ideal for travellers aged 45 and over.