The M/SBeagle is named after HMS Beagle that carried Charles Darwin to the Galapagos a century and a half ago. It is a magnificent 105-foot twin screw steel-hulled brigantine with teak decks and beautifully designed interiors. There are six twin cabins, each with its own toilet. The Beagle is in a class itself among the flotilla of sailing yachts in the Galapagos because of her unique beauty and speed.

The Beagle is owned and operated by Augusto Cruz and Georgina Marten Cruz, a couple who has been working together with yachts in the Galapagos since 1981. Augusto was born in the Galapagos and has been working in the trade since 1977. He therefore has an entire lifetime of knowledge of this unique and fascinating archipelago, and guests on The Beagle are immediately aware of the benefits derived from this. Augusto usually greets every group of tourists who arrive before they begin sailing.

A friendly and highly professional crew of six runs each voyage: the captain, helmsman, steward, cook, engineer and the best of the Galapagos’ certified bilingual naturalist guides. The Beagle is a choice gig for guides, and generally the finest of the 100 or so always working the islands accompany this vessel. The guide plans and accompanies all the excursions.

Meals are gourmet caliber and are all bountiful. The cook blends Ecuadorian and continental cuisine with much that is freshly caught. Coffee and tea are always available on deck, as are cold drinks including beer and a selection of wine and cocktails you may purchase from a well stocked bar. Refreshing snacks are put out at teatime.

Because of the owners’ deep concern for the Galapagos conservation, the yacht uses only locally produced goods and services and maintains its main offices on Santa Cruz Island. Unlike many yachts held as a part of a larger company, often managed from abroad, the M/S Beagle is a distinctly Galapagos operation. For these and other reasons, the owners are among a handful of yacht operators to have been awarded the “Smart Voyager Certificate” by the Ecuadorian national parks, granted to yacht operators who have demonstrated rigid adherence to sound conservation practices.