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The Galapagos Islands | Ecuador | South America
FROM: NZD $16,465 pp
Wilds of Ecuador - 16 days map

Embark on an incredible adventure through the wilds of Ecuador from the lush Amazon rainforest to the volcanic islands of the Galapagos, teeming with endemic species. Explore colonial Quito, cross the Equator, shop till you drop at Otavalo market and soak up the grandeur of Cuenca. journey through the El Cajas National Park before embarking on a 4 night Galapagos cruise aboard a luxury yacht.

Inclusions
Itinerary
Prices & Dates
Hotels

Trip Highlights

Quito and the Centre of the World – tour this UNESCO-listed colonial city and a visit to the Equatorial Monument
Otavalo – visit the vibrant handicraft markets
El Cajas National Park - marvel at glacial lakes and small forests of quinua trees
San Cristóbal Island – see the colony of bachelor sea lions at Punta Pitt and take a walk along Cerro Brujo’s white coral beach
South Plaza Island – discover striking black lava rock formations and bright orange ‘Sally Lightfoot’ crabs
Española Island – see the bird colonies of Punta Suárez and a stroll along Gardener Bay
The Amazon Rainforest – spend three nights at a lodge, spot wildlife on jungle excursions on foot and by boat
Cuenca – discover this beautiful colonial city with traditional architecture and houses overhanging the Rio Tomebamba
The Galapagos – join an unforgettable five day cruise around the eastern islands
Santa Fe Island – spot the endemic land iguana and visit Cerro Colorado giant tortoise breeding centre
Santa Cruz Island - visit the world famous Charles Darwin Research Station

Included

All touring and excursions in Galapagos on a shared basis
4 night/5 day Eastern Islands Galapagos Cruise aboard the La Pinta yacht in a luxury twin/double cabin. Cruise includes all meals, soft drinks, island sightseeing, naturalist guides and lecture services, wet suit rental and snorkelling gear
All airport transfers (on a shared basis)
Services of professional English-speaking naturalist guides in the Galapagos
Guided tour of Quito, El Cajas National Park and Otavalo
3 economy flights - Quito to Coca, Coca to Quito and Quito to Cuenca
8 nights STANDARD accommodation and 3 nights at the Sacha Lodge, Amazon. Upgrading to SUPERIOR or DELUXE accommodation options are also available upon request. Accommodation rating – See Trip Notes for details
15 breakfasts, 10 lunches and 7 dinners
Services of local English-speaking specialist guides for sightseeing excursions
Entrance fees to sites visited as per itinerary unless otherwise stated
All relevant transfers and transportation (please note Guayaquil transfers for flights to / from Galapagos are on a shared basis)

Not Included

International flights, Galapagos flights and visa
Tipping – an entirely personal gesture
Entrance Fees: USD$120pp Galapagos park fee & transit card, paid in USD
Galapagos National Park entrance fee - US$100pp and Migration Control Card - US$20pp, pay locally
Galapagos fuel surcharge US$80pp, pay locally

Itinerary

Day 1

Quito

Bienviendos a Ecuador! Upon arrival you will be met at the international airport and take a scheduled transfer to your hotel in Quito where the rest of the day is free.
Overnight: Quito

Day 2

Quito and the Centre of the World

This morning visit downtown Quito and its architectural treasures on a private city tour. Quito’s UNESCO-listed colonial quarter is one of the largest and best-preserved in South America. Your stroll takes you through Independence Plaza, past the Cathedral and the Presidential Palace, and on to the temple of La Compañia de Jesús with its dazzling gilded interior and the impressive façade of the Monastery of San Francisco. Touring continues with the Equatorial Monument that marks the exact point of the Middle of the World. With a latitude of 0°, you can stand with a foot in each hemisphere and collect a certificate for having crossed the Equator. Next visit the Ethnographic Museum to learn about the different Native American groups living in Ecuador.
Overnight: Quito  |  Breakfast

Days 3-5

The mighty Amazon

Quito – Amazon. A scenic flight over the majestic Andes mountains followed by a motorised canoe ride along the Napo River brings you to your stunning jungle lodge. Over the next three days you will have plenty of opportunities to discover the pristine Ecuadorian rainforest and its colourful characters. During the day venture out into the wilds for wildlife spotting and outdoor activities and at night share your stories with the other guests at the lodge as the sounds of the jungle create your very own soundtrack.

Swim in the local lakes, observe bird species from the mini observational towers, visit the vibrant butterfly house and explore the jungle at night on foot or by boat looking out for the glowing orange eyes of the black caiman. There’ll also be numerous hiking trails available along the Rio Napo or deep into the rainforest and for those looking for a bird’s eye view, the canopy walkway is the perfect vertigo-inducing experience.
Overnight: Amazon Jungle - Ecuador  |  Breakfast x 3, Lunch x 3, Dinner x 3

Days 6-7

Otavalo Market

Amazon – Quito – Otavalo – Quito. After your final breakfast in the Amazon, take an easy walk on the boardwalk to watch monkeys one last time before departing your jungle lodge and heading back to Quito by plane. On arrival you will take a scheduled transfer to your hotel. The rest of the day is free.

On day 7 enjoy an excursion to the market town of Otavalo. A stunning journey through dramatic Andean scenery brings you to your first stop of the day, the small town of Calderón popular for the bread dough figurines sculpted into many shapes and sizes. Continue along the valleys of Guayllabamba and Cayambe to arrive at Otavalo in time for the famous market of local handicrafts. It’s the perfect time for souvenir shopping with stalls piled high with ponchos, scarves, blankets, woven belts (fajas), handbags and much more. Next stop is the traditional Indian village of Peguche where artisans weave in their homes. Lunch is taken at one of the charming haciendas in the area.
Overnight: Quito  |  Breakfast x 2, Lunch x 1

Days 8-9

Cuenca

Quito – Cuenca. This morning a scheduled transfer takes you to the airport in Quito for your flight to Cuenca, the colonial jewel of the south. Considered to be one of Ecuador’s most beautiful cities, Cuenca is surrounded by the Cullca hills to the north and Turi to the south. Spend the next two days independently exploring Cuenca at leisure. Head down to the Rio Tomebamba to see the overhanging houses lining the slopes and colourful laundry hanging out to dry or wander through the colonial heart of the city and marvel at the UNESCO-listed architecture. You might also want to bag yourself a Panama hat from a local outlet.
Overnight: Cuenca  |  Breakfast x 2

Day 10

El Cajas National Park

Cuenca – Guayaquil. Departing Cuenca this morning journey through the El Cajas National Park, an expanse of glacial lakes, Andean cloud forests and volcanic peaks, on a private excursion. Stop for a stroll at Llaviucu Lake and to admire the views at La Toreadora Lake. Later continue to the coastal city of Guayaquil. The rest of the day is free for you to explore the numerous barrios, each with their own distinct flavour.
Overnight: Guayaquil  |  Breakfast, Lunch

Day 11

The beautiful Galapagos

Guayaquil – Baltra Island. Early this morning take transfer to the airport for your flight to Baltra Island in the Galapagos where you will be met and transferred to the dock to board Yacht La Pinta to embark on your 4 night Eastern Galapagos cruise. After a welcome introductory briefing and lunch set sail to the small, lava-formed island of South Plaza where the turquoise waters contrast brilliantly with the white sand and black rock of the shoreline littered with bright orange ‘Sally Lightfoot’ crabs. Along the coastline spot sea lion colonies and sea birds.

Please note: Galapagos flight are not included but we can book them upon request.
Overnight: Galapagos Islands  |  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 12

Santa Fe Island

Take the dinghy over to idyllic Santa Fe Island today. The sandy white beaches of Santa Fe Island are home to numerous male sea lion harems and Galapagos hawks perched atop salt bushes and giant prickly pear cactus. After a walk there's the opportunity to go snorkelling or enjoy a ride on a glass-bottom boat.

Have lunch onboard before disembarking at Puerto Baquerizo Moreno, the island’s capital and driving to Cerro Colorado. Here you'll visit the breeding centre for endangered giant tortoises in a spectacular deciduous forest, home to dozens of bird species.
Overnight: Galapagos Islands  |  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 13

San Cristobal Island

Visit San Cristobal Island this morning and stroll along the trail that ascends from the beach to enjoy spectacular views of the shoreline, spotting frigates and a colony of bachelor sea lions. After the walk there's the opportunity to enjoy a beach and snorkel.

In the afternoon, after lunch onboard, visit the beautiful white coral beach at Cerro Brujo, where Charles Darwin visited in 1835. On the beach spot seabirds, shore bird and look out for Galapagos sea lions.
Overnight: Galapagos Islands  |  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 14

Punta Suarez

Enjoy a morning outing to Punta Suárez for an exciting walk over lava and boulder terrain to visit unique sea bird colonies of waved albatross, Nazca boobies and swallow-tail gulls. Among its land birds the Hood Island mockingbird, Galápagos doves and three species of Darwin’s finches are common highlights. In the afternoon explore the white coral beach of Gardener Bay to observe sea lions. There’s also the chance to swim, snorkel or ride aboard the glass-bottom boat.
Overnight: Galapagos Islands  |  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 15

Charles Darwin Centre

Baltra Island – Guayaquil. Disembarking at Santa Cruz this morning, visit the Charles Darwin Research Station and the captive rearing programme for the giant tortoises. Then transfer by bus across Santa Cruz Island and take a short ferry ride to Baltra. Transfer to the airport for your flight back to the coastal city of Guayaquil on the mainland. Upon arrival take a scheduled transfer to your hotel for the night.
Overnight: Guayaquil  |  Breakfast, Lunch

Day 16

Guayaquil

Today marks the end of your incredible journey through the wilds of Ecuador. After breakfast and hotel check out you will take a scheduled transfer to the airport in time for your onward international departure flight.
Breakfast

Prices & Dates

Prices shown are per person when there are 2 persons sharing a room. The 'Single Room' price is applicable when a single room is required, based on a travelling party of at least 2 adults.

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Available
Contact us to book
Not Available
2023
Twin Share
Single Room
NZD $16,465
NZD $22,885
NZD $16,465
NZD $22,885
NZD $16,465
NZD $22,885
NZD $16,465
NZD $22,885
NZD $16,465
NZD $22,885
NZD $16,465
NZD $22,885
NZD $16,465
NZD $22,885
NZD $16,465
NZD $22,885
NZD $16,465
NZD $22,885
NZD $16,465
NZD $22,885
NZD $16,465
NZD $22,885
NZD $16,465
NZD $22,885
NZD $16,465
NZD $22,885
NZD $16,465
NZD $22,885
NZD $16,465
NZD $22,885
NZD $16,465
NZD $22,885
NZD $16,465
NZD $22,885
NZD $16,465
NZD $22,885
NZD $16,465
NZD $22,885
NZD $16,465
NZD $22,885
NZD $16,465
NZD $22,885

Hotels

The hotels listed below are ones which we frequently use on this tour. We reserve the right to substitute these hotels to ones of a similar standard.

La Pinta Luxury Yacht, Galapagos Islands

Our Category: Deluxe   |   Regional Category: 5 star cruise boat

La Pinta is a luxury vessel, featuring some of the largest cabins in the Galapagos, complete with floor-to-ceiling windows, spacious interiors and an overall design that minimizes the possibility of seasickness. Above all, this Yacht offers you the true definition of luxury in the Archipelago: full, unmitigated access. Small groups (average just 12 guests or fewer per guide) are guaranteed and all the required equipment is ready and set for your convenience: a Glass-bottom boat, kayaks, snorkeling equipment, and large and comfortable pangas. The ideal vessel for exploring the Galapagos in the most comfortable, stylish way. Join the guides in the lounge for nightly briefings about the next day’s activities. On the following day, visit the national park on carefully planned excursions. There's an outdoor terrace for dining when weather permits and an observation deck which is perfect for equatorial stargazing. Relax in the hot tub, work out in the cardio-gym, or lounge on the sun deck.

At a Glance

Range
Trip Type
Starts
Quito
Ends
Guayaquil
Departs
Mondays
Group Size
Min 2 / Max N/A
Hotel Rating
Standard hotels (superior & deluxe available on request). Plus 4 nights on board luxury yacht La Pinta
Tour Guide
Yes - for all included sightseeing
Meals
Breakfast: 15, Lunch: 10, Dinner: 7
Countries
Minimum Age
5 yrs, accompanied by an adult
Arr. Transfer
Yes
Dep. Transfer
Yes
Misty clouds over the Amazon Jungle in Ecuador
Brightly coloured textiles at a market in Otavalo
Charming town of Cuenca, fringed with rugged wilderness
Marine iguana on a rock on the Galapagos Islands
Marine iguana on a rock on the Galapagos Islands
Marine iguana on a rock on the Galapagos Islands
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