Galápagos Wildlife Adventure
Where else in the world can you snorkel with penguins, sharks and sea lions at the same time? Walk in the footsteps of Charles Darwin, exploring one of the most unique environments on the planet! On this “best of the Galapagos” adventure you’ll encounter giant tortoises, blue-footed boobies, land and marine iguanas, Darwin finches, magnificent frigatebirds, penguins, flamingos and more. And that’s just on land! You’ll also have numerous chances to snorkel in waters teaming with tropical fish, playful sea lions, sea turtles, rays and even sharks (but don’t worry, they’re friendly)! Whether your interest is marine biology, geology, photography, or unique and rare wildlife species, a journey to the Galapagos Islands is unlike any other.
Per Person Double Occupancy
Single Supplement: $599
Nov. 6-15, 2021
10 Days / 9 Nights
Depart USA for Ecuador
Upon arrival in Quito, Ecuador, we’ll be met and transferred to our hotel for the evening.
Quito accommodations: Hotel San Jose de Puembo
Fly to Galápagos
After breakfast at our hotel, we’ll head to the airport and depart on our ﬂight to the Galapagos Islands. On arrival in Baltra, we are met by our Naturalist Guide who will accompany us to a wonderful restaurant in the middle of the cloud forest where lunch is waiting. On our way to the restaurant we will stop to visit “Los Gemelos,” which are two pit craters located in the cloud forest to see some of Darwin’s famous ﬁnches and endemic plants of the area. After lunch, we’ll head to our hotel to check in and do a quick snorkel practice in the hotel swimming pool. (B, L, D)
Galapagos accommodations: Hotel Fernandina
Darwin Center – Tortuga Bay
This morning we visit the Charles Darwin Station where we’ll learn about the different conservation programs the Galapagos National Park and Darwin Station are carrying out. We’ll also visit the tortoise breeding center, where we’ll see baby tortoises before they are old enough to go back to their original island. Later this morning we’ll go to one of the most beautiful beaches in the world, Tortuga Bay. Along our walk through a magniﬁcent cactus forest, our naturalist will point out many species of bird, including the Galapagos mockingbird. We’ll enjoy the clear water, swimming, snorkeling and kayaking with a picnic lunch on the beach.
Plenty of Galapagos wildlife can be found here, such as marine iguanas, sea turtles, lava herons, pelicans and ﬁnches. (B, L, D)
Santa Cruz Highlands – Giant Tortoises – Farm Visit
Today we will explore the highlands of Santa Cruz. We travel by bus to the highlands where giant tortoises are found in their natural habitat. Santa Cruz has a population of about 2,000 giant tortoises. Here we will also see a natural lava tube. We will walk this ancient underground lava river for about 30 minutes, exploring the vast geological formation. Our busy morning will end with a delicious lunch in the highlands.
After lunch we’ll stop at a local farm run by a true Galapagos farmer. We’ll see a small coffee, banana and sugarcane plantation and many other interesting plants in the area. (B, L, D)
After some coffee at the hotel, we will travel by bus to the other side of the island where our boat will be waiting. Once onboard, we will have breakfast as we navigate to Bartolome. This hour and 30 minute navigation gives us a good chance to see the playful bottlenose dolphins, jumping rays and hopefully even bigger creatures. Bartolome is one of the most beautiful places in the Galapagos. We’ll hike the 372 steps to see this iconic panorama (pictured above). Along the way we’ll learn about the remarkable pioneer plants growing from the ashes of a recent (1684) lava ﬂow. Later we’ll snorkel in the water surrounding Pinnacle Rock and hopefully swim with penguins and many different ﬁsh. We’ll return to the hotel smiling, happy, tired and ready for more adventure! (B, L)
Today we’ll depart for the island of Santa Fe, one of the oldest islands in the archipelago. Santa Fe’s beach makes quite the impression as it is typically packed with sea lions. Further inland, we’ll walk a path to discover the Galapagos hawk, Santa Fe marine iguana, land iguanas, blue-footed boobies and more.
Later this afternoon after a delicious lunch at sea, we’ll go snorkeling to see rays, turtles, many different types of ﬁsh and playful sea lions. Then we’ll head back to Puerto Ayora where you’ll have dinner on your own this evening. (B, L)
North Seymour – Bachas
Following a delicious breakfast, we depart for North Seymour Island and Bachas Beach. North Seymour Island is the only place where we will see the male frigate bird showing his big red pouch. We’ll also see blue-footed boobies, gulls, marine iguanas and sea lions pups. After our adventure on shore, we’ll return to the boat for lunch.
Following lunch, we navigate to Bachas Beach, a beautiful white coral beach located on the northern side of Santa Cruz Island. This is a sea turtle nesting site where we will also see a ﬂamingo lagoon, mockingbirds, ghost crabs and pelicans. We will have time here for more snorkeling or a stroll along this gorgeous beach and its crystal clear water. Tonight enjoy a farewell feast in town as we say goodbye to our Galapagos Naturalist Guide. (B, L, D)
Fly to Quito
After breakfast we will say goodbye to our new friends in the Galapagos Islands and return to the airport for our ﬂight to mainland Ecuador. We’ll transfer to Quito’s city center and check in to our hotel. Later tonight we gather for a farewell dinner. (B, D)
Quito accommodations: Swissotel
Quito – Overnight Flight Home
After a leisurely morning, we board our bus to tour Quito’s Old Town. The mix of well-preserved colonial churches and convents and shining glass and sleek contemporary architecture makes Quito one of the most beautiful cities in Latin America. Later we will transfer to the airport to check in for our overnight international ﬂight home. (B)
- International airfare from Chicago
- Flights between Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands
- Transfers between airports and hotels
- Hotel accommodations
- All activities as specified in your itinerary
- Expert English-speaking naturalist guides in the Galapagos and tour guide on the mainland
- All meals as speciﬁed in the itinerary (B, L, D indicate the meals included each day)
- Soft drink or water with your meals and a water dispenser with purified water at your hotel in the Galapagos Islands
- Snorkeling gear and a mesh bag
- Galapagos National Park fee
- Immigration card in the Galapagos
- All tips for guides, porters, drivers and included meals
- Complete services of Cruise & Tour including on trip host
- Travel Insurance (travelers must have a minimum of medical-only travel insurance to participate)
- Airline baggage fees (if applicable)
- Any increase in taxes or fees after 1/1/20
- Items of a personal nature such as passport fees, laundry, alcoholic beverages, medical care, etc.
- Meals not speciﬁed in the itinerary
COVID-19 NOTICE: Effective immediately and until further notice, all guests may be required to provide one of the following in order to be able to travel: proof of vaccination, proof of recovery from COVID-19 (based upon a defined time frame specified by entry country), or a negative COVID-19 test result (based upon a defined time frame and test type specified by entry country). Specific requirements will vary by destination governing bodies and travel vendor/operator and are subject to change at any time. Cruise & Tour does not have any control over these requirements. Masks may be required to be worn during portions of your trip and specific requirements will vary by destination governing bodies and travel vendor/operator. Cruise & Tour does not have any control over these requirements. Any costs associated with these requirements shall be at the travelers’ expense. This shall not release the passenger from the cancellation policy or be grounds for adjustment of the price of the travel arrangements reserved.
DEPOSITS AND PAYMENT:
$1000 per person deposit required with your reservation
$2000 per person second deposit due 4/9/21
Final payment due 7/9/21
*Travelers must have a minimum of medical-only travel insurance to participate.
CANCELLATIONS AND REFUNDS:
Initial $1000 deposit refundable through 4/9/21, less a $500 cancellation fee
4/10/21 to 7/9/21: Cancellation charge is 50% of deposits paid
After 7/9/21 or non-appearance on departure day: 100% of cost forfeited
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