Galápagos Wildlife Adventure
In 1976 I visited the Galapagos Islands and immediately fell in love. Where else in the world can you snorkel with penguins, sharks and sea lions at the same time? 16 excursions later and the Galapagos is still as amazing as that first time. It’s the wildlife that makes the Galapagos so special. Wildlife that has evolved without fear of humans. I am continuously amazed by these breathtaking creatures that you can view so close up!
On October 13, 2018 we’ll depart the U.S. to 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: $459
October 13-21, 2018
9 Days / 8 Nights
Depart USA for Ecuador
Upon arrival in Guayaquil Ecuador, we’ll be met and transferred to our hotel for the evening.
Guayaquil accommodations: Hotel Ramada
Fly to Galápagos
After breakfast at our hotel we’ll transfer 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. We will see the Scalecia forest, which is related to the sunflower, and we will see some of the famous Darwin finches and endemic plants of the area. Following lunch, we will go to our hotel, 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 a few of the Darwin finches. We’ll enjoy the clear water, swimming, snorkeling, kayaking, sunbathing and relaxing, with lunch on the beach. Much 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 through private farmland to a place in the highlands where giant tortoises are found in their natural habitat. Santa Cruz has a population of about 2,000 giant tortoises. We’ll also see another natural wonder, a lava tube and we will walk underground for about 30 minutes to enjoy this 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 Adriano Cabrera, who is a true Galapagos farmer. Mr. Cabrera will share with us his vast knowledge as a long time farmer. We’ll see a small coffee, banana and sugar-cane 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 one hour and thirty minute navigation gives us a good chance to see the playful bottlenose dolphins, jumping rays and hopefully, bigger creatures.
Bartolome is one of the most beautiful places in the Galapagos. The island is famous for Pinnacle Rock, wonderful volcanic views, pioneer plants, the Galapagos penguins and of course a beautiful golden beach. After walking, we may go into the water to explore the diverse marine life and hopefully swim with penguins and many different fish. We return to the hotel smiling, happy, tired and ready for more adventure! (B, L, D)
Day at Leisure
Today is a day that you can do as little or as much as you want. If you’re looking for adventure, there is much to choose from. Go scuba diving, deep sea fishing, kayaking in the harbor, biking and more. You could also spend your day at leisure, exploring the charming downtown of Puerto Ayora, shopping, or even get a massage. The choice is yours. (B)
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. After our adventure on shore, we’ll return to the boat, change clothes and go snorkeling to explore the marine life. We will see countless tropical fish and sometimes small sharks.
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 a second snorkel, or a stroll down 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 Guayaquil
Following breakfast we will say goodbye to our new friends in the Galapagos Islands and return to the airport on Baltra for our flight to mainland Ecuador. Lunch is served aboard our flight to Guayaquil. After we claim our luggage, we’ll check back into our hotel.
This afternoon we’ll head out to see a little bit of downtown Guayaquil, including Santa Ana Hill and “Las Peñas”, one of the most traditional and bohemian neighborhoods in Guayaquil. (B, L, D)
Guayaquil accommodations: Hotel Ramada
We will transfer to the airport to check in for our international flight home. (B)
- International airfare
- Flights between Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands
- Transfers between airports and hotels
- Hotel accommodations
- All activities as specified in the itinerary
- Expert English speaking naturalist guides in the Galapagos and tour guide on the mainland
- All meals as specified in the itinerary
- 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
- Tips for guides, porters, drivers and included meals
- Travel insurance
- Any increase in air tax, fuel surcharge or park fee after 10/9/17
- Items of a personal nature such as passport fees, laundry, alcoholic beverages, medical care, etc.
- Meals not specified in the itinerary
DEPOSITS AND PAYMENT: A $500 per person deposit is required at the time of booking. A second deposit in the amount of $1000 per person is due 3/16/2018. Final payment is due 6/15/2018. Your first deposit may be paid by credit card, check or cash. Please be advised: SECOND DEPOSIT AND FINAL PAYMENT IS PAYABLE BY CHECK OR CASH ONLY.
CANCELLATIONS AND REFUNDS: All cancellations must be in writing and will not be acted upon or acknowledged until received at the offices of Cruise & Tour. For cancellations in writing on or before 3/16/2018, a $300 per person cancellation fee applies. From 3/17/2018 to 6/5/2018, the cancellation charge is 50% of deposits paid. After 6/5/2018, 100% of the cost of your travel arrangements is forfeited. This policy supersedes any other published cancellation and refund policy. If flights are purchased other than the designated group flights, separate airline penalties apply. If any other arrangements outside of the group package have been made, penalties may apply and are not the responsibility of Cruise & Tour. Cruise & Tour reserves the right to process refunds in separate transactions or by check. Cruise & Tour strongly recommends the purchase of RoamRight Travel Insurance. For cancellations and refunds within the covered terms of the RoamRight Travel Insurance Policy, you must apply to RoamRight Insurance for your refund (less the cost of insurance) in accordance with policy terms and conditions. Please allow 6-8 weeks for processing by RoamRight.
How to Book
- Call Cruise & Tour at (800) 383-3131 or REQUEST A CALL
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- You will receive an email with a link to our online registration form
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Travel Insurance Information
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SPECIAL NOTE: Travel outside of the U.S. requires a passport with an expiration date six months or more beyond your return date. If you have a valid passport, please include a copy of the picture page with your completed reservation form. See below for more information on passport application or renewal. The name on your reservation must match the first and last name on your passport. Non-U.S. citizens must consult the appropriate consulates to determine if any visas are needed and are responsible for obtaining all visas and entry documents.