14 Day Galapagos Islands & Kaleidoscope of Ecuador

14 Day Galapagos Islands & Kaleidoscope of Ecuador


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Please Note: Land Price does not include airfare, departure or arrival transfers, airline taxes and fuel surcharges.

Overview

Dates & Prices

*Please Note: This vacation includes an internal air component which will not be discounted from the listed price below.
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From
Thu, Dec 12, 2019
To
Wed, Dec 25, 2019
Deals$3,799$4,399Get Quote
* Discount not applicable for internal flights

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Itinerary

Tour Itinerary

Your Galapagos itinerary may vary according to weather conditions, seasonal changes, safety issues and wildlife migration patterns.

DAY 1, Thursday - Depart for Ecuador
Depart for Ecuador. Arrive in Guayaquil and transfer to your hotel. Balance of the day is at leisure
Overnight: Guayaquil

DAY 2, Friday - Galapagos Islands, Baltra, Santa Cruz
Embark this morning on a journey to the Galapagos Archipelago of volcanic islands, five million years in the making. Your flight from Guayaquil takes you to Baltra Airport; you’ll be met by your naturalist guides and transferred by boat to Santa Cruz Island. Here, you visit the Giant Tortoise Reserve and see their natural habitat - a once in a lifetime experience! Tortoises can be seen grazing on the vegetation, wallowing in muddy banks or in the small red ponds. The area is teeming with wildlife - woodpecker finches, mockingbirds, flycatchers, as well as ducks, herons, and gallinules. After a stop for lunch, on to Puerto Ayora, the most developed town in the Galapagos Islands, where you board the Finch Panga that takes you to Finch Bay, an eco-friendly resort-hotel in a private seaside location surrounded by mangroves, your home for the next three nights. The rest of the day is at leisure to enjoy the hotel's pool, natural spa, white coral beach or admire the view from the comfort of your hammock. Tonight, savor dinner highlighted by local delicacies
Overnight: Galapagos
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 3, Saturday - Excursion to Divine Bay, Charles Darwin Research Station
Today, head by boat to wildlife-rich Divine Bay, that lies a short distance away from Academy Bay and Puerto Ayora. Noddy terns, herons, marine iguanas, blue-footed boobies and Galapagos brown pelicans are commonly seen here. This morning’s visit includes snorkeling on a calm section of the cove and swimming in Playa Punta Estrada. Afterward, a dry landing and a short walk will lead you to the south shore of the island, to a small beach called Playa de los Perros (Dog Beach). This is a great place to see intertidal organisms and learn more about the rich sea life of the Galapagos. Return to the Finch Bay hotel for lunch, followed by an afternoon visit to the Charles Darwin Research Station and the Fausto Llerena Giant Tortoise Breeding Centre. Gain insight into the huge efforts being made by scientists, guides, rangers and park managers to preserve this UNESCO World Heritage Site. Dinner tonight is at the hotel
Overnight: Galapagos
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 4, Sunday - North Seymour Island
You’ll be transported on your yacht, The Sea Lion, to North Seymour Island, lifted from the ocean floor by a seismic event. Cliffs that are only a few feet high form the shoreline, where swallow-tailed gulls sit perched on ledges and a tiny forest of silver-grey Palo Santo trees stand just above the landing. This island is teeming with life! You might have to give right-of-way to a passing sea lion or a marine iguana. Along the way, perhaps you may see the famous Galapagos blue-footed booby nesting beside the trail or spot flocks of pelicans in a feeding frenzy. Keep on the lookout for the magnificent frigate bird, with its puffed- up scarlet throat sack, perched in low bushes watching over their chicks. After your enlightening walking excursion, you return to Finch Bay for leisure time. Enjoy dinner at the hotel
Overnight: Galapagos
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 5, Monday - Port of Baltra, Flight to Guayaquil
Depart the Finch Bay Hotel. On your way to Baltra, stop at the Twin Pit Craters to view the great depressions of volcanic material formed by a long process of the sinking ground, and the exceptional view of Scalesia trees, ferns, mosses, and orchids. Then, proceed to the airport for the flight to Guayaquil. Arrive late afternoon in Ecuador's sprawling and vivacious port city. Transfer to the hotel. Evening is at leisure in Guayaquil
Overnight: Guayaquil
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 6, Tuesday - Guayaquil City Tour
Begin your tour of Guayaquil at Seminario Park, famous for its many green iguanas living within the trees and ornate gardens. Then, view the contrasting architecture of the city's Neo-Gothic Cathedral, Moorish clock tower, La Rotonda Monument and climb up the 444 steps to Santa Ana hill in Las Peñas neighborhood to enjoy panoramic views of the city. The afternoon is yours to explore Malecón 2000, the city's gleaming new riverside development, which incorporates shops, restaurants, a landmark museum, and several of the city's most famous monuments. Tonight, join your Tour Manager for an orientation meeting on the wonderful tour that awaits you in Ecuador. Meet your fellow travelers and share a Welcome Dinner with delicious Ecuadorian food
Overnight: Guayaquil
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 7, Wednesday - Chocolate Tasting & Cuenca
Travel today from Guayaquil to Cuenca, one of the country's most beautiful cities. En route, stop at a Cocoa (Cacao) Plantation for a tour and demonstration of the process that begins after the beans are picked from the cocoa trees. Ecuador is a major producer of cacao worldwide with chocolate as one of their thriving exports. Afterward, drive up to Tres Cruces in the Andean mountains and savor lunch at a lodge nestled between lakes and mountains. Continue with a drive along the country roads, passing indigenous people in their colorful clothes wearing the customary fedoras. Arrive in Cuenca, set 8,400 feet up in the majestic Andes. Enjoy the rest of the day in this enchanting city with its red tiled roofs, cobblestone streets and plazas adorned with flowers
Overnight: Cuenca
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 8, Thursday - Orchid Nursery and Colonial Cuenca
Today in the small town of Gualaceo, attend a weaving and dying demonstration that will teach you about traditional textiles. Next, visit an Orchid nursery and meet with one of the orchid growers that produces and exports thousands of orchids annually. Learn about the cultivation process and see the vibrant array of orchids that are raised here. Return to Colonial Cuenca, where your tour of the city begins at the Plaza and Church of San Sebastian, built in the 17th century, with its magnificent carved door. Arrive at the stark white Church of El Carmen de la Asunción, founded in 1682, an important historical building lovingly preserved in its original condition, with its beautiful baroque façade. See the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception on the Plaza Calderón, considered the most important religious monument in the city. View the contrast between the two cathedrals when you visit the Old Cathedral which served as the main place of worship for the Spaniards during the colonial period and contains original paintings and sculptures from that era. Then, walk along the winding cobblestone lanes to the main square with its stunning architecture accented by wrought-iron balconies, tiny quaint parks, and romantic plazas. The center of Cuenca was declared a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site. Spend the rest of the day at leisure admiring the panorama of the city or enjoy the international restaurants, art galleries, and outdoor cafés surrounded by the magnificent architecture
Overnight: Cuenca
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 9, Friday - Ride the "Devil’s Nose" Train, Riobamba
An adventurous day! Drive from Cuenca to the small town of Alausi. Arrive at the train station to board the world-famous "Devil’s Nose" train that takes you on a thrilling ride that zigzags up and down steep slopes, through scenic river valleys and along the wall of rock named Nariz del Diablo, the Devil’s Nose. Sit back, and enjoy this extraordinary experience. Return back to Alausi and have lunch at a local restaurant. Afterwards, travel to Riobamba for dinner and overnight
Overnight: Riobamba
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 10, Saturday - Devil's Cauldron Waterfall, Amazon Lodge
This morning, visit the powerful Devil's Cauldron (El Pailon del Diablo)* one of Ecuador's most striking waterfalls, hidden in the Ecuadorian rainforest. After a box lunch, travel to Ahuano. Along the way, stop for a fascinating visit at a local Quechua community interpretation center to learn about life and survival in the Amazon. Enjoy the sounds, the serenity, and the magnificent foliage as you begin your exploration of the unique Amazon culture. After, you travel to La Punta Ahuano, a tiny port on the north bank of the Napo River, where you board a canoe that takes you to your Lodge** situated on the Napo River. You'll be able to spot many species of birds along the way. Tonight, join your fellow travelers for dinner at the lodge*This is an active hike to and from El Pailon del Diablo waterfall **Upon arrival the lodge is approximately a 5-10 minute walk uphill from where passengers will exit the canoe. Passengers are required to transport their own carry-on luggage
Overnight: Amazon
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 11, Sunday - Nature Trail Hike, Leisure Time at the Lodge
This morning, after a canoe ride you can hike in the Misicocha Private Nature Reserve for approximately two hours while viewing the beautiful flora and fauna up-close. The Amazon rainforest is the world's largest ecosystem, so be sure to keep an eye out for the innumerable species of tropical plants and insects. Enjoy the views as you cross suspended bridges and fly through the jungle on a short zip line basket ride. At the end of the hike, take a rafting trip on a traditional balsa log raft*. Balance of the day is at leisure or, choose to participate in one of the optional tours, including the Butterfly Farm & Balsa Wood Carving Demonstration, Cacao Farm & AmaZOOnico Rescue Center or Canopy Adventure Park*This is an active hike and sections of the path include steps. Also, those who participate in the rafting trip will need to step through the water to reach the raft and will get wet during the ride
Optional: Butterfly Farm & Balsa Wood Demonstration
Optional: Cacao Farm & AmaZOOnico Rescue
Optional: Canopy Adventure Park
Overnight: Amazon
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 12, Monday - San Isidro Lodge, Hummingbird Park, Quito
Depart the Amazon this morning by canoe. Then, continue by motor coach to the picturesque San Isidro Lodge, a paradise for hummingbird lovers and photographers. Walk along the scenic trails, stopping to see over 14 different species of hummingbirds. After lunch, head towards Quito, the historic masterpiece in the high Andes, at the base of the Pichincha Volcano. Arrive at the hotel in this city aptly called "an urban jewel", with its priceless treasures of art and architecture. Tonight, get acquainted with the city's wide choice of world-class restaurants, cafes and shops
Overnight: Quito
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 13, Tuesday - Quito City Tour, Middle of the World Monument
Discover Quito's colonial quarter, the largest and best preserved in Latin America, designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Begin at Independence Plaza, flanked by the Metropolitan Cathedral, the Presidential Palace, the Municipal Building and the Archbishop's Palace. Continue to the Metropolitan Cultural Center with its exhibits highlighting Ecuadorian culture and rich history. Visit the La Compania Church with its beautiful gilded interior, or, the Monastery of San Francisco, one of the great religious buildings of the New World with its impressive façade and atrium. Continue to the Middle of the World Monument at the Equator, which marks latitude 0 °. Here, you can stand with one foot in each hemisphere! After lunch at a local restaurant, return to Quito for leisure time. There is so much to see in this city with its lovely markets, shops, cafes and excellent local cuisine. Bid farewell to your Tour Manager and new-found friends on your last day in Ecuador at a Farewell Dinner
Overnight: Quito
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 14, Wednesday - Depart Ecuador
Transfer to the airport for your departure flightSome flights depart shortly after midnight in the very early morning of Day 14 and will require a transfer on Day 13. Transfers depart the hotel approximately 4 hours prior to flight time
Meals: Breakfast

Due to the high elevation, travel in the Ecuadorian Andes may cause some passengers to experience the temporary effects of altitude sickness. If you have any concerns about traveling to higher than your accustomed elevation, please consult your healthcare provider.

Please Note: Land Price does not include airfare, departure or arrival transfers, airline taxes and fuel surcharges.

OR Call Us For a Free Quote 1-800-935-2620

Inclusions

Please Note: Land Price does not include airfare, departure or arrival transfers, airline taxes and fuel surcharges.

Part-Escorted Package Includes

  • Flights Miami-Guayaquil, Quito-Miami
    Some departure dates may be offered from an alternate nearby airport. Check flight itinerary options when booking.
    Other departure cities available.
  • Airline taxes & fuel surcharges
  • All intra-flights: Guayaquil-Baltra & Baltra-Guayaquil
  • 13 nights accommodations
  • 3 nights Guayaquil
  • 3 nights Galapagos Islands
  • 2 nights Cuenca
  • 1 night Riobamba
  • 2 nights Punta Ahuano (Amazon)
  • 2 nights Quito
  • Hotel taxes, fees, & service charges
  • Hotel porterage
  • All transfers included only with airfare purchase on package arrival & departure dates†
  • 30 meals: 13 breakfasts, 9 lunches, 8 dinners
  • Services of English-speaking local guides
  • Services of English-speaking naturalist guides in the Galapagos (Day 2-4)
  • Shore Excursions
  • Galapagos National Park Fee of $100
  • Galapagos Transit Control Card fee of $20
  • Sightseeing per itinerary in modern air-conditioned motor coach
  • Services of English-speaking tour manager (Days 5-13)
  • Services of English-speaking local guides
  • Entrance fees per itinerary
  • Special Features

  • Embark on a journey to the beginning of time in the Galapagos Archipelago of volcanic islands
  • Tour the Charles Darwin Research Center to learn about their preservation goals
  • Explore areas with blue-footed boobies, frigate birds and sea lions
  • In the old center of Guayaquil, visit Seminario Park, with its colonial atmosphere
  • Enjoy a tour, demonstration and chocolate tasting at a cocoa plantation
  • Learn about the cultivation of orchids in the small town of Gualaceo
  • Discover the charm of Cuenca, a city located high in the Andean Mountains
  • Ride the "Devil’s Nose" train from Alausi to Sibambe
  • Spend two nights at an Amazon Lodge discovering the area's flora and fauna
  • Visit a Quechua community interpretation center in the riverside village of Ahuano
  • Visit Colonial Quito and walk through its cobblestone streets
  • Excursion to the Middle of the World Monument
  • †Transfers are available for purchase for land only or on alternative flight dates

    *Not Included:
    Optional tours and gratuities.


    Additional Information:
    Land only price does not include arrival/departure transfers.

    Some flights depart shortly after midnight in the very early morning of Day 14 and will require a transfer on Day 13. Transfers depart the hotel approximately 4 hours prior to flight time.

    Passport numbers for all passengers must be submitted before documents can be issued.

    The route and program may vary according to weather conditions, seasonal changes, safety issues and wildlife migration patterns. Wildlife and visits listed in the itinerary are based upon optimal conditions and therefore subject to change.

    Sturdy shoes are recommended for this program.


    Accommodation Details:
    Triple Rooms cannot be accommodated on this program.

    OR Call Us For a Free Quote 1-800-935-2620

    Accommodations

    Unipark Hotel
    This first class hotel overlooks Parque Seminario, which is also known as Iguanas Park for the large population of iguanas that live there.

    Finch Bay Hotel
    This first class hotel is just steps from the beach, nestled in a very private location.

    Unipark Hotel
    This first class hotel overlooks Parque Seminario, which is also known as Iguanas Park for the large population of iguanas that live there.

    Hotel Oro Verde Cuenca
    This first class hotel is about a ten minute ride away from Cuenca's historic downtown.

    Hosteria La Andaluza
    This first class hotel has lovely views of Chimborazo.

    Casa del Suizo
    This tourist class lodge is located in the Ecuadorian Amazon in a lush tropical and tranquil setting on the banks of the Napo River.

    Hilton Colon Quito
    This deluxe hotel is located in the heart of Ecuador's capital with easy access to the financial district and the colonial sector of the city.

    OR Call Us For a Free Quote 1-800-935-2620

    Questions & Answers

    Question: How many suitcases can I take with me on my trip?

    Each person is allowed one "check-in," and one "carry-on." Remember to take all valuables with you as "carry-on", because electronic equipment, cameras, laptops, jewelry, business documents and money are not covered by the airlines' liability, so always carry them aboard with you.

    Question: Is Airfare Included in the Price?

    Airfare from your point of origin to and from the trip is not included in the land price.

    Gate1 Tours Customer Reviews

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    Ratings based off 4604 reviews about Gate1 Tours. Currently showing 15 reviews with comments only.
    By Claretha F on Nov 14, 2019

    Good trip. Great guide/driver. Good activities. and great hotel location-central.

    By Brenda T on Nov 08, 2019

    Love affordable tours Been using them for years

    By Jeffrey L on Nov 02, 2019

    This was a bucket list trip. Everything was as promised and exceded

    By Stella L on Oct 26, 2019

    Our guide (Tom) throughout the trip went beyond and above his duty to take care of us every step throughout our journey. I can't say enough about him His loving spirit, his calm demeanor and his seemingly never ending energy. I cannot say enough about him. He was/phenomenal.

    By William M on Oct 23, 2019

    Reasonable base price, convenient hotel locations and an excellent guide.

    By Vincent P on Oct 11, 2019

    Everything was exactly as was advertised. Philip was great.

    By Mary M on Oct 11, 2019

    This was so easy to book thru affordable tours. Great service.

    By Wayne T on Oct 11, 2019

    Loved this land tour with Gate1. There were a few other couples that had done Gate 1 tours and liked every one of them. I can see why. It was a great tour. The tour guide, provided meals, and rooms were excellent.

    By Patricia F on Oct 09, 2019

    This is the first group tour we have taken but will not be our last. Our Affordable Tours agent John was just great. The tour manager Giuliana and all of the local guides were amazing. This trip far exceeded our expectations. The hotels and transportation were top notch. After talking with people from other competing tour companies this far exceeded theirs. We couldn't be happier and are looking forward to our next tour with Gate1 through Affordable Tours.

    By Beverly C on Oct 03, 2019

    The trip was great. Everything was wonderful

    By John W on Oct 03, 2019

    This tour delivered everything that it promised in its description. Wonderful, professional tour guide and drivers, top accommodations, plenty of little extras. It exceeded my expectations.

    By Maria A on Oct 01, 2019

    This was our first time traveling with Gate One and we found them to be very friendly and efficient.

    By Trudy P on Sep 28, 2019

    This is my sixth trip with Gate 1 and I am never disappointed. The good thing is your only requirement is to be ready to go when instructed. All the planning is done for you.

    By Nancy C on Sep 26, 2019

    Everything went very smoothly. Food was excellent and the lodging ranged from good to outstanding.


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