Galapagos Island Adventure

UPCOMING DATES: Nov 10-16, 2018

Optional: Quito Add-On Nov 8-10, 2018

Don’t wait another year to make your Travel Bucket List dreams come true. You’ll be awed by all the exotic and unique scenery, have the rare opportunity to experience wildlife up close, and relax on some of the most beautiful beaches on the planet.  This is your chance to see all the Galapagos has to offer, with the ease, safety and fun of an expert guide.

This carefully planned journey will take you to the best destinations in the Galapagos Islands, San Cristóbal, Santa Cruz and Bartolome. You will see wildlife closer than you ever thought possible! Sea lions, giant tortoises, pelicans, iguanas, and more interact with visitors daily. The endemic fauna and volcanic island rock formations provide so many incredible landscapes that you’ll have a hard time putting your camera down. In addition, this trip will feature a special tour of Quito and the Ecuador mainland.

Included:

  • 7 Days & 6 Nights Accommodations, All guests enjoy a private room
  • 3 Nights on San Cristóbal and 3 Nights on Santa Cruz at Hotel Miconia, Hotel Fiesta or similar top-rated hotels. Click here for more Accommodations Info
  • 18 Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner Daily
  • All Excursions, Tours, Airport Transfers, and Ground Transportation
  • Full Service, Bilingual Tour Guide, with time available for personal exploration
  • All Top-Ranked Activities and Attractions of the Galapagos Islands (Top 10 of 15 on Trip Advisor including Tortuga Bay Beach, Snorkeling at Kicker Rock, Sea Lion & Giant Tortoise Reservations, Lava Tunnels and the Charles Darwin Research Station)
  • Incredible Interactions with Wildlife: Walking among Iguanas, Sea Lions & Giant Tortoises or Snorkeling with Sea Turtles, Manta Rays & Penguins
  • All Ecuadorian Taxes and Service Fees (24%)

Not Included:

  • Flights into San Cristóbal, Galapagos (SCY) and from Baltra Santa Cruz, Galapagos (GPS)
  • Galapagos Island National Park Entrance Fee ($100) and Visitor Card ($20), Paid on arrival in Cash
  • Alcoholic Beverages, and Personal Snacks
  • Additional Hotel options including but not limited to Phone Calls, Internet, or Massage Services
  • Any personal changes to the planned itinerary

Optional Add-Ons:

  • Quito Concierge Package.  Instead of booking airfare to the Galapagos, book airfare to Quito, Ecuador (UIO). Package includes a Full day tour of the city of Quito, pre-arranged Galapagos Island Registration, and Flights between Quito and the Galapagos Islands. Ensure a safe and comfortable journey into the Galapagos
  • Additional Luxury Yacht tour of Bartolome Island with Snorkeling, Lava Field Walk, and Hike to Iconic Views of the Islands.  This tour is highly recommended, there is limited availability which sells out quickly
  • Additional Scuba Diving with Wet Suit, Gear Rental and Certified guide. (2) Opportunities, pending availability: San Cristóbal and Santa Cruz. 
  • Additional Mainland Ecuador Night Stays and Excursions

Full Itinerary Details

Optional Quito Add-On Begins and Ends in Quito, Ecuador (UIO)

Optional Day 1:  Arrival in Quito (UIO)

Optional Day 2:  Quito City Tour

Galapagos Tour Begins in San Cristóbal Island (SCY), Galapagos
Galapagos Tour Ends in Santa Cruz Island (GPS), Galapagos

Day 1:  Arrival San Cristóbal Island (SCY) 12:00 PM

Day 2:  San Cristóbal Highlands Tour

Day 3:  Kicker Rock Snorkeling

Day 4:  Santa Cruz Island, Tortuga Bay

Day 5:  Las Grietas or Optional Luxury Yacht to Bartolomé Island

Day 6:  Santa Cruz Tortoise Reserve & Lava Tunnels

Day 7:  Departure Baltra Santa Cruz (GPS) 12:00 PM

 

OPTIONAL DAY 1

Arrival Quito (UIO)

Early arrival will allow time to manage any flight or baggage delays, and breakup long travel schedules.  Meanwhile you can enjoy discovering the culture of Ecuador and learning about Quito’s rich history. Your hosts will complete your Pre-Registration and guide you through the special Galapagos customs to ensure a relaxed and convenient arrival to the islands.

Upon arrival, you’ll exit customs to be greeted by your driver.  Travel to the beautiful Garden Hotel San Jose where you’ll be welcomed and guided to your room.  Guests arriving in the afternoon can enjoy the many onsite amenities at San Jose before joining the group for a Welcome Dinner and Orientation at about 7:00 PM. Meet your hosts and fellow travelers.

OPTIONAL DAY 2

Equator Sites and Quito City Tour

Kick off your Ecuador Adventure by exploring the Equator and learning about the natural phenomenon that make this such an amazing location.  First we’ll see the Temple Del Sol which provides a very spiritual aura and connection with the earth and sun. Here we will be able to learn more about the culture of indigenous Ecuadorians, the healing properties of essential oils, and view the beautiful art gallery of world renowned artist Cristobal Ortega.  Then see the always fun, interactive Intiñan Solar Museum. We will learn about the indigenous culture and witness the effects of the Equator’s gravitational forces on water currents, personal strength, even balancing an egg on a nail!

In the afternoon travel into Quito’s Colonial district. The cobblestone streets and European style squares bring the past to life in its museums, convents, carved stone facades and golden altars of its many churches. While wandering the streets, stop into La Compañía to marvel at the ornate golden details and catch a perfect sunset photo in San Francisco Plaza.

The Quito Concierge Package also includes Pre-Registration into the Galapagos Islands National Park, Roundtrip Flights between Quito and the Galapagos, airport transfers, and your STI Host guiding you every step of the way.  On the morning of Galapagos Day 1, your host will meet you at the hotel to take you to the airport, escorting you through the Galapagos luggage and registration process.  Your optional package will also include transport to the airport and flight back to Quito, UIO.

DAY 1

Arrival San Cristóbal Island (SCY) 12:00 PM

Welcome to the Galapagos!  Enjoy a personal pickup from the airport on San Cristóbal Island.  Upon arrival, guests will first need to pass Galapagos Park Registration and collect their bags.  Your airport transport will be waiting to help with bags and take you to the hotel.  Guests arriving by 12:00 PM can join a welcome lunch before the afternoon’s excursion.

Kick off Galapagos tours with a visit to the Darwin Interpretation Center. The entrance museum holds a brief history on the Galapagos Islands, then opens to a unique dry forest filled with cacti, finches, and little lava lizards. Hike the volcanic rock trail to Tijeretas Point and Darwin Bay. You will be treated to your first sweeping views of the Galapagos and Puerto Baquerizo Moreno Bay, with Tijeretas and Blue Footed Boobies flying by. This is a great area to snorkel, see exotic fish and swim with sea lions in a turquoise pool set inside a stunning Volcanic Rock shoreline.

Afterward it’s a short walk to Playa Mann, where the remainder of the afternoon will be spent relaxing on the beach and enjoying the Loberia. Since so many Sea Lions share the island, Cristóbal is also known as Isla Lobo and has many protected breeding areas. You’ll enjoy watching Sea Lions play in the sand alongside sun bathers and swimmers.

DAY 2 – SUNDAY (NOVEMBER 12)

San Cristóbal Highlands Tour

Start off the day with an early and refreshing breakfast at the hotel so that we can hit the road for the beautiful highlands of San Cristóbal. A small hike leads up the side of an extinct volcano to El Junco, a miraculous fresh water lake in the center of the volcanic crater. This beautiful site offers both incredible panoramic views of the island and ideal bird watching. You may see many of the endemic bird species including Galapagos mockingbirds, pintails, moorhens, pied-billed grebes and frigate birds as they swoop down to the water to wash off the salt from the ocean and dive for fish.

Next it’s a short ride to the San Cristóbal Tortoise Reservation. In conjunction with the Charles Darwin Research Center, this Reservation is a remarkable sanctuary and breeding center for the Giant Tortoises. Quietly wander through open trails to see these gentle giants in their natural habitat. They are often at arm’s length, sharing the trails and searching for leafy greens.

Finally, spend the afternoon in the beautiful and secluded Puerto Chino. This sandy beach is a surfer’s paradise and the perfect spot to enjoy a swim and look for Blue-footed Boobies & Ghost Crabs on the Rocky shore. In the evening take time to stroll through Downtown Puerto Baquerizo Moreno, where sea lions share the cobblestone streets and harbor benches. Have dinner with the group at a delicious local restaurant.

DAY 3

Kicker Rock Snorkeling

After breakfast, prepare for an unforgettable snorkeling experience. Enjoy a refreshing boat ride with beautiful views of the coastline. Then look at the volcanic rock formations ahead, two towers rising out of the water. Between these towers is an incredible channel filled with colorful schools of fish as well as exciting marine life. Float on the waves above while you watch all the beautiful life below swimming through the channel. This truly is a once in a lifetime snorkeling experience with tropic fish and sea turtles passing alongside you, and eagle rays and hammerhead sharks swimming in the distance. The boat will take us around Kicker Rock to view the best snorkeling sites and wildlife observation sites.
After a day of sun, swim and snorkel, take some time to relax before enjoying a final evening and dinner in Puerto Moreno.

DAY 4

Santa Cruz Island, Tortuga Bay

After an early morning boat taxi to Puerto Ayora, Santa Cruz, take some time to check in and relax at the hotel. Then spend the afternoon at Tortuga Bay, one of the most beautiful beaches in the world. The walking path to the beach is about 1.5 miles and worth every step. While at the beach you can stroll along the pristine white sand while watching iguanas, herons or pelicans. Put on your snorkeling gear to see sea turtles, sea lions or manta rays and more colorful fish. The beauty of this bay will make it hard to leave. Catch a couple minutes of beautiful sunset views before hitting the trail back out of the park.

DAY 5

Las Grietas or Optional Luxury Yacht to Bartolomé Island

After breakfast, your guide will lead the way through volcanic terrain to a rocky crevasse that opens to a beautiful lagoon filled with crystal clear water, Las Grietas. Everyone will appreciate a refreshing swim and amazing snorkeling in the peaceful cool turquoise waters. Enjoy the afternoon at your leisure, exploring the shops of downtown Puerto Ayora, biking through the Interpretation Center, or relaxing at the beach.

Optional Tour:  Don’t miss this chance to see iconic views of the Islands, availability is limited and sells out weeks in advance.

Book early for your chance to see the endemic Galapagos Penguins. After breakfast, leave for a ride through the highlands to Puerta Itabaca on the far North Side of the island. From this port, board a luxury Yacht for a comfortable ride to Bartolomé, an uninhabited island off of Santiago. The day will be filled with the best snorkeling in the Galapagos Islands and a hike to the island’s peak along the path where the movie ‘Master and Commander’ was filmed to see the most incredible views of the islands.  Get back on board for a freshly prepared lunch while the boat travels back to Itabaca Canal. See our Book Your Trip Page to add this option.

DAY 6

Santa Cruz Tortoise Reserve & Lava Tunnels

An official Galapagos National Park guide will take everyone to a Private Tortoise Reserve Ranch. Step deeper into the Giant Tortoise’s natural environment as an official guide leads the way through lush endemic Galapagos ferns to ponds were the Giant Tortoises congregate. This site also features Los Tuneles underground Lava Caves. See the incredible rock formations created in these amazing underground caverns. After you’ve worked up an appetite exploring, enjoy a delicious lunch including freshly made empanadas and locally grown organic coffee – a favorite souvenir for foodies to take home.

DAY 7

Departure – 9:00 AM

An early breakfast will allow an opportunity to check out some sights in the highlands on the way to the airport. Our taxi will leave the hotel at 9:00 AM and travels north, stopping to see Los Gemelos or Twin Craters. Though they are called craters, these formations are actually the result of collapsed dormant volcanos. The Taxi will continue north to Itabaca Canal for a Ferry ride to arrive at the airport on Baltra Island about 10:30 AM.  Plan departure flights from (GPS) no earlier than 12:00 PM.

Unfortunately, our adventure comes to an end, but leaving us with wonderful photos and memories. We look forward to having you and your friends with us soon on a Singles Travel International vacation! Have a safe journey back home!

 

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner will be provided daily, a total of 18 meals. Guests will be responsible for their own Beer, Wine and Cocktails. Guests will also have the flexibility to explore other locations at their own cost and discretion to suit their personal tastes or budget.

  • Each morning there will be an American style breakfast provided.
  • Moderate lunches and snacks will be provided throughout the tour including local treats such as Empanadas, freshly prepared Fish or Chicken with Rice & Vegetables, or traditional favorites like Pizza and Sandwiches.
  • The hotels in both Cristóbal and Santa Cruz are located within walking distance to the restaurant and shopping districts. Each evening we will return to the hotel to freshen up and make dinner plans. You can choose to join the group dinner or explore the downtown areas at your leisure. There will be a different, top rated restaurant chosen each evening with a special group dinner and drink available. At both islands you’ll easily be able to choose from an array of restaurants featuring both local seafood specialties and traditional international meals.

Meals may fluctuate according to the itinerary and seasonal availability. Your host will plan for Vegan or any other dietary restrictions or requirements if notified 2 weeks prior to arrival. Please email info@EcuadorMVI.com with any allergy or dietary needs.

 

Itinerary Changes: Itinerary details are established in advance and subject to change according to unforeseen factors and local conditions such as availability, weather, traffic or construction. In the event that conditions prevent an excursion your host and hotel staff will accommodate to the best of their ability a similar tour. If personal needs or preferences do not align with a certain day or portion of the trip, and the guides will do everything possible to accommodate or assist. However, changes will be the guest’s responsibility and priority will be given to the planned itinerary. Singles Travel International and tour hosts, Mountain Views Inn are not liable for itinerary changes.

Assumption of Risk: Mountain View Inn are dedicated to ensuring the safety of all participants; however participants must assume the risk inherent in travel including those from weather, wildlife or other force majeure.  For travel insurance we recommend Travelex, https://www.travelexinsurance.com/

Health:  The participant confirms that he/she has no physical conditions or medical precautions that would adversely affect his/her ability to take part in the yoga program or other physical or cultural activities offered. The participant fully understands that his/her participation in the yoga program or other activities could be injurious to his/her health. The participant voluntarily assumes all risks related to such activities and releases Mountain Views Inn from liability for accident, personal injury, illness, emotional damage, incurred travel expenses or property damage he/she may incur as a result of his/her traveling and staying at this retreat.