Galapagos Land Based

Ecuador & Galapagos

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Galapagos Land Based

Galapagos Land Based tours are becoming increasingly an attractive alternative to enjoy the Galapagos Islands. Land based tours to Galapagos means that you fly to the island, instead taking a boat from the mainland. On arrival, you are transferred to a hotel for you to explore the island at ease. Private excursions can be arranged to nearby islands to explore its wildlife. These excursions with your private guide can be customised to include Scuba Diving and other specialised activities. 

Travellers have traditionally visited the islands on a cruise. The reason being that way back in the 1970’s, when the islands caught interest amongst experiential travellers, there were no hotels on the islands. Today, however, few hotels (which comply with environmental regulations) allow land based programmes (also referred to as Galapagos Island hopping tours). These tours with private options are customised to your needs and have become increasingly popular.

TRAVEL UNTAMED ON THIS 8 DAY LAND BASED TOUR OF GALAPAGOS…
And, take naturalist-led day trips to the surrounding islands.
 

What We Love
  • This tour can be extended to include the Otavalo region or Amazon basin.
  • In Quito, stay at the luxurious boutique Casa Gangotena hotel. 
  • Stay in Pikaia Lodge, the most luxurious and sustainable Eco Lodge in the Galapagos Islands.
  • Explore the surrounds on the hotels private 100-foot yacht.
  • This tour is designed to provide maximum outdoor experience.
What to Know
  • This is a medium active tour and may include walking on rough terrains.
  • You will be in a small group during the cruise in Galapagos.
  • We carefully select the world's best boutique tour companies in each destination.
  • Around the clock support in each destination during your trip.
  • This tour is in high demand and we suggest that you book in advance.
  • We strongly recommend that you take travel insurance for this holiday.

 

Review

Begin in Quito, the capital of Ecuador, one of South America’s best-preserved colonial cities. Explore the lavishly decorated monasteries with rich interiors, that are pure examples of the 'Baroque school of Quito', which is a fusion of Spanish, Italian, Moorish, Flemish and indigenous art. The beautiful Quito town abounds with chic hotels, contemporary restaurants and cool bars.

Next, fly to the Galapagos Islands, a dream destination for nature lovers, and stay four nights at Pikaia Lodge on Santa Cruz Island, the finest resort hotel in the Galapagos. Enjoy naturalist-led day trips aboard Pikaia’s private 100-foot yacht to landing sites on Santa Cruz and the most interesting surrounding islands, such as Bartolome, Santiago and North Seymour. See incredible volcanic landscapes, and get close to iconic Galapagos wildlife such as giant tortoises, blue-footed boobies and marine iguanas.

Each day, tour different islands with an expert naturalist, and get close to giant tortoises, blue-footed boobies, marine iguanas and other iconic Galapagos wildlife. Most exciting for visitors is the lack of fear and even curiosity with which the Galápagos animals typically regard humans. This means visitors can get up close and personal without them scurrying off. Some 95 percent of the islands' pre-human biodiversity remains intact—a remarkable figure. But even this paradise hasn’t remained totally pristine.

The tour concludes with one night back in Quito.

Getting There

Ecuador: There are no direct flights to Ecuador from Britain and Ireland, but there are plenty of indirect flights to both Quito and Guayaquil involving a change of plane in either a European or American city. The US airlines fly via their respective hubs. Approximate flying times from the US to Quito without stops are four hours from Miami, and around five hours from Houston and Atlanta.

Iberia and Air Comet offer services via Madrid, and KLM via Amsterdam (stopping at Bonaire, in the Dutch Antilles). Other possibilities include taking a flight to South American hubs, such as Bogotá or Caracas, from where connections to Ecuador can be made. Typical journey times are between fifteen and seventeen hours, with Iberia and American Airlines offering marginally faster services.

Galapagos: There are daily flights to Galapagos from Quito and Guayaquil. Our ground staff will offer assistance with the check in procedure and help with payment of park tax and transit card. The airline allows one checked suitcase (maximum 44 lbs.) and one carry-on bag per passenger.

We recommend that all passengers travelling to Galapagos consider two nights in mainland Ecuador prior to their cruise to allow for potential flight delays and misconnection.  This is particularly important for passengers travelling over winter holidays when flights tend to be overbooked and/or delayed caused by poor weather conditions.
 

 
Galapagos Land Based Ecuador & Galapagos

Galapagos Land Based

Quito, Galapagos Islands
(8 Days – Travel Any Day)


Day 1 – Arrive
Quito On arrival in Buenos Aires you will VIP airport assistance and private transfer to your chosen hotel for a two-night stay.  
Overnight: Hotel of your choice
Recommended: Casa Gangotena.

Day 2 – Private Touring
Quito Full-day private touring: With your private local guide, tour the city center, a UNESCO World Heritage Site filled with Spanish colonial-era architecture. Explore interesting back streets, hidden courtyards and churches with spectacular interiors. Visit the best museums, traditional workshops, markets and other sites according to your interests. Perhaps also shop for a high-quality Panama hat—an Ecuador original.
Overnight: Hotel of your choice
Recommended: Casa Gangotena (B)

Day 3 – Transfer
Galapagos Islands Private transfer to the airport for your flight to Galapagos. On arrival transfer to hotel. Stay four nights at Pikaia Lodge on Santa Cruz Island, the finest resort hotel in the Galapagos. Enjoy naturalist-led day trips aboard Pikaia’s private 100-foot yacht to landing sites on Santa Cruz and the most interesting surrounding islands, such as Bartolome, Santiago and North Seymour. See incredible volcanic landscapes, and get close to iconic Galapagos wildlife such as giant tortoises, blue-footed boobies and marine iguanas.
Overnight: Hotel of your choice
Recommended: Pikaia Lodge (B, L, D)

Day 4 – North Seymour and Santa Cruz Islands
Galapagos Islands Full-day yacht excursion with naturalist to landing sites on North Seymour and Santa Cruz islands. Depending on the season, also see mating rituals, newborns feeding, territorial squabbles and more. If desired, snorkel in areas frequented by sea lions, penguins, sea turtles and schools of colorful fish. Also enjoy a naturalist-led excursion on Santa Cruz to highlights such as the giant tortoise reserve, lava tubes, scalesia forest and the Charles Darwin Research Station, where different subspecies of Galapagos tortoises are raised.
Overnight: Hotel of your choice
Recommended: Pikaia Lodge (B, L, D)

Day 5 – Santa Cruz Island
Galapagos Islands Touring on Santa Cruz Island with naturalist guide.
Overnight: Hotel of your choice
Recommended: Pikaia Lodge (B, L, D)

Day 6 – Bartolome and Santiago Islands
Galapagos Islands Full-day yacht excursion with naturalist to landing sites on Bartolome and Santiago islands.
Overnight: Hotel of your choice
Recommended: Pikaia Lodge (B, L, D)

Day 7 – Transfer
Quito Transfer to flight to Quito. Private arrival transfer to hotel for 1 night
Overnight: Hotel of your choice
Recommended: Casa Gangotena (B)

Day 8 – Depart
Quito Private transfer to the airport for your connecting flight.
 

 

Recommended price

  • 5-star: From GBP 300 per person per day
  • 4-star: From GBP 250 per person per day
  • 3-star: From GBP 200 per person per day

The true price is customised based on final choice of hotels, travel dates, and other custom preferences. All prices exclude international flights.

Price Includes: hotels, airport transfers and transportation within the country, unique experiences guided by local experts and 24X7 support during your trip.

Make this your holiday

  • Exclusive Tour: your own private multilingual guide throughout the trip  
  • Price Guarantee: costing 25-30% less than similar tours of the same flexibility and quality
  • Tailor Made: customised itinerary to create your dream holiday
  • Duration: shorten or lengthen the tour to suit your wishes
  • Dates: depart and return whenever you choose
  • Hotels: change hotel grade to suit your budget
  • Group Discounts: call 020 8350 6199


General Ecuador is one of the smallest countries in South America, yet despite its size, it holds one of the greatest amounts of plant and animal species in the world. It is home to rain forests, jungles, mountains, islands, deserts, valleys, and snowcapped peaks. One of its main attractions is the Galapagos Archipelago and its marine reserve, which contain endemic species unique to the area.

With more bird species per area than any other country in Latin America, Ecuador is a paradise for bird watching and research. Some 17% of the world's endemic species are found here making it the densest bird population in the world.

Where to go Cotopaxi is the second highest summit in Ecuador, reaching a height of just below 6,000 mtrs. Its snow covered peak is clearly visible from Quito. Cotopaxi is also one of the highest active volcanoes in the world, although its present activity is limited to a few steam fumaroles.

Take a short train journey between the towns of Sibambe and Alausi. A series of switchbacks along the way makes it possible for the train to slowly climb the steep ascent to Alausi and offer visitors sweeping panoramic views of the countryside. But the astounding engineering project undertaken in the rugged Andes mountains was completed at a high cost human lives that gave its name the “Devil’s Nose”.

Situated in the Amazon rainforest region of Ecuador, for tourists, Tena serves as a launching point for jungle adventures. The Tena River joins with the Masahualli River, and then with the Napo River, a tributary of the Amazon. Adventure enthusiasts cite Tena as one of the best places in the world for whitewater rafting and kayaking.

The colonial city of Cuenca is the third largest in Ecuador, popular for its year-round temperate climate. The New Cathedral of Cuenca, built over a century, is the city’s most-recognizable landmark. With a façade crafted from alabaster and marble, the New Cathedral is most notable for the its three immense domes, each covered in blue glazed tiles.

When to go The Galapagos have a surprisingly cool, sub-tropical climate. The coastal areas are arid and covered with plants adapted to desert conditions.  The highland areas receive moisture almost all year round, which support lush vegetation.  Temperatures are determined almost entirely by ocean currents, which are influenced by the trade winds.

There are two seasons, both of which have some precipitation. Galapagos gets an average of ten inches of rain per year, it is never considered “rainy”. During the months of December to May, the cooling currents subside, temperatures rise and the climate is warm and sunny with occasional showers. In June, the trend begins toward cooler temperatures with moderate breezes, which continue through November. This period is referred to as the “garua” season, meaning mist in Spanish.

Visa UK nationals can visit Ecuador without a visa, but you may be asked about your reason for travel and to provide evidence of a return or onward flight/bus ticket when you arrive. On arrival in the country, you’ll normally be allowed to remain in Ecuador for up to 90 days per year.

Passport validity: Your passport should be valid for a minimum period of 6 months from the date of entry; this is a strict legal requirement from the Ecuadorean government. Without this minimum validity entry to the country will be denied.

Visa information source: www.gov.uk