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Galapagos and Ecuador
In Ecuador you can find an active volcano, lush Amazon rain forest or traditional Indian culture, but it is also well known for the islands of Galapagos, which are considered as one of the best wildlife safaris on the planet. Unique fauna and flora and absolutely fearless animals allow you to experience local wildlife from few centimetres! You can choose a 4, 5 or 8 day cruise around Galapagos and a boat which matches your standards. With personal experience and a wide offer of tours we are ready to meet any of your expectations.
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Galapagos and Ecuador Beauty, 10 days


Cost: from $ 2.990 AUD
Flights: All domestic flights included
Duration: 10 days
Departure: Daily
Location: Galapagos, Quito, Otavalo, Cotopaxi NP

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Tour Description

This amazing tour combines the beauty of Ecuador and a cruise along the Galapagos Islands in comfort. The Galapagos Islands are a place where animals do not fear humans, making it a natural paradise and haven for naturalists wishing to escape a busy and noisy outside world. Apart from the Galapagos, you will visit a few places in Ecuador: the capital of Quito with its historical sights, the highest active volcano Cotopaxi, the biggest Indian market Otavalo and other wonderful sites. A unique excursion tour - don't miss it!

Itinerary

Day 1 - Arrival to Quito
After arriving to Ecuador we will take you to a hotel for relax. The rest of the day is at leisure. Night in the hotel with breakfast.

Day 2 – Quito City Tour (B)
We will take you after breakfast to this magnificent city for an excursion. The tour starts on the city's central square Plaza de La Independencia and with a show-around in the Cathedral. Then we continue to the Presidential Palace, Archbishop Cathedral and an old town hall. A bit further well-known La Compaňía de Jesus with its beautifully decorated interior will enchant you. Church and Convent of St. Francis is our next stop. Here you can admire unique frescoes, the atrium and baroque interior. This old "downtown" is the historical centre where there are beautiful works of architecture. Our last visit is to Panecillo, a hill that is a natural lookout having an impressive panoramic view of Quito and the surrounding valleys. Return to the hotel.

Day 3 – Quito – Galapagos (B, L, D)
Flight to the Galapagos to Baltra Island where you board the yacht after a short drive to the harbour. Welcome to the Galapagos Islands of volcanic origin! Your cruise starts with lunch and the first excursion to the Black Turtle Cove. It is on the north side of Santa Cruz. You have to go by panga (motorized canoe) to reach it and see its mangrove swamp where there are nesting marine turtles during certain seasons of the year, and also sharks and rays.

Day 4 – Bartolome Island, Santiago Island (B, L, D)
You continue today to the Bartolome Island. It offers the possibility to climb to the summit, from where visitors can observe a variety of volcanic formations including lava bombs, spatter and cinder cones, lava flows and lava tubes. The moon like landscape provides one of the most scenic panoramas in the archipelago. And you also have the chance to relax on a beautiful beach, which offers great snorkelling opportunities. Multi –coloured fish and occasionally penguins and sea turtles have been here. After lunch a panga ride in Sullivan Bay is waiting for you. You will have plenty of time for observing birds and local lava creations.

Day 5 – Plaza Islands, Santa Fé Island (B, L, D)
You set out first of all to two small islets that were formed a short distance from the East Coast of Santa Cruz, Plaza Island. Despite its small size, some of the most interesting and outstanding species of the archipelago occur here. The principal attractions of the Plazas are the land iguanas, sea lions and swallow–tailed gulls. It is possible to observe land iguanas relaxing in the shade of cactus plants and swallow-tailed gulls nesting on the rugged southern cliffs. And that’s not all as the protected rocky seashore is a prime habitat for a large colony of noisy sea lions. Also we will be able to see yellow – tailed mullets, Audubon’s shearwaters, red-billed tropicbirds, frigate birds, and brown pelicans gliding past the cliffs. In the afternoon you visit Santa Fé Island (Barrington), known mainly or sea lions. You can not only observe them but also swim with them.

Day 6 – Santa Cruz – Quito (B, L)
The deserted, picturesque beach Las Bachas at the northern shore of Santa Cruz invites you for a swim in the crystal-clear water or to relax in the sun. Afterwards you will be visiting the bay Caleta Tortuga Negra which is close by. This bay is surrounded by mangroves where you can spot pelicans and herons. While snorkelling you can have a swim with turtles, white tip sharks and rays. In the afternoon you will say goodbye to these magnificent islands where it seems that time has stopped and you will be taken to the Baltra airport for your return flight to Quito. Here you will be transferred by taxi to the hotel.

Day 7 - Equator (B)
You depart from the north part of Quito in the morning and take the Manual Córdoba Highway to the Equator Monument that marks the equinoctial line established by the French Geodesic Mission in the 18th century. Here you will be able to jump from the southern to the northern hemisphere in an instant. Inside, there is an interesting ethnographic museum and you can visit a lot of souvenir shops. Return to the hotel.

Day 8 – Cotopaxi NP (B)
Cotopaxi National Park is a protected area that goes from an altitude of 3.200 up to 6.000m. It has 4 climatic zones: Andean forest, paramo, high plateau and glacier. Cotopaxi is claimed to be the highest and the most perfectly shaped mountain in the world. It is Ecuador’s most famous volcano. Return to Quito.

Day 9 – Otavalo (B)
North of Quito, you will find one of South America’s most famous indigenous markets. Otavalo Indians are a very prosperous trade’s people, as you will see at this outdoor emporium. While the most colorful market occurs on Saturdays, there are smaller markets each day of the week. While some markets focus on agricultural products, others are famous for their refined crafts like baskets, ponchos, hats, sweaters, tapestries and leatherwork.

Day 10 - Quito – flight back to Australia (B)
Transfer to the airport after breakfast, for your flight home. End of our services.

Package Inclusions

3 Nights accommodation on an economy class boat (in twin cabins); 4 Day Galapagos cruise; Full board on the boat (alcoholic drinks excluded); All services, transfers and excursions detailed in the program; Local English speaking guide; Snorkelling; Taxes. 7 Nights accommodation in a 3-star hotel in Quito with breakfast; All excursions and tours specified above with an English speaking guide; Domestic flights.

(B – breakfast, L – lunch, D – dinner)

Price per person (2 people in double/twin room)

Package Exclusions

Tips; Insurance; Personal expenses; Galapagos National Park Entrance fee 100 USD; Optional Excursions.

Supplements

Single supplement – contact us for details

4* hotel upgrade - $ 350 per person

Extended stay at Galapagos Islands by 1 or 4 days.

Upgrade your boat at Galapagos to superior or luxury level

Extended stay in Quito

Note

Departure date is subject to Galapagos cruise departure.

The price is subject to availability and actual airfare cost.


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