Longing for an iconic island adventure? This weeklong jaunt to the Galápagos Islands is for you. You’ll hit up the beautiful islands of Santa Cruz, Floreana, and Isobela, taking in nature walks to spot exotic seabirds and flamboyant sea lions with plenty of opportunities for swimming and snorkelling these impossibly blue waters. Throw in a volcano hike and encounters with friendly sea lions and your camera will be getting a workout.
Arrival transfer. Quito to Galápagos return flights. Isabela Municipal Tax. Charles Darwin Research Station visit. Floreana swimming, snorkelling and Highlands excursion. Visit the Isabela Flamingo Lagoon. Visit “Wall of Tears” monument. Sierra Negra Volcano hike and lava fields walk. Isabela Giant Tortoise Breeding Centre visit. All transport between destinations and to/from included activities.
Encounter incredible wildlife up close and in person, snorkel and swim with sea lions and other sea life, observe the famed blue footed boobie, hike up the active Sierra Negra Volcano, visit the Charles Darwin Research Station and learn about natural history
The information in this trip details document has been compiled with care and is provided in good faith. However it is subject to change, and does not form part of the contract between the client and the operator. The itinerary featured is correct at time of printing. It may differ slightly to the one in the brochure. Occasionally our itineraries change as we make improvements that stem from past travellers, comments and our own research. Sometimes it can be a small change like adding an extra meal along the itinerary. Sometimes the change may result in us altering the tour for the coming year. Ultimately, our goal is to provide you with the most rewarding experience. Please note that our brochure is usually released in November each year. If you have booked from the previous brochure you may find there have been some changes to the itinerary.
VERY IMPORTANT: Please ensure that you print a final copy of your Trip Details to review a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans.
While it is our intention to adhere to the route described below, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable to make alterations. The itinerary is brief, as we never know exactly where our journey will take us. Due to our style of travel and the regions we visit, travel can be unpredictable. The Trip Details document is a general guide to the tour and region and any mention of specific destinations or wildlife is by no means a guarantee that they will be visited or encountered. Aboard expedition trips visits to research stations depend on final permission.
Additionally, any travel times listed are approximations only and subject to vary due to local circumstances.
The itinerary is subject to further changes dependent upon new regulations made by the Galapagos National Park or seasonal points of interest.
2) PERSONAL DETAILS
G Adventures requires your passport number, full name and date of birth at the time of booking. Please make sure you give this information to your travel agent.
3) CONFIRM DETAILS WITH US
Once you have confirmed your booking please give us your international flight details and advise us if you have any important issues such as allergies, special diets, etc.
4) GALAPAGOS ISLAND PARK ENTRY FEE
The Ecuadorian government currently levies a Galapagos Islands Park entry fee of $100 USD per person. This is payable at the airport upon arrival in the park. It is not included in the cost of the tour, and must be paid in CASH. This fee funds Park maintenance and supervision in Galapagos, as well as ecological study, conservation and infrastructure development in Ecuador’s other National Parks. Entry fees and the funds they generate for the National Park System are among measures taken by the Ecuadorian government to protect its natural heritage.
5) TRANSIT CONTROL CARDS
The Consejo de Gobierno (local government council) have implemented a system of Transit Control Cards at a fee of $20 USD per person. This card is to be purchased in CASH at a counter in the Quito airport before boarding the flight to the Galapagos. Please retain this card along with your passport as you will be required to present this upon arrival to the Galapagos Islands. Please note that this applies to all tourists entering the Galapagos Islands and is a supplement to the existing entry fee to the National Park and is not controlled by tour operators or travel agencies. It is the first of a number of initiatives to track, control and maintain the sustainable tourism targets set out by the Galapagos National Park and the Ecuadorian government in an attempt to preserve the fragile environment of the archipelago.
6) All travellers are required to pay the tax on domestic flights in Ecuador. Foreign travellers are exempt form this, and proving you are indeed a foreign traveller can be done by providing us with your international ticket number (ITN). Travellers who do not submit international ticket numbers at least 30 days prior to Day 1 of their tour will be required to pay the domestic tax on all included flights.
Group Leader Description
All G Adventures group trips are accompanied by one of our group leaders, a G Adventures representative, or an expedition team. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. They will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the countries visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. We also use local guides where we think more specific knowledge will add to the enjoyment of the places we are visiting- we think it’s the best of both worlds.
Group Size Notes
Max 16, avg 10
8 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 1 dinner
Eating is a big part of traveling. Travelling with G Adventures you experience the vast array of wonderful food that is available out in the world. Generally meals are not included in the trip price when there is a choice of eating options, to give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat. It also gives you more budgeting flexibility, though generally food is cheap. Our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other’s company. There is no obligation to do this though. Your leader will be able to suggest favourite restaurants during your trip. For all trips please refer to the meals included and budget information for included meals and meal budgets.
Flight, speed boat, van, pickup truck, local bus, Zodiac.
About our Transportation
Please note that speed boats are used to transfer between Islands. This is a fun way to travel but those who do experience motion sickness may want to ensure they bring any medications or use preventative measures against an upset stomach.
All local flights are included in the cost of your tour unless otherwise noted. It is important that we have your passport information at the time of booking in order to process these tickets. Internal flight tickets are issued locally and will be given to you prior to the flight departure.
We believe single travellers should not have to pay more to travel so our group trips are designed for shared accommodation and do not involve a single supplement. Single travellers joining group trips are paired in twin or multi-share accommodation with someone of the same sex for the duration of the trip. Some of our Independent trips are designed differently and single travellers on these itineraries must pay the single trip price.
Comfort Hotels (7 nts), simple lodge (1 nt).
My Own Room
Please note that if you have booked the “My Own Room” option for this tour, you will receive your own single room for all night stops
Please note that hot water shortages and power outages can be fairly common in Galapagos. We appreciate your patience and understanding that these occurrences are outside of our control.
Please note that due to its remote location, we do stay at a simple lodge on Floreana Island and services and amenities may be a bit more simple than in other hotels on this trip. The experience of staying in a more remote and less-visited spot, more than makes up for a few less frills.
For details of your joining hotel please refer to your tour voucher, G Account, the G Adventures App or contact your travel agent.
An arrival transfer is included when you arrive on Day 1, or when you arrive up to three days prior to the tour, provided that you have booked your pre-accommodation through G Adventures in our joining hotel. Due to customer experience and quality considerations, all services related to the tour must be continuous.
A representative will be waiting at the airport to meet you holding a G Adventures sign with your name, directly in front of the arrivals section. There are often many people holding signs so we recommend to take some time to locate the rep with a G Adventures logo and sign with your name. If for any reason you are not met at the airport, you can go directly to the H.A.T.S. counter (Hotel and Airline Transportation Services) which is situated directly in front of the international arrival area, next to the taxi stand, and they will be able to assist you. In addition you may call our local support line at 0999 506 000. If you are unable to make contact for whatever reason, please make your way to the joining point hotel via taxi and report the issue to a G Adventures representative at the welcome meeting.
Please note that Day 1 is an arrival day and no activities have been planned for that day other then your welcome meeting in the evening, so you can arrive at any time. Similarly the last day is a departure day during which no activities have been planned.
A G Adventures Representative will organize a short meeting soon after arrival, during which you will meet other tour participants and receive information about general and specific aspects of the trip. A welcome note will be left for you in the hotel so you have all the necessary information regarding the meeting time and your transfer times back to the airport the next day. If you arrive late, s/he will leave you a message detailing what time and where you should meet the next morning.
Excess luggage can be stored free of charge at the joining hotel during your tour if desired.
We don’t expect any problems, and nor should you, but if for any reason you are unable to commence your trip as scheduled, as soon as possible please contact your starting point hotel, requesting that you speak to or leave a message for your CEO (if you are not on a group tour please refer to the emergency contact details provided in this dossier). If you are unable to get in touch with your leader, please refer to our emergency contact details. If you have pre-booked an airport transfer and have not made contact with our representative within 30 minutes of clearing customs and immigration, we recommend that you make your own way to the Starting Point hotel, following the Joining Instructions. Please apply to your travel agent on your return for a refund of the transfer cost if this occurs.
Should you need to contact us during a situation of dire need, it is best to first call either the G Adventures Representative (if one is listed below) or our G Adventures Local Office. If for any reason you do not receive an immediate answer, please leave a detailed message and contact information, so they may return your call and assist you as soon as possible.
If you have purchased an arrival through G Adventures or if an arrival transfer is included in the cost of your tour, please note that:
Your arrival transfer has been arranged based on flight information provided to us. If you are advised of a flight schedule change within 48 hours of your scheduled arrival time, we will do our best to rearrange your arrival transfer however we cannot guarantee this. If your arrival transfer does not arrive within 30 minutes after you have exited the arrivals area please take a taxi to your start point hotel.
EMERGENCY CONTACT NUMBERS
G Adventures Office Quito, Ecuador
During office hours (Weekdays 9am-6pm Local Time)
From outside Ecuador: +593 2250 6610
From within Ecuador: 022 506 610
After hours Emergency number
From outside Ecuador: +593 999 506 000
From within Ecuador: 0999 506 000
If you are unable for any reason to contact our local office, please call the numbers listed below, which will connect you directly with our 24 hour Sales team, who will happily assist you.
Toll-free, North America only: 1 888 800 4100
Calls from UK: 0344 272 0000
Calls from Germany: 0800 365 1000
Calls from Australia: 1 300 796 618
Calls from New Zealand: 0800 333 307
Outside North America, Australia, New Zealand, Germany and the UK: +1 416 260 0999
What to Take
We recommend the use of a duffel bag, soft bag on wheels or backpack (whichever you find easiest to carry). A good size daypack is also essential.
Please note that Galapagos is a protected National Park so your luggage will be checked before arrival and departure to and from the islands. Don’t bring any food, seeds or other organic material that could affect the delicate ecosystem of the islands.
- Airline tickets (with photocopies)
- Passport (with photocopies)
- Travel insurance (with photocopies)
- Credit or debit cards (see personal spending money)
- G Adventures vouchers and trip details
- Any entry visas or vaccination certificates required
- Camera / extra memory cards
- Reading/writing material
- Cover for backpacks
- Fleece top
- Windproof/waterproof jacket
- Small towel and swimwear
- 4 shirts/t-shirts
- Sun hat
- 2 pair of shorts
- 2 pairs of long/2/4 trousers
- 1 pair hiking pants/track pants
- Hiking boots/ sturdy walking shoes
- Sport sandals
- Toiletries (biodegradable)
- Watch or alarm clock
- Water bottle
- First-aid kit (should contain lip salve, Aspirin, Band Aids, anti-histamine, Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrhea, re-hydration powder, extra prescription drugs you may be taking).
Laundry facilities are offered by some of our hotels for a charge. There will be times when you may want to or have to do your own laundry so we suggest you bring non-polluting/biodegradable soap.
Visas and Entry Requirements
All countries require a valid passport (with a minimum 6 months validity). Contact your local embassy, or consulate for the most up-to-date visa requirements, or see your travel agent.
Detailed Trip Notes
Located on the Equator, the Galapagos climate is tempered by the Humboldt Current, so you do not experience extreme heat found elsewhere at this latitude. The warmest weather is December to June, when temperatures range from 22-33°C (72-90 °F), and the water temperature is in the mid 20s (mid 70°F). From July to November, temperatures are cooler and range from 18-24°C (60s -75°F), when average water temperature rarely reach 21°C (70°F).
Every traveller is different and therefore spending money requirements will vary. Some travellers may drink more than others while other travellers like to purchase more souvenirs than most. Please consider your own spending habits when it comes to allowing for drinks, shopping and tipping. Please also remember the following specific recommendations when planning your trip.
Credit cards and debit cards are very useful for cash advances. Visa cards are the most widely accepted cards. While ATMs are widely available some may not accept all international credit or debit cards. You may need to try at more than one machine if the first does not accept your card. You should also check with your bank before leaving to ensure that your card works internationally. You should be aware that to purchase products or services on a credit card a fee of 5%-10% usually applies. Do not rely on credit or debit cards as your only source of money. A combination of US dollar cash and cards is best. Always take more rather than less, as you don’t want to spoil the trip by constantly feeling short of funds. Please bring USD banknotes in denominations smaller than 100, as they can be hard to exchange in Ecuador. 100 dollar bills of certain series (e.g. CB B2) can be especially hard to cash! CURRENCY EXCHANGE TIP: Please be advised that slightly torn notes, notes that have been heavily marked or are faded may be difficult to exchange. It is best to bring notes in fairly good condition, in denominations lower than 100USD (or equivalent). As currency exchange rates can fluctuate often we ask that you refer to the following website for daily exchange rates: www.xe.com
Please also make sure you have access to at least an additional USD $200 (or equivalent) as an ‘emergency’ fund, to be used when circumstances outside our control (ex. a natural disaster) require a change to our planned route. This is a rare occurrence!
It is customary in Latin America to tip service providers such as waiters, at approximately 10%, depending on the service. Tipping is an expected – though not compulsory – component of your tour program and an expression of satisfaction with the persons who have assisted you on your tour. Although it may not be customary to you, it is of considerable significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels. There are several times during the trip where there is opportunity to tip the local guides or drivers we use. Recommendations for tipping drivers and local guides would range from $5-10 USD per day depending on the quality and length of the service.
- Islote Tintoreras Boat Excursion (45USD per person)
Please note inoculations may be required for the country visited. It is your responsibility to consult with your travel doctor for up to date medical travel information well before departure.
You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information well before departure. We recommend that you carry a First Aid kit and hand sanitizers / antibacterial wipes as well as any personal medical requirements. Please be aware that quite often we are in remote areas and away from medical facilities, and for legal reasons our leaders are prohibited from administering any type of drug including headache tablets, antibiotics, etc. When selecting your trip please carefully read the brochure and itinerary and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please refer to the Physical and Culture Shock ratings for trip specific information. G Adventures reserves the right to exclude any traveller from all or part of a trip without refund if in the reasonable opinion of our CEO they are unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group.
Please note your Adventure travels to high altitude, in Quito. This is medically defined as anything over 8,000 feet (2,440 meters). Most people can travel to 8,000 feet with minimal effects. However, everyone reacts to altitude differently and altitude sickness can on set with some people irrespective of fitness and age. For details on how to best prepare and what to do in the unlikely event you are effected on your Adventure, please consult your physician.
Safety and Security
Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government’s advice for their latest travel information before departure. We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe keeping of your passport, air tickets, travellers’ cheques, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home – you won’t need it while travelling. Many of the hotels we use have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage. When travelling on a group trip, please note that your CEO has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it is deemed necessary due to safety concerns. Your CEO will accompany you on all included activities. During your trip you will have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. While your CEO will assist you with options available in a given location please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your itinerary, and we offer no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgment when selecting an activity in your free time. Although the cities visited on tour are generally safe during the day, there can be risks to wandering throughout any major city at night. It is our recommendation to stay in small groups and to take taxis to and from restaurants, or during night time excursions.
Protests and Demonstrations- Protests and demonstrations, even those that are well intended, have the potential to turn violent with no warning. Counter protests can also turn violent. Action by security forces to disperse demonstrators and protesters may occur at any time. If you are in an area where demonstrators or protesters are gathering, avoid the temptation of staying for a good photo opportunity and leave the area immediately.
Water based activities have an element of danger and excitement built into them. We recommend only participating in water based activities when accompanied by a guide(s). We make every reasonable effort to ensure the fun and adventurous element of any water based activities (in countries with varying degrees of operating standards) have a balanced approach to safety. It is our policy not to allow our CEOs to make arrangements on your behalf for water based activities that are not accompanied by guide(s).
Swimming, including snorkeling, is always at your own risk.
We take all prudent measures in relation to your safety. For ways to further enhance your personal safety while traveling, please visit:
Trip Specific Safety
Please take care when wandering about the city on your own, as pick pockets and purse-snatchers are common, particularly in the Old Town. Be safe and leave your passport, credit cards, traveller’s cheques and cash you don’t need in the hotel’s safety deposit box. Most Quiteños are honest and genuinely helpful and friendly, but be safe and enjoy the city!
A Couple of Rules
Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on any trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for our travellers. Our philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter, and in particular the local people who make the world the special place it is. The exploitation of prostitutes is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our CEOs have the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they use prostitutes.
Travel Insurance: Travel insurance is compulsory in order to participate on any of our trips. When travelling on a group trip, you will not be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance has been sighted by your CEO, who will take note of your insurance details. When selecting a travel insurance policy please bear in mind that all clients must have medical coverage and that we require a minimum coverage of USD 200,000 for repatriation and emergency rescue. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. If you have credit card insurance we require proof of purchase of the trip (a receipt of credit card statement) with a credit card in your name. Contact your bank for details of their participating insurer, the level of coverage and emergency contact telephone number.
Planeterra-The G Adventures Foundation
The Planeterra Foundation planeterra.org is a Canadian non-profit organization that helps empower local people to develop their communities, conserve their cultures, and create humane and supportive systems for their endeavours. Planeterra provides capacity building and catalyst grants to get community social enterprises off the ground. These businesses address local challenges by providing benefits for indigenous people, empowering marginalized women, and granting disadvantaged youth access to education, employment, and brighter futures. Planeterra also works to ensure these businesses have a thriving customer base by integrating programs into G Adventures’ itineraries globally.
G Adventures is Planeterra’s largest corporate donor, covering all operating costs so 100% of your donation will bring opportunity to people in need.
G Adventures’ Dollar-a-Day Program provides travellers with the opportunity to give back to the people and places visited on our tours by donating one dollar for every day you are on trip. 100% of these donations go directly to support community development projects worldwide that are implemented by Planeterra.
After your travels, we want to hear from you! Your feedback information is so important to us that we’ll give you 5% off the price of your next G Adventures trip if your feedback is completed on-line within 30 days of finishing your trip. Your tour evaluation will be e-mailed to you 24 hours after the conclusion of your trip. If you do not receive the tour evaluation link in the days after your tour has finished, please drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will send it on to you.
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You must be 18 to travel unaccompanied on a G Adventures tour. For minors travelling with a guardian over 21 years old, the minimum age is 12.
Check-in times and baggage allowances/restrictions vary by airline and can change at any time. For the most up-to-date information for your flight, please contact your airline. We recommend checking in online in advance to avoid potential delays at the airport.
15, avg 12
Local naturalist CEO while in the Galápagos Islands (certified by the Galápagos National Park Authority), G representative in Quito.
PRODUCT_LINE: SEGX, ID: 22747
Day 1: Quito
Located 2850m (9348 ft) above sea level, the Ecuadorian capital of Quito enjoys a wonderful spring-like climate, despite the fact that it is only 22km (14 mi) south of the Equator. On a clear day, several snow-capped volcanoes, including nearby Pichincha, are visible from the centre of this city nestled in a mountain-flanked valley. Add to its beautiful location a rich history and well-preserved colonial district, and you begin to understand Quito’s appeal to thousands of visitors every year.
We recommend booking pre- or post-night stays in Quito to better enjoy the many sites and excursions possible from the city.
If you are not able to attend the welcome meeting, a G Adventures representative will leave all important information at the hotel’s reception indicating what time to be ready on Day 2 of the trip. If there is any confusion on arrival, please do not hesitate to call the contact number listed in this dossier.
Arrival Day and Welcome Meeting
Day 2: Quito/Santa Cruz Island (1B)
In Baltra, you will be met by a G Adventures representative who will assist you in transferring from the Baltra airport by bus, ferry, and taxi to the hotel on Santa Cruz Island. Meet the local CEO for an orientation meeting, and then visit the Charles Darwin Research Station.
Your flight from Quito to Baltra is unaccompanied.
Fausto Llerena Breeding Center & Charles Darwin Research Station Visit
Private Vehicle (0.50-1.00 hours)
Plane (3.00 hour(s))
Local bus (0.25 hour(s))
Taxicab (0.75 hour(s))
Day 3: Puerto Ayora/Floreana Island (1B, 1L, 1D)
In the morning, head to Floreana Island by speed boat. Keep an eye out for dolphins and the magnificent albatross along the way.
Walk along the black sand beach until Loberia, and enjoy beach snorkelling or swimming. After, continue to the isolated town of Puerto Velasco Ibarra to the hotel located right on the black sand beach. For dinner, enjoy the abundance of fresh seafood available.
Please note: Seas can be rough during this voyage. Please bring seasickness medication, if required.
Loberia Snorkelling Excursion
Speedboat (3.00 hour(s), 74km)
Day 4: Floreana Island/Isabela Island (1B)
Explore new surroundings with a short walk nearby to observe pink flamingos in the wetlands, and catch a stunning Isabela sunset on the beach. Along the way, stop at a lookout point, and visit natural pools, beaches, and mangrove swamps.
Please note: Seas can be rough during this voyage. Please bring seasickness medication, if required.
Floreana Highlands Excursion
Flamingo Lagoon Visit
Speedboat (2.00 hour(s), 37km)
Day 5: Isabela Island (1B, 1L)
A full-day tour on Isabela Island at the Sierra Negra Volcano, one of the most active volcanoes in Galapagos boasting the second largest crater in the world. Hike to the summit to experience a bird’s-eye view of this magical landscape. Continue to the lava fields of Volcano Chico and enjoy lunch, admiring views of the surrounding volcanoes and islands. In the evening, relax at the bar or on the beach and enjoy an optional cold beer or cocktail.
Sierra Negra Volcano Excursion
Lava Fields Walk
Day 6: Isabela Island (1B)
Visit the Giant Tortoise Breeding Centre. Later, opt to take a wildlife boat excursion to ‘Islote Tintoreras’ to view breeding whitetip reef sharks, marine iguanas, blue-footed boobies, rays, and penguins.
Giant Tortoise Breeding Centre Visit
Day 7: Isabela Island/Puerto Ayora (1B)
Set sail for Santa Cruz Island and dock at the town of Puerto Ayora. In the evening, enjoy free time to explore this bustling little town and sample some of the local restaurants and bars, or maybe do some souvenir shopping in one of the many shops.
Please note: seas can be rough during this voyage. Please bring seasickness medication, if required.
Speedboat (2.00 hour(s))
Day 8: Santa Cruz Island/Quito (1B)
Retrace your footsteps to return to Baltra Island for the flight to Quito. Upon arrival in Quito, transfer to the hotel for one last night in town. The G Adventures representative in Quito will be able to arrange many of the available day tours in and around Quito if you have time to spare. We highly recommend booking post-accommodation in this lively city.
Taxicab (0.75 hour(s))
Ferry (0.25 hour(s))
Local bus (0.25 hour(s))
Plane (3.00 hour(s), 970km)
Day 9: Quito (1B)
Depart at any time.