8-Night Stay for 2 (1400-2n)
8-Night Land & Sea Adventure in Ecuador, Galapagos and Santa Cruz Island with Domestic Airfare (South America) for 2 (1400-2n)
This Experience Includes
- A total of 2 nights at the Hilton Colon Quito Hotel in Ecuador, including daily breakfast
- 2-night stay at the Finch Bay Hotel on Santa Cruz Island/Galapagos, including daily breakfast
- 4-night stay (Monday-Friday) aboard the M/V Santa Cruz cruise ship in the northern Galapagos Islands, including all on-board meals
- All ground transfers between airports, hotels and cruise port
- Round-trip domestic airfare between Quito and the Galapagos Islands (Baltra)
- Winspire booking & concierge service
Hilton Colon Quito
Enjoy a 1-night stay in a club floor room including buffet breakfast prior to your flight to the Galapagos Islands and a 1-night stay including buffet breakfast upon your return from the Galapagos Islands. The Hilton Colon Quito Hotel, located on the main financial, commercial and tourist area of the city, is a 10-minute walk to Quito’s Spanish Colonial old town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The next day take a complimentary transfer to the airport for the flight to Baltra, Galapagos. Transfer to the Finch Bay Eco Hotel upon arrival.
Finch Bay Hotel (Santa Cruz Island, Galapagos Islands)
Enjoy a 2-night stay in a garden-view room with twin beds and daily buffet breakfast at the charming Finch Bay Hotel, named after the famous Darwin's Finches abundant in the surroundings. Located just steps from the beach on a private seaside location, surrounded by mangroves. Here guests can cherish the privacy, natural surroundings and superb service offered by the Finch Bay. Located on Santa Cruz Island at Punta Estrada, across the bay from the town of Puerto Ayora, the hotel is situated in a quiet location, with only pedestrian and bicycle circulation - there are no cars in the neighborhood.
Cruise - M/V Santa Cruz
Enjoy a 4-night (Monday-Friday) Northern Islands cruise for two people in a Horizon Deck Explorer cabin, all meals (excluding alcoholic beverages and gratuities), and excursions with an English- speaking naturalist guide. The only ship built exclusively for Galapagos Islands cruising. The M/V Santa Cruz is a luxury vessel offering superb service, a highly experienced crew, including on-board naturalists. Cruisers must be at least 6 years of age.
Note: Those desiring to cruise during December 20-January 5 will need to pay an additional fee.
Cruise Itinerary: (subject to change)
Baltra Island/Las Bachas (Santa Cruz Island)
Morning arrival to Baltra Island by plane and immediate transfer to the dock to board the MV Santa Cruz. Welcome introductory briefing and lunch.
Las Bachas (Santa Cruz Island)
After WWII, US military barges were beached and abandoned here. Locals referred to the beach as the barges beach, a name that morphed to “Bachas”. Today it is an important nesting area for the east Pacific green sea turtle. Located on the north shore of Santa Cruz Island, it is a glorious white beach (wet landing), with several brackish lagoons only a few steps away from the sea. These lagoons are the feeding grounds of various wading birds, from stilts to flamingos. This is a great opportunity to get acquainted with snorkeling gear and techniques. Welcome cocktail, expedition plan for Tuesday and dinner.
Buccaneer Cove/Puerto Egas (James Island)
After breakfast, enjoy a coastal exploration along the impressive cliffs of Buccaneer Cove. Learn about the history of Santiago Island, its relevance for the whalers, pirates and early researchers including Darwin’s epic voyage in 1835, and conservation projects. Today the island is free of feral goats, and the cove is home to a large number of marine birds, sea lions, and inter-tidal organisms. Enjoy fantastic natural formations such as the “Elephant Rock”, “The Bishop” and an impressive natural cave. This is a great site for snorkeling or panga ride.
Puerto Egas (James Island)
Disembark at the beach (wet landing) and enjoy a swim or snorkel amid a rocky shoreline, usually in the company of marine turtles. A mid-length walk will provide a great opportunity to see land and marine birds amid landscape of tuff-stone layers and lava flows, and to observe a fur-sea lion colony. At low tide, marine iguanas graze upon the algae beds.
Rábida Island/Bartolomé Island (Jervis)
Go for a fascinating panga ride along the shores or disembark on Rábida Island’s red-coloured beach, caused by the unusually high content of iron in the volcanic material. The walk may bring you close to a large colony of sea lions, marine iguanas, mockingbirds, yellow warblers and several species of Darwin’s finches. Very close to the beach, a salt pond hosts migrating greater flamingos at certain times of year. This is a great place to snorkel from the beach, both for beginners as well as for experienced snorkelers, due to the unique combination of underwater species and submarine landscapes. Non-snorkelers will enjoy a ride on the glass bottom boat or a panga ride. During navigation to the next island, dolphins are sometimes spotted!
Disembark on the golden beach (wet landing) on this famous island, dominated by the imposing Pinnacle Rock, for great snorkeling and swimming and a chance to ride the glass bottom boat. Then enjoy a dinghy ride around colossal Pinnacle to explore the rugged and volcanic shoreline and a hike to the summit of this island that boasts fantastic views of the archipelago. This is a moderately steep climb aided by a wooden staircase resting platforms and handrails; the view from the top is worth the effort.
Prince Philip’s Steps/Darwin Bay (Tower/Genovesa Island)
The morning starts with a steep climb (90 feet) up some stairs to a flat rocky plateau for a stimulating one-mile walk to the other side of this small island. Observe large colonies of Nazca boobies, red footed boobies, great frigate birds and storm petrels. Those not wishing to disembark can enjoy a longer panga ride along the cliffs (depending on weather conditions).
Darwin Bay (Tower/Genovesa Island)
In the afternoon, a wet landing for an easy stroll observing hundreds of birds, mainly Great frigate birds, red footed and Nazca (masked) boobies, gulls, herons, finches and mockingbirds. Optional walk over sharp lava and uneven terrain, or return to the beach to enjoy swimming and snorkeling at this beautiful natural harbor. Farewell cocktail, departure briefing and dinner.
Puerto Baquerizo Moreno (San Cristóbal - Chatham Island)
Optional departure after breakfast, to see the breeding program of giant tortoises at Cerro Colorado. Learn about this endangered species, and its promising recovery. This site is 45 minutes by bus, on the south shore of San Cristóbal Island. Return to town and transfer to the airport to take the flight back to the mainland.
Enjoy round-trip coach class service for two from Quito to Galapagos Islands (Baltra). Airfare must be booked within one year from the date of purchase.
Winspire Booking & Concierge Service
Winspire provides a team of seasoned travel professionals who will help you redeem your experience. All travel related details and reservations are handled for every part of your Winspire experience. Operating as a full-service travel agency, Winspire can assist with extra hotel nights, airfare upgrades, and additional guests. This service also provides you with an established network of onsite contacts who can help you book additional experiences, activities and tours.
Must be booked a minimum of 60 days in advance. Reservations are subject to availability. Flights may not be upgraded with miles. Certificates cannot be replaced if lost stolen or destroyed. All packages are non-refundable. Packages cannot be resold. Suggested retail value is calculated using tariff air rates and rack room rates. Ground transportation is not included in this package unless where specified.
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