Quito & Galapagos 7Days
Quito & Galapagos 7Days
Follow in the footsteps of Charles Darwin during this 7-day Quito Galapagos Tour. Spend a full day in Quito, the capital of Ecuador to explore its historic center and visit the Mitad del Mundo monument. On the third day fly directly to the Enchanted Islands, Galapagos, where our guide will be waiting to accompany you on your great 4-day adventure in the archipelago. Learn about the native flora and fauna of the islands, also about the famous giant tortoises and return to Quito for your flight back h
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Today the archipelago is known as the Enchanted Islands for its unique flora and fauna.Located in the Pacific Ocean 972 kilometers from the continental coast of Ecuador, and made up of 13 islands, all of volcanic origin because this is one of the most active areas of the world, its name comes from the tortoises that live there, called Galapagos because their shell resembles the English saddle used on horses.
Day 1: Trasfer In Airport – Hotel – Quito.
Day 2. Full Day Quito.
Colonial City Tour & Middle of the World: bustling streets and squares of the largest historical old town in the Americas, a multi-ethnic, artistic and cultural heritage destination. Visit the “Middle of the world” situated at 0º0’0” latitude. then We will take the road to the Pululahua Volcano viewpoint before returning to the city and the hotel to rest.
Day 3 : Quito – Galápago -Isabel, Island
Transfer to the airport to for get the flight to Galapagos. Arrival at Baltra airport, after approximately 50 minutes drive we arrive at the hotel in Santa Cruz.
In Puerto Ayora, lunch will be served at a local restaurant. Lunch consists of the menu of the day (no a la carte dishes). Then we transfer to the dock to take (at 14:00) a public service speedboat to Puerto Villamil on Isabela Island (2 ½ to 3 hours approx. depending on the tide). In Isabela the local guide will be waiting for us to take us to the specified hotel.
After a short rest we will go to Laguna de los Flamingos; in this place you can see flocks of flamingos that come to feed and reproduce in the lagoon. After returning to the hotel and a brief rest, dinner will be served at the restaurant specified by the guide
Day 4: Isabela Island
Early in the morning at 08:00am we will get ready for the excursion to the Sierra Negra Volcano. We recommend wearing comfortable hiking shoes, waterproof poncho, a jacket, sun protection, water bottle, sun hat and keep any electronics in cases of rain. A bag or backpack is also recommended to carry the Box Lunch that you can prepare yourself at the hotel San Vicente as the guide will indicate. It takes about 45 minutes to get to the volcano in a chiva or bus, depending on the number of participants. The 12 km hike takes about 3 hours. The hike is done on a medium-difficulty trail with a gentle slope. Sierra Negra Volcano has the second longest crater in the world, approximately 6 miles in diameter and 300 feet deep, and is one of the most spectacular sights in Galapagos. The hike continues to Volcán Chico. You can feel the hot earth as you approach, as this is an active volcano. The panoramic view from this place is wonderful. In the afternoon we return to the hotel. After a short rest we proceed to try on our snorkeling gear and head to Concha Perla.
Here we will be able to observe a great variety of fish, sea urchins, the occasional sea lion and hopefully sea turtles. After a rest at the hotel, dinner will be served at the restaurant specified by the guide.
Day 5 :Santa Cruz Island.
This day we will waking up at 05:00 am for the transfer from Isabela to Puerto Ayora in the public service speedboats (departure at 6:00 am – time subject to change).
After 2 ½ to 3 d (depending on the tide) we arrive in Puerto Ayora – Santa Cruz. After breakfast and a brief rest at the hotel, we start a tour in double cab vans or buses to the upper part of Santa Cruz. Short and long walks will take us to the natural habitat of the Giant Tortoises, known as the Galapagos (from which the islands take their name). The site is also inhabited by native birds such as the Galapagos Witchbirds and Galapagos Finches.
Abundant endemic vegetation such as scalecías and matazarnos make the highlands an essential place to visit to understand the natural environment of the islands.
After this incredible encounter with the Galapagos tortoises, we return to Puerto Ayora for lunch at the restaurant indicated by the guide. In the afternoon, at the time indicated by the guide, we will head to the Charles Darwin Research Station. In the place we can find several pens with Galapagos tortoises that vary in age and family, since the center gathers species from the most representative islands of the archipelago. It is also a refuge for fascinating land iguanas. We will receive a talk about the evolution of the species and the research carried out by the station for the preservation of the islands.After this visit we will go to the center of Puerto Ayora for a short tour of the famous Galleries. After a rest at the hotel, dinner will be served at the restaurant specified by the guide.
Day 6: Baltra Airport – Quito
After breakfast we will transfer to Baltra airport to take the plane to Quito or Guayaquil (if you buy the flights on your own, please send us the itinerary for better coordination). The route will be the same as the one we took on the first day.
On the way if time permits we will visit two crater-like land sinks, which were formed by the collapse of the earth as lava flows passed under this place and when this flow ceased, a hollow tunnel was left causing the collapse of the earth, this place is known as “Los Gemelos” (The Twins). Our driver will be waiting for us in the Mariscal Sucre airport then to take us to the hotel in Quito.
Day 7: Return to country of origin.
Breakfast at the hotel after the indicated time transfer out to the airport to take your flight back to your country.
- 3 nights lodging in double rooms in Quito.
- 3 nights hotel accommodation in the selected class in Galapagos.
- 3 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 3 dinners in Galapagos.
- 2 breakfasts in Quito.
- Transfers from Airport – Hotel – Airport (Days 1, 3, 6 and 7).
- Land and sea transportation within the Galapagos during the program.
- Bilingual naturalist guides in Galapagos.
- Excursions and visits during the program as shown in the itinerary.
- Air tickets to/from Ecuador and Galapagos.
- Lunches and dinners in Quito.
- Entrance to the Inti Ñan Museum and the Monument to the Middle of the World in Quito.
- Entrance fee to Galapagos National Park – USD $ 100.
- Dock in Isabela – USD $ 5.
- Migratory Control Card for Galapagos – USD $ 20.
- Water cab from the dock – speedboat – USD $ 1 per person / per trip
Book your flight in advance
Flights to visit the Galapagos Islands depart from Guayaquil or Quito. It is not exactly a cheap trip, but sometimes you can find discounts if you book in advance. If you are going to make a trip on your own to several islands, a good idea is to arrive at one of the airports (Baltra or San Cristobal) and depart from another.
Do not worry about the entrance to the park
You do not have to make any preparations when purchasing the entrance fee to the Galapagos Park. When you arrive at the departure airport you will pay a $20 transit fee at the INGALA booth. Without this document you will not be able to board. Then, upon landing, you will have to pay the $100 park entrance fee to continue your trip.
Choose between cruise or self-drive
The most popular option to visit the Galapagos Islands is aboard a cruise ship that stops at different islands. These usually last between 4 and 7 days. Although it is the easiest option, it is also the most expensive.
If you opt for the second option, you will basically make a base on the islands of San Cristobal, Santa Cruz and Isabela and from there you can hire excursions to nearby islands. The trips between these 3 islands are made in the so-called fibers. They cost about 30$ and leave early in the morning and at 14:00 or 15:00.
Take into account the weather
There is no bad season to travel to Galapagos (although between January and April there is more chance of rain), but the season does influence the fauna and flora you can see when visiting the Galapagos Islands. If you are looking forward to diving with hammerhead sharks, for example, a good time is in April or June. There are mating seasons for animals such as blue-footed boobies or marine iguanas that are also impressive, so it is important to be informed beforehand.
Booking accommodation is not so important
If you think that sleeping in Galapagos is expensive, in the islands we have mentioned you will find accommodation from 30$ a double room. If you do not go during high demand periods such as Easter, Christmas or summer vacations, you will have no problem booking when you arrive. In fact, this way you can get some discounts.
Choose your excursions wisely
Don’t panic, if you decide to visit the Galapagos Islands on your own, you should know that the normal price of a daily excursion is around $150. Therefore, if you do not want to spend your entire budget, choose well which excursions you want to do. We highly recommend the Túneles y Tintoreras in Isabela, León Dormido from San Cristóbal and Santa Fe, Bartolomé and Plaza Sur from Santa Cruz.
Don’t worry, there are also accessible places where you will see a lot of wildlife without paying too much. For example, the Lobería, Tortuga Bay or the Manzanillo farm are impressive and visiting them is free or costs less than $30.
These islands are a natural paradise that we have the duty to preserve. Therefore, follow the rules of the park and do not touch or feed the animals, do not introduce food that is not allowed, do not take anything from the park… In short, practice responsible tourism.