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Air & Land
Land Only

12 Day Ecuador with 3 Day Galapagos Cruise

Part-Escorted Package Includes

  • Flights Miami-Quito, Guayaquil-Miami
    Other departure cities available. Click on date of departure for selection and prices
  • Airline taxes & fuel surcharges
  • Intra-flights Quito-San Cristobal & Baltra-Guayaquil
  • 11 nights First Class accommodations
    • 2 nights Quito
    • 1 night Otavalo
    • 1 night Papallacta
    • 2 nights Punta Ahuano (Amazon)
    • 1 night Patate
    • 3 nights Galapagos Cruise on Galapagos Explorer II, Classic Suite outside cabin with 2 lower berths
    • 1 night Guayaquil
  • Cruise porterage
  • All transfers
  • 24 Meals: 11 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 7 dinners
  • Beverages and gratuities onboard Galapagos Explorer II
  • Sightseeing per itinerary in modern air-conditioned motor coach
  • Services of English-speaking tour manager (Days 1-8)
  • Services of English-speaking local guides
  • Services of English-speaking naturalist guides in the Galapagos
  • Entrance fees per itinerary
  • Shore Excursions
  • Galapagos National Park Fee of $100
  • Galapagos Transit Control Card fee of $10

Special Features

  • Quito City Tour
  • Excursion to the Middle of the World
  • Otavalo Market
  • Rainforest Excursions
  • Cotopaxi National Park
  • Galapagos Islands

This 12 day “on-the-go” program features the highlights of Ecuador in an active itinerary which includes several walking tours as well as some early starts and long days.

DAY 1, Wednesday - Depart the USA, Arrive in Quito
Depart the USA for Ecuador. Arrive in Quito and transfer to your hotel. The Quito airport is approximately a 1-2 hour drive from the city. Balance of the day at leisure
Overnight: Quito▲

DAY 2, Thursday - Quito City Tour & Visit to the Middle of the World
In the morning meet with the tour manager for an orientation. The morning's tour of Quito begins with a view of the Congress Building, whose outside stone mural records Ecuador's history. Continue to Quito's colonial section to walk along the narrow cobblestone streets and feel the charm of 16th-century Quito. See the Independence Plaza, the Cathedral, Presidential Palace, and the Archbishop's Palace before visiting La Compañia Church or the Church of San Francisco**. Afterward, see the Middle of the World Monument, located at a latitude of 0º, and stand with one foot in the Northern and one in the Southern Hemisphere. This afternoon, transfer by bus to Otavalo
**Please note that the itinerary may vary slightly based on local conditions and holidays, therefore La Compañia Church may be replaced with a visit to the Church of San Francisco
Overnight: Otavalo
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 3, Friday - Otavalo Market, Transfer to Papallacta
This morning, enjoy a tour of the market in Otavalo, one of the largest in South America and run by the local Otavaleño Indians. Here, enjoy the lively market atmosphere and browse the various stalls for traditional goods such as hand-woven clothes and rugs, jewelry, fruits, vegetables and more. Then, visit the surrounding towns of Cotacachi, known for its leather handicrafts, and Peguche, known for its beautiful waterfall. This afternoon, transfer to Papallacta located in the Andes Mountains. The balance of the day is at leisure to explore Papallacta's spas and hot springs, for which it is famous
Optional: Termas de Papallacta Spa Package (PM)
Overnight: Papallacta
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 4, Saturday - Transfer to Amazon Resort
After breakfast, transfer by bus to La Punta Ahuano on the Napo River where you will board a canoe that will take you to your Amazon lodge. Enjoy the serene tranquility that the lodge has to offer and prepare to be amazed by both the wildlife and the culture inherent to the Amazon. In the afternoon, visit Ahuano to have the opportunity to meet a local Quechua family and learn about their way of life first hand before returning to the hotel
**Please note upon arrival the lodge is approximately a 5-10 minute walk uphill from where passengers will exit the canoe
Overnight: Amazon
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 5, Sunday - Full Day Amazon
This morning, you can hike to the Napo river for approximately two hours while viewing the beautiful flora and fauna up close. The Amazon rainforest is the world's largest ecosystem, so be sure to keep an eye out for the innumerable species of tropical plants and flowers, insects, and butterflies. Enjoy the views as you cross suspended bridges and fly through the jungle on a short zipline basket ride. At the end of the hike, enjoy a rafting trip on a traditional balsa log raft. Enjoy the afternoon at leisure. Consider a visit to the Butterfly farm
**Please note this is an active hike and sections of the path include steps. Also, those who participate in the rafting trip will need to step through the water to reach the raft and will get wet during the ride
Overnight: Amazon
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 6, Monday - Baños & Patate
This morning, board a canoe for the short trip back to La Punta Ahuano and transfer to Patate via motor coach. En route, stop in the towns of Puyo, nicknamed "City of the Clouds, and Baños, noted for its thermal springs and beautiful highland scenery for a short tour of each. In Baños, you will be treated to a demonstration on vegetable ivory, a traditional craft that utilizes palm nuts to make jewelry and animal carvings. Along the way, you will have the opportunity to view El Pailon del Diablo or "The Devil's Cauldron", one of Ecuador's most beautiful waterfalls. In the late afternoon, check into your hotel in Patate. Enjoy the balance of the day at leisure
**Please note that it is an active hike to and from El Pailon del Diablo waterfall
Overnight: Patate
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 7, Tuesday - Cotopaxi National Park
Today enjoy a visit to Cotopaxi National Park, home to some of the highest altitude volcanoes in the world. The picturesque Cotopaxi Volcano, rising more than 19,000 feet above the plains, dominates the scene. The park is also home to a wide variety of local wildlife including wild horses and the elusive Andean Condor. Passengers have the opportunity to take an hour-long hike around Limpiapungo Lake and take in the beautiful scenery of the surrounding plains and volcanoes, followed by a visit to the park's Interpretation Center. If time permits there may be a visit to a local school en route to Cotopaxi National Park. After the excursion, continue to Quito, nestled high in the Andes Mountain
**Please note the hike length at Cotopaxi National Park is subject to weather conditions
Overnight: Quito
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 8, Wednesday - Fly to San Cristóbal Island
This morning, transfer to the airport for your flight to San Cristóbal, the Galapagos' oldest and easternmost island. Upon arrival, proceed to board your ship, the Galapagos Explorer II. Settle in as you are whisked away to your first excursion. San Cristóbal is where Darwin first landed in 1835 during the Voyage of the Beagle and began his observation of the diverse and unique species of the islands. Visit La Galapaguera, a breeding ground and sanctuary for giant tortoises, or El Junco, the largest freshwater lake in the archipelago, located in a large crater in the highlands depending on local conditions
Overnight: Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 9, Thursday - Sail to Española Island
This morning, sail to Gardner Bay (wet landing) on Española Island and view one of the most pristine beaches in all of the Galapagos, home to many sea lion colonies and endemic mocking birds. Although the water may be chilly, travelers are able to go swimming and snorkeling in the crystal clear waters to view the varied species beneath the surface. In the afternoon, visit Punta Suarez (dry landing), where you can view sea lions surfing the waves and marine iguanas basking in the sun. You may hike further inland and view the Blowhole, a fissure in the lava cliffs where sea water jets high into the air
Overnight: Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 10, Friday - Sail to Santa Cruz Island
Today, arrive at Santa Cruz Island (dry landing). Visit the Charles Darwin Research Station, a specialized breeding and rearing center for the endangered Galapagos Giant Tortoise. The Darwin Station is a working branch of the international, non-profit Charles Darwin Foundation which works to protect and maintain the Galapagos' precious ecosystems. Afterward, walk through Puerto Ayora, the largest town on the islands, and visit the local shops for unique souvenirs. This afternoon continue to Plazas Island, which was formed from lava leaking out of the ocean floor. It houses one of the largest Land Iguana populations in the Galapagos and is famous for its beautiful flora, which includes prickly pear cactus trees and Sesuvium ground vegetation, which changes color from green in the rainy season to orange and purple in the dry season
Overnight: Cruise
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 11, Saturday - Sail to Baltra Island/Flight to Guayaquil
Dock in Baltra Island and transfer to the airport, where a plane will take you to Guayaquil on the mainland. Upon arrival, transfer to your hotel and enjoy the balance of your day at leisure
Overnight: Guayaquil
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 12, Sunday - Depart for the USA
Transfer to the airport for your departure flight
Meals: Breakfast

▲ Due to the high elevation, travel in the Ecuadorian Andes may cause some passengers to experience the temporary effects of altitude sickness. If you have any concerns about traveling to higher than your accustomed elevation, please consult your healthcare provider.

    Book your Optional Tours before you travel and see more, save time, save money, and protect your investment. Tours purchased while traveling may cost an extra 10% or even more! Tours often sell out - avoid disappointment! Save your cash - many countries do not accept credit cards. Travel insurance only covers services purchased prior to departure.

    Book your Optional Tours before you travel and see more, save time, save money, and protect your investment. Tours purchased while traveling may cost an extra 10% or even more! Tours often sell out - avoid disappointment! Save your cash - many countries do not accept credit cards. Travel insurance only covers services purchased prior to departure.

    Hotels Available for Departure Dates

    Choice of Hotel Plans

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    This package is currently unavailable. Please check back later or call Virgin Vacations for more information.
    Create Your Own Flexible Vacation

    *Not Included:
    Optional tours and gratuities.

    Additional Information:
    Land only price does not include arrival/departure transfers, but does include flights Quito-Galapagos-Guayaquil.

    Passport numbers for all passengers must be submitted before documents can be issued.

    Gratuities for crew and naturalist guides on Galapagos Explorer II are included.

    Beverage package onboard Galapagos Explorer II includes selected wines, spirits, cocktails, beers, bottled water, juices and soft drinks at all bars and lounges.

    The route and program may vary according to weather conditions, seasonal changes, safety issues and wildlife migration patterns. Wildlife and visits listed in the itinerary are based upon optimal conditions and therefore subject to change.

    Dry landing: Passengers step from the dinghy onto rocks or a dock.

    Wet landing: As the dinghy edges onto a sandy beach, passengers step into knee-deep water and wade ashore.

    Sturdy shoes are recommended for this program.

    Entry Requirements:
    Passengers traveling abroad require a passport valid for six months beyond their travel dates. All travelers are responsible to check if a visa is required for all countries on their itinerary. For visa information, check our Visas page.

    This trip is also available with the following variations: