14 Day Galapagos Islands & Ecuador

Land Only
Air & Land

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Featured Hotels

14 Day Galapagos Islands & Ecuador
Hotel Oro Verde Guayaquil
Finch Bay Hotel Galapagos
Hilton Colon Quito Quito
Cabanas del Lago Otavalo
Puertolago Country Inn Otavalo
Termas de Papallacta Papallacta
Casa del Suizo Amazon
Samari Spa Resort Banos

Select a Departure Date

2019 Dates & Prices
Dates Air & Land Land Only
Jul 20  (Sold Out) $5449* $4949
$5059* $4689
Sep 07  (Sold Out) $5339* $4949
Sep 21  (Sold Out) $5059* $4689
$4919* $4579
$4959* $4529

*Not Included:
Optional tours and gratuities.

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

Some flights depart shortly after midnight in the very early morning of Day 14 and will require a transfer on Day 13. Transfers depart the hotel approximately 4 hours prior to flight time.

Triple Rooms cannot be accommodated on this program.

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

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.

Sturdy shoes are recommended for this program.

Accommodation Details:
Apr 27 and May 18 departures will be accommodated at Puertolago Country Inn in Otavalo.

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.

Is This Trip Right for You?

This moderately active trip covers a fair amount of ground each day. Expect from three to four hours walking every touring day. The pace is moderate, however you will encounter some uneven surfaces, stairs, steps and significant slopes. 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. In the Galapagos, expect from three to four hours walking every touring day. The pace is moderate, however you will encounter some uneven surfaces such as sandy and rocky beaches, stairs, steps and significant slopes. It takes approximately 2 hours to get to and from the areas populated with wildlife. You will experience wet landings in water, on sand or rocks and dry landings on wooden docks. This is a Partially Escorted program. For more information, click here.

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Accommodation Details

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DAY 1, Saturday - Depart for Ecuador
Depart for Ecuador. Arrive in Guayaquil, Ecuador's sprawling and vivacious port city, transfer to the hotel. The rest of the day is yours to explore the city's many museums, botanical gardens or stroll along the lively riverfront promenade
Overnight: Guayaquil

DAY 2, Sunday - Guayaquil City Tour & Parque Historico
Begin your tour of Guayaquil by visiting el Parque Centenario, home of the Monument of the Independence Heroes. Continue to Seminario Park, or Parque de las Iguanas as it is popularly known, a favorite place of bird watchers and home to arboreal Iguanas. Next, experience the many ethnological influences present in Ecuadorian culture by viewing the contrasting architecture of a Neo-Gothic Cathedral, a Moorish clock tower, and La Rotonda Monument, which portrays Simon Bolivar and Jose San Martin shaking hands. Departing from the banks of the river, the bus will take you to admire the beautiful Garden of Malecon and Santa Ana Hill, the area where the city Santiago de Guayaquil was founded in the 16th century. Continue to Parque Historico and learn about the history & culture of the region. Evening at leisure to savor your first taste of delicious Ecuadorian food
Overnight: Guayaquil
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 3, Monday - Galapagos Islands, Baltra, Santa Cruz
Embark this morning on a journey to the Galapagos archipelago of volcanic islands, five million years in the making. Your flight from Guayaquil takes you to Baltra Airport; meeting and transfer by boat to Santa Cruz Island. Here, visit the Giant Tortoise Reserve and see their natural habitat; a once in a lifetime experience! Tortoises can be seen grazing on the vegetation or wallowing in muddy banks or in small red ponds. The area is teeming with wildlife - woodpecker finches, mockingbirds, flycatchers, as well as ducks, herons, and gallinules. After a stop for lunch, on to Puerto Ayora, the most developed town in the Galapagos Islands, where you board the Finch Panga that takes you to Finch Bay, an eco-friendly resort-hotel in a private seaside location surrounded by mangroves, your home for the next three nights. The rest of the day is at leisure to enjoy the hotel's pool, natural spa, white coral beach or marvel at the stunning views from the comfort of your hammock. Tonight, enjoy dinner along with a briefing by your naturalist guide on the adventures that await you in the Galapagos Islands
Overnight: Galapagos Islands
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 4, Tuesday - Punta Carrion, South Plaza, Santa Cruz Island
Cross Santa Cruz Island to board the Sea Lion yacht that takes you on your journey today. The first stop is at Punta Carrión at the north-eastern tip of the island, where you snorkel at an idyllic spot. Continue sailing to South Plaza, on the eastern part of the island, one of the most impressive sites in the Galapagos. This small island is abundant with fascinating wildlife at the seaside and along the cliffs including sea lions, land iguanas, and swallow-tailed gulls, along with many species of cacti and vegetation that changes colors according to the season. See the spectacular panorama as you land in the channel. The turquoise waters contrast brilliantly with the white sand and black lava of the shoreline. The rocks are thick with green seaweed, speckled with bright orange Sally Lightfoot crabs. Further up the shore, a carpet of scarlet succulents serves as a ground cover for a grove of luminescent green prickly pear cactus with land iguanas sitting beneath, waiting patiently for pears to drop. Follow the trail to the cliffs that overlook the ocean where swallow-tailed gulls nest and red-billed tropicbirds, masked and blue-footed boobies ride the windy currents. The surf pounds an inlet at the western corner of the island, where colonies of sea lions make their home. After an exhilarating day of discovery, return to Finch Bay
Overnight: Galapagos Islands
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 5, Wednesday - Divine Bay, Punta Estrada, Charles Darwin Research Station
This morning, explore the wildlife-rich Divine Bay by boat. This magnificent cove is protected from the swells by natural volcanic reefs and a gallery of mangrove trees. Every morning, hundreds of herons cross on their daily foraging trips, returning before sunset to perching trees. Galapagos brown pelicans hover in the evergreen mangroves under the surveillance of blue-footed boobies perched along the cliffs. Under the sea, sea turtles graze on seaweed, while hundreds of reef fish swim about the lava crevices and young reef sharks and rays use the streams to hide from large predators. Next, tour Punta Estrada Island's small beach, a great place to see intertidal organisms and learn about marine iguanas in their nesting site. Return to Finch Bay for lunch, followed by a fascinating visit to the Charles Darwin Research Station's giant tortoise breeding center, situated within an impressive prickly pear cactus forest home. This is the world-renowned headquarters of scientific investigation, conservation, and the National Park administration. Time to linger on your own in town, or, return to the hotel
Overnight: Galapagos Islands
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 6, Thursday - Santa Fe Island
Santa Fe offers some of the most beautiful sheltered coves in the islands. Its turquoise lagoon is protected by a peninsula of tiny islets forming an ideal anchorage. The island lies to the southeast of Santa Cruz within sight of Puerto Ayora. A wet landing on the sandy white beach brings you into contact with one of the many sea lions and views of the giant prickly pear cactus that live up to their name, with tree-sized trunks! Look out for the large species of land iguana native to Santa Fe. These huge chocolate brown iguanas have dragon-like spines, and truly resemble dinosaurs. After the hike, an inviting swim in the crystal clear calm waters of the bay with great snorkeling opportunities. Lunch at Finch Bay with the rest of the afternoon at leisure to enjoy all of the hotel's great facilities
Overnight: Galapagos Islands
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 7, Friday - Baltra Island, Flight to Quito
Depart the Finch Bay Hotel. On your way to Baltra, stop at the Twin Pit Craters to view the great depressions of volcanic material formed by a long process of the sinking ground, and the exceptional view of Scalesia trees, ferns, mosses and orchids. Then, proceed to the airport for the flight to Quito through Guayaquil. Arrive late afternoon in this historic city in the high Andes at the base of the Pichincha Volcano; transfer to the hotel. Evening is at leisure in Quito
Overnight: Quito▲
Meals: Breakfast

DAY 8, Saturday - Quito City Tour & Visit to the Middle of the World
The morning's tour begins with a visit to the colonial section of Quito 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 de Jesus Church, with its beautiful gilded interior or the Church and Monastery of San Francisco, one of the great religious buildings of the New World with its impressive facade and atrium. Afterward, visit 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. This evening, enjoy an orientation meeting with your Tour Manager and fellow travelers, followed by a Welcome Dinner
Overnight: Otavalo
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 9, Sunday - 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 Otavaleños. Here, enjoy the lively market atmosphere and browse the various stalls for traditional goods such as hand-woven clothes and rugs, jewelry, and more. Then, visit Peguche, known for its beautiful waterfall. This afternoon, transfer to Papallacta located in the Andes Mountains. The remainder of the day is at leisure or join the optional tour to Papallacta's spas and hot springs, for which it is famous
Optional: Termas de Papallacta Spa Package (PM)
Overnight: Papallacta
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 10, Monday - 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 and a local Quechua community interpretation center to 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. Passengers are required to transport their own carry on luggage
Overnight: Amazon
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 11, Tuesday - Hike in a Private Nature Reserve
This morning, after a canoe ride you can hike in the Misicocha Private Nature Reserve 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 insects. Enjoy the views as you cross suspended bridges and fly through the jungle on a short zip line basket ride. At the end of the hike*, take a rafting trip on a traditional balsa log raft. The balance of the day is at leisure or, choose to participate in one of the optional tours, including the Butterfly Farm & Balsa Wood Carving Demonstration, Cacao Farm & AmaZOOnico Rescue Center or Canopy Adventure Park
*Please Note: It 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
Optional: Butterfly Farm & Balsa Wood Demonstration
Optional: Cacao Farm & AmaZOOnico Rescue
Optional: Canopy Adventure Park
Overnight: Amazon
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 12, Wednesday - El Pailon del Diablo & Baños
This morning, board a canoe for the short trip to La Punta Ahuano, continuing by coach to Patate. Stop along the way to visit the powerful El Pailon del Diablo or "The Devil's Cauldron"*, one of Ecuador's most beautiful waterfalls. Drive to Baños, an idyllic little town known for its hot thermal baths and the sometimes steamy Tungurahua Volcano. Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant. Afterwards, watch a demonstration on vegetable ivory, a traditional craft that utilizes palm nuts to make jewelry and animal carvings. In the late afternoon, check into your resort hotel** in Baños. Balance of the day is at leisure to enjoy all the amenities offered by your hotel or, explore the town of Banos, a short walk away.
*It is an active hike to and from El Pailon del Diablo waterfall
** Aug 18 departure will be accommodated at Haciena Leito in Patate
Overnight: Baños
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 13, Thursday - Visit to a Rose Plantation, Lunch at Hacienda La Cienega
Today enjoy a tour of a beautiful rose plantation. Although roses are not native to Ecuador, the country has a perfect environment for rose cultivation and is presently one of the world's major producers. On the plantation, you'll learn more about the farming process, from planting to exporting. Continue to Hacienda La Cienega for lunch, one of the oldest and most historical haciendas in Ecuador, belonging to the descendants of Marques of Maenza dating back to the 17th century, with a spectacular view of the Cotopaxi volcano, in the background. After lunch, time to wander around the grounds of the Hacienda. Return to the hotel in Quito for this evening's "Farewell to Ecuador" Dinner with your group
Overnight: Quito
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 14, Friday - Depart Ecuador
Transfer to the airport for your departure flight
*Some flights depart shortly after midnight in the very early morning of Day 14 and will require a transfer on Day 13. Transfers depart the hotel approximately 4 hours prior to flight time
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.

Virgin Vacations itineraries may contain suggestions for activities for your leisure time; these suggestions do not constitute a recommendation nor an endorsement of any specific service provider and the decision to participate in any such activities should be made independently.

Featured Hotels

Hotel Oro Verde Image
Finch Bay Hotel Image
Hilton Colon Quito Image
Cabanas del Lago Image
Termas de Papallacta Image
Casa del Suizo Image
Samari Spa Resort Image

Optional Tours

Indulge in a little relaxation and pampering this evening at the Spa at Termas de Papallacta. Unwind for 20-30 minutes in one of the thermal hot pools and the refreshing cold pool. Next, enjoy a 20 minute mineral infused steam as hot water trickles over rocks and eucalyptus leaves in the Steam bath at the thermal grotto. Wrap up your session with a 30 minute neck and back massage to help you relax after an exciting day of sightseeing.

Approximate tour duration is 1.5 hours.

*Please note that a swimsuit is required to enter the Spa and Thermal Pools.
**Due to limited availability, advanced booking is recommended.

Day #9 01 Jan 2019 - 07 Jan 2020 $55.00
Termas de Papallacta Spa Package Thumbnail

Today, visit the nearby Butterfly Farm, just a 15 minute walk from the lodge. The farm houses and serves as the mating ground to many butterfly species found in the surrounding jungle, including the brilliant blue morpho butterfly. Observe how these beautiful creatures are fed, raised and undergo metamorphosis. Enter the "winged room" where you will be surrounded by hundreds of exquisite colored butterflies flying around. After, walk for another 15 minutes and visit an indigenous handicraft workshop, before returning to your lodge.

Approximate tour duration is 1.5 hours.

*Optionals "Cacao Farm and AmaZOOnico Rescue Center", "Butterfly Farm and Balsa Wood Demonstration", and "Canopy Adventure Park" operate at the same time and should not be booked together.

Day #11 01 Jun 2017 - 07 Jan 2020 $12.00
Butterfly Farm & Balsa Wood Carving Demonstration Thumbnail

Take a 15 minute drive and then hike 30 minutes through the rainforest to get to the Canopy Adventure Park that is located near the Pangayacu River. The Canopy Adventure Park is a ropes course or "parcour". You’ll find yourself whizzing under the foliage and over the jungle floor in no time with the help of experienced guides. There are two circuits, each with increasing level of difficulty.

It is recommended that you wear hiking boots for this activity as you will be walking some distance through the forest. For some, this activity may be considered very strenuous and people with difficulty breathing, heart or other medical conditions, should consider not choosing this optional tour. Minimum age is 8 years old and minimum height is 3' 3" (1 meter)

Approximate tour duration is 2 hours.

*Optionals "Cacao Farm and AmaZOOnico Rescue Center", "Butterfly Farm and Balsa Wood Demonstration", and "Canopy Adventure Park" operate at the same time and should not be booked together.

Day #11 01 Jun 2017 - 07 Jan 2020 $19.00
Canopy Adventure Park Thumbnail

Take a 25 minute canoe ride on the Arajuno River to visit a cacao farm, where you watch the process of obtaining chocolate from the seeds of the cacao fruit. Try your hand at grinding the roasted cacao beans in order to obtain the paste from which chocolate is made. At the end of the demonstration, taste a delicious cacao spread on toast or, a cup of hot chocolate. After, get back on your canoe and ride downriver to visit the AmaZOOnico Animal Rescue Center. The AmaZOOnico serves to rescue and care for the Amazonian animals who were injured, mistreated and illegally-trafficked. Take a guided tour of the center and watch rare species of animals in their natural habitat.

Approximate tour duration is 3.5 hours.

*Optionals "Cacao Farm and AmaZOOnico Rescue Center", "Butterfly Farm and Balsa Wood Demonstration", and "Canopy Adventure Park" operate at the same time and should not be booked together.

Day #11 01 Jun 2017 - 06 Jan 2021 $15.00
Cacao Farm & AmaZOOnico Rescue Center Thumbnail