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Galapagos Cruise + Quito


ERA8Q
8 NIGHTS
FROM £3,795
International flights quoted separately
Combine a visit to historic Quito in the Andean Highliands, with an expedition cruise through the pristine Galapagos Islands. The wildlife here is quite unaffected by people and you can walk among nesting blue-footed boobies, see giant tortoises, iguana, frigate birds and so much more. Dive options also available. Galapagos flights, marine fees & all transfers included.
ecuador and galapagos islands cruise holiday - see land and marine iguana
• 
Quito
• 
Otavalo
• 
Galapagos Cruise
• 
North Seymour Island
• 
Punta Vicente Roca
• 
Isabela Island
• 
Fernandina Island
• 
Santa Cruz Island
• 
Charles Darwin Station
• 
Floreana Island
• 
Quito
• 
Otavalo
• 
Galapagos Cruise
• 
North Seymour Island
• 
Punta Vicente Roca
• 
Isabela Island
• 
Fernandina Island
• 
Santa Cruz Island
• 
Charles Darwin Station
• 
Floreana Island
Day 1
You will be met at Quito Airport and transferred to your hotel in this historic Spanish colonial city that straddles the equator and is today a World Heritage Site.
 
Check in and relax in this capital city in the Andean Highlands, with its many museums, monasteries and churches with golden altars. The prosperous centre of the Kingdom of Quitus during the 13th century, and later the northern capital of the Inca Empire, it has a setting that few cities in the world can match.
Day 2
This morning we visit the equatorial monument that marks the Centre of the World at latitude 0º - about 16 miles (25 km) north of Quito. Here you can stand with a foot on each hemisphere and visit the Intiñan folk museum that showcases the different Native American groups living in Ecuador, their culture and traditions. There is also a colonial-style tourist village complete with main square, church, post office, bull ring and gift shops.
 
Afterwards enjoy a walking tour through the streets and main square of the historic Colonial Quarter, the largest and best preserved in South America. Take in its magnificent colonial architecture - including the Cathedral, President's Palace, Archbishop's Palace and the Municipal Building flanking Independence Plaza. You will see many mansions, monasteries and churches, and visit the Church & Convent of Santo Domingo. The city also has many cosmopolitan galleries and boutiques filled with contemporary paintings, sculptures and exquisite traditional crafts.
 
Please note: Quito walking tour is conducted at an altitude of 2,800 m and includes climbing stairs. As you will be visiting churches (except on Sundays, when this is not permitted), do not wear shorts or mini-skirts as these are not allowed.
Day 3
At leisure to explore the historic town of Quito independently.
Day 4
Transfer to Quito Airport for your flight to the spectacular Galapagos Islands.
 
You will be met at Baltra Airport and transferred by bus to the boarding jetty. Here you will embark by panga boat (zodiac) on your Expedition Cruise through this magnificent archipelago, situated on the equator in the Pacific Ocean some 560 miles (900 km) west of the Ecuador mainland.
  
These volcanic islands are famous for their vast number of endemic species, studied by Charles Darwin during his historic voyage on the Beagle, which contributed to his Theory of Evolution by natural selection. Check in and relax in this astonishing marine reserve, where the unique wildlife does not seem perturbed by human visitors - allowing for extremely close-up encounters.
 
Please note that you need to be relatively mobile to enjoy an expedition cruise in the Galapagos, as you will be embarking and disembarking by panga boat (zodiac). All sightseeing with a naturalist guide, marine fees, snorkelling and medical care aboard the boat are included, but not the cost of medicines. Wetsuits are available for hire. Children < 6 years are not allowed on an expedition cruise.
Days 5 To 7
Enjoy cruising through the marine-rich waters of the world-famous Galapagos Islands, with shore excursions each day with a naturalist.
 
Your exact routing will depend on your departure date and the vessel you have selected.
Day 8
Disembark from your Expedition Cruise and transfer to Baltra Airport for your flight to Guayaquil.
 
You will be met at Guayaquil Airport and transferred to your hotel in this important port, that is the largest city in Ecuador. Here the vibe is Caribbean, in marked contrast to the Andean region.
Day 9
Transfer by shuttle to Guayaquil Airport for your flight home.

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