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Signature Galapagos Express

8 Days FROM AUD 7,090

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Overview

Join this 8 day, superior experience of Quito and the Galapagos Islands. The cruise offers all the creature comforts of superior accommodation onboard the MC Seaman Journey, a luxurious sixteen passenger catamaran, and three nights accommodation in Quito at the boutique five star Illa Experience hotel.

You will enjoy a few days sightseeing Quito from the hotel, which is centrally located in the city’s old town, before boarding your cruise and experiencing the spectacular scenery, natural wonders and incredible flora and fauna of the Galapagos Islands. There, you will observe Galapagos tortoises in their habitat, snorkel the white coral beach of Cerro Brulo, observe sea lions and sharks at Espanola Island and spot blue-footed boobies and albatrosses at Suarez Point.

Every day of this express South American tour is an adventure as you encounter the fascinating and colourful creatures who call these islands their home.

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This superior itinerary includes accommodation onboard the Seaman Journey - a luxurious 16 passenger catamaran and three nights in Quito staying the Illa Experience hotel, a boutique 5 star hotel located in the city's old town, this hotel  is the perfect base to explore the best sights and attractions the city has to offer.

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Optional Activities :

Trip Code: ECSJGALB

Travel Style: Personalised Itinerary & Small Ship Cruise

Location: Quito, Ecuador, Galapagos Islands

Ship: Galapagos Seaman Journey

CRUISE ITINERARY

On arrival, please make your way through to the Arrivals Hall where our representative will be waiting for you to transfer you to your hotel. This service includes a driver and local English speaking guide, who will provide you with any useful information needed for your stay. He/she will be holding a sign with your name on it.

Should you not be able to locate them, please refer to the front of your itinerary for emergency contact details of our representative office.

Arrival transfer in Quito

Departsouth from Quito to visit Cotopaxi National Park. Cotopaxi (5,943 m)is the highest active volcano in the world. Despite the altitude, the Park is home to numerous birds and varied plant life. Northeast lies Rumiñahui(4,557 m) and between the two mountains the plain and lagoon of Limpiopungo (3800m approx.). If weather permits, from the north face we may have spectacular views of the mountain. The surrounding scenery also includes volcanoes like Pasochoa, Ruminahui and Sincholagua, Lunch is included at a restaurant at the base of the mountain. The tour also includes a visit to an indigenous market nearby.
You will be returned to your hotel in Quito at the end of the tour.

Full Day Cotapaxi National Park Excursion with Lun

This morning you will be collected from your hotel to commence a colonial city tour of Quito exploring the bustling streets and squares of the largest historical old town in the Americas. Visit some of its most important churches such as the majestic La Compañía and iconic San Francisco which have stunning multi-ethnic designs and cultural heritage. We then travel by road to the Equatorial Monument, 25km (16 miles) north of Quito, which marks the exact middle of the World, Latitude 0º, where you can stand with a foot on each hemisphere. A certificate for having crossed the Equator is issued to each guest. The surrounding, volcanic scenery is stunning and you can choose to either visit the Ethnographic Museum or the Inti Ñan Museum, both located near the site of the monument. On completion of the tour, you will be returned to your hotel. Please note this is a private tour that includes a local English speaking guide.

Quito - City Tour and the Equator

AM: Galapaguera
The Galapaguera was built to increase the population of the Galapagos tortoise that is under threat from introduced species such as wild goats and cats. It is a breeding station and sanctuary for giant tortoises and provides a good place in which to observe Galapagos tortoises in their natural habitat.

San Cristobal Island is the easternmost island in the Galapagos archipelago. It has some endemic species including the San Cristobal mockingbird, San Cristobal lava lizard, leaf-toed gecko and turtles. The beach is large and serves as a nesting site for sea turtles. The females lay their eggs in the sand dunes between January and May.

PM: Cerro Brujo
Cerro Brujo is a beautiful white coral sand beach, with good swimming and snorkelling in the turquoise waters. It is home to a colony of sea lions and blue-footed boobies and there are great egrets and great blue herons in the lagoon behind the beach. Nazca boobies, frigate birds and shore birds can also be observed. This is the first coast where Charles Darwin went ashore in 1835.

The salt water pools behind the sand dunes were used by the fishermen as a salt mine in order to preserve food for the local population. Here you may see the Chatham mockingbird and the San Cristobal lava lizard, both species being endemic to the island and unique to this area. You may also spot Galapagos turtles and with luck the small bird known as the Pájaro Brujo in Spanish, an endemic species from San Cristobal Island. The vegetation on the island includes candelabrum cacti and carob trees.

Located on the north coast of Isla San Cristobal, Cerro Brujo is a peaceful place with white sand and crystal water, a perfect combination for an incredible visit.

San Cristobal Island | Seaman Journey

AM: Española Island, Gardner Bay
Española Island is the southernmost of the Galapagos Islands and one of the oldest, and due to its isolation, it has a large number of endemic species including the Española mockingbird, Española lava lizard and the waved albatross. Located on the north-eastern coast of Española Island (or Hood Island as it was named by the English), Gardner Bay provides an excellent beach for relaxing, swimming, snorkelling, and kayaking. The beach attracts many sea lions, and you may see sharks as well as green sea turtles in the crystal-clear ocean waters.

PM: Suarez Point
This beautiful site on the ocean front is great for spotting blue-footed boobies, albatrosses and Nazca boobies. The large, waved albatrosses breed on the island and use the cliff as a launching pad. The famous attraction is the magnificent blowhole, where waves crash into a lava fissure, creating a blowhole that spurts water 30-50 metres into the air. Suarez Point presents wonderful photographic opportunities.

Espanola Island | Seaman Journey

AM: Cormorant Point
Cormorant Point on Floreana Island probably offers one of the largest and best flamingo lagoons in the Galapagos. It is situated between two tuff lava cones that give the area a special atmosphere. There are various other species of shorebirds to observe including common stilts, white-cheeked pintail ducks, large-billed flycatchers, finches and other migratory birds. There are two distinct beaches: “Green Beach” (due to its high percentage of olivine crystals in the sand) and “Flour Sand Beach” which is made up of fine, pulverized coral. Green sea turtles nest on Flour Beach and several species of rays can be seen in the waters.
After the interesting walk we will head to Champion Islet which is a great place to enjoy snorkelling and underwater wildlife. Some of the animals that can be seen are sea turtles, sea lions and schools of fish thanks to the nearby coral reef.

PM: Post Office Bay
Historically, this site is the location of a wooden barrel that was placed here by the crew of a whaling ship in the 18th century. It has been used since this time by mariners and tourists as a post office. The idea is to carry letters or postcards to their destination by hand. This days afternoon is thought to be a relaxing time for visitors to enjoy the beach and the beauty of the Galapagos.

Floreana Island | Seaman Journey

AM: Turtles Trail
Although the great majority of Galapagos visitors come here to observe and appreciate natural wonders, it is also interesting to learn how the protection and conservation of the islands are carried out. This path offers the possibility to do this and to feel connected with nature.

After the morning excursion you will be taken to the airport for your flight to the mainland. Transfer to Baltra Airport

Flight back to Quito or Guayaquil.

Turtles Trail - Disembark the Seaman Journey
DOWNLOAD ITINERARY PDF

ITINERARY ADD-ONS

  • If you are looking at covering off the highlights of South America, our 21 day / 20 night Signature South America Circle package is our best selling itinerary for a reason. This itinerary visits four of our top five year-round selling destinations - Machu Picchu, Iguazu Falls, Buenos Aires, Rio de Janeiro. Galagagos is also within our top five destinations.  

  • Travel to Peru before or after your Ecuador adventure and add our 9 day / 8 night Signature Peru Package for the perfect two week South American getaway. This carefully designed itinerary will showcase Peru's gastronomy scene in Lima, introduce you to Incan culture and history with a visit to the Sacred Valley before the highlight of any visit to South America; Machu Picchu. Finish with three days in Cusco, one of South America's greatest cities.

  • Round off your Ecuador adventure with our 4 day / 3 night Amazon Lodge Ecuador extension package and experience two of the world's best natural experinces. The Amazon is the world's largest rainforest and covers 40% of South America and can easily be accessed from Quito. After visiting the arid environment of the Galapagos, experience a complete contrast by discovering the incredible biodiversity of the world's largest rainforests. 

  • This itinerary includes a shortened Galapagos itinerary. If time permits, we suggest extending your time in the Galapgos with our extended 11 Days / 10 night Signature Quito & Galapagos in Depth itinerary to give you more time to experience different islands, wildlife, landscapes to fully appreciate the diversity this unique environment has to offer 

Pricing per person & date

Signature Galapagos Express from AUD 7,090
Departing Ending Duration
15 Jul 2022 22 Jul 2022 8
29 Jul 2022 05 Aug 2022 8
12 Aug 2022 19 Aug 2022 8
26 Aug 2022 02 Sep 2022 8
09 Sep 2022 16 Sep 2022 8
23 Sep 2022 30 Sep 2022 8
07 Oct 2022 14 Oct 2022 8
21 Oct 2022 28 Oct 2022 8
04 Nov 2022 11 Nov 2022 8
18 Nov 2022 25 Nov 2022 8
02 Dec 2022 09 Dec 2022 8
16 Dec 2022 23 Dec 2022 8

Important Information

  • INCLUDED:
    - 3 nights in Quito / Illa Experience hotel Luxury room
    - $100 USD on board credit
    - Round trip flight to/from Galapagos 
    - Galapagos National Park Entrance fee USD 100, oo p/p
    - Galápagos Ingala card USD 20,00 p/p
    - Transfers in Galapagos
    - Accommodation on board in double cabin
    - All meals during the cruise
    - Naturalist Bilingual Guide level III
    - All visits and excursions according to the itinerary
    - Snorkel Gear (mask, tube and fins)
    - Kayaks
    - Unlimited purified water, coffee and tea

    Mainland services
    - English speaking guide + private transportation
    - Tours and airport transfers as listed on the program
    - Hotel accommodations as listed on the program subject to availability
    - Meals as listed B: breakfast. L: lunch and D: dinner.

    NOT INCLUDED:
    - Negative PCR test for Covid-19 (taken 96 hours before the departure)
    - Local Taxes
    - Travel Insurance
    - Personal expenses and tips
    - Alcoholic drinks
    - Items not specified
    - Additional visits
    - Additional meals

  • 2 (light adventure)
  • Available upon request

  • Season and availability

SPEAK TO A SPECIALIST

Talk to one of our Destination Specialists to plan your South American adventure and turn your dream into a reality. With exceptional knowledge and first hand experience, our consultants will piece together one of our Signature packages and customise your travel plans by adding extension packages.

Sustainability

Chimu Adventures undertakes a number of sustainability measures within its operations including:

1) Only using local guides and office staff to both maximise local employment opportunities and minimise carbon footprints. Local guides also ensure you benefit from the intimate knowledge, passion and culture of the country you’re visiting.

2) Where possible, using locally owned and operated boutique hotels to maximise the return to the local community.

3) Chimu’s “Pass it on” programme has provided funding to hundreds of local community projects in Latin America. Our aim is to empower local communities, helping them to develop their own infrastructure for the future. Since 2006, we have been working with Kiva (a well-known Non-Governmental Organisation), providing hundreds of loans to local businesses all over South America.

4) In our pre tour information we provide a range of tips and advice on how to minimise your impact on both local environments and communities.

5) Chimu Adventures’ offices also take a number of sustainability measures including carbon offsets for company vehicles and most staff travel. Chimu Adventure’s internal processes are also structures to create a paperless office and to reduce waste. There are also internal programmes to help staff minimise their carbon footprint such as our staff bike purchase assistance plan which encourages office staff to commute to work via bicycle. Currently almost half of our office based staff commute to work via bicycle.

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