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Peru Galapagos Adventure

Peru Galapagos Adventure

Peru Galapagos Adventure

HIGHLIGHTS

Colca Canyon, Lake Titicaca, Machu Picchu and the Galapagos Islands

FROM

US$8,188

DURATION

25 Days

Our carefully crafted Peru and Galapagos Adventure is overflowing with Peru’s diverse cultures and the magical wildlife and geography of the enchanted Galapagos Islands.

Experience a variety of transport from boats to motorized canoes, local buses and private minivans. Our handpicked mostly family run accommodation is around a  3 star standard with en-suite rooms. Hotels are chosen for their  ambiance, safety, location, and friendly staff. There may be one multi share night (triple or quad), at the home stay on Lake Tititcaca, with basic shared facilities.

Being an active sightseeing holiday, there is moderate walking involved throughout the journey, around Inca sites, in the cities and on the Galapagos Islands. When at altitude in Peru it can be a little tougher than usual, but not challenging. We grade this trip as “moderately active”, average fitness and no previous kayaking or snorkelling experience is  required to participate.

Rather than doing the Inca Trail, we visit local indigenous communities in the Sacred Valley. They offer a very unique experience that benefits not only the tourists, but also the communities, and shows their traditional lifestyle that Quechua (the ancient Inca culture) subsistence farmers practice today.

In our tour leader’s words: We’ve had two fantastic days visiting the communities. The best part is that in both cases the experience reflects something real and not made up for tourists. I can tell you that even for me, traveling for so long in Peru, it was a very moving and unique experience.

*** Inca trail option: If you still prefer to do the trail, we can book it for you as an independent tour. You will be with another group and have to advise us early, so that trail permits can be obtained. You would then stay in Cusco on day 10 and meet the group back in Cusco on day 14. Inca trail supplement will be approximately USD580 on a twin share basis.

In the Galapagos Islands we spend our nights on land, going out by boat during the day. This makes it the perfect trip for those concerned about sea sickness, as we return to comfortable hotels every evening. The walks, bike rides, snorkeling and kayaking are all suitable for anyone of average fitness. We provide instruction for kayaking and snorkeling so you can enjoy the activity, without prior experience.

If you are a certified diver and would like to dive, please notify us on your booking form. Though even if you don’t dive, you will still enjoy amazing snorkeling and close encounters with wildlife. All our included activities here are designed so that everyone can easily take part without prior experience.

*All our tours are non-smoking

TRIP SUMMARY:

Duration: 25 days starting in Lima and ending in Quito
Trip focus: Active sightseeing and cultural tour. Unique wildlife of the Galapagos Islands.
Accommodation: 21 nights hotels, 1 night home stay on Lake Titicaca, 2 nights in a 400 year old Hacienda
Transport: Flight, bus, train, launch
Group size: Maximum 12 + S.E.T. tour leader, Minimum 4
Trip cost: **Internal airfares subject to change. If not arriving with Lan Airlines, an airfare surcharge applies.
Single supplement: US$1,379

WHAT’S INCLUDED:

  • All accommodation
  • Meals as specified in tour (breakfast, lunch and dinner)
  • Airport transfers to and from accommodation in Peru, Galapagos and Quito
  • Airfare Lima-Arequipa//Cusco-Quito-Galapagos-Quito
  • Full pre departure briefings and logistical support in Lima and Quito
  • All land and sea transport
  • Entry and guided visit to all Inca sites on the itinerary
  • Snorkelling equipment *Galapagos only
  • Naturalist guides authorised by national park of Galapagos.
  • Local payment of US$300
  • Airport transfers

WHAT’S NOT INCLUDED:

  • Galapagos National Park entrance fee US$120, only payable in cash, upon arrival
  • Alcoholic and soft drinks
  • Meals not specified in itinerary
  • Anything not specified in the package
  • Optional diving (please enquire for diving package)
  • Inca Trail option – see notes in “is this trip for you”
  • International flights
  • Travel insurance, visas and vaccinations
  • Tips for your tour leaders

WHERE WE DIVE:

Leon Dormido – Kicker Rock (intermediate) tropical fish, Galapagos shark, batfish, occasional scalloped hammerhead shark, eagle and golden rays, moray eels, green sea turtles, stingrays, barracuda, triggerfish, boxfish, frogfish, and plenty more! Reprinted with permission of the author, Crystal Hightower. © Copyright 2010 Crystal Hightower

PAYING LOCALLY:

Most of our adventure tours involve a local payment. Paying locally allows us to keep the overall cost of our tours competitive and pass the savings on to you. These funds are put towards local expenses. In some developing countries the transferring of funds is at times problematic so this is a way to help us serve you, whilst saving you money. Payment is to be made to your leader upon arrival in cash.

All prices are approximate and subject to currency fluctuations until final payment has been made.

DAY 1 – ARRIVAL DAY LIMA

Arrive anytime today and meet your fellow tour participants. Though the flights from New Zealand for our Kiwi guests arrive a bit late, so we’d suggest an extra night. There’s a lot to see and do in Lima.

DAY 2 – LIMA

Morning trip briefing. Join our insightful Lima reality city tour where take you to the historical center for half a day and then visit a local community project in a colourful shanty in the afternoon. These culturally sensitive tours let you see the real life of locals and gives back to the communities visited.

Meals Included: Dinner

DAYS 3 & 4 – AREQUIPA

A morning flight to arguably Peru’s most beautiful city. Arequipa exhibits delightful colonial past and a visit to the colourful Santa Catalina Convent is a must. Situated under the volcano “El Misti”, stroll around the city enjoying the local museums, churches and sample some of the many superb regional dishes.

Meals Included: 2 Breakfasts

DAYS 5 & 6 – COLCA CANYON

Colca Canyon, home to the famous Andean Condor. View these birds close up, as they soar above us while on the edge of the canyon. Visit local villages, soak in thermal baths and sample the life, music and spectacular scenery.

Meals Included: 2 Breakfasts

DAYS 7 to 9 – PUNO, LAKE TITICACA

We continue through to the city of Puno on Day 7. From the shores of magnificent “Lake Titicaca”, we board a boat bound for the floating islands of Uros and a local homestay in a less touristed community, along the way learning of the legends and the ways of the lake and its people where life has remained relatively unchanged over the centuries. An overnight home stay will allow us to live with a family on the islands.

Meals Included: 3 Breakfasts and 1 Dinner

DAYS 10 & 11 – SACRED VALLEY INCA RUINS & LOCAL FAMILIES

Depart Puno and travel by road across the Altiplano to Cuzco and then we head out to the beautiful Urubamba Valley (Sacred alley of the Inca’s). We’ll explore the valley including ancient township and Ollantaytambo Inca site, rural villages & Pisac. We’re very privileged to visit a local farming community, where we’re welcomed with a ceremony to Pacha Mama (earth mother). Spend time learning the ancient and traditional ways of life, from medicinal herbs and wool dying to helping with farm projects. Later explore the vibrant Pisac market.

Meals Included: 2 Breakfasts and 1 Lunch

***Inca Trail Option: If you still prefer to do the trail, we can book it for you as an independent tour. You will be with another group and have to advise us early, so that trail permits can be obtained. You would then stay in Cusco on day 10 and meet the group back in Cusco on day 14. Inca trail supplement will be approximately USD380 on a twin share basis.

DAY 12 – MACHU PICCHU

Take an train to Aguas Calientes (now known as Machu Picchu village) where we’ll check in to our hotel and make our way to Machu Picchu. You’ll have free time until mid afternoon to wander around this amazing site, then join our guided tour once the crowds have subsided. Relax at your own pace for the rest of the day in Machu Picchu, head down to the village or soak in the hot springs.

Meals Included: Breakfast

DAYS 13 & 14 – CUSCO

An early morning train and bus takes us to the imperial city of the Incas, Cusco, visiting some interesting sites on the way. Rich in history and surrounded by ancient Inca sites, churches and museums and markets, there is plenty for all to do and see. Enjoy a half day city tour on day 14, then free time to enjoy the city, before taking part in a unique cooking class overlooking the city.

Meals Included: Breakfast and Dinner

DAY 15 – CUSCO

Free time to explore this beautiful city with great shopping, fascinating markets, or just relax in one of the many cafes and soak up the special atmosphere, which makes Cusco a truly unique place.

Meals Included: Breakfast

DAYS 16 & 17 – ECUADOR- OTAVALO & HACIENDA STAY

An early morning flight takes us from Cusco via Lima to Quito for your Ecuador adventure. Head north to South America’s most famous market, Otavalo. We will spend the night in an ancient hacienda over 400 years old and have plenty of time to look around the market and enjoy the sites and sounds. The world famous Saturday crafts market in Otavalo is one of the most well known throughout the Andes.

On the way back to Quito is the “Mitad del Mundo” (Equator) located 45 minutes from the city. Here we’ll visit the Inti, a local museum with different experiments showing that we’re right on the Equator. Tonight we include a dinner at an authentic Ecuadorian fine dining restaurant.

Meals Included: 2 Breakfasts and 1 Dinner

DAY 18 – GALAPAGOS ISLANDS, SANTA CRUZ

This morning, you’ll fly to Santa Cruz, or Baltra, to be exact. This little island off the coast of Santa Cruz is home to the airport. Your guide will be waiting for you and the adventure will begin right away! As you make your way to Puerto Ayora, the capital of Santa Cruz, you’ll begin your first activity with a stop in the highlands to visit a private giant tortoise reserve. You’ll be able to see these massive creatures in their natural habitat cooling off in a watering hole or munching away. You’ll also have the chance to explore some nearby lava tunnels and gain a better appreciation of the natural forces that created these islands.

You’ll continue on to Puerto Ayora, and after a quick check-in, head out to explore town. Santa Cruz is the most populated of all the islands and its bustling port city is the tourist capital of Galapagos. Tonight, your guide will lead you to the Calle de los Kioskos (Kiosks Street). This little back street is closed down each night as the small stall restaurants set up table and chairs in the middle of the street for open-air dining. If you’re looking for where the locals eat, look no further!

Meals Included: Lunch and Dinner

DAY 19 – TORTUGA BAY & ISABELA ISLAND

This morning we’ll take a short walk that ends in white sand and luscious waves. Tortuga Bay is a gorgeous beach accessible only by foot and laden with choices. Do you want to swim, sunbathe, bodysurf or do all three? A leisurely 45-minute path leads to the beach area and along the way you may spot lava lizards and birds in the surrounding trees.

Upon arrival at the first soft, white sandy beach, you’ll be greeted by some perfect surf. Further along you can reach Tortuga Bay, a calm bay that is sheltered by mangroves and ideal for swimming, sometimes friendly baby sharks can be seen here too! There’s a nice walk through a cactus forest, a chance to spot nesting blue-footed boobies or massive marine iguanas.

We’ll head back to town at any time. For those interested, an optional visit to the Charles Darwin Research Station is suggested. We’ll learn about the stations successes in repopulating the islands with the once endangered land iguana and several species of giant tortoise. From the collection of the eggs to the age of release, we’ll observe how the giant tortoises are raised and readied for life on their own.

After lunch, we’ll hop on board for our boat ride to Isabela Island – the largest island in the Archipelago. After check-in, we’ll go for a stroll through the picturesque town of Puerto Villamil. Along it’s white sand beach we’re sure to find the perfect spot to toast in our first Isabela sunset, arguably the most beautiful of all the islands.

SURFING: Sometimes it’s possible to surf or boogie board at Tortuga Bay. Please tell your guide ahead of time if this is something you’d like to do.

Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch

DAY 20 – SIERRA NEGRA VOLCANO HIKE, ISABELA

Breakfast and Lunch Provided.

Lace up your hiking boots – we’re hiking up a volcano! Sierra Negra is one of the most active volcanoes in Galapagos; its last eruption was in October 2005. As we hike to the perimeter of the caldera, we’ll be on the lookout for bird species found only in the highlands like the bright red Vermillion Flycatcher and the elusive short-eared owl. Once we reach the rim, we’ll be met with a 9km view that stretches across one of the most active calderas in the world.

We’ll continue around the rim, stopping at various lookouts along the way, en route to Volcan Chico. Volcano vents dot the landscape and colorful minerals can be found in some lava rocks. Both “aa” and “pahoehoe” lava flows have occurred here, creating an otherworldly-looking landscape. We’ll cross fields of lava and small lava tunnels until we reach a lookout that boasts breathtaking views reaching to the north of Isabela.

After enjoying a hearty sense of accomplishment, we’ll make our way back to town in early afternoon. You are free to take is easy or partake in an optional activity – a leisurely kayak around the sheltered bay area of Puerto Villamil. Galapagos penguins (the only penguin found north of the equator), sea turtles and rays frequent these shallow waters and blue-footed boobies, frigate birds and pelicans may be seen resting along the shore and in some nearby mangrove trees.

If you prefer, you also have the option to rent a bike and head to the Wall of Tears. Return to town just in time for a sunset dip before your independent dinner. As always, your guide will be more than happy to help you find a local spot to dine.

DAY 21 – GIANT TORTOISE BREEDING CENTER & SAN CRISTOBAL

Breakfast and Lunch Provided.

After breakfast, we’ll head off for a leisurely walk through a coastal lagoon. If we’re lucky, we’ll see some pink flamingos along the way! This mangrove-lined path will lead us to Isabela’s Giant Tortoise Breeding Center where we’ll see giant tortoises in all stages of development. The center has almost one thousand giant tortoises training for life on their own!

This afternoon, you’ll take an early flight to the island of San Cristobal, the oldest and eastern-most island of the Galapagos archipelago. You’ll arrive just in time for lunch before you head out for your first activity: a visit to La Loberia.

La “Loberia” is an area frequented by sea lions. In other words, it’s a sea lion hang out! There we’ll be able to watch sea lions sunbathing and vying for our attention. They play, they nap and sometimes, they pose for pictures! If you’re keen for a swim, hop on in.

On the way back to town, your guide will point out their favorite spots to dine.

DAY 22 – SNORKEL AT KICKER ROCK, OPTIONAL BIKE RIDE

Today we take to the water to get a glimpse of the underwater world of Galapagos. First, we’ll cruise along the coast in our boat identifying shore birds like the great frigate and famous blue-footed booby. Then we’ll drop anchor for an introductory snorkel where we’ll get our fins wet in search of damselfish, puffer fish, and, hopefully, curious sea lion pups.

Next, we’ll continue to Kicker Rock, or Leon Dormido as it’s known by the locals, to explore the final remains of a tuff cone rising over 143 meters out of the ocean. If Kicker Rock were a building, it would have almost 50 floors! Along the edge and through a channel of this drastic compact ash formation, we’ll be on the hunt for sea turtles, spotted eagle rays, chocolate chip starfish, and, with any luck, a Galapagos Shark or two. Don’t worry: they won’t be as interested in you as you are in them!

A beautiful beach accessible only by boat will be our final stop. After lunch on board, feel free to spend your time swimming in the turquoise water or snapping photos of Kicker Rock in the distance.

We’ll head back to town late afternoon and have some time to explore town. Perhaps you’ll want to grab a sunset beer or cocktail by the waterfront and watch the spectacular sunset. Another optional activity is to grab a bike and explore town.

Tonight, we head to one of our favorite spots for some open air dining. It’ll be a well-deserved farewell feast as this is the last night in the Enchanted Islands!

DIVING: Occasionally, the option to dive is available. Please inquire in advance.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

DAY 23 – SAN CRISTOBAL, QUITO

Today is the last day on the islands and you get to choose how you’d like to spend your morning. Squeeze in some souvenir shopping, head to the beach for one last swim or visit the Interpretation Center to learn about the history and mystery of the archipelago. This educational center explains how the islands were discovered and what makes them so special. You can learn about Charles Darwin’s visit and the present day efforts to protect this amazing World Heritage site. There’s a short hike to Tijeretas, a panoramic lookout over the town and Kicker Rock, for those who are interested. This afternoon, you’ll fly back to Quito. You will be met by our friendly team and transferred to your hotel.

Meals Included: Breakfast

DAY 24 – QUITO

While in Quito, we’ll head out for a half day tour of the city, including the historical center and La Compania church and the Panecillo lookout over the city. Tonight we include a farewell dinner at an authentic Ecuadorian fine dining restaurant.

Meals Included: Breakfast and Dinner

DAY 25 – DEPARTURE DAY

Today is the last day of the tour and we’ll be sure to get you to the airport for your onward flight. If you just can’t bear to leave, our representative will be able to advise you and help with some of the many tours available in and around Quito.

Meals Included: Breakfast

SPECIAL NOTE. S.E.T. RESERVES THE RIGHT TO CHANGE THE ITINERARY DUE TO WEATHER CONDITIONS AND OR GALAPAGOS NATIONAL PARK REGULATION CHANGES

TESTIMONIALS

HikingBikingSightseeingWildlife WatchingCultural ExperiencesFood and CookingDivingPlaneBusTrainBoatNature

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Insightful Lima city tour
  • Experience the floating Uros islands and homestay with a local community on Lake Titicaca
  • Wander the colonial city of Arequipa and watch soaring condors in the Colca Canyon
  • In depth exploration of the Sacred Valley, visiting inca sites and local families
  • The lost city of the Inca’s Machu Picchu
  • Cooking class in Cusco to learn the secrets of delicious Peruvian cuisine
  • Explore the city of Cusco
  • Snorkelling with harmless Sharks and playful Sea lions
  • Close encounters with rare wildlife
  • Hiking through stunning volcanic landscapes
  • Diving (optional)
  • Relaxing on remote Galapagos beaches
  • Otavalo markets and overnight in an historic Hacienda

DATES

Start Date End Date Availability Cost
20th Aug 2020 13th Sep 2020 AVAILABLE US8,188
19th Aug 2021 12th Sep 2021 AVAILABLE US$8,188
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