Private Journeys

Value Ecuador and Galapagos: At a glance

9 days

Ecuador & Galapagos Islands / Galapagos Islands

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Overview & Highlights

This is a great value, short but variety-packed holiday suitable for families and individuals alike.  Discover the Avenue of the Volcanoes in Andean Ecuador and explore Santa Cruz Island and further afield in the Galápagos from the well regarded, guesthouse-style Hotel Mainao.

You might have thought that a holiday to the remote Pacific Galápagos islands would be prohibitively expensive. While cruising on a yacht can still be pricey, you now have the option of a land-based visit, where you can get to know one or two islands on shared guided day trips by boat. This holiday bases you at the popular Mainao hotel on the principal island, Santa Cruz, with a couple of motor yacht cruises included and a day at leisure to explore the sparking beaches, Puerto Ayora town, visit the Charles Darwin Research Centre or even venture inland to spot giant tortoises.  You don't have to decide in advance: book up and pay locally. 

Spend a few days on the mainland too, well worth exploring in its own right. Based at historic Quito, visit the famous Andean mountain town Otavalo with its indigenous market and travel down the aptly named Avenue of the Volcanoes, dominated by the towering snow-draped mountain Cotopaxi.

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  • Ful day excursion to the famous Otavalo market
  • Walking tour of historic colonial Quito
  • Visit the Cotopaxi National Park and Quilotoa
  • 4 days land based exploration in the Galápagos Islands
  • Explore Santa Cruz and visit neighbouring islands

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Bartolome, Galápagos

What our clients say

  • There were many highlights: Machu Picchu of course, also the Uyuni salt flats was unworldly, unique. La Paz, crazy city. Lake Titicaca beautiful. Great food almost everywhere. Stunning landscapes.

    MC, Ely
  • Education about the history and current situation of the country.  Also enjoyed seeing many distinct parts of the country less visited by tourists such as Baracoa.

    GW, Crieff
  • This was a great trip - wonderful scenery and amazing sites. It was well organised and allowed for some opportunity to do things on one's own away from the group.

    DS, London
  • Everything went smoothly, the flights were good as were the transfer vehicles. The bus to Puerto Natales was fine as were the minibuses for longer trips. I enjoyed the boat…

    PM, Wirral
  • An extremely memorable trip, well organised, with knowledgeable and passionate guides. I'm so lucky to have had this great experience and not to have had the worry of organising it!

    JB, Bristol
  • This tour packed in an amazing amount in such a large country. You might have liked longer at some sites, but that could have been very exhausting!

    NH, Grimsby
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Our Expert's Opinion

Chris
Chris Rendell-Dunn Travel Expert Anglo-Peruvian Chris grew up in Lima and spent much of his adult life in between London and Cusco as a tour leader, before settling permanently in our London-based Tailor-made and Group Tours sales team.

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Papagaio

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Bartolome, Galápagos

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  • Sophie
    Sophie Barber - Travel Expert

    Sophie lived in Chile before joining us and has travelled extensively across Latin America, from Mexico to the furthest tip of Patagonia and beyond to Antarctica.

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    Lina Fuller - Travel Expert

    Lina's passion for the continent where she was born really took off when she moved to Córdoba (Argentina) to study, spending the holidays travelling between Argentina and her native Colombia.

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    Juliet Ellwood - Travel Expert

    After graduating with a degree in Anthropology and History and having been fascinated by Latin America since childhood by the book featuring photos of Nazca, Juliet first visited the region in 2003. Since then, Juliet has visited the majority of countries in Latin America but has particularly extensive experience with Peru, a country she loves for many reasons but not least, its incredible archaeological richness and delicious food!

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    Millie Davies - Travel Expert

    Having caught the travel bug as a child, Millie has travelled all over Latin America before making her home in Buenos Aires for 3 years.

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    Ben Line - Travel Expert

    Ben fell in love with Latin America on a six month backpacking trip from Colombia to Mexico in 1995. Since then he has explored most of South America, including living in Peru for a year. He is now Head of Sales.

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    Hannah Donaldson - Travel Expert

    Having spent part of her childhood in Colombia and worked in Brazil and Costa Rica, Hannah's ties to Latin America run deep. Hannah is a much valued Travel Expert in our Tailor-made Holidays and Group Tours sales team.

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