2022 Ecuador and the Mysterious Galapagos Islands

Dates June 18 - 30, 2022
Destination Quito, Ecuador; Otavalo, Ecuador; Mindo Cloud Forest, Ecuador; Galapagos Islands; United States
Duration 12 days 11 nights
Price From 3,599

Religious Focus:


Activity Level:

Join our experienced Tour Host Carlos Fida. He is a native of Argentina, where he held teaching positions at the University of Patagonia and at the Military Academy. He has lectured for university groups on the rich history of pre-Colombian and modern Latin American history. He has devoted 39 years of his life as a highly qualified specialist in Latin American travel.

To Book This Tour, Contact:

Carol Alegre, Tour Manager
Tel: (801) 483-6165
Email Carol

TOUR ID#9222F19

CASH DISCOUNT of $100.00 for final payment by check

Day 1: Saturday, June 18, 2022

Home Cities - Quito, Ecuador

Departure from your home city to Quito, Ecuador. Once we arrive in the international airport of Quito, we will be greeted by our local English-speaking guide, and will transfer us to the First-Class Swiss Quito Hotel. The transfer drive will take approximately 1 hour and upon arrival at the hotel you will be welcomed by the attentive staff and give you the room keys. Then, our guide will give a short briefing about the next day's activities.

Meals : In-flight
Day 2: Sunday, June 19, 2022

Quito - Otavalo - Cotacachi - Pinsaqui

Early breakfast and at 7:00 a.m. in the morning our transport and guide will take us for a drive towards the Imbabura Province, well known as the “Lagoons Province” due to the many beautiful lakes that exist in this area of the northern Andes of Ecuador. Continuing to Otavalo, we will amaze observing the San Pablo Lagoon and emerging from a side of it, the impressive steep Imbabura volcano. Then we will arrive to the city of Otavalo which is home for the laborious Otavalo Indians. Here we will visit the Otavalo market, considered as one of the biggest Indigenous Markets in South America. Here we find beautiful textile tapestries, wood handcrafts, ponchos, and so many different and colorful products. Bargaining is part of the experience! Afterwards, we continue our drive for about 30 minutes to the charming town of Cotacachi well known for its quality leather goods. The town itself is beautiful, clean maintained, with a typical ambiance of an Andean village. Lunch (on your own) and afterwards, we will go up to the highlands of the Cuicocha Lake, located inside of a side volcanic crater of the Cotacachi Mountain. In this area, a well-maintained trail offers the possibility to do a nice short hike to enjoy the view of the lake and of the surrounding area while observing beautiful Andean flora. Overnight in the historical Hacienda Pinsaqui or similar. Included: Breakfast, Lunch.

Meals : Breakfast, Lunch
Day 3: Monday, June 20, 2022

Otavalo - Equator Line - Mindo Cloud Forest

After breakfast, you will visit the Middle of the World which is a small typical Andean town, lying on the Equator line.  Here we find the monument marking the latitude 0’ 00” and in its interior we find a museum which shows the different ethnic races living in Ecuador. Nearby is located the Intiñan Museum which according with some experts this is the real place where the Equator line crosses Ecuador. Then we continue our drive west towards Mindo area.  The road will go from the Andean environment down to the beautiful "Cloud Forest" area of the west side of the high Cordillera of the Andes.  The road crosses lush green vegetation typical of the area where the locals grow different products, mainly coffee and sugar cane from which they produce a strong liquor.  Finally, we will arrive to the comfortable Septimo Paraiso Lodge, surrounded by the amazing cloud forest.  After a good short rest, we will go for a walk to observe orchids, enjoy the sounds of the forest, and observe dozens of the tiny gracious hummingbirds, flying close to the lodge area.  Time to enjoy the swimming pool or just relax on the several beautiful gardens of the lodge.

Meals : Breakfast, Dinner
Day 4: Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Mindo Cloud Forest - Quito

In the morning and after breakfast, we can opt for an optional Zipline adventure tour or we can go for a walk in the Cloud Forest for birdwatching and enjoy the wonderful green lush area or simply you can relax at the lodge.  The area surrounding the Septimo Paraiso in the cloud forest of Mindo, offers wonderful landscapes of lush green forest, with rivers, waterfalls, lot of birds, wild orchids, and the possibility to see some fauna, typical of the area such as spectacle bears, armadillos, tail guantas, squirrel bats, woodpeckers, etc.  Return to the lodge for lunch and after some free time, we will start our drive back to Quito, to the ikala hotel to prepare ourselves for the next great adventure on the Galapagos Island.

Meals : Breakfast, Lunch
Day 5: Wednesday, June 22, 2022

Quito to Galapagos

AM: Morning transfer to the airport in Quito and flight to Baltra Island. The flight will take approximately 3 hours (with one stop in the city of Guayaquil). Upon arrival to the airport of Baltra, our local Galapagos National Park trained guide welcomes and arranges our transfer to the city of Puerto Ayora, the biggest on the Galapagos Archipelago and located on Santa Cruz Island. On the way, using a local ferry, we should cross the beautiful Itabaca Canal, which separates Baltra and Santa Cruz Islands.

P.M. Once on the other side of the canal our private transportation will take you up to the highlands of Santa Cruz Island where our first visit starts on a private farm enjoying a nice hike in beautiful natural environment. Here we can observe Giant Falapagos Tortoises in their natural state. These animals are overly sensitive and will typically withdraw into their carapaces as soon as they see you coming close. It is especially important not to bother, touch or feed these beautiful animals. In this area, we can also observe different species of Galapagos birds including the tiny Galapagos rail and with little luck perhaps the not so common Vegetarian Finch and the endemic subspecies of Vermilion Flycatcher finches. Transport to the hotel in the town of Puerto Ayora and free time.

Meals : Breakfast, Lunch
Day 6: Thursday, June 23, 2022

Tortuga Bay & Interpretation Center

A.M. After an early breakfast in the hotel, we start our day hiking towards the shores of the Pacific Ocean, to Tortuga Bay Beach, known as one of the most beautiful beaches on the Archipelago. After some 40 – 60-minute walk, we arrive to the heavenly spot. The soft coral sand and nice scenery make this a special location for anyone visiting. The first part of the beach has strong waves and therefore is not recommended for swimming, but an additional 10 minutes walk to the west will get us to a beautiful bay of calm water. Here, we can observe a colony of marine iguanas, blue footed boobies, and marine birds, as well as mangroves, cacti forest and interesting flora of the coast. Time to enjoy the beach before returning to town using a local boat. Free time for lunch (on your own) and rest.  

PM: In the afternoon, we will walk to the Fausto Llerena Interpretation Center where we will learn about the Galapagos National Park´s work and observe tortoises of different species and size, as well as some land iguanas. At the interpretation center, we will enter in a special air-conditioned chamber where we will be able to observe the embalmed body of the world-famous tortoise: Lonesome George, who now is in exhibition. Later we visit the small museum of the well-known Charles Darwin Research Station. After enjoying this wonderful walk enjoy a free time. Christmas Celebration Dinner in La Terraza Restaurant by Ikala.

Meals : Breakfast, Dinner
Day 7: Friday, June 24, 2022

Puerto Ayora - Floreana Island

A.M. At 8:30 a.m. tarts the 2.5 hours navigation on board of the first-class Galapagos Element Wind Yacht towards the small village known as Puerto Velasco Ibarra on the historical Floreana Island. Once at the town, a local water taxi takes us to the pier of the town where we have great chances to meet right away sea lions and marine iguanas enjoying the morning sun. A short walk takes us to a beautiful, secluded spot where the lodge is located right in front of the ocean and where we will spend the night. Lodging accommodations and enjoy a delicious lunch in one of the small local restaurants. In the afternoon a local transport known as “Chiva” wil take us for a 15-minute ride up to the highlands of Floreana Island to a place from where we start a nice walk observing the typical flora of the area and encountering some giant Galapagos Tortoises. Continuing our walk, we reach a rocky area where we find the place known as “Asilo de la Paz” (Peace Asylum), a historical place where the German Wittmer family settled down when arrived to Floreana in 1932. Transport back to town to enjoy a delicious lunch.

P.M. After a good rest we walk to a place where we find a beautiful bay where we will perhaps enjoy snorkeling with sea lions and marine turtles. The whole area is of an amazing beauty. Dinner and enjoy a good rest while observing the sunset

Meals : Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 8:Saturday, June 25, 2022

Floreana Island - Isabela - Tintoreras

A.M.: In the morning and after a relaxing breakfast, at 8:30 a.m. we start sailing towards Puerto Villamil, the biggest town on Isabela Island. During our 2.5-hour navigation, there are great chances to observe marine turtles, manta rays, several species of marine birds, dolphins and perhaps whales (from June to September). Upon arrival to the bay of Puerto Villamil a local transport takes us to the Hotel. Time to relax at the long, beautiful beach of Puerto Villamil. Free time for lunch (on your own).

P.M.: In the afternoon at about 2 p.m. we take you to the pier to participate in an amazing, guided tour to the area known as “Las Tintoreras”. This is a scenic area and where during the hike, you will find colonies of marine iguanas, sea lions, and as one of the main attractions we will be able to observe White-tipped sharks known as “Tintoreras” which are resting in the channels formed by lava flows. The area is also well known for snorkeling activities perhaps in the company of sea lions, penguins, and marine turtles. Transport back to the hotel. Free time.

Meals : Breakfast, Lunch
Day 9: Sunday, June 26 2022

Sierra Negra Volcano - Wetlands

A.M.: At 7:30 a.m. we start driving (30 min) up to the highlands of Isabela Island until we reach the visitors control area of the National Park. From here we start an easy 1.5 hour walk to reach the rim of the impressive crater of the Sierra Negra Volcano, considered after the Ngorongoro crater in Africa, as the second biggest in the world. It has the largest caldera of all the Galapagos volcanoes with dimensions of 5 miles x 7 miles, with the long axis being southwest to northeast. The caldera is also the shallowest of the Isabela volcanoes at only 100 m (328 ft) deep and give us one of the most spectacular views in Galapagos, showing us how powerful nature is. Return to the hotel for lunch (on your own).

P.M.: In the afternoon, our transport will take you the Isabela’s Tortoise Breeding Center where we will observe Giant Galapagos Tortoises of different species and sizes. Then we continue our walk along a well-maintained trail which leads to the place known as “Humedales” (Wetlands) where you will be amazed by the impressive scenery composed by lagoons surrounded by 4 species of exuberant mangroves and typical flora of the area. In the lagoons, we observe flamingos and migratory birds such as the charran or Gaviota de Galapagos (Creagrus furcatus ), la Cerceta aliazul, etc. The walk will end at the main road and close to the beach where you will have time to enjoy the place perhaps with the company of marine iguanas. Back to the hotel and free time for dinner (on your own).

Meals : Breakfast, Dinner
Day 10: Monday, June 27, 2022

Isabela Island - Santa Cruz Island

A.M.: At 8:00 a.m. transfer to the pier of Puerto Villamil to  board the Yacht for a 3.0- hour navigation to the town of Puerto Ayora where we expect to arrive at about 11:00 A.M. We will navigate close to the steep cliffs of the “Tortuga Island” and where we will be able to observe hundreds of different species of birds including blue footed boobies, masked Nazca boobies, tropical birds, frigate birds, Galapagos gulls, etc. etc. Then we continue our navigation and be ready perhaps to observe marine turtles, stingrays, dolphins, etc. Upon arrival to Puerto Ayora, our guide will lead you to the hotel where you will have a short free time to enjoy the swimming pool together with a refreshing drink or just relax and preparing for the afternoon activities which includes a visit to a local handicraft shop and a visit to an artisanal sugar cane mill and coffee plantation. Enjoy a farewell dinner.

Meals : Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 11, Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Galapagos - Quito 

In the morning and after breakfast, our transport will take (30 minutes) us up to the highlands of Santa Cruz Island where we will be stopping at the natural formation known as “The twins” (Los Gemelos) Craters, that lies on the route to the Itabaca Canal. Los Gemelos in fact are not actual craters caused by impact or volcanic craters, but they are sink holes that were created when the volcanic roof of empty magma chamber collapses from tectonic shifts and erosion over time. The area surrounding “Los Gemelos” has quite a different climate from other parts of the island and are surrounded by scalesia (scalesia pedunculata) forests and it is the habitat for bromeliads, orchids, mosses, lichens, etc. It is the habitat for many birds and with little luck you find among others the vermillion flycatcher, several species of Darwin finches, a n d short-eared owls. We will continue our trip to the Itabaca Canal and after crossing it, we will return to the airport for our flight to Quito.  Upon arrival, we will be met by our local guide and transfer to the hotel. 

Meals : Breakfast
Day 12, Wednesday, June 29, 2022


After breakfast, we will have a tour that starts in the heart of Colonial Quito with a visit to the Independence Square where the Presidential Palace, the Cathedral and El Sagrario Church are located. We will also visit the Church of La Compania de Jesus (1605) which with its amazing gilt altars is considered as one of the finest examples of baroque art in America.  Afterwards, we will walk to the plaza where the Church and Monastery of San Francisco of San Francisco (1535) is located.  This is the oldest Ecuadorian church, where the main altar inside is a spectacular example of baroque carving.  There is also a fine collection of artworks including paintings, sculptures and furniture dating back to the 16th century.  Return to the hotel for a delicious farewell lunch, and free time to prepare the luggage for the late afternoon transfer to the international airport.  

Day 13, Thursday, June 30, 2022

Quito to U.S.A

Return to your home city.

To Book This Tour, Contact:

Carol Alegre, Tour Manager
Tel: (801) 483-6165
Email Carol

TOUR ID#9222F19

CASH DISCOUNT of $100.00 for final payment by check

Meals : In-flight

Price includes:

  • 1 tour-bus experience for the entire tour
  • Roundtrip transfers to ship and airport
  • Navigation on board of the First-Class Yacht Catamaran Galapagos Element Wind
  • English Speaking guides & Galapagos naturalist guide
  • Sightseeing as outlined on the itinerary
  • Meals as noted in the itinerary-Daily breakfast, 5 lunches, 5 dinners
  • 10-night accommodations in moderate to first class hotels
  • Travel documents & Digital travel App
  • Tips for guides and drivers

Price does not include:

  • International round trip flights to Quito
  • Round-trip Air Ticket to Galapagos ($506.00 pp)
  • Galapagos Islands National Park Fee: $ 100.00 pp
  • Transit Card fee: $ 20.00 pp
  • Single Occupancy: 4,250
  • Meals not included on tour
  • Additional nights or sightseeing tours not included
  • Beverages on cruise
  • Items of a personal nature (room service, phone calls, internet, etc.)
  • Medical Coverage and Travel Insurance

Payment information:

  • Deposit due at time of booking $500.00 p/p
  • Final payment due April 15, 2022

To Book This Tour, Contact:

Carol Alegre, Tour Manager
Tel: (801) 483-6165
Email Carol

TOUR ID#9222F19

CASH DISCOUNT of $100.00 for final payment by check