Green Ecuador

ECU-53 / 14-day trip with 5-day Galapagos cruise

Green Ecuador 1
OVERVIEW

Intro


Day 1 Arrival in Quito
Day 2 Quito – City Tour
Day 3 Bellavista & Cloud Forest
Day 4 Visit to Mindo: Chocolate, butterflies & Orchids
Day 5 Otavalo & Hacienda
Day 6 Return to Quito
Day 7 – 10 Galapagos: 5-day Cruise Peru, Ecuador & Galapagos 1
Day 11 End of cruise. Travel to Isabela Island
Day 12 Isabela Island: Visit volcano Sierra Negra
Day 13 Isabela Island: Snorkeling tour to Tintoreas 
Day 14 Departure
ITINERARY
Day 1

Arrival in Quito
Reception at the airport and transfer to hotel.

Day 2

Quito – City Tour
Half-day private city tour in the historical part of Quito, including La Basilica Church, La Compañia Church and El Panecillo Hill. We leave the hotel by bus and will see the transformation from the new part of the city to the absolutely beautiful historical and colonial part of Quito. We get off the bus and will have time to see all the interesting churches, plazas etc. But also simply enjoy the local atmosphere, the many shops and sellers. After these interesting sights, we continue by bus to “El Panecillo”, the hill in the centre of Quito overviewing the city and the historical centre. Also from here, on clear days, we may observe several of the snow-capped volcanoes surrounding Quito.
Night in hotel.
Included meals: Breakfast

Day 3

Bellavista
Arrive around 9:30 am, breakfast at the lodge. The rest of the day enjoy guided tours in the cloud forest. Bellavista is the perfect place for anyone who seeks to immerse themselves in its mysteries, soak in its vast views, anyone who wants to discover its rare and native birds, orchids and other species, anyone who wants to discover true peace and wild places, anyone who loves forests – there are few places like this that are so easily accessible. Add to that the sense of adventure hiking the forest trails, or deep adventure hiking up streams to reach hidden waterfalls, and you have the ingredients for a very unique travel experience.

The reserve has about 20 different trails, many of them interconnected. These paths go through primary and secondary forests. The hikes last between 1.5 to almost 3 hours depending on the trails, the hikers and the weather. There are easy trails and very hard ones, but we always choose the appropriate trails according to the hikers’ physical condition, their age and the weather. None of the trails are completely flat, and all of them have the common terrain of the cloud forest (mud, stairs, and lots of plants).
Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4

Half day tour to Mindo – Chocolate, Butterflies & Orchids
Half day tour to visit the Chocolate factory, the Butterfly Reserve and the Orchid farm.
 Departure from Bellavista after breakfast. We head to Mindo, where the Chocolate factory is located. From here we combine the visit with a tour to the “Butterfly Reserve”, which is a beautiful little farm where they breed about 20 different species of butterflies. Visitors witness the whole process of birth and flight of these lovley creatures. 
Then we go to Chocolate factory. Here you will have around an hour’s explanation of the process of harvesting and processing of cacao, with tasting of flavors and other interesting things.
 Finally we go to the Orchid farm, which houses a fascinating collection of about 200 different species. And not only that – this farm also has a small viewpoint for bird watching. From here you can see tanagers, hummingbirds and momotos. 
At noon, transfer back to Bellavista, where we will have lunch.

Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5

Bellavista – Otavalo
From Bellavista, pick up by AWT guide in the morning. Private tour to Otavalo. We leave Bellavista after breakfast and have an approximately 3-hour drive to Otavalo. The drive is fascinating, travelling through the relatively dry areas caused by the “rain-shadow” from the volcanoes, and it is easy to observe the sediments suggesting the formation of this part of the Andes. This valley is very beautiful and surrounded by smaller volcanoes and lakes. We visit the Otavalo market where you will find all sorts of souvenirs, and enjoy simply watching the local people and their interesting daily life. In the afternoon, transfer to an authentic hacienda in the outskirts of Otavalo, where you will have a nice dinner.
Included meals: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 6

Otavalo – Quito
In the morning, after enjoying the nice Hacienda, we head towards Cotacachi’s crater lake. This lake is beautifully located at the foot of Cuicocha volcano. There will be time to take a short walk and enjoy the magnificent views. Then we will return to Cotacachi, a small village, where we will have the opportunity to buy high quality leather products and enjoy a very nice lunch before heading home.
Included meals: Breakfast

Day 7 – 10

Galapagos: 5-day Cruise  cruise-ship-
We suggest a 5-day itinerary on the tourist superior yacht Eden, or any of our other cruises. (The itinerary below is for the Eden.)
Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAYVISITOR SITES
1 - SunAM - Baltra Island Airport: Arrival and Transfer to the boatPM - Bachas
2 - MonAM - Darwin BayPM - The Barranco (Genovesa Island)
3 - TuesAM - Bartolome IslandPM - Sullivan Bay
4 - WedAM - Daphne Island / Black Turtle CovePM - Dragon Hill (Santa Cruz)
5 - ThursAM - Charles Darwin Research StationTour Ends - Transfer to Baltra Airport
See detailed Itinerary Eden 5-day cruise (pdf)

Day 11

End of cruise. Travel to Isabela Island
The cruise ends during the morning hours in Puerto Ayora (Santa Cruz). Some hours free to visit Galapagos biggest town, Puerto Ayora, and to enjoy the restaurants before checking in to the ferry and head for the largest (and some would say the most beautiful) island, Isabela.   The ferry takes of at 2 pm and its a 3 h boat ride. Arrival to Isabela and transfer to hotel.
Included meals: Breakfast

Day 12

Isabela – Excursion to the Sierra Negra volcano
Today there is a day excursion to the Sierra Negra volcano. Pick up at the hotel early in the morning and arrive at the foot of the crater. From the entrance, we take a 30 minute walk to the crater, with an amazing view of the 1450 m volcano. It is the second largest crater in the world, with a diameter of 9,6 km. The volcano is active and had a major eruption in 2005, and we can clearly see the remains of the lava rivers from this eruption. Later we visit the Chico volcano, an area not often visited, where we can appreciate clear signs of volcanic activity such as fumaroles and mineral associations.
Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 13

Isabela – Visit to Tintoreras Island
Depending on the time of the year, you will either have the tour to Tintoreas in the morning or in the afternoon. Pick up at the hotel and a short boat trip to “Los Tintoreras”, named after a shark which is abundant around the Galapagos. On this small island we have the chance to spot many marine iguanas and also the Tintoreras sharks in a canal. The snorkeling is excellent around this island, and we reserve plenty of time to enjoy the waters and the wildlife.
Included meals: Breakfast

Day 14

Departure
End of Galapagos tour. Early morning transfer to the peer in Villamil and ferry to Santa Cruz. From here transfer to Baltra airport. Flight to Guayaquil and international connection in the afternoon. 
Included meals: Breakfast

PRICING
ECU-53 – To request prices, please click on the BOOK TRIP bottom on the right sidebar and fill the information.


INCLUDED

  • All transfers
  • English speaking guide during activities/tours
  • All activities/tours in private services
  • Entrance fees for tours
  • Hotels according to “hotel list” (the availability will be confirmed at the moment of the booking)
  • Meals as described in the itinerary

NOT INCLUDED

  • International & domestic flights
  • Galapagos entrance fees: Galapagos Park Entrance fee (100 USD), Ingala (20 USD) and Isabela Island Local Taxes  (10 USD)
  • Galapagos Cruise (price depends on length and final choice of cruise – see options here)
  • Tips
  • Personal expenses
  • Meals not mentioned in the program
HOTEL LIST

QUITO: Hostal Fuente de Piedra or similar

BELLAVISTA: Bellavista Cloud Forest  or similar

OTAVALO: Hacienda Cusin or similar

ISABELA – GALAPAGOS: Hotel La Casa de Marita or similar

MAP

Overview:


Continent:


Galapagos Islands – Santa Cruz:

GALLERY
Tags: Nature & Culture, Ecuador, Galapagos Cruises, Quito, Cruise