Antarctica & Arctic
The Galapagos Islands are a must-see destination for any nature traveller. An active experience focused on nature, this trip offers a secluded, eye-level encounter with the Galapagos, exploring on foot or by kayak.
a Destinations d > Ecuador > Hiking and Kayaking Adventure
Six nights cruise, one night tented camp and two nights hotel accommodation, meals as indicated, services of a Natural Habitat Adventures Expedition Leader and flights and transfers as specified.
Every Second Friday
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Hike through the Andean Highlands
Snorkel, hike and kayak
Stay aboard an exclusive sailing catamaran
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Arrive in Quito and transfer to the market town of Otavalo, home to mostly indigenous residents of the Andes. Spend the next two nights at Las Palmeras, a 150-year-old hacienda. (D)
The countryside surrounding Otavalo offers an ideal introduction for hiking in Ecuador. Mountain lakes glisten beneath blue skies, while two dramatic volcanoes dominate the skyline, Imbabura and Cotacachi. (B)(L)(D)
Fly to Galapagos and board S/C Nemo III. Set off for North Seymour, a small geological uplift where you will follow a trail that leads to blue-footed boobies, land iguanas and the largest colony of frigatebirds. (B)(L)(D)
Spend the morning snorkelling with the resident sea lion colony at Isla Lobos. Sail on to Kicker Rock, a dramatic volcanic tuff cone and snorkel with sea turtles, rays and reef sharks. Taking to your kayak, paddle the shoreline along Cerro Brujo. (B)(L)(D)
Paddling excursion along the north shore of Espanola Island, following a cliff formed by eroded cinder cones and layers of old basalt where you observe giant cacti and many different bird species. Hike along the headlands, hoping to see Hood mockingbirds and blue-footed boobies. (B)(L)(D)
Visit Punta Cormorant on Floreana. Following a trail through a Palo Santo forest to a brackish lagoon, find pintail ducks and bright pink flamingos. Back aboard the Nemo III, sail to Champion Islet, one of the best driftsnorkel spots. (B)(L)(D)
Hike to secluded Tortuga Bay with its pristine white sand beach. Kayak among mangrove lagoons on the bay’s edge, where sea turtles are frequently found. Afterwards visit the world-famous giant tortoise-rearing centre located at the Charles Darwin Research Station.
Ascend into the misty highlands of Santa Cruz to arrive at Natural Habitats’ exclusive Tortoise Camp where you will spend the night. Its safari-style tents and treehouses are tucked among lush vegetation that attracts giant tortoises (most commonly seen from July through February). You will have a chance to view these ancient creatures in their natural setting. (B)(L)(D)
Sail to Santa Fe for a two hour paddle that reveals large cliffs and sea caves used by many species of marine birds for nesting and roosting—as well as basking green sea turtles and sea lions. (B)(L)(D)
Snorkel in Bartolome, an underwater playground that’s home to the Galapagos penguins. Climb to the island’s highest point for 360-degree views, passing intriguing geological formations. Sail to Chinese Hat for a two hour paddle through the Bainbridge Rocks. (B)(L)(D)
There will be a morning visit to Mosquera, a tiny islet that’s home to a huge population of sea lions, before your flight back to Quito. (B)
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