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Quito and Galapagos Islands 7 days: Finch Bay Eco Hotel

 
Destination(s): Quito & the Galapagos Islands
Duration: 7 days / 6 nights
Frequency: Weekly, year-round
Price: starting at $3,780.00 per person
  *single supplement on request
Deadline to book: Open booking
 
 
 

The highlight of any trip to Ecuador, explore the renowned Galapagos Islands! From on board an expedition ship or a land-based resort enjoy daily island excursions lead by certified naturalist guides each day exploring the varied marine life, and flora & fauna made famous by Charles Darwin.

You’ll feel right at home knowing that you are in the hands of professionals that pay careful attention to details. From organizing special activities for children, honeymooners, or that annual family getaway. You will have everything you need to enjoy the Galapagos Islands at your pace.

The Finch Bay Eco Hotel offers an alternative way of experiencing the Galápagos Islands with all-inclusive Galápagos packages that range from 3 to 7 nights. Combine exploring neighboring islands aboard the their own yacht, with excursions on Santa Cruz Island. Biking, snorkeling, trekking, kayaking, or just lounge by the beach front pool!

Program includes: 

  • Three nights accommodation at the Finch Bay Eco Hotel in a Garden view room
  • All daily meals, snacks and drinking water at Finch Bay
  • Daily island excursions with an expert licensed English-speaking naturalist guide
  • Three nights accommodation at the JW Marriott Quito in a Deluxe room w/breakfast
  • Private Quito City Tour Like a Local w/lunch
  • Private Otavalo Handcraft Tour w/lunch
  • Round-trip internal airfare to/from Galapagos, from Quito or Guayaquil  
  • Galapagos National Park entrance fee
  • Galapagos Transit Control Card
  • Snorkeling equipment
  • Round-trip private airport transfers

   Not included:

  • Bar consumption, tips, extras and personal expenses
  • Medical, travel & cancellation insurance
  • International airfare from your city 
  • Additional services on the Ecuadorian mainland not specified

Day 1   Tuesday, Arrive in Quito

After clearing customs and retrieving your bags you’ll be met by a tour representative and transferred to the JW Marriott Quito, check-in and overnight. Meals: N/A

Day 2   Wednesday, Quito Tour – Live Quito Like a Local

A day dedicated to exploring the lives, beliefs, cuisine and traditions of Old Town Quito, the first city named a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1978, and a revelation to many people. The tour is all about ‘living Quito like a local’, visiting shops, exploring markets, meeting local herbal healers, wandering the streets, learning skills from artisans, and enjoying a lunch of great Ecuadorian cooking at the sophisticated Casa Gangotena hotel.

We head out for a walking tour of the Old Town, intent on understanding more about the people who live in the largest and best-restored historical centre in the Americas. We begin by meeting our local resident guide, part of a grassroots NGO organization that has created a walking tour of its Quito neighborhood, called San Roque. The guide takes us through the nearby streets, stopping to meet artisans, shopkeepers, hat makers and sweet confectioners. Up the hill on Calle Rocafuerte, we explore the San Francisco Market, one of the oldest in the capital. Here, we learn all about the fruit and vegetables produced in Ecuador and some culinary traditions.

We also have the chance to meet and learn from one of the local herbal healers who have locales in the market.

From the market, we walk downhill to the emblematic street of La Ronda, considered one of the flagship regeneration projects in the city. It’s a quiet, cobbled street with typical balconies overflowing with geraniums. Here we visit the Manos en La Ronda project and meet artisans in the workshops. We then visit the chocolatier on the ground floor, where we enjoy a snack and have a chance to discover and taste the finest chocolate in the world – which, of course, comes from Ecuador..!

From La Ronda, we walk northwards through the handsome streets of the Old Town to the Plaza Grande, the political heart of the city. Following a brief explanation, we stroll to the Jesuit church of La Compañía with its stunning gold-leaf interior. Returning back to Plaza San Francisco, we visit the church, choir and pretty patios of the Franciscan order before arriving at Casa Gangotena, on the same square, for a lunch of Ecuadorian specialties prepared by the hotel’s talented chefs.

In the afternoon, we cross the street to the excellent Casa del Alabado Archaeological Museum. It houses a fantastic collection of pieces dating back some 5,000 years, arrayed beautifully within a restored 17th-century colonial mansion.

This tour also includes a visit to a panoramic viewpoint to appreciate Quito in all its Andean splendor. Meals: breakfast and lunch

Day 3   Thursday, Otavalo Handcraft Tour

This one-day private excursion has been designed to provide guests with an overall view of the dramatic Andean scenery, with an earlier departure to arrive in time to appreciate the activity of the Otavalo Market, visit the towns of Peguche to observe the weaving process and Cotacachi, for leather goods.

This excursion goes north, to the land of the Otavalos and South America’s most famous Indian fair along the Panamerican Highway through dramatic mountain scenery to the textile market of Otavalo, where guests will enjoy visiting the many stalls full of ponchos, scarves, blankets, wall hangings, woven belts (fajas), hats, handbags and much more. Here Otavaleños barter in silence, in marked contrast to the raucous noise of other markets; take your time to negotiate the best bargains. Then, proceed to Peguche, an Indian village very near Otavalo that is home to the artisans who do the weaving in their homes; guests can learn about their culture and everyday life and on to Cotacachi, where the whole town is dedicated to the production and sale of leather goods: coats, belts and all kinds of handbags. Lunch is at the charming Hacienda Pinsaqui. Meals: breakfast and lunch

Day 4   Monday, Galapagos Islands

Baltra

You will have an early morning transfer to the airport to board a flight to the island of Baltra in the Galapagos. Upon arrival, guests are met by the hotel naturalist guides.

Santa Cruz

Depart the airport and cross the Itabaca Channel and towards the highlands of Santa Cruz. From there a short drive across the farming area will lead us to El Manzanillo at the northern edge of the Giant Tortoise Reserve. El Manzanillo is located on the natural path tortoises take every year as they either migrate to higher moist locations during the garúa season (June-September), or when they descend to the warmer lowlands during the wet season. The Galapagos giant tortoise (Chelonoidis nigra) is the largest living tortoise species, weighing up to 250 kg (550 lb). It plays an important biological role as the top grazer in its habitat. In the wild, these gentle giants slowly barrel their way through the plant cover. The shape of their carapaces varies from island to island. On Santa Cruz, year round, tortoises can be seen grazing on the surrounding vegetation, or wallowing in muddy banks or in a small red-colored pond (impressively colored by surface red pond-weeds).

The area is teeming with life: chirping vegetarian-, small-tree, large-tree and woodpecker mockingbirds and flycatchers, as well as ducks, herons and gallinules make this an exciting visit.

Afterwards continue on to Puerto Ayora and the Finch Bay Eco Hotel, check-in and overnight. Meals: breakfast, lunch and dinner

Day 5   Tuesday, Galapagos Islands

Bartolome

Bartolome is famous for Pinnacle Rock, a towering spearheaded obelisk that rises from the ocean’s edge and is the best-known landmark in the islands. Galapagos penguins—the only species of penguin found north of the equator—walk precariously along narrow volcanic ledges at its base. Sea lions snooze on rocky platforms, ready to slide into the water to play with passing snorkelers. Meals: breakfast, lunch and dinner

Day 6   Wednesday, Galapagos Islands

Tortuga Bay & Charles Darwin Research Station

Tortuga Bay is located to the southwest of Puerto Ayora, on Santa Cruz Island. Its name means “turtle”, and the island received this moniker because it is sea turtles favorite place to lay their eggs. The stunning white sand beach is considered by many the most beautiful in the Galapagos archipelago. The beach is reached via a marked and cobbled two kilometer path that starts at the west end of Charles Binford Street; guests must sign in and out at the National Park control point at the beginning of the path– it is open from 6:00 AM to 6:30 PM daily. There is excellent bird-watching along the path, with plenty of Darwin’s finches and other sea birds. And for active visitors, it is a great place to kayak, snorkel and surf!

The headquarters of the Galapagos National Park Service and The Charles Darwin Research Station are located side by side on the outskirts of Puerto Ayora. There is an interpretation centre open to the public and also one may view the tortoise rearing program. Those guests who do not have the opportunity to explore the highlands of Santa Cruz and see tortoises in their natural habitat will have the chance to see tortoises here. And for those who have already seen them in the wild, a visit to the Centre will expand their knowledge of this unique, iconic Galapagos animal. Meals: breakfast, lunch and dinner

Day 7   Thursday, Galapagos Islands / Return

After breakfast we leave the Finch Bay Hotel and on the way to Baltra, stop at the Twin Pit Craters, great geological depressions of volcanic material, formed by a long process of slow sinking of the ground, where exceptional Scalesia trees, ferns, mosses and orchids can be seen in the surroundings. Then, overland transfer to the airport in Baltra to take the flight back to the continent. Meals: breakfast

Important Notes:

- Please remember that the exact route and program may vary according to weather and ocean conditions and the wildlife we encounter. It's also subject to change without previous notice due mainly to readjustment of the National Park policies and regulations.

- Optional activities, at no extra cost: kayaking, snorkeling.

- Optional activities, with extra cost (please inquire): Cerro Puntudo hike, specialized birdwatching, full-day mountain biking, full-day surfing, full-day kayaking, SCUBA diving packages are also available.



Note: All itineraries are subject to change, due to weather and other conditions. All times indicated are approximate, and are also subject to change.


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