Galapagos and Amazon Family Kayak Expedition $2800

Departure Date

Every Sunday

Duration

12 days 11 nights

Views

1089

Maximum Seats

10
Overview

We’ve combined two of our most popular offerings to give you an action-packed family adventure that’s sure to be one for the ages! Paddle and snorkel in the Galapagos alongside penguins, turtles, rays, blue footed boobies and schools of multicolored fish; hike and kayak through the thick of the Amazon and meet troops of monkeys hanging from the trees that line the river; visit the Kichwa indigenous people and learn about their culture and traditions. From East to West and everywhere in between the best of Ecuador is waiting for you in this fantastic expedition. Accommodation is provided at charming lodges and hotels.
  • Kayak and snorkel on search for penguins

  • Snorkel through the lava tunnels with giant turtles

  • Wine tasting

  • Hike in the highlands of Santa Cruz to view giant tortoises

  • Share time with the local people

  • Kayak the Amazon

  • Make organic chocolate fondue with your hands

  • Learn how to use a blowgun

  • Share time with the local indigenous people

  • Hike in the Amazon Jungle and search for medicinal plants

  • View monkeys in the forest

  • Stay at unique places in every location

  • Be led by top Activexpedition experienced guides at every step you take

  • Support sustainable travel to preserve culture and nature

  • Snorkeling

  • Hiking

  • Paddling

  • Swimming

  • Culture

  • Wildlife

  • Biking

  • Year around

  • 5 years old

Full Itinerary

Day 1

Arrival

There are no activities planned for your first day for you to be able to explore the beautiful city of Quito on your own terms, but if you feel like having a guided day tour at extra cost, do not hesitate in contacting us. We are always more than happy to send you with one of our expert guides to learn more about the city or the surrounding areas. Please keep in mind that there is a meeting at 18:00 in the hotel’s lobby the first day to meet your guide and the rest of the group as well as learn about what’s in store for the days of your expedition! Overnight: Dann Carlton or similar Meals included: none
Day 2

Travel day to Galapagos

Today in the morning we will be picked up and taken to the airport for a three hour flight to Baltra and then road and water transport to Isabela Island one of the youngest islands in the Galapagos. Isabela is mostly uninhabited and remains a sanctuary for wildlife, being home to animals such as iguanas, flamingos, giant tortoises and even penguins. Once we arrive, we will have check in at the hotel and enjoy the sunset. Overnight: Cormorant Hotel or similar Meal included: Breakfast
Day 3

Biking Exploration

After breakfast we will head out on our next day of Adventure, biking along an exclusive road around the side of the island. Each stop on our journey will take us to leisurely walking trails with impressive views of the different landscapes and immerse us in the diverse ecosystem of the island. Highlighting our ride are stops at Playa del Amor and the Tortoise Breeding Center. Playa del Amor, or Love Beach, is home to the largest population of iguanas on the Island. Lounging about, these creatures are exclusive to the Galapagos and are marine animals, having the ability to forage underwater. At the Tortoise breeding center we will learn of the impressive efforts of workers at the National Park in the preservation of the tortoise population. Our day finishes after five hours of exploration though richly diverse environments at the Flamingo lagoon. Once back in town you will be able to enjoy the golden sunset amidst the gentle sounds of crashing waves. Overnight: Cormorant Hotel or similar Meals included: Breakfast
Day 4

Lava Tunnels

Enter a world like no other at Los Tunneles. Famous for its arch like volcanic formations this is an ecosystem brimming with different species of animals and is nesting ground for blue- footed boobies. Possible sightings include white-tip reef sharks, penguins, golden and eagle rays, among many others! Explore the area above and below as our day's expeditions takes us by boat, snorkeling as well as on foot. Lunch will be served on board and after we will travel back to town. Overnight: Cormorant Hotel or similar Meals included: Breakfast and lunch
Day 5

Trekking Sierra Negra and Snorkel Tintoreras

The morning is to explore the Highlands of Isabela, as we will trek the rim of Sierra Negra Volcano for 10 miles total, there you can see fresh volcanic material from the last eruptions of 2018, with clear weather you can also have a nice view of Elizabeth bay, in the Affernoon we will go to Tintoreras, and islet of jagged volcanic rock that form small underwater canyons thriving with wildlife. Be on the look out for feisty penguins and blue-footed boobies! Want to get the view from above and below? Get up close and personal by submerging in serene crystal waters in search of more varieties of fish, turtles, and sea lions. Overnight: Cormorant Hotel or similar Meals included: Breakfast and lunch.
Day 6

Charles Darwin Station and Giant Tortoises Reserve

Seize the day with an early rise and boat right two hours to the Island of Santa Cruz home to the Charles Darwin Research Station. Witness the tireless efforts of researchers and conservationist and learn about how they are helping to repopulate the island with different species of tortoise. Although you will see many different types of tortoise at the station’s breeding center, our second stop of the day will take us up to ‘El Chato’ reserve in the highlands for an up close and personal experience to see them in their natural habitat. Explore the lava tunnels that dot the property while watching the gentle giants lounge around in the mud these are truly impressive creatures! Our day ends returning to town where you can enjoy the evening taking a stroll through Puerto Ayora. We recommend heading down to the boat docks at night as sharks and rays can be spotted playing in the lights below. Overnight: Galapagos Inn Hotel or similar Meals included: Breakfast
Day 7

Return to Quito

In the morning we will be transferred back to Baltra for our return flights to Quito. Average time back to the city is 2-3 hours depending on if your flight is direct or with a stop in Guayaquil. Overnight: Dann Carlton or Similar Meals included: Breakfast
Day 8

Kayak to the Kichwa Community

Tracing the edge of the eastern Andes we take a scenic drive passing the continental divide as we descend into the Amazon Basin. Upon entrance to this amazing ecosystem you will see the change from dry shrub and plants of the Ecuadorian paramo to the large and leafy green of the rainforest. As we leave the modern world behind, we depart in kayak down the river Punin for a three-hour paddle towards a Kichwa community where we will set up our campsite. In the late afternoon the members of the community will join us to recount stories of old as well as teach us traditions within the community. Overnight: Kichwa campsite Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner
Day 9

Kayak the Arajuno

We rise early to the sound of chirping birds and make our way in canoe downriver to the favorite gathering place of vibrantly feathered local parrots: the claylick. This mineral-rich structure is where the parrots come every morning to get minerals that help them detoxify the diet they eat. Watch as the birds flit around each other looking for the best spot to get their fill. After watching these colorful friends dine, we too will get nutrients through a yummy traditional breakfast including Guayusa tea brewed from the dried leaves of the plant, native to the Amazon, of the same name. Upon finishing breakfast, we will hop on our kayaks and paddle on the Arajuno River. Be on the lookout for the myriad of birds that live in the towering treetops such as toucans, king fishers, oropendolas, parrots, swallows, hawks, and more. We stop riverside to picnic on a freshly prepared meal before continuing on. After a day on the river we return to our thatched-roofed accommodations tucked in the forest to rest up for the next days’ expedition. Overnight: Liana lodge or similar Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner
Day 10

Hike to the Animal Shelter and Anaconda Island

Into the Jungle—that is the LIVING JUNGLE, or in Spanish Selva Viva. Selva Viva is a 1750-hectare wildlife and nature reserve run by the NGO AmaZoonico. The mission of this organization is to rehabilitate wildlife that has been taken from their natural habitats in order prepare them for reintroduction into the wild. The majority of these releases happen inside Selva Viva. Our guides will teach us about medicinal plans as well as some techniques for surviving in the jungle. Many of the monkeys and other animals that we may stumble upon during our hike were cared for at Amazoonico! Our visit directly helps fund the continuation of this initiative. After an educational adventure into the forest we will go back to the lodge for lunch before our second excursion of the day: a visit to Anaconda Island. This area is a natural paradise for prehistoric birds and other animals such as caiman. Here we will immerse ourselves in nature and learn about the lifestyle of the family who lives on the island, blowgun hunting techniques, and even have the chance to feed the caiman. Overnight: Liana lodge or similar Meals included: Breakfast, lunch and dinner
Day 11

Hot springs

Rounding out our trip we make our make back towards Quito through a majestic and winding path with a stop at Papallacta Hot springs. Known for its healing capabilities; Papallacta is a natural spring sourcing from the Cayambe and Antisana volcanoes, the latter of which on a clear day can be seen on the way toward the spring. Take a relaxing dip in one of the many pools or, if you so choose, we can pre-arrange a massage or facial for you (at extra cost) so you can wind down after many days of adventuring throughout our beautiful country! We will arrive in Quito in the late afternoon. Overnight: Dann Carlton or similar Meals included: Breakfast
Day 12

Departure

As you depart, we thank you and wish you safe travels to wherever your destination may be! If you wish to continue exploring more of Ecuador, we can help you organize an extension trip to places you did not see during this trip. We thank you for choosing Activexpedition and hope to see you soon! Meals included: Breakfast
  • Top Experienced Certified English-Speaking Guide

  • Private Land Transport

  • Shared Water Transport

  • Accommodation for eleven nights

  • Meals according to the Itinerary

  • Water and snacks at all time

  • Water bottle

  • Biking gear: Hybrid bikes, certified helmets and gloves

  • Paddling gear: Seat on top double kayaks, lifejackets and paddles

  • Snorkeling gear: Mask and fins

  • Hiking gear: Robber boots

  • All fees to reserves and museums

  • International or domestic flights

  • Galapagos transit control card INGALA

  • Galapagos National Park fee

  • Isabela Island fee

  • Airport transfers for international flights

  • Meals not mentioned in the itinerary

  • Tips for guides and drivers

  • Travel insurance (mandatory)

  • Optional activities

  • Itinerary Disclaimer: Even though we have a detailed itinerary, changes can be made by your guides, due to weather or safety reasons. Please also note that none of the wildlife sightings mentioned on the itinerary are guaranteed.

  • Visas and Passports: Make sure you check your visa and passport validity and requirements per country. It is important your passport is valid for at least 6 months before your travel.

  • Accommodation: We strive to use small and charming places that are unique and provide stellar service.

  • Single Supplement Costs: Generally this fee is not incurred as we match you with another person of the same gender in a twin room, but if you prefer not to share and have your own room, then there will be an associated fee

  • Transportation: Driving time can take more than expected in Ecuador, as it is a small country with roads meandering through the Andes Mountains. We assure your comfort during transit no matter the size of the group, while in the Galapagos the speed boat from Santa Cruz to Isabela can be a bit challenging if you are not use to travel by boat, so we highly recommend to carry some seasickness medicine with you

  • Level of Activity: This trip is considered as 2 out of 5. No prior experience is required, and your guides will always brief you about safety and proper use of gear on every leg of the trip. The biking on Isabela is quite easy on mostly flat terrain along the coastline, the kayaking is on a calm area, the kayaking in the Amazon is class I, this means there are not big rapids, so it is very easy to do paddle, and there will be a transport support for the majority of the activities in the case that someone wants to take a break or just wants to relax.

  • Weather and Elevation in Galapagos: Although the islands are located on the equator, the Humboldt Current brings cold water to them, causing frequent drizzles during most of the year. The weather is periodically influenced by the El Niño events, which occur about every 3 to 7 years and are characterized by warm sea surface temperatures, a rise in sea level, greater wave action, and a depletion of nutrients in the water.During the season known as the garúa (June to November), the temperature by the sea is 22 °C (72 °F), a steady and cold wind blows from south and southeast, frequent drizzles (garúas) last most of the day, and dense fog conceals the islands. During the warm season (December to May), the average sea and air temperature rises to 25 °C (77 °F), there is no wind at all, there are sporadic, though strong, rains and the sun shines. Weather changes as altitude increases in the large islands. Temperature decreases gradually with altitude, while precipitation increases due to the condensation of moisture in clouds on the slopes. There is a large range in precipitation from one place to another, not only with altitude, but also depending on the location of the islands, and also with the seasons. The precipitation also depends on the geographical location. During March 1969, the precipitation over Charles Darwin Station, on the southern coast of Santa Cruz was 249.0 mm (9.80 in), while on Baltra Island, the precipitation during the same month was only 137.6 mm (5.42 in). This is because Baltra is located behind Santa Cruz with respect to the prevailing southerly winds, so most of the moisture gets precipitated in the Santa Cruz highlands. There are significant changes in precipitation from one year to another, too. At Charles Darwin Station, the precipitation during March 1969 was 249.0 mm (9.80 in), but during March 1970, it was only 1.2 mm (0.047 in). On the larger islands, the pattern of generally wet highlands and drier lowlands impacts the flora. The vegetation in the highlands tends to be green and lush, with tropical woodland in places. The lowland areas tend to have arid and semi-arid vegetation, with many thorny shrubs and cacti, and almost bare volcanic rock elsewhere.

  • Weather and Elevation in Mainland: In Ecuador the weather can be vary greatly depending on which side of the Andes you are traveling to, so it is highly recommended to come ready for all kinds of weather. When they say “Ecuador, All in One Place” they mean it! The altitude determines the temperature and the higher you go the colder it gets. Don’t let the geographic location of the country fool you. Even at a mere 15,000 feet the temperatures can feel like those of a winter in the northern United States. The coastal lowlands in the western part of Ecuador are typically warm with temperatures in the region of 25 °C (77 °F). Coastal areas are affected by ocean currents and between January and April are hot and rainy. The weather in Quito is consistent with that of a subtropical highland climate. The average temperature during the day is 70 °F (21 °C), which generally falls to an average of 50 °F (10 °C) at night. The average temperature annually is 64°F (17.8°C). There are only really two seasons in the city: dry and wet. The dry season runs from June to September and the wet season is from October to May.

  • Sustainability: We do our best to not produce any trash; we believe that recycling is not enough, so we try to avoid using any plastic or materials that pollute our environment. Every day we work towards being a zero-waste tour operator and our staff is well trained to leave the least impact possible in our service areas. We also work with local indigenous communities in the different regions. By doing so we are able to teach our guests about the rich culture Ecuador, all the while helping the people preserve their traditions and lands. By working directly with local peoples, we are able to create a sustainable touristic income for the community.

  • Guides: All our guides have a professional background from the Tourism University; this means they have a degree in guiding, so their knowledge and skills when leading a group are top-notch. Each guide has many years of experience and they all have taken additional courses for other outdoor activities as well as have International First-Aid certifications. On top of all of this, they are all extremely personable and strive to deliver travel experiences of a lifetime.

  • Heath advices: no vaccinations needed for this trip

We do recommend travelling light for this expedition. A duffel bag of 50 litters for your luggage and a backpack of 20 litters for daily activities should be sufficient. In Ecuador and The Galapagos, the weather can change drastically so please be ready.

  • Passport

  • Credit card

  • Two pairs of lightweight hiking pants

  • Two pairs of shorts

  • Two bathing suit

  • Four non-cotton T-shirts

  • Two cotton T-shirts

  • Two water T-shirt

  • Two fleece

  • One rain jacket

  • One pair of rain pants

  • Two buffs

  • One pair of hiking shoes

  • One pair of snickers

  • One pair of water sandals

  • One pair of flip flops

  • One- or two-night outfits

  • One cap or hat

  • Sunscreen

  • Sunglasses

  • Mosquito repellent

  • Camera

  • Optional binoculars

  • Head lamp

NOTE: Laundry is available almost at every location and is quiet cheap, this helps traveling light too.

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Otherwise, email us anytime. On average we provide quotes within 6 hours during business hours and the next day during off business hours. Privately guided trips allow you to be in control of all the details of your trip - departure times, accommodations, extra nights, extra activities, extra experiences - what you want and how you want it. If you want to go private or customize this expedition, contact us.
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christian@activexpedition.com