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Ecuador

11 days / 10 nights

Tour Overview 

Quito + Baños + Rio Bamba + Cuenca + Guayaquil + Galapagos Islands 

Highlights

Quito

Guayaquil

Galapagos Islands

Itinerary

DAY 

1

Quito

Arrival: Mariscal Sucre International Airport transfer to the hotel. (1 hour)

DAY 

2

Quito

Breakfast at the hotel. Quito city tour is perfect for seeing fascinating panoramas, churches, domes and roofs that have an important historical value. You will admire and learn about colonial art, architecture, culture, legends, and traditions. Quito, the capital of Ecuador, was founded in the 16th century on the ruins of an Inca city and stands at an altitude of 9.350 feet. Despite the 1917 earthquake, the city has the best-preserved, least altered historic Center in Latin America. The architecture and rich interiors, are pure examples of Quito School of sculpture, which is a fusion of Spanish, Italian, Moorish, Flemish and indigenous art. After four incredible hours exploring the Old Town, you'll understand why Quito was the world's first city named to UNESCO's Cultural Heritage list.  Lunch at El Crater Restaurant

At the afternoon, you will visit: “Cuidad Mitad Del Mundo” and Intiñan Museum 

Ciudad Mitad del Mundo

“Ciudad Mitad del Mundo” is the touristic, cultural, scientific and commercial smallest city of Ecuador. Its architecture is based on colonial style. An obelisk and a museum relevant to its geographical location were built at the Middle of the World site. All of this is found among the drastic landscape surrounded by nature and modern buildings. The monument is crowned by a metallic sphere that represents the Earth. It is named Equatorial Monument and it geographical orientation coincides with the four cardinal points and is located precisely at Earth’s midpoint — 0 degrees latitude, 0 minutes, 0 seconds.

Intiñan Museum

Since the year 1960, the Intiñan Museum in Quito has been a center for the promotion of the many aspects of Ecuador’s culture.  This museum offers interactive exhibits on how the Incas determined the middle of the earth, plus interesting science experiments such as balancing an egg on a nail.

Return to the hotel.

Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 

3

Quito - Baños

Breakfast: at the hotel. Visit: Quilotoa Crater Lake. After breakfast we will drive to the famous Quilotoa Crater Lake. On our way we will pass by the Tigua workshop and admire some impressive local artwork with impressions of life in the Andes. At our arrival to the Quilotoa Loop, we will appreciate an emerald green lake inside the crater of an extinct volcano with steep jagged cliffs. We are going to trek into the crater to the lake shore and the return to the top of the crater is a mule ride. Kayak on the lake (optional).

Then we continue to Baños. Transfer to the hotel.  

Breakfast, Dinner

DAY 

4

Baños - Rio Bamba

Breakfast: at the hotel. Baños is known as "The Gate of the Amazon Region." Baños are located on the outside of the eastern range of the Andes. It is the perfect place to relax and explore. This small town is famous worldwide for its natural crystalline waterfalls. Here you can see how it is made the famous "marshmallow" (candy, which is made from sugar cane). Baños is the main tourist attraction for adventure, there are several ways to enjoy nature through hiking, horseback riding, cycling and rafting. We will start the city tour and the visit the waterfalls: “Agoyán”, “Manto de la Novia” and “Pailón Del Diablo”. Continue to Riobamba

Breakfast

DAY 

5

Rio Bamba - Cuenca

After breakfast you will continue driving south to the train Station of Alausí. On your way to Alausí you will visit the church of Balbanera. Enduring the pass of time, this is one of the oldest catholic churches in Latin America built by Sebastian de Benalcazar in 1534.  At Alausí you will board the train for a thrilling adventure with a 45-degree descent by a zigzagging railway built in the ledge of the Condor Puñuña Mountain, known as La Nariz del Diablo. This engineering achievement finally allowed to connect the coast with the Andes region and brought a new era for the republic of Ecuador. After visiting the reserve, we go to the ruins of Ingapirca. Ingapirca is the largest and best preserved archaeological site in Ecuador, is located 80 km from the city of Cuenca, in Cañar province. It was built with millions of hewn stone in the middle of the eighteenth century. In the complex you can see the different architectural units, among which stands the Temple of the Sun, which have an elliptical shape 37 feet long and 12 meters wide, was used to perform ceremonies and rituals Cañari-Inca culture. In addition, you can observed the oldest building Ingapirca Pilaloma which consists of a series of rectangular rooms. After visiting the ruins we will go to Cuenca, here you can rest and enjoy your free time

Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 

6

Cuenca

Cuenca, 2560 m. high (8400 feet), the third largest city in Ecuador and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is situated in a fertile valley in the southern highlands of Ecuador. Cuenca has kept its old-world architectural charm and its colonial ambience. The Old Town is best visited on foot. Our tour takes you along the cobblestone streets admiring the historic buildings, hanging balconies, carved wooden doors, the craft fair and colorful flower market, the main plaza with the Old Cathedral, which has been converted to the “Museum for Religious Art”, and the magnificent blue-domed Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. See silversmiths at work and handicrafts of almost every kind. You end the tour with a visit to the “Panama Hat” factory.

Breakfast

DAY 

7

Cuenca - Guayaquil

Breakfast at the hotel. National Park Cajas is located in the Ecuadorian Andes west of Cuenca. This is a striking name as the area is characterized by large outcrops of bedrock. This is called knob and kettle geomorphology and results in a spectacular landscape, where the outcrops alternate with lakes. The lakes and rivers are famous for their trout and pure water. The park is about twenty-nine thousand square hectares large and ranges in altitude from 2800 meters to more than 4400 meters above sea level. Cajas is a National Park since 1996. Cajas was declared a National Area of Recreation in 1977. Humidity, low temperature, and high altitude with low atmospheric pressure create an ecosystem that accumulates organic material in the soil that is able to retain water. The National Park is home to a large variety of animals, some of which are endemic or highly endangered. In the afternoon we travel to Guayaquil (3.5 hour drive). In the path we will visit a Cacao Plantation. Lunch at Cacao y Mango Plantation Continue to Guayaquil

Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 

8

Guayaquil - Galapagos Islands

Breakfast at hotel Transfer to the airport - flight to the Galapagos Islands.

When you land in Baltra a guide will be waiting for you. You will arrive at Santa Cruz Island crossing the Itabaca Channel, it is a waterway that connects two islands,(Baltra and Santa Cruz), in 10 minutes. Then you will take a private bus to take you to the Silberstein Hotel. During the trip, we can admire the different environments, from a rocky red surface in the north to the green landscape of wildlife in the south. Once at the hotel reception your room will be assigned. In the afternoon, you will visit Charles Darwin Research Station. This station has a museum of history and development of the Galapagos Islands, as well as information on the protection of natural heritage. Here you can watch the endemic giant tortoises from the islands. Later you will have free time to explore the town of Puerto Ayora, where you can several souvenir shops.  

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner 

DAY 

9-10 

From the second day, the excursion may change depending on the availability. Visits to the islands are confirmed one week before arrival. 

Galapagos Island

Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 

11

Galapagos Island Out

Breakfast: at the hotel. Transfer to the airport for your flight to Guayaquil or Quito.

Breakfast

Tour Inclusions & Exclusions

Price includes

  • Private transportation and tour with English speaking guide/translator in Mainland Ecuador as described on the itinerary, except for a shared train excursion;

  • Shared transportation and tours with English speaking guide at the Galapagos Islands as described on the itinerary, except for a transfer Hotel-Airport w/driver only;

  • Accommodation as listed on the itinerary;

  • Meals as listed on the itinerary;

  • Entrance fees as listed on the itinerary.

Price does not include

  • Flight to/from Galapagos Islands, USD 490 per person.

  • Discount for children under 12 years - USD 100 (the cost may change);

  • Galapagos National Park Entrance Fee / USD 100 pp (subject to change);

  • Discount for children under 12 years – 50% (the cost may change);

  • Ingala Transit Control Card / USD 20 pp;

  • International flights;

  • Travel insurance (optional)

  • and health insurance (obligatory);

  • Tips;

  • Personal expenses;

  • Items not specified.

Tour Pricing

Rates in $US per person

SGL

DBL

Rates in Mainland Ecuador 

Selection of Hotels 4*

3,465 US$ pp

1,990 US$ pp

1,980 US$ pp

Rates in Galapagos Islands

Selection of Hotels 4*

1,790 US$ pp

1,390 US$ pp

1,290 US$ pp

TPL

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