Galapagos Multi Sport

8 Days from $4,500

Enjoy exotic and abundant wildlife and unique, scenic locations—without the crowds as we sail through Ecuador’s volcanic Galápagos Archipelago on a deluxe, 80 ft catamaran.

Galapagos Multi Sport

A Galapagos Island cruise by upscale yacht, combined with snorkeling, hiking and photography is the best possible way to explore the Galapagos Island Archipelago, and Bio Bio Expedition’s Galapagos adventure vacation is the most active way to explore this unique destination.

Sail, snorkel, sea kayak, surf, and hike your way around this fascinating group of islands in Ecuador. We know that our guests prefer not to be crammed into a large Galapagos cruiseship with hoards of people or stuck in a sea kayak all day. They’d much rather be photographing a sea turtle or sharing a glass of wine and the day’s stories on the deck of a private catamaran. On this unique Galapagos Cruise itinerary, you can pick and choose you own activity levels while our local guide and Level III Naturalist takes care of all the details.

Photograph and learn about the Galapagos animals from blue-footed boobies, to marine iguanas, friendly sea lions, giant tortoises, Darwin’s finches and Galapagos penguins. Relax on the expansive beaches of the Galapagos Islands and enjoy lingering sunsets, gourmet cuisine and outstanding adventure— all aboard or accessible from our private first-class catamaran.

Enjoy exotic and abundant wildlife and unique, scenic locations—without the crowds as we cruise through Ecuador’s volcanic Galapagos Archipelago on a deluxe, upscale catamaran.  Days are spent bobbing with blue-footed boobies, swimming nose-to-nose with friendly and playful sea lions, snorkeling and kayaking with sea turtles and observing breath-taking marine, bird and wildlife.  Additional activities may include riding, hiking and surfing. Evenings feature plenty of time to lounge aboard our private yacht while savoring delightful regional cuisine prepared fresh daily by a talented chef.

What’s Included?

• Skilled professional guide service
• Fully crewed sail boat with naturalist
• 7 nights lodging on catamaran (based on double occupancy)
• All meals from breakfast Day 1 through breakfast Day 8
• All activities and equipment as outlined in the itinerary

What’s Not Included?

  • Transportation to/from Quito, Ecuador
  • Excess baggage charges
  • International airport departure tax
  • National Park entrance fee $100 US per person, $70 US per child under 12 (cash only)
  • Single supplement – by choice or circumstance ($2000)
  • Insurance of any kind, including travel and mandatory medical and evacuation insurance
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Items of personal nature (a complete packing list will be provided)
  • Gratuities

International and internal flights are not included – we will purchase your flights to Galapagos from Quito and add to your bill.

Itinerary Snapshot

Itinerary at a glance:
Although every boat and departure has a slightly different schedule, following is a sample of what your trip may be like:

Day 1 (Sunday) – Flight to Galapagos (Baltra Island) and hike/snorkel North Seymour

Day 2 – Hike to see giant tortoises, snorkel, explore Santa Cruz

Day 3 – Hike and snorkel on Isabela Island and Punta Moreno

Day 4 – Snorkeling at Tagus Cove and Fernandina Punta Espinoza

Day 5 – Hiking and snorkeling – Santiago Puerto Egas and Espumilla Beach

Day 6 – Rabida and Sullivan Bay

Day 7 – Hiking volcanoes – Genovesa – Barranco – Darwin Bay

Day 8 (Sunday) – Arrive Baltra and flight back to Quito

Please note: we arrive back in Quito at approx 3-4 pm

Because of the Galapagos’ famed natural history and remarkable creatures, these remote islands are revered the world over. In an effort to protect and preserve these “enchanted isles”, that literally changed the world, access is restricted and regulated. On these adventures, our special permits allow us to visit these protected sites.

Most flights arrive into Quito in the evenings so we highly recommend you arrive two nights before your flight to the islands. This allows you to decompress, affords time for flight delays or lost baggage. Here’s sample of what we recommend:

(Friday) – (suggested arrival into) Quito, Ecuador
Upon arrival in Quito, you will be met at the airport and whisked to your nearby hacienda.

(Saturday) (suggested) Optional activities
Today you can sleep in a little and enjoy the great breakfast at this family-owned and operated hacienda. Later in the morning, you can depart to Papallacta Hot Springs to soak and unwind after the flight to Ecuador. It’s about a one-hour scenic drive but a wonderful way to see the countryside. In addition to the private hot pools, we will have lunch and some may choose to do some hiking while others may opt to get a massage or other spa services. If hot springs are not your thing, we can organize a guided visit to Otavalao, Ecuador’s largest open air market. Dinner and overnight at the hacienda

Day 1 (Sunday) Early morning flight to Baltra and snorkel at North Seymour
Its an early day as we catch a flight from Quito to Baltra (which is adjacent to Santa Cruz). Once in Galapagos, your naturalist guide will meet you at the park entrance and take you to our yacht moored in the harbor. You’ll check in to your cabins and then regroup to enjoy a delicious lunch.

Soon after we navigate around Daphne Major and learn about Darwin’s Finches before landing at North Seymour for a guided walk. Immediately we will see sea lions, blue-footed boobies and nesting frigate birds. As we walk this beautiful trail we may see land iguanas and even marine iguanas. This island hosts great blue herons and small waders such as sanderlings and semi-palmated plovers. Pelicans, tropicbirds and herons may also be a part of the mix. Later in the day we’ll gather for the first in a series of congenial onboard dinners as we get to know our fellow travelers and navigate our way to Santa Cruz.

Day 2 (Monday) Hiking – Santa Cruz and Charles Darwin Station
After a glorious oceanside breakfast, we will explore the island of Santa Cruz. In the morning we will travel up into the highlands to see tortoises in the wilds. A stunning view and relaxed private reserve, we will be able to wlak around on your own and take picture sof these incredible beasts.

In the afternoon we will visit the world famous Charles Darwin Research Centre where most of the efforts to protect and preserve the native flora and fauna are developed. The center also has giant tortoise rearing programs and is home to Lonesome George, the last of his species. Tonight we will dine while we navigate to Isabela Island.

Day 3 (Tuesday) Hiking and snorkeling – Isabela Island and Punta Moreno
Located on the western shore of Isabela, Punta Moreno is a place where the forces of the Galapagos have joined to create a work of art. Our exploration starts with a panga ride along the beautiful rocky shores where Galapagos penguins and shore birds are frequently seen. After a dry landing, the path traverses through jagged black lava rock. As the swirling black lava flow gave way to form craters, crystal tide pools formed-some surrounded by mangroves. This is a magnet for small blue lagoons, pink flamingos, blue herons, and Bahama pintail ducks. Brown pelican can be seen nesting in the green leaves of the mangroves. You can walk to the edge of the lava to look straight down on these pools including the occasional green sea turtle, white-tipped shark and puffer fish. We will have time to snorkel before lunch and then navigate to Urbina Bay.

URBINA BAY

Lying at the foot of Alcedo Volcano, south of Tagus Cove, is Urvina Bay (Urbina Bay) one of the best and the most recent example of geological uplift in the Galapagos. Uplift occurs when the molten materials beneath the surface shift. In 1954 the shoreline was uplifted nearly 15 feet (4 meters). The coastline was driven 3/4 of a mile further out to sea, exposing giant coral heads and stranding marine organisms on what was now on shore. A Disney film crew visited the site shortly afterwards and discovered skeletons of sharks, sea turtles and lobsters unable to find the ocean from the rapidly rising land. Schools of fish were found stranded in newly formed tide pools. Boulder sized coral heads can be seen near the area that once was the beach. The uplifting of Urbina Bay was followed by an eruption of Alcedo a few weeks later.

Seasonally Urvina Bay provides a nesting area for many of the Galapagos creatures. Female tortoises journey down from Alcedo to lay their eggs in the sand. Galapagos penguins, flightless cormorants and brown pelicans nest in the area as well. The visit begins with a wet landing on the white sand beach. The difficulty of the route varies by season as the trail ranges from stark and easily passable during the dry season to mildly challenging requiring wading to pass during the rainy season. Visitors cross the uplifted region learning about this geological wonder. Then reach the sandy area that was once the beach. Shorter visits return to the landing point on the same path, while longer visits continue past the coral heads and new beach.

Other highlights of this site include marine iguanas and some of the largest land iguanas in the islands, and Galapagos Cotton an endemic plant, historians believe the Incas brought to the islands, while naturalist theorize it floated across from Peru. Tonight we will dine enroute to Tagus Cove

Day 4 (Wednesday) Snorkeling at Tagus Cove and Fernandina Punta Espinoza
Tagus Cove is situated directly east of Fernandina Island on the west coast of Isabela Island. It is a beautiful, well-protected cove sheltered by the shoulders of two volcanic craters and has been used as an anchorage for over 300 years. A nature trail here ascends through the typical dry vegetation zone and offers spectacular views of Darwin Lake, a saltwater crater lake and the long narrow inlet that appears to connect with it. At the top of the trail it is possible to observe the different vegetation zones, catch a glimpse of Darwin and Wolf volcanoes, and observe Galapagos penguins, flightless cormorants and pelicans. We will have an opportunity to snorkel before sailing to Fernandina.

Fernandina Island is the youngest and most active volcano in the Galapagos, with eruptions taking place every few years. The flat lava of Punta Espinosa offers a stark and barren landscape, but here flightless cormorants build their nests on the point, sea lions sprawl on the beach or play in the tide pools and large numbers of marine iguanas dot the sand. We also will have the opportunity to compare the aa and pahoehoe lava types here. Dinner at night and navigation to Santiago,

Day 5 (Thursday) Hiking and snorkeling – Santiago Puerto Egas and Espumilla Beach
A visit to Puerto Egas begins with a wet landing on the dark sand beaches of James Bay. Here we walk along the rocky coast giving visitors the opportunity to view some of the Galapagos Island’s best tide pools. Sponges, snails, hermit crabs, barnacles and fish including the endemic four-eyed blenny can be seen. The walk also presents a variety of shore birds, marine iguanas, sally light foot crabs and sea lions.

There are two interesting excursions at Puerto Egas. The first is a short walk from the landing site to the site of one of the Galapagos’ first entrepreneurial endeavours. For decades salt was extracted from a local salt crater. The industry was abandoned in the 1950’s leaving behind a variety of rusted old machines and parts of buildings. The trail follows the path once used by wagon trains to the crater cone. The steep trail is easy, but can often seem one of the hottest hikes in the islands. Feral goats prune the arid vegetation, which lines the trail. The goats feed on any leaves within reach leaving little left for the endemic island creatures. Bird lovers will be delighted with the opportunity to catch a glimpse of one of Darwins finch, the endemic Galapagos hawk, or the colorful vermillion flycatcher.

Reaching the crater rim presents an incredible vista as you are able to see this extinct volcano whose floor has sunken below sea level. Salt water seeps into the crater creating a small salt lake. The sun evaporates the water, leaving the salt that many have tried to mine without success. Looking away from the crater are the older orange lava fields supporting vegetation including the palo santo trees and the younger desolate black lava fields.

The second excursion is to a fur seal grotto. Fur seals and sea lions can be seen swimming in the rocky lava ringed pools. This is the best opportunity guests have to see and swim with fur seals. Fur seals were once hunted to near extinction for their coats. The Galapagos Fur Seal is the smallest of the fur seals found in the southern hemisphere, now compare in numbers with the sea lions. During the day they hide from the hot equatorial sun in shelves or caves of the rocky lava cliffs. At night they feed on squid and fish avoiding the sharks, which are their natural predator. The crystal clear water, volcanic bridges, fur seals and sea lions make this a magnificent place for swimming and snorkeling.

ESPUMILLA BEACH

Visitors who now come to Espumilla Beach come in search of birds rather than water. A short walk inland takes visitors through a mangrove forest normally inhabited by the common stilt. Sea turtles also visit these mangroves to nest. Beyond the mangroves is a brackish lagoon where flocks of pink flamingos and white cheeked pintails can be seen. The trail makes a loop heading over a knob into a sparely forested area then back to the beach. Along the way those with a watchful eye may spot a variety of Darwin finches or a vermilion fly catcher. Once back at the beach visitors may have the chance to swim or snorkel time permitting.

BUCCANEER’S COVE

Less than an hour north of Puerto Egas, Buccaneers Cove served as a safe haven for pirates, sailors and whalers during the 18th and 19th century. Anchoring in the protected bay they were able to make much needed repairs to their ships while other men went a shore to stock up on salt, tortoises, fresh water and firewood. Several years ago ceramic jars were found at the bottom of the bay, the disregarded cargo of some mariner from years gone by. Inside the jars were supplies of wine and marmalade. Few boats stop at Buccaneers Cove today. Though many cruise by at a slow speed giving visitors the opportunity to view the steep cliffs made of tuff formations and the dark reddish-purple sand beach. This dramatic landscape is made all the more impressive by the hundreds of seabirds perched atop the cliffs. Two of the more recognizable rock formations are known as the “monk” and “elephant rock”. A large population of feral goats now frequents Buccaneers Cove and this portion of Santiago. The National Park Service has fenced off part of the area to protect the native vegetation from the destructive eating habits of this introduced species. A wet landing on the large coffee-colored sand beach is just north of the prized fresh water supply that once attracted pirates and whalers. Dinner at night and navigation to Rabida.

Day 6 (Friday) Rabida and Sullivan Bay
One of the special features of Rabida Island is its remarkable red color, which is a result of the high percentage of oxidized iron in the composition of lava. Here we will witness the nine varieties of finches also the large-billed flycatchers and brown pelicans. Here a small salt-water lagoon where greater Flamingos can be seen and a beautiful colony of sea lions. The main attraction of Sullivan Bay is the broad, pahoehoe or rope lava flow. It is one of the most incredible places to compare the lava flows and their characteristics. Dinner at night and navigation to Genovesa.

Day 7 (Saturday) Hiking volcanoes – Genovesa – Barranco – Darwin Bay
Also known as bird Island, El Barranco, is a place where tropicbirds, red-footed boobies and other nesting seabirds can be found. We follow the trail through a palo santo forest to a storm petrel colony passing boobies and great frigate birds along the way. Darwin Bay is the caldera of a collapsed volcano and has a small coral beach where we can land for an easier walk, snorkel and kayaking. This will allow for stunning views from the cliffs and an opportunity to photograph the amazing bird life such as swallow-tailed gulls, red-footed booby, nazca booby, large ground finch, large cactus finch, sharp-billed ground finch, small marine iguanas, and great frigate bird. Dinner at night and navigation to Baltra.

Day 8 (Sunday) Baltra
Birdlife abounds as the morning sunrise lights up the pink skies. Soon after, reality sinks in that it is time to leave this island paradise and make our way to the airport at Baltra. Tonight you may decide to re-group in Quito for a farewell dinner to share memories and laughs before retiring to your overnight accommodations. Please note: guests flying home on Delta may depart this evening from Quito

(Monday)
After an early breakfast at the hotel, take a taxi to the airport to catch flights home or get ready for your next adventure in Ecuador

On the Water

We utilize an 80-foot sailing fully air conditioned catamaran with 6 cabins for 12 guests.  Each cabin has private shower/bathroom.  The boat has a comfortable and spacious salon area and indoor/outdoor dining areas.  The width of the cat makes it incredibly stable and also serves as a fantastic snorkeling platform.

Departure Dates:

December 24-31, 2017
December 31, 2017 – January 7, 2018
February 4-11, 2018

Other dates may be available on request.

Trip Length: 8 Days
Trip Price:

$4,500 per person, based on double occupancy

Deposit: $1000

Planning Your Trip

This trip planner has been created to help prepare you for your upcoming adventure. We have tried to anticipate questions you might have concerning travel arrangements, what to bring, and getting in shape. If any of your questions remain unanswered, please don’t hesitate to call.

Getting There

Your trip begins and ends in Quito, Ecuador. You will need to arrange for your international flights. American, Delta, United and Continental airlines offer direct service into Quito from Miami, Atlanta and Houston respectively. We will make the arrangements for your Quito-Galapagos flights.

Rendezvous

We will fly to Galapagos on Sunday morning. Make sure you have cash for your park entry fee.

When you arrive at the domestic terminal, take your bags through the screening system on the right hand side before you check in at the airline desk. You will need to present passports in order to get your boarding pass.

Money Matters

Ecuador uses US dollars as their currency. Each participant will be required to pay a park entrance fee for the Galapagos Islands ($100 per adult, $70 per child, 12 years and under). Having between $300 and $600 for souvenirs and meals in Quito should be more than adequate depending on how much you like to shop! In the Galapagos Islands, you will most likely need cash as ATM machines are limited and credit cards are not widely accepted. In hotels and shops in Quito you can use credit cards to charge purchases such as food, accommodations, and clothing. American Express, Visa, and MasterCard are widely accepted.

Medical Matters

The trip leader is responsible for the safety of all trip members and he or she may evacuate or disqualify a trip member in the field if anyone’s safety is jeopardized. Please be aware that hospital facilities for serious medical problems may be far away, doctors are not always available and that evacuations can be prolonged, difficult and expensive.

Medications

If you are taking any prescription drugs, be certain that you bring a sufficient supply to last through the trip. Do not pack these medications in your checked luggage. You will not find common American drugs in Ecuador. If you have concerns about seasickness, we suggest that you speak with your doctor about available treatments. Scopolamine patches (prescription) or Bonine (over the counter) are common medications for preventing seasickness, while an electro-stimulator worn on the wrist can also be an effective prevention.

Immunizations

Currently, if you fly direct between the USA and Ecuador, no vaccinations are required. However, regulations and recommendations change frequently, so please check with the Center for Disease Control (www.cdc.gov/travel/tropsam.htm) for up-to-date information.

Essential Travel Documents

Your Passport – If you don’t have a passport, apply for one immediately because the process can be lengthy. If you do have a passport, find it and check the expiration date. Make a photocopy of the photo page of your passport and carry it separately from your passport. If your passport is lost or stolen, a photocopy will help the local consulate speed up authorization for replacement.

Check your passport for blank pages. If you do not have a least two blank pages in your passport, we recommend that you apply to have additional pages added. You also need to make sure your passport expiry has more than 6 months remaining or they may not allow you entry.

Please do not pack your passport in your check-in luggage. You may be asked for your papers not only upon departure but a various times during your trip, even while checking into the hotel in Quito. If you are carrying a customs form, please keep it in a safe place at all times, perhaps in your pouch along with your other valuables. We do not recommend carrying it in the passport because you must often submit the passport at hotels, where the form can easily be lost.

Visas – Visas are not required for US or Canadian citizens to enter Ecuador. For others, please check with the Ecuadorian Consulate.

Travel and Evacuation Insurance

Travel insurance that includes medical emergency evacuation is advised. You may call Travelex at 800-228-9792 and mention location #05-8655 or visit their website at https://www.travelexinsurance.com/quote/?nc=1. Coverage for baggage loss, medical protection, trip cancellation, trip interruption is highly recommended. When selecting a policy please make sure you are very clear about what it will and will not cover. No travel insurance covers all scenarios. Proof of insurance will be required prior to your trip.

Special Considerations

Please let us know if you’re having a birthday or anniversary on the trip. We’ll also need to know of any medical or dietary requirements that you’d like us to consider in planning your trip (i.e. if you’re a vegetarian or vegan, or if you have any food allergies.). Please note this on the Guest Registration Form (be specific as to what your needs are) and return it to our office at least 60 days before your trip. If you’re booking your trip less than 60 days before departure, please make sure you’ve discussed any special requests with our office.

Weather

You may want to check one week prior to your trip for an up-to-date weather forecast. We recommend you check the following web sites: www.weather.com or www.wunderground.com

There are two primary seasons during the year in the Galapagos. Each offers a good time for visiting, but the character of each season is somewhat different.

November through May is the warmer time of year, with the highs in the upper 80s to mid-90s. Although the islands receive relatively more rainfall during this time most of the lower elevations of the islands are quite arid and there is plenty of sunshine and blue skies. The sea is at its warmest, and it is usually calmer at this time of year.

The drier “garua season” lasts from June through October. The garua is mist that forms in the highlands of the islands. Ironically, the garua season provides more moisture at the upper levels of the islands than the so-called wet season. Air temperatures are lower, with highs in the upper 70s. The climate at this time is affected by the strong Humboldt Current, which comes from the south. The water temperature, therefore, is at its coolest during this time, about 68 degrees Fahrenheit.

In Quito, which is about 9300 feet above sea level, the elevation greatly moderates the climate. The temperature ranges from 45 to 70 degrees, with lower temperatures from April to October. Daytime temperatures are warm and pleasant, while evenings are cool and comfortable.

Physical Preparation

This trip is relatively moderate but hiking, snorkeling and kayaking require a combination of cardiac and strength training. Jogging, swimming, and aerobic exercises will help increase endurance for the activities. Push-ups, sit-ups and other weight training exercises that increase upper and lower body strength will ensure preparedness for getting the most out of your experience. Regular exercise prior to your trip will certainly add to your enjoyment.

Hiking

The hikes are moderate and allow you to get up close and personal with the magnificent wildlife in the islands. We recommend that your hiking shoes be lightweight, with sturdy soles, and that they are well worn in. If you are buying new hiking shoes for this trip, be sure to walk them in well in advance to avoid blisters during the trip.

Snorkeling

Snorkeling will expose you to a new world. You may come face-to-face with baby sea lions as they dart playfully past your mask. Penguins flit by in a trail of bubbles and sea turtles glide beneath you. The ecological diversity characteristic of the Galapagos is on grand display beneath the surface of the ocean as much as it is on land. If you’ve never snorkeled before, you’ll want to try it out here as the experience is not to be missed.

Sea Kayaking

The Galapagos is a wonderful place to sea kayak as you glide over a plethora of marine life. The yacht is equipped with two kayaks for exploring the seashore. In the last few years, they have begun to strictly regulate the areas in which we can sea kayak so it tends to vary by the trip and park regulations. In any case, the paddling is always exceptional!

Suggested Packing List

If you do not already own any of the items on the suggested packing list feel free to call our office for suggestions.

Equipment:

Duffel Bag: Bring your gear packed in a soft duffel bag rather than suitcase
Daypack: For day hikes it should be large enough to carry water bottles, camera and rain jacket and can double as your flight carry-on bag
Spare soft duffel for purchases while in Ecuador (or purchase in Ecuador)
Plastic Bags: Large trash bag and ziploc bags to separate clean and dry clothes from wet and dirty.

Personal Items:
Sunglasses with securing strap
Toiletries
Earplugs: It will sometimes be necessary to motor through the night to make it to the next day’s destination
Sunscreen (Waterproof & SPF 15 or higher)
Lip Protection (SPF 15 or higher)
Moisturizing Lotion
Insect repellent
Personal First Aid Kit (Band-Aids, antibiotic ointment, ibuprofen, moleskin)
Spare pair of glasses and/or contacts
Water Bottles: Heavy duty and minimum 2 quart capacity. For day hikes, hydration systems like a “Camelbak” are great too
Headlamp or Flashlight, extra batteries and bulb
Camera, batteries, film or memory cards
Notebook and Pen
Cash for National Park entrance fee, gratuities and souvenirs

Clothing:
Any clothing you bring should be synthetic, quick drying, and breathable. This is a sub-tropical adventure and you will be exposed to sun, wind, and water. Long sleeves, long pants, and wide brimmed hats are recommended for sun protection. In general, you will need loose fitting clothes for the hotter parts of the trip and some extra layering for evenings. Keep in mind that some of what you bring may get sweaty and wet due to the humid climate. You will also encounter dust, sand, and salt, and may feel a little grubby from time to time. No fancy dress clothing is required.

Long Sleeved Shirt: Lightweight and light color for sun protection.
Long Pants: Lightweight and light color for sun protection (jeans not recommended)
Shade Hat or Visor with tie and a spare
Bandanna
Rain Jacket & Pants: A hooded jacket is recommended as well as good secure closures around your head, neck and wrists. Rain pants are optional
Swimsuits: 2
1 -2 rash guard tops for snorkeling
Underwear: Quick-drying
Shorts: 2-3 pair lightweight, and fast drying
T-shirts or lightweight fast drying tops
Sport Sandals: Teva, Chacos or Keen brand
Athletic Shoes or Lightweight Hiking Boots: 1 pair, comfortable and with good tread
Hiking Socks: 3 or 4 pair mid-weight
Casual clothes for evenings and in Quito (Note: evenings are cool)

Optional Items:
Walking Stick: collapsible
Binoculars: compact
Shortie wetsuit
Electrolyte mix for flavoring water
Personal snorkel gear (we provide gear but many prefer their own)
Cameras

Bringing the right camera equipment will go a long toward determining the quality of your photographs. If you’re an avid photographer, we recommend bringing a good digital SLR camera that can be used on land and when aboard the catamaran. There are many great underwater digital cameras that are salt-water resistant and protected against sand.

Bring more memory card space than you think you’ll need. And don’t forget to pack spare camera batteries or a charger. You should be ready for bright sunlight, so you may want to bring a polarizing filter. Zip-Lock plastic bags help protect you camera against sand and salt. We strongly recommend you take out a rider on you homeowner’s policy to cover your camera -especially if it’s fine equipment.

For Women Only

Even if you aren’t anticipating your menstrual period, come prepared for it. We recommend you bring some sandwich size zip-lock bags. They can be used during the day while you are on the water or hiking and can be disposed of when you reach your overnight lodging. (Hint for tampon users: o.b. tampons are 1/3 the size of regular tampons, tuck discreetly into pockets and have less paper wrapping). Many women suggest bringing a small supply of baby wipes.

Packing Your Gear

We recommend traveling as light as possible! Excess baggage can be a burden to you and to support personnel. On an international flight, you are typically allowed 1-2 pieces of checked luggage at no additional fee but luggage restrictions are changing regularly and vary according to airline – please check with your specific airline to determine luggage allowance. On the flight from Quito to the Galapagos, you will only be allowed 44 lbs. Excess luggage may be kept at the hotel in Quito.

Water

We will provide purified water while in the Galapagos. It is best to bring your own reusable water bottle or hydration pack, in order to limit waste. Do not drink water from the tap as it frequently contains bacteria that can cause stomach problems.

The boats are equipped with a water desalinization machine to provide us with freshwater for daily use. Please limit the number and time of your daily showers, as the machine provides 200 litres of freshwater per hour, and an average shower requires 40 litres. For the same reason, we ask that you do not wash your clothes on the boat.

It is crucial that you stay hydrated while in the tropics, especially when we are hiking, biking and kayaking. Electrolyte powders make water taste better, while replacing salts and minerals lost to sweating.

Electricity

Ecuador is on the 110V AC system. Sockets are the standard US style, either 2 flat prongs or 2 flat prongs and a round ground. There are sockets on the catamaran for recharging batteries. In order to save power, please remember to switch off the light and A/C when not in your cabin.

Avoiding Sunburn

The sun is very strong in the Galapagos. Reapply sunscreen often, and wear your hat and sunglasses.

Staying Healthy

In hot climates, cuts and scratches can easily become infected and take a long time to heal. Prevent infection from coral cuts by immediately washing wounds with fresh water. Use an antiseptic like hydrogen peroxide and an antibacterial like Neosporin. Prickly heat, or salt/heat rash is a common ailment for tropical adventurers. It is caused by salt buildup in the sweat glands. The skin becomes soggy and small red blisters appear. At first sight of the rash, wash with fresh water and apply calamine lotion, dust with talcum powder and change clothes. Until the rash improves, avoid alcohol and caffeine.

Island Excursions

Passengers will be transferred from the catamaran to the islands in a panga (dinghy). The landings may be wet or dry. Dry landings mean you step directly onto rock, while wet landings mean you step into the water and wade to shore. Your guide will tell you ahead of time what type of landing to expect. Either way, crew members will be there to assist you.

Briefings

Your guide will conduct a briefing every evening after dinner. He or she will explain the following day’s activities and talk about what animals and plants might be seen.

Park Guidelines

Please remember you are visiting a national park, and will be expected to follow park regulations. The instructions you receive from your guide are intended for the preservation and conservation of the Galapagos.

Basic Rules:
Stay on marked trails
Do not touch or feed the animals
Do not smoke on the Islands
Clean the soles of your shoes to avoid carrying endemic seeds from one island to another
Take only pictures, leave only footprints

Snorkeling

Each guest will be given a mask, a snorkel and a pair of fins, in an individually numbered bag, to use for the duration of the trip. Please rinse your gear in freshwater after each use. Snorkelers are asked to follow these simple instructions:

Stay with the group; look up every few minutes to check that you are still close
Be aware of the location of the panga
When getting on and off the panga, stay clear of the outboard motor
Have all your gear on before getting off the panga
Take off only your fins before re-boarding the panga
When diving under be sure to look up before resurfacing
If you feel more comfortable in a life vest, you are welcome to wear one
Scuba Diving

For those interested, scuba diving will be an option for an extra fee. The dives are offered at times that will not interfere with the land-based activities. Please bring your diving license if you’d like to participate but advance notice is required.

Meal Service

Please inform us of any dietary restrictions when booking the trip. Meals are generally served at these times (subject to change to suit the itinerary):
-Breakfast 7:00 – 7:30
-Lunch 12:00 – 12:30
-Dinner 19:00 – 19:30
Snacks will be offered between meals.

Bar Service

There are a variety of soft drinks, beer and liquor available. The bartender will open a tab for you and settle up at the end of the cruise.

Cabin Service

The cabins are cleaned every morning. Towels and sheets are changed 3 times a week. Please do not bring any food or drinks into the cabins.

Boat Safety

Your guide will thoroughly explain safety procedures once you are on-board. Please be sure to check exactly where the life vests are located in your cabin. In the unlikely event that the alarm sounds, you will be expected to gather your personal documents, put on warm clothes, and bring your life vest to the lounge where the crew members will be waiting with further instructions.

Smoking On Board

There are designated smoking areas on deck. Please ask one of the crew members for an ashtray and do not throw butts into the water. Smoking on the islands is not allowed.

Toilets

Everywhere in Ecuador, including Quito, the Galapagos Islands and our catamaran, people are asked not to throw anything into the toilets, including toilet paper. A wastebasket is provided for toilet paper and it is emptied often. This may seem strange to North Americans, but please obey this rule and avoid being the cause of a backed up septic system. Thanks!

Laundry

Laundry service is available at the hotel and the occasional location in the islands. Before dropping any laundry check for turn-around times. We recommend lightweight, quick drying articles of clothing that can air dry on the boat.

Time Zones

The Galapagos Islands are in the same time zone as Central Standard in the USA (CST). Quito time is the same as Eastern Standard Time.

Gratuities

The tipping of guides is entirely discretionary, and we feel strongly that gratuities should not be offered to them if they lead anything less than a great trip. However, we expect that our crew will do a great job in making your trip memorable and, when they do, it is not uncommon for our travelers to offer a gratuity. The guides very much appreciate it.

In this regard, we are often asked what is appropriate. As a general tipping guideline, we have found that our travelers will each leave $150 (for the crew to split) and another $100 to the naturalist and tour leader. Once again, tipping is entirely at your discretion and varies by culture and situation.

1 review for Galapagos Multi Sport

  1. The Galapagos was incredible. The boat was perfect. Upscale but perfect. Space wise, everything. The other guests were fun and we have met some really interesting people we will keep in touch with from the UK.

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Extensions available:

  • Galapagos Safari Camp

    Galapagos Safari Camp is a new way to experience the Galapagos, either in addition to a cruise or as a unique destination in itself. Our eco-luxury tented camp – one of the first in Latin America – follows the African safari tradition in which guests enjoy total comfort under canvas while experiencing nature in its purest form.

     

    5 to 7 Days from $3600.00 per person, based on double occupancy
  • Hacienda Zuleta in the Andes

    Built in 1691, Hacienda Zuleta lies in the spectacular Andean mountain range of Ecuador at 9,600 feet. Explore the mountains by horseback, mountain bike or foot. Learn about the rich culture of this community that still operates as they did hundreds of years ago. Dine on food that is locally sourced and fall asleep to the crackling fire in your room’s fireplace.

    Customizable from $280 per person, based on double occupancy
  • Ecuador Amazon Extension

    In only 4 or 5 days, it is not uncommon for even the most casual birder to see over 250 species here. With only minimal effort you can expect to see dozens of colorful parrots, toucans, hummingbirds, tanagers, hawks, and oropendolas, as well as many monkey, frog and snake species, to name a few.

    4 Days/3 Nights or
    5 Days/4 Nights from $1,050 Per person, based on double occupancy