Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel and Machu Picchu

13 Days/12 Nights

From $4,379 per person

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Overview

Experience the unique wildlife of the Galapagos Islands and the ancient citadel of Machu Picchu on this wondrous tour.  The tour begins in Quito with a city tour and a visit to the Equatorial Monument and continues on to the Galapagos with four nights at the Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel on Santa Cruz Island.  You will have land-based and yacht excursions to visit other nearby islands.  The last part of the trip takes you to Peru, where you will visit Lima, Cusco, the Sacred Valley of the Incas, and then Machu Picchu.

Lodging and Meals: This tour includes accommodations for 12 nights (2 nights in Quito, 4 nights at Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel, 2 nights in Lima, 3 nights in Cusco, and 1 night in Machu Picchu), and 22 meals (12 breakfasts, 6 lunches, and 4 dinners).

Best Time to Go: April-October.

Destinations: South America, Ecuador, Galapagos, and Peru.

Interests: Adventure, All-Inclusive Properties, Culture & History, Expedition Cruising, Sea Kayaking, Snorkeling, Sun & Beach, and Wildlife Viewing.

Places Visited: Quito, the Galapagos Islands, Lima, Cusco, the Sacred Valley, and Machu Picchu.

Day-by-Day Itinerary

Note: The order of yacht excursions and land activities, and the order of land activities themselves, can change according to various factors, including weather, tides, group sizes and physical abilities, languages, etc. The hotel expedition staff will confirm the order of the land activity schedules.

Depart to Quito. After passing through immigration and customs, proceed to the reception area, where our representative will be holding a sign with your name on it. You will be greeted and then transferred to your hotel.

This morning, you will visit to downtown Quito to relish in this urban jewel and its treasures of art and architecture. Quito’s colonial quarter, the largest and best preserved of South America, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The stroll starts at the Independence Plaza, flanked by the Cathedral, the Presidential Palace, the Municipal Building and the Archbishop’s Palace. Visit the temple of La Compañía de Jesús and its awesome gilded interior. Continue on to the Monastery of San Francisco, one the of great religious buildings of the New World; its impressive façade and atrium that lead to its Baroque interior influenced by Moorish style, with the winged Virgin of Quito at its main altar. Then continue to the Equatorial Monument, 16 miles north of Quito, which marks the exact Middle of the World, latitude 0º, where you can stand with a foot on each hemisphere. Visit the Ethnographic Museum inside the monument, which shows the different Native American groups living in Ecuador. Beside the monument there is a colonial-style town, complete with main square, church, post office, bullring, cafeterias, restaurants and many gift shops with postcards and souvenirs. You will get a certificate for having crossed the Equator. (B)

Transfer to the airport for the flight to Galapagos.  Upon arrival in Baltra, you will be transferred to the hotel.  Enroute, you will stop at El Manzanillo at the northern edge of the Giant Tortoise Reserve in the Highlands of Santa Cruz.  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 morning visit.  On the return to Puerto Ayora, visit one of the island’s lava tunnels, significant geological formations that take us back in time and allow us to remember how lava flows formed the islands.  Lunch at El Manzanillo.  Overnight at Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel.  (B,L,D)

Choice of full day land-based or yacht exploration.  Overnight at Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel.  (B,L,D)

Choice of full day land-based or yacht exploration.  Overnight at Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel.  (B,L,D)

Choice of full day land-based or yacht exploration.  Overnight at Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel.  (B,L,D)

Transfer to Baltra Airport for the flight to Guayaquil and then Lima, Peru.  After passing through immigration and customs, proceed to the reception area, where our inbound services representative will be holding a sign with your name on it.  You will be greeted and then transferred to your hotel.  Overnight in Lima.  (B)

In the afternoon, you will have a city tour of Lima. You will visit downtown Lima and see several examples of the Spanish architecture of the colonial period including the Plaza de Armas, the Presidential Palace, the Cathedral, and the Church of San Francisco and Catacombs. After that, you will see Huaca Huallamarca, a restored adobe pyramid dating from the pre-Inca period located in San Isidro. You will tour the upscale residential and commercial district of Miraflores and see the Parque del Amor, a seaside park with a huge statue of a kissing couple, before returning to your hotel. Overnight in Lima. (B)

Early morning transfer to the airport for the flight to Cusco. Upon arrival, you will be transferred to your hotel. Because of the high altitude (10,912 feet above sea level), we recommend that you rest for a short period. In the afternoon, you will have a city tour that includes a walk-through of the Cathedral, the Koricancha (‘site of gold’), typical streets, and the four ruins that surround the city: the Sacsayhuaman Fortress, Kenko, Puca Pucara, and Tampumachay. Overnight in Cusco. (B)

Today you will have a full-day excursion to the Sacred Valley of the Incas. The tour begins at Awanakancha, a living museum of the Peruvian Andes, where you can observe traditional textile dyeing and weaving techniques and the four types of camelids that are native to the region. You will also visit the Indian artisan market in Pisac and have lunch at a local restaurant (included). The last stop is the impressive Inca ruins of Ollantaytambo that served as both a fortress and ceremonial center, and is the site of a short-lived victory by the Incas over the Spanish. Overnight in Cusco. (B,L)

Note: The Indian market is open on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays from October to March, and daily from April to September. On the days of the week that the market is not open, you will be taken to the Inca ruins above the village.

Early morning transfer to the train station for the ride to Machu Picchu, ‘the Lost City of the Incas’ (7,900 feet). This mountaintop citadel, which served as both a center of worship and an astronomic observatory, is located in the middle of the cloud forest overlooking the Urubamba River. There are both agricultural and urban areas constructed with the precision stonework that the Incas are known for. The agricultural area consists of terraces and food storehouses, and the urban area contains temples, squares, and royal tombs. Guided tour followed by lunch at the Sanctuary Lodge. In the afternoon, you will be transferred to your hotel. Overnight in Aguas Calientes. (B,L)

This is a free day to explore Machu Picchu on your own. You may want to hike Huayna Picchu or enjoy another activity. Mid-afternoon, you will depart from Machu Picchu by train to Poroy Station in the Sacred Valley, and then be taken to your hotel in Cusco. Overnight in Cusco. (B)

Transfer to the airport for your flight back to Lima and your final destination. Depending upon the time of your departure flight from Lima, you can choose to leave Cusco on a mid-afternoon flight to Lima and stay at the airport until your flight departs, or leave Cusco on a morning flight to Lima, pay for a day use hotel and transfers to and from the airport to rest before your flight and enjoy your last day in Lima. (B)

B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner

Full Day Land-Based Exploration Option

Tortuga Bay and 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 center open to the public and also a 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 Center will expand their knowledge of this unique, iconic Galapagos animal.  Lunch included.

Full Day Yacht Exploration Options (Choice of Two)

North Seymour Island

North Seymour was lifted from the ocean floor by a seismic event, and its origins as a seabed give the island its low, flat profile.  Cliffs only a few meters high form the shoreline, where swallow-tailed gulls sit among the ledges and rocks.  A tiny forest of silver-grey Palo Santo trees stands just above the landing, usually without leaves, waiting for the rains to burst into bloom.  This island is teaming with life!  Lunch included.  (Monday and Sunday)

Bartolome Island

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.  Lunch included.  (Saturday)

South Plaza Island

South Plaza is a small island full of fascinating wildlife, both along its shore and along its dramatic, wind-swept cliffs: sea lions, land iguanas, swallow-tailed gulls, Opuntia cacti and vegetation that changes colors according to the season.  South Plaza is one of Galapagos’ most impressive visitor sites.  Lunch included.  (Tuesday and Friday)

Santa Fe Island

Santa Fe offers one of the more beautiful and sheltered coves in the islands.  Its turquoise lagoon is protected by a peninsula of tiny islets forming an ideal anchorage.  The island lies to the southeast of Santa Cruz within sight of Puerto Ayora.  Like North Seymour, Santa Fe has been uplifted seismically, and you can see underwater lava formations.  Lunch included.  (Wednesday and Thursday)

A Note About Your Free Day in Machu Picchu

On your free day, you will be on your own. If you choose to revisit Machu Picchu, you will need to purchase a second entrance ticket, which currently costs $74 per person. If you are staying in Aguas Calientes, you will also need to purchase a round-trip bus ticket ($28 per person) for transportation to the site. The first bus departs at 5:30 AM. As an alternative to visiting Machu Picchu again, you can hike Huayna Picchu (a +/- 60 minute hike), or partake in another activity. The cost for hiking Huayna Picchu is $13 (in addition to the second entrance ticket). At the end of the day (mid-late afternoon), you will walk to the train station for the return ride to Poroy train station, where our local representative will be waiting for you to take you to your hotel in Cusco.

Prices & Dates

Price per Person

Category Single Double Triple
3 Star $6,229 $4,379 $4,069
4 Star $6,589 $4,929 $4,349
5 Star $8,109 $5,719 $5,129
Deluxe $9,289 $6,339 $6,139
** The prices shown above are in U.S. Dollars. See the cost of this tour in your currency here.

Notes:

  1. The above prices are valid until December 15, 2018.
  2. Room upgrades and additional nights in each destination are available upon request.
  3. Machu Picchu Pueblo, Casa del Sol Machu Picchu, and Sanctuary Lodge accommodations include breakfast and dinner.
  4. Upgrade to the Hiram Bingham train, which operates every day except Sunday, is available for $700 per person.
  5. Oxygenated rooms are available at the Monasterio for an additional $50 per room per day.
  6. Holy Week, Inti Raymi Festival, and Christmas week surcharges may apply.

Departure Dates

Daily departures throughout the year.

What's Included

Price Includes

  • South American Vacations’ expert pre-departure planning services and documentation.
  • Airport/hotel transfers including baggage handling.
  • Hotel accommodations including service fees and taxes.
  • Meals as indicated on the itinerary.
  • Choice of one full day land-based and two full day yacht explorations in the Galapagos.
  • Excursion to Machu Picchu via Vistadome train and other excursions as indicated on the itinerary including all applicable entrance fees.
  • Use of snorkeling equipment.
  • Local, English-speaking tour guides.

Price Does Not Include

  • International airfare.
  • Domestic airfares.
  • Galapagos National Park Entrance Fee ($100).
  • Transit control card ($20).
  • Meals not indicated on the itinerary.
  • Alcoholic beverages.
  • Optional activities with extra cost: kayaking, mountain biking, diving, and surfing.
  • Gratuities, gifts, and personal items.
  • Travel insurance.

We will be happy to quote the cost of airfare and travel insurance, and to make these arrangements for you.

Additional Details

Group Private: All transfers in Quito are private, and all other services in Quito and the Galapagos are operated on a group basis. In Peru, all transfers are private, and the city tours of Lima and Cusco, the Sacred Valley of the Incas excursion, and Machu Picchu guided tour are group tours for single passengers and 3 Star accommodations, and private for 4 Star, 5 Star, and Deluxe accommodations.

Elevations: Quito is 9,350 feet above sea level, Cusco is 10,912 feet, the Sacred Valley of the Incas is 8,944 feet, and Machu Picchu is 7,900 feet.

IGTOA’S Galapagos Traveler Conservation Fund: South American Vacations is an active member of IGTOA (International Galapagos Tour Operators Association).  In support of IGTOA’s Galapagos Traveler Conservation Fund, we contribute $20 for each passenger that we send to the Galapagos Islands.  You’ll travel knowing that you support the lasting protection of Galapagos Islands.

Sixty percent of the funding of this program goes directly to the Charles Darwin Foundation for science, conservation, and education.  Their work, carried out through the Charles Darwin Research Station and Galapagos National Park, is vital to the preservation of the islands.  You can visit their web site to learn more www.darwinfoundation.org.  The remainder goes toward IGTOA’s mission of creating a model of responsible and sustainable tourism.

Passport/Visa: For Ecuador, U.S., Australian, Canadian, and EU citizens require a passport valid for at least six months from date of entry and return ticket for stays of up to 90 days. Citizens of other countries are advised to contact the Ecuadorian embassy in their country before traveling. For Peru, U.S., Australian, Canadian, and EU citizens require a passport valid for at least six months from date of entry and return ticket for stays of up to 90 days. Citizens of other countries are advised to contact the Peruvian embassy in their country before traveling.

Travel Insurance: In order to protect your travel investment from unforeseen circumstances that may arise before or during your trip, we strongly recommend that you purchase travel insurance. We offer Allianz Global Assistance’s Classic Comprehensive and other plans. The Benefits and Coverage Limits are summarized on our Travel Insurance page. Call your travel counselor if you have any questions or to purchase a plan.

To Book This Trip: We require a non-refundable deposit of $700 per person plus the cost of the airfare (if we make the arrangements for you). The balance of the trip cost is due 60 days prior to departure.