Galapagos, Machu Picchu, and the Amazon
16 Days/15 Nights
From $4,999 per person
(Dbl. Occupancy, Not Incl. Airfare)
Galapagos, Machu Picchu, and the Peruvian Amazon are three of the most popular destinations in South America. Your tour will begin in Quito, which has a well-preserved colonial center and spectacular views of the Andes and nearby volcanoes. You will then travel to the Galapagos Islands for a four day cruise aboard the Galapagos Legend, where you will enjoy plant and animal species that are found nowhere else on Earth. In Peru, you will visit Machu Picchu, the spectacular mountain top citadel known as the ‘Lost city of the Incas’ and Posada Amazonas in the Peruvian Amazon, which features an amazing parrot clay lick.
Lodging and Meals: This tour includes accommodations for 15 nights (2 nights in Quito, 3 nights on the Galapagos Legend, 3 nights in Lima, 2 nights in the Sacred Valley, 1 night in Machu Picchu, 2 nights in Cusco, and 2 nights at Posada Amazonas) and 28 meals (15 breakfasts, 8 lunches, and 5 dinners).
Best Time to Go: April-October.
Places Visited: Quito, the Galapagos Islands, Baltra Island, Genovesa Island, Mosquera Islet, Santa Cruz Island, Santa Fe Island, Lima, Cusco, the Sacred Valley, Machu Picchu, and Puerto Maldonado & the Southern Amazon.
Note: The route and program may vary according to National Park policies and regulations, weather conditions, seasonal changes, safety reasons and wildlife encounters.
Dry Landing: Guests step from the dinghy directly onto rocks or a dock.
Wet Landing: As the dinghy edges onto a sandy beach, guests step into knee-deep water and wade ashore.
Day 1 (Sat): Quito.
Day 2 (Sun): City Tour of Quito-Middle of the World.
Day 3 (Mon): Quito-Baltra Airport-Highlands Tortoise Reserve (Santa Cruz).
Highlands Tortoise Reserve (dry landing). In the mountains of Galapagos you can observe different kinds of birds, including tree and ground finches, vermillion flycatchers, paint-billed crakes, yellow warblers, and cattle egrets (usually standing on the tortoises’ shell). The journey to the reserve also offers a great opportunity to see contrasting ecosystems. The road goes from the coast through the agricultural zone and straight up to the dense humid forests. Often, Galapagos Giant Tortoises are seen on the way, wandering through pastures in the paddocks. This spot is a bird watchers’ haven since almost every land bird present on the island lives or migrates here. (Duration: 45 minute drive/1.5 hour walk). Overnight aboard the ship. (B,L,D)
Day 4 (Tue): El Barranco (Prince Philip’s Steps)-Darwin Bay (Genovesa).
Darwin Bay. Disembark onto a small sand and coral beach. A short trail heads west along a tidal lagoon and then up a rocky hill that leads to a point overlooking the cliffs and Darwin Bay. Along the trail near the tidal lagoon, visitors will see pairs of Swallow-tailed Gulls, Lava Gulls, Yellow-crowned and Lava Herons. The trail continues through Palo Santo trees, Opuntia cacti, and Saltbushes inhabited by Great Frigate birds and Red-footed Boobies. This is one of the few places in the islands where visitors are guaranteed to see Red-footed Boobies. It is estimated that more than 200,000 live in the trees and bushes of Genovesa. (Duration: 2.5 hour walk). Overnight aboard the ship. (B,L,D)
Day 5 (Wed): Dragon Hill (Santa Cruz)-Santa Fe.
Santa Fe (wet landing). Santa Fe shows white sand beaches surrounded by sea lion colonies; through the island path, an endemic cactus forest is passed, home of the Santa Fe land iguanas (the largest in the islands). This island is also the habitat for a number of species, including the Galapagos hawk, Galapagos snakes, rice rats (one of the few endemic Galapagos rodents), a variety of finches and one of the four mockingbird species of the archipelago. (Duration: 1.5 hour walk/one hour deep water snorkeling). Overnight aboard the ship. (B,L,D).
Day 6 (Thu): Mosquera Islet-Baltra Airport-Guayaquil-Lima.
After the visit, passengers will be transferred to Baltra Airport for their 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)
Day 7 (Fri): Lima-City Tour.
Day 8 (Sat): Lima-Cusco-Sacred Valley-Awanakancha-Pisac Market.
Day 9 (Sun): Sacred Valley-Chinchero-Moray-Maras-Ollantaytambo.
Day 10 (Mon): Sacred Valley-Machu Picchu.
Day 11 (Tue): Machu Picchu-Cusco.
Day 12 (Wed): Cusco-City Tour.
Day 13 (Thu): Cusco-Puerto Maldonado-Posada Amazonas-Canopy Tower.
Day 14 (Fri): Posada Amazonas-Tres Chimbadas Oxbow Lake-Parrot Clay Lick-Ethnobotanical Tour.
Day 15 (Sat): Posada Amazonas/Puerto Maldonado/Lima.
Day 16 (Sun): Lima.
B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner
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.
- South American Vacations’ expert pre-departure planning services and documentation.
- Airport/hotel transfers including baggage handling.
- Hotel accommodations including service fees and taxes.
- Accommodations on board the M/V Galapagos Legend.
- All meals scheduled on board and others as indicated on the itinerary.
- Daily excursions to the islands conducted by English-speaking naturalist guides.
- Use of snorkeling equipment.
- Evening briefings and lectures.
- Excursion to Machu Picchu including overnight stay and transportation via Vistadome train.
Price Does Not Include
- International airfare.
- Domestic airfare.
- Fuel surcharge for the ship ($50).
- Galapagos National Park entrance fee ($100).
- Transit control card ($20).
- Meals not indicated on the itinerary.
- Gratuities to ship crew and guides.
- Alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages.
- 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.
Group Private: All services included in Quito and Galapagos are operated on a group basis. In Peru, all airport/hotel transfers in Lima and Cusco are private, and the city tour of Lima, the Machu Picchu Guided tour, and the city tour of Cusco are group tours for single passengers and 3 Star accommodations, and private for 4 Star, 5 Star, and Deluxe accommodations. The excursions in the Sacred Valley are private.
Elevations: Quito is 9,350 feet above sea level, the Sacred Valley of the Incas is 8,944 feet, Machu Picchu is 7,900 feet, and Cusco is 10,912 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 $1,000 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.
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