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Galapagos Discovery

9 Days | Meet sea lions and bunk on the best islands

4.6 out of 5 based on 36 reviews submitted.
Wildlife
From
USD $2,394
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Take in the highlights of the unique flora- and fauna-rich islands of the Galapagos on this eight-day adventure. From rubbing shoulders with giant tortoises to gazing up in wonder at the spectacular blue-footed boobies’ synchronised fishing technique, the Galapagos offers the chance to see an abundance of rare creatures at close range. We’ll show you the best islands, coves and natural wonders, and give you plenty of time to explore (with local advice!) so you can spend your time the way you want. Snorkel with sea lions, swim with sea turtles and relax in paradise.

Trip overview

Map of Galapagos Discovery including Ecuador
Start
Quito, Ecuador
Finish
Quito, Ecuador
Theme
Wildlife
Destinations
Ecuador
Physical rating
Indicates how physically exerting a trip is, and how fit you will need to be to enjoy it. More info on physical ratings
Style
Basix
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1 - Max 15
Trip code
GGRR
This trip generates 68.87 kg of CO2-e per person per day.
We offset these emissions on your behalf. But we know that is not enough, so we also have a carbon reduction target.

Why you'll love this trip
  • Get your blood pumping as you scale Sierra Negra Volcano during an epic hike, then cool off with a swim in the perfect waters of Isla Isabela’s beaches.
  • Many come to Isla Santa Cruz just for the giant tortoises. Get up close and personal with these enormous animals as they drag themselves through the sand.
  • Learn about the unique habits of the marine iguana. This dinosaur-like little creature has an iridescent sheen and is only found on the Galapagos Islands.
  • Birdwatching at the Galapagos is quite an experience. Watch the aerobatic routines of blue-footed boobies and the death defying stunts of the frigate birds as they whizz through the air.
  • This trip combines plenty of must-try activities and islands with generous mounts of free time, so you can explore the Galapagos at your own pace.

Is this trip right for you?
  • This trip begins in Quito, where elevation can cause altitude sickness regardless of age or physical health. Please see the ‘Medical and health information’ section of the Essential Trip Information for more details.
  • The itinerary involves a lot of travel by speed boat between the various Galapagos Islands, the rides can be quite bumpy at times. The good news is that seasickness can often be managed with medication. Consult a health professional before your trip.
  • This trip includes a 17-kilometre hike (approximately 5–6 hours) on rocky terrain.
  • Understandably, many of our travellers’ express interest in scuba diving in the Galapagos. We are now able to assist with booking this activity, though please note that our staff are only able to do this through a provider that meets our internal safety policy. Speak to an Intrepid agent at the time of booking for more information.
  • The sun in the Galapagos islands is incredibly strong due to its close proximity to the equator, ensure you are well prepared with sunscreen, a hat, sunglasses and a rash guard if desired.
  • This trip does include snorkelling on multiple days throughout the itinerary. Confident swimming skills are required to take part.
  • The Galapagos is a great place to switch off and take a break from your phone, as internet access can be patchy, and Wi-Fi is not always available or reliable.
  • Hot water can be sporadic in some parts of the Galapagos, so there may be a few cold showers on the trip.

Itinerary

Map of Galapagos Discovery including Ecuador

Inclusions

Meals

5 breakfasts

Transport

Plane, Speed boat, Private Vehicle, Public bus

Accommodation

Hotel (8 nights)

Activities
  • Isla San Cristobal - Interpretation Center (45 minutes)
  • Isla San Cristobal - Snorkelling in Tijeretas Hill
  • Isla Santa Cruz - Highlands Visit (1.5 hours) - Dry Landing
  • Isla Santa Cruz - Charles Darwin Research Centre (45 Minutes)
  • Isla Isabela - Giant Tortoise Breeding Centre (1 Hour)
  • Isla Isabela - Sierra Negra Volcano Hike (5-6 Hours)
  • Santa Cruz Marine Reserves - Half Day Boat Tour
Add on activities
  • Cotopaxi - National Park Hiking Tour - USD95
  • Quito - La Ronda Walk - Free
  • Antisana Trek Full day from Quito - USD120
  • Quito - Papallacta Hot Springs (Full day) - USD70
  • Quito - Bellavista Cloud forest (Full day) - USD110
  • Urban Adventures: Condors and Culture in Otavalo - USD756
  • Quito - Urban Adventures: Legends and Culture Tour - USD50
  • Kicker Rock excursion - USD120
  • Frigate Bird Hill - Free
  • Mann Beach - Free
  • Snorkelling gear rental - USD5
  • Isla Lobos. - USD80
  • Isla Tintoreras - USD47
  • Isla Isabela - wetsuite rental - USD15
  • Kayak rental - USD50
  • Isla Isabela - Snorkeling in Concha y Perla - Free
  • Isabela Island – Snorkelling gear rental - USD5
  • Tunneles Snorkelling - USD120
  • Isla Santa Cruz - Tortuga Bay walk - Free
  • Quito - Market Discovery Urban Adventure - USD99
  • Quito - Sweet & Culinary Experience - Urban Adventures - USD103
  • Quito - Old Town & Gastronomic- Urban Adventures - USD99
  • Quito - Condors and Culture in Otavalo Urban Adventures - USD156
  • Quito - Otavalo Indian Market (Full day) - USD70
  • Quilotoa - Quilotoa Lagoon (Full day) - USD100

Dates and availability

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Important notes

1. Due to limited hotel availability, a single supplement is not available on this trip.
2. Intrepid offers a shorter version of this tour (search trip code GGRX), which doesn't include flights to and from Quito and starts in the Galapagos.
3. Full passport details are required at the time of booking. Please ensure all your details are correct and that they match your passport. The passport you travel with must match the booking details provided to us, otherwise, it could cause issues with your transit card and internal flights, resulting in purchasing a new card and flights at your own expense. This information is also necessary to purchase entry permits to certain sites. Please note that delays in providing this information could result in additional booking fees or changes to your itinerary.
4. At the Welcome Meeting on Day 1, you will need to pay your Leader $20 USD in cash for your Galapagos Transit Control Card.
5. Before you board your flight to the islands, at either Quito or Guayaquil Airports, you will have to check your luggage at the SICGAL counter, where they seal your checked bags, then proceed to the check-in counter of your respective airline.
6. The Galapagos park fee (US$100) and Isabela Port fee (US$10) are payable upon arrival to the islands (cash only). These amounts are in addition to your trip payment.
7. Please be advised that for the internal flights on this tour, the airline only provides a small snack. You may wish to take your own snacks as it is a long travel day.
8. Strict rules apply in the Galapagos Islands aimed at protecting and preserving its unique biodiversity. Intrepid strongly agrees and supports these rules, which range from times of the day that a destination can be visited to the distance kept between people and wildlife and especially not removing anything from the environment ( shells and corals, for example) – all these rules will be explained in more detail by your Leader on the ground. Not adhering to these rules can lead to hefty fines for travellers and can result in Intrepid losing the license to operate in the Galapagos Islands – these rules must be adhered to by all, without exception. Failure to adhere to the rules can result in being removed from the trip without a refund.
For more information, please follow this link: http://www.galapagos.org/travel/travel/park-rules/

Essential Trip Information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

Read Essential Trip Information

Reviews

4.6 out of 5 based on 36 reviews submitted.
Reviews are from travellers who have completed their trip and want to share their experience. We show all reviews, but may remove any that include profanity or inappropriate content, are unrelated to the trip or reveal personal details.

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Nicole · Traveled December 2023
I just returned from this tour. The Galapagos were amazing, and the people on the tour were great. However, our tour guide, Pamela, was a real let-down. I am pretty sure that she did not bother to learn any of our names (there were 12 of us), and getting information out of her was like pulling teeth sometimes. She did the bare minimum of chauffeuring us around. On our final day, we had another intrepid guide take us to the airport, and I learned more from him in the very short amount of time we spent with him that I did from Pamela during the entire time. Part of why I decided to do intrepid was because they have a good reputation for having great guides. That was not my experience, and I cannot recommend this particular tour.
Review submitted 15 Jan 2024

Anna · Traveled November 2023
The Galápagos Islands were amazing, unfortunately Intrepid was not. The organisation and communication from Intrepid and our ‘trip leader’ (local guide) were definitely lacking compared to other travel brands. Several days of our trip had no trip leader at all. Optional excursions are not part of the tour so expect to be with other strangers instead of your group. However, the excursions outside of Intrepid were the highlights of my trip.
Review submitted 17 Nov 2023

Everardo · Traveled August 2023
Intrepid’s itinerary for our Galapagos trip was excellent. The accommodations were good and the meals were excellent. Our tour leader, Andres was excellent. He was very knowledgeable and informative. He was very friendly and approachable and was eager to answer all our questions.
Review submitted 18 Aug 2023

Nancy · Traveled August 2023
It was my first visit to Galapagos and I was so lucky to have an excellent guide with knowledge, patient and beautiful personality. If you go to Galapagos ask for Andres Pazmino and you will be safe, you’ll learn and you will have the best trip to the Islands .
Review submitted 23 Aug 2023

Rose · Traveled August 2023
Our trip to the Galapagos for our honeymoon was nothing short of breathtaking. The perfect blend of relaxation, sightseeing and adventure meant we were in a constant state of euphoria. Everything was taken care of by intrepid so we were never left worrying about what to do next. Our guide, Andrés was amazing, super friendly and incredibly knowledgeable about the islands and all its inhabitants. It really was the dream getaway to celebrate our marriage.
Review submitted 23 Aug 2023
Galapagos Discovery
From
USD $2,394