Galapagos wildlife cruise
18 day small ship cruise around the Galapagos archipelago. Join other animal enthusiasts and local crew as you set sail to lesser-known islands and explore above and below the water.
Quito Baltra, Santa Cruz 14 nights on fully crewed small ship Eastern and Western Islands Isabella Espanola San Salvador Fernandina Genovesa
US $14249excluding flights
Ecuador, Galapagos Islands
Optional single supplement £120.
Minimum age 16.
Minimum age 16.
Late availability on upcoming trips
Description of Galapagos wildlife cruise
Check dates, prices & availability
Small group tours:
Small group travel is not large group travel scaled down. It is modeled on independent travel – but with the advantage of a group leader to take care of the itinerary, accommodation and tickets, and dealing with the language. It’s easy to tick off the big sights independently – but finding those one-off experiences, local festivals, traveling markets and secret viewpoints is almost impossible for someone without the insider knowledge gained from years in the field. Those with a two-week vacation, a small group tour will save valuable planning time.
1 Reviews of Galapagos wildlife cruise
5 out of 5 stars
Reviewed on 31 Dec 2021 by Don McNeil
1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?
Difficult. I had done it before and was nursing a recently broken leg, so snorkelling out and rough walking too, though I was given a personal support (Pedro) who was also the chief boatman who took me on boat rides when I deemed that going ashore would be too risky for my leg. I suppose the consideration and kindness of the crew and guide Daniel Jacome were really memorable because they went overboard to make my trip memorable. As for exciting, it was probably finding the Galapagos Blue Butterfly which had passed un-noticed by even the guide and was a target species for the visit.
2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?
Don't neglect the 1st aid kit. I had to provide Paracetamol for one chap who was too ill to come out of his cabin for the first day (food problem in Quito) and others provided anti-motion sickness patches for several of the group although the water was rather gentle on us. Spend time with camera on deck. If you want to see dolphins, whales etc you are not going to do it in your cabin asleep. Sightings are often brief and whilst the captain will call and then help as much as possible you could be too late.
3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?
Once we got to the Galapagos everything seemed to be sourced locally and so benefited the community. The impact on the environment and conservation is something closely controlled by the local government / National Park.
4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?
No Question, it was fantastic. hard work with the leg but the support could hardly have been bettered. Catering was beyond excellent and other personal needs well looked after. Guide Dani was very good. Only a year into the job he will get better with experience. He has a great sense of humour and seemed to enjoy unmerciful teasing from old farts like me. He has my commendations.
As the pioneers of responsible tourism, we've screened this (and every) vacation so that you can travel knowing it will help support the places and people that you visit, and the planet. Read how below.
PlanetAccommodation & Meals:
Most of the trip is spent sleeping on a first class, motor boat with only two nights in a hotel. The Cachalote Explorer is an environmental conscious vessel that is equipped with a wastewater treatment plant to ensure that no residue goes into the sea. There are tight regulations in place to prevent ecological damage such as: restricting use of electrical products, use of biodegradable products (like shampoo, detergent, soap), recycling of contaminants (oil and fuel) which are sent back to the mainland for disposal and water treatment. Staff are also employed locally both in Quito and the Galapagos, therefore providing benefit to the community.
We visit the Charles Darwin Research Centre on Santa Cruz Island after driving to the highlands to look for wild tortoises. This center is dedicated to protecting and conserving the ecology of the islands and carries out educational projects in support of conservation of the Galapagos Islands. Our entry fees help contribute to all the work going on here by improving demand, facilities and creating employment opportunities for scientists. We are also careful to adhere to National Park guidelines, which, amongst other things, ask that we keep a safe distance from wildlife at all times.
This is a small group tour, meaning that we have a low impact on the environments and communities we visit and are able to ensure that we do not disrupt or lead to the displacement of local people. The small number also allows us to stay in unique, family-run hotels that cannot benefit from coach tours and other mass tourism due to their limited sizes.
It all starts at home where we work towards reducing our carbon footprint in our offices through energy conservation measures, recycling policies and the promotion of cycling and walking as a means for our staff to commute. Our head office has become a plastic-free zone with the use of plastic bottles being banned in our head office and we distributed reusable water bottles and tote bags to every staff member. We also support a large number of community and environmental projects in different parts of the world and try to give something back to the places we visit.
The Galapagos is renowned for its incredibly unique wildlife and conservation efforts. We try to make as little negative impact on the environment and wildlife as possible, but also to leave a positive impact in terms of community and local economy. Guides and other staff are local to the area, providing local employment and economy benefits. Although much of this tour is spent on board the boat or in nature, wherever the opportunity arises clients are encouraged to use local businesses and to engage with people they meet in order to promote positive cultural exchange.