Trip Overview

Cruise the Galápagos Islands on AdventureWomen’s privately chartered yacht and meet the fabled and unique species of Galápagos animals “nose-to-nose” as you hike, swim and snorkel while exploring this iconic island archipelago!

For eight days of unforgettable “nose-to-nose” and “nose-to-beak” encounters in the Galápagos Islands, travel aboard the Coral II, AdventureWomen’s private, chartered motor yacht, on the ultimate island safari! The Coral II is elegant and spacious. Built in Holland, every cabin features handsome wood decoration, along with air-conditioning, a private bathroom and even your choice of background music! The ship features three sundecks (some shaded), a Jacuzzi, as well as a comfortable dining room and lounge. On board, get to know the other women in your group, quickly becoming friends over delicious meals enjoyed al fresco, great conversations, and daily island excursions accompanied by the yacht’s  Galapagos expert naturalist.

The iconic reptiles of the Galápagos Islands are a thrill to see, and they inhabit all the islands you’ll visit. Walk among the slow-moving Galápagos giant tortoises found on Isabela, Santiago, and Santa Cruz Islands to study them eye-to-eye. On Isabela Island, get up close to the spiky marine iguanas as they bask, graze, or scramble fearlessly into the surf. On Santa Cruz Island, enjoy a close-up view of hefty land iguanas living among prickly pears, and on a quiet cruise through Black Turtle Cove Sanctuary, watch as sea turtles, as well as sharks and rays, pass right under our boat.

Swimming and snorkeling are just perfect ways to explore the incredible life below the surface in the Galápagos. The pure turquoise blue ocean and lagoons invite you to glide over corals and around smooth lava forms as sea turtles, white tip sharks, and rays swim soundlessly beside you, close enough to touch. Sea lions may approach you to play as you swim, and the Galapagos penguins of Bartolome Island have been known to swim right up and peer into your mask! The deep water snorkeling near Tagus Cove is also not to be missed because even whales and dolphins might swim by. Don’t forget to bring an underwater camera or case for your phone!

Birders will enjoy the nearly constant company of abundant birds. Land birds include flycatchers, mockingbirds, and Darwin finches, which sometimes fly out to visit boats at anchor. The Galápagos Islands’ avian “rock stars” are its pink flamingos; watch for them feeding as you hike around the briny lagoons of Rábida Island and Santa Cruz’s Dragon Hill! Walk carefully around the high cliffs, rocky outcroppings, and mangroves as these are nesting grounds for nazca boobies, red-billed tropicbirds, swallow-tailed gulls, blue-footed boobies, and brown pelicans. Galapagos Hawks are sometimes easy to spot as they like to perch near people out of curiosity and short-eared owls hunt in the daytime!

On your final full day, explore Santiago Island’s fur seal grottos, snorkel around the Pahoehoe Lava flow, and fit a little more time in to swim with the sea lions. Returning to our yacht, celebrate over a farewell feast where you’ll each recount favorite moments and reflect on this extraordinary journey you shared together discovering the magic of the Galápagos Islands.

Main Attractions

  • Cruise through Isabela, Santiago, Santa Cruz, Bartolome, and Rábida islands on board the Coral II
  • Learn about wildlife conservation efforts and the fascinating Galápagos Island wildlife from your naturalist guide on board
  • Swim and snorkel with dolphins, whales, and sea lions
  • Visit a sea turtle sanctuary and meet blue-footed boobies and pink flamingos

What You'll See and Do

  • Anthropology
  • Birding
  • Hiking
  • Kayaking
  • Natural History
  • Photography
  • Private Chartered Yacht
  • Sea Kayaking
  • Snorkeling
  • Swim with Sea Lions
  • Swimming
  • UNESCO Site
  • Walking
  • Wildlife Viewing

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

Trip Itinerary

Day 1

Arrive in Guayaquil
Arrive in Guyaquil today and take the hotel shuttle to the Wyndham Guayaquil. Look for your name on a sign.

You can check in as AdventureWomen at the hotel. There is a lovely restaurant in the hotel where you can have dinner this evening if you’d like.
Meals on your own

Overnight: Wyndham Guayaquil

Day 2

Guayaquil to the Galapagos Islands
Meet your group at 6:30am (be packed and ready to go!) and head to the airport for your flight to the Galapagos Islands.

You’ll be met by your guide at the airport and transferred to the dock where you will board your yacht.

You’ll be given some information about the yacht, your home for the next week. The crew will show you to your cabin before lunch.

Visit the Charles Darwin Station and Fausto Llerena Breeding Center on Santa Cruz Island, home to the Galapagos giant tortoise breeding program. This is part of the effort to preserve the fragile Galapagos environment and where the famous Lonesome George (the last surviving specimen of his species) lived for decades. Admire a prickly-pear cactus forest, a variety of Darwin’s finches, and other land birds. The Darwin Station also works to provide environmental education to communities and schools within the islands and to tourists visiting the Galapagos Islands.

Enjoy some free time to visit the town. There are good shopping opportunities at the local boutiques which sell uniquely designed handcrafts, jewelry, ceramics, T-shirts, and souvenirs. You can also try some food, beer, or ice cream with locals.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: M/Y Coral II

Day 3

The Galapagos Island
On this two hour hike of Dragon Hill, you can find various species of flora and fauna. Enjoy the pond behind the beach that is often home to flamingos. Along the trail, observe a variety of reptiles, especially land iguanas, which look like dragons because of their claws and spiky crests. Young iguanas are easily preyed upon by predatory birds and snakes; otherwise, they can live up to 60 years of age. Pass extensive vegetation, including a forest of holy stick trees (burseras), whose appearance changes depending on the season. The forest is home to a variety of birds, including mockingbirds, Darwin finches, yellow warblers, and Galapagos doves.

This afternoon you’ll have two landing possibilities: a dock and a beach. The dock, made out of lava and concrete, soon turns into a wooden staircase built to avoid erosion and consists of 372 steps. It takes you to the island’s summit, where you’ll find Pinnacle Rock. Due to its altitude, the lack of vegetation is immediately noticeable. Pioneer plants are present, and are named because they are the first to establish roots on new ground. They include Tiquilia nesiotica (which is endemic to the island), Chamaesyce (known as sand mat or spurge in English), lava cactus, and Scalesia bushes. The coralline beach next to Pinnacle Rock is a wet landing site from which you are able to snorkel amongst tropical fish and perhaps sea lions and penguins; they rest on the lava of the intertidal zone and sometimes decide to take a dip.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: M/Y Coral II

Day 4

The Galapagos Islands
Rábida Island has an abundance of landscapes and marine life. The trail takes about 45 minutes to walk, and you can also go around the shoreline in a dinghy to spot fur seals, pelicans, blue-footed boobies, and Nazca boobies. This is an excellent place for swimming and snorkeling; you could see white tipped sharks, rays, sea lions, among many others.

Behind the beach at Buccaneers Cove lie two small flamingo ponds where iguanas sunbathe. The native red and black mangrove can be also seen here. This beach is one of the main sea turtle nesting sites in the Galapagos. A turtle can lay eggs three to four times per season. You will also find the remains of barges that were sunk during World War II, when the United States Navy operated a base on Baltra Island.

Relax on board your beautiful yacht as you are mesmerized by the crystal clear water surrounding you.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: M/Y Coral II

Day 5

The Galapagos Islands
This morning, board a dinghy to view the turtles in Black Turtle Cove, a designated Turtle Sanctuary.

Enjoy lunch on the yacht.

Land on Santa Cruz Island and drive about 45 minutes into the highlands. When you arrive, take a 90-minute walk and admire different kinds of birds, such as tree and ground finches, vermillion flycatchers, paint-billed crakes, yellow warblers, and cattle egrets (usually standing on the shells of tortoises). The journey to the reserve gives you an opportunity to see the contrasts between the ecosystems in the Galapagos. The road goes from the coast through the agricultural zone and straight up to the dense humid forests. Often, Galapagos Giant Tortoises are also seen on the way, wandering through pastures. This spot is a birdwatchers’ haven since almost every land bird present on the island lives or migrates here.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: M/Y Coral II

Day 6

The Galapagos Islands
Take a dinghy ride along the coast of Vicente Roca Point to observe a great diversity of sea and coastal birds. Cold water currents make themselves known here!

Walk for about three hours on Fernandina Island. This is one of the most pristine islands in the world, with no introduced species. Espinosa Point is located on the northwestern part of the island, and its flat jet-black lava is a defining feature of the stark and barren landscape. It is also home to the largest colony of endemic marine iguanas. Enjoy an hour of snorkeling in this area as well.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: M/Y Coral II

Day 7

The Galapagos Islands
Urbina Bay is located at the west of Isabela Island and it has a spectacular view of Alcedo volcano. Along the trail, which will take about an hour and a half, you will see land iguanas, mockingbirds, finches, Galapagos hawks, Galapagos martins, and occasionally, giant tortoises. At the beach, you will be able to see the largest marine iguanas on the Galapagos, and those who wish to swim or snorkel can approach flightless cormorants, penguins, sea turtles, and assorted colored fish.

Tagus Cove is located on the Northwestern coast of Isabela Island. It is a historical site visited by Charles Darwin in 1835, where graffiti has been carved into the rock walls by visitors over the past centuries; this happened just before the Galapagos National Park was established in 1959-1960. You’ll walk for about two hours. Observe countless species: blue-footed booby, brown noddy, terns, flightless cormorant, Galapagos penguins, and marine iguanas depending on the season. Take a 40-minute dinghy ride, and snorkel for an hour. The deep water snorkeling this afternoon is highly recommended!
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: M/Y Coral II

Day 8

The Galapagos Islands
This area is a prime place for spotting and observing hunting herons – Great Blue Herons, Yellow-crowned Night Herons, and Lava Herons – as well as oystercatchers. You will enjoy the sight of marine iguanas grazing upon algae beds at low tide, sharing space with crabs and other wading birds. Go for an hour and a half walk, and then you will get to snorkel for an hour as well!

The southeastern portion of Santiago Island features extensive lava flows which are believed to have been formed during the last quarter of the 19th century. The area is covered by Pahoehoe lava flows (Pahoehoe in Polynesian language means “easy to walk”); this type of lava is rare in the rest of the world but is common to the volcanoes of the Galapagos Islands and Hawaii. This is the perfect place to see and feel the volcanic origin of the Galapagos. After exploring the lava flow on an hour and a half walk, you can swim and snorkel with playful sea lions off two small coralline beaches.

Have a farewell dinner with your group to toast the end of an exceptional adventure.
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Overnight: M/Y Coral II

Day 9

Depart the Galapagos Islands
Enjoy one last hour of beach time in the Galapagos Islands.

You’ll be transferred to the airport for your flight to Guayaquil, where you will connect with your flights home.

Your flight will land in Guayquil in the early afternoon, but we do not recommend booking your onward travel for earlier than 6:00pm. AdventureWomen can arrange a day room at a hotel for you at an additional cost where you can shower and repack before your flights home. Let us know if you’d like us to book a room for you.
Breakfast

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

Traveling to The Galapagos Islands



Arrival/Departure Information

March 14 Departure:

Arrive: Arrive in Guayaquil, Ecuador (GYE) on March 14, 2020.

Depart: Depart Guayaquil, Ecuador (GYE) on March 22, 2020 after 6:00pm.

August 15 Departure:

Arrive: Arrive in Guayaquil, Ecuador (GYE) on August 15, 2020.

Depart: Depart Guayaquil, Ecuador (GYE) on August 23, 2020 after 6:00pm.

We are happy to help you make your flight and travel arrangements. Please contact us at:

(800) 804-8686 or (617) 544-9393
email: info@adventurewomen.com

If you’d like to do anything prior to or following the AdventureWomen trip, we’d be delighted to help you arrange any trip extensions you’re interested in.

Note: The recent trend in travel is for travelers to finalize their plans much closer to departure time than was customary in the past. While we try to be as flexible as possible booking last-minute registrants, we must release hotel rooms two to three months prior to departure! Please keep this in mind when making your travel plans.

Passports and Visas

Citizens of the United States must have a passport valid for six months beyond your travel dates with at least two blank facing pages. If you do not have a passport, please apply now!

Activity Level

We rate this trip as Active. Our Active adventures get you on your feet! You should be in good physical condition where you are comfortable walking on uneven surfaces, such as cobblestone streets, biking manicured nature trails, or kayaking calm waters.

We recommend training before your trip (with your doctor’s permission!) to make the most of your adventure. We have a partnership with FitForTrips, a company that will design an individualized fitness plan for you with this itinerary in mind. Best of all, AdventureWomen guests get a 25% discount with the code FITWOMEN. Learn more here.

You should come with a flexible, adventurous, and enthusiastic spirit, and a wonderful sense of humor that adventure travel requires.

Health Considerations

Make an appointment with a travel clinic. There are no immunization requirements for travel to the Galapagos, however your local travel clinic may have recommendations for you based on your age, health, and past vaccination history.

For more health information, go to www.cdc.gov/travel and navigate to the page about the Galapagos.

Money

The currency of Ecuador is the US Dollar. You should bring cash for purchases on the yacht.

Suggested Gratuities:

  • Main guide: $10 per day
  • Yacht Crew: $8-10 per day

How to Register

Call the AdventureWomen office at (800) 804-8686 to determine space availability and register for this trip. We can complete your registration, including taking your credit card deposit over the phone.

If you prefer, you can register online by clicking “Sign Up for this Trip” on the trip page.

Please be sure to read the AdventureWomen policies before registering!

Forms and Final Payment

The deposit for this trip is $800, and is nonrefundable and nontransferable. Once you book, you will need to fill out and return to AdventureWomen:

  • Information Form
  • Booking Conditions Form
  • Copy of Flight Information
  • Copy of Issuing Page of Passport (photo page)

Final payment must be made to AdventureWomen in a cash form (check, money order, or wire transfer). A maximum of $1,500 per person can be put on a credit card, which includes your deposit.

March 14 Departure Final Payment Date: December 15, 2019

August 15 Departure Final Payment Date: May 17, 2020

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

What's Included

Included

  • Accommodations based on double occupancy
  • Meals as noted in the itinerary
  • All transportation throughout the trip
  • All activities as listed in the itinerary
  • Entrance fees & Galapagos entry card
  • English-speaking guide throughout the trip
  • One AdventureWomen Ambassador

Not Included

  • International airfare
  • Domestic airfare
  • Meals not specified in itinerary
  • Alcoholic beverages, unless otherwise specified
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Gratuities

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

Accommodations

Wyndham Guayaquil
Situated just steps from the historic Santa Ana Hill and its famous Lighthouse, and minutes to the vibrant Malecon 2000, the Wyndham Guayaquil hotel offers an ideal location near Guayaquil’s many attractions.

M/Y Coral II
The Coral II is a gorgeous, comfortable yacht offering charming social areas distributed on multiple decks, with both outdoor and interior spaces allowing you to enjoy an intimate expedition experience in your own way. The vessel offers open- deck areas with a Jacuzzi to make the best of your relaxing time while cruising the islands.

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686

What to Bring

As you get ready to pack for your adventure, have a look at The AdventureWomen Store at www.theadventurewomenstore.com - we have picked out our favorite travel clothes and outdoor gear to help make packing easy for you. You can also see our recommendations for this trip on the AdventureWomen Pinterest page.

This time of year is warm in the Galapagos, with an average high temperature of 88°F. Be prepared for a range of weather, and dress in layers. You’ll likely be changing your clothing fairly frequently as you’ll be in and out of the water.

Remember as you choose sunscreen, insect repellent, and toiletries that the Galapagos is a pristine national park. You’ll be in and out of the water, and everything you put on your body will likely end up in the ocean. Please be respectful of this unique ecosystem.

Only one checked bag is allowed. Your bag must be soft- sided and it cannot weigh more than 44 pounds. Snorkeling equipment will be provided on board, but if you have your own mask and fins, you should certainly bring them. “Shorty” wet suits are provided on board; AdventureWomen will need to know your wet suit size three months prior to departure.

Clothing and Gear

  • 1 small soft-sided duffel bag
  • 1 day pack
  • 4-5 short sleeve shirts (quick dry recommended)
  • 1-2 long sleeve shirts (quick dry recommended)
  • 1 medium weight fleece sweater/jacket for cool evenings
  • 1-2 pairs of pants
  • 2-3 pairs of shorts
  • 2 bathing suits
  • Rash guard (sun protection and easier to put on wet suit)
  • Waterproof jacket/windbreaker
  • Hat for sun protection
  • 5-7 pairs underwear (quick dry recommended)
  • 4-5 pairs socks
  • Sneakers/walking shoes with good treads
  • Water shoes/sandals - closed toe for hikes/walks
  • Sleepwear

AdventureWomen Essentials

  • Travel documents (identification documents, airline tickets, money)
  • 2-3 spare passport photos in case your passport is lost or stolen
  • Write down/print out travel insurance number
  • Locks for your suitcase/duffel bag
  • Travel alarm clock with spare batteries
  • Headlamp or small flashlight with spare batteries
  • Binoculars (8x40/42 models are excellent choices; center focus models are easiest)
  • Digital camera, memory cards, battery charger
  • Power adapters/power bank
  • Sunglasses, case, and strap
  • Spare glasses, contact lenses, cleaner, saline, etc.
  • Money belt or neck pouch
  • Your AdventureWomen insulated bottle (good for hot or cold drinks!)
  • Hand wipes/hand sanitizer
  • Toothbrush/toothpaste
  • Small packet of tissues
  • Tampons and panty liners (avoid plastic applicators)
  • Earplugs: We recommend Mack’s Pillow Soft White Moldable Silicone Snore Proof Earplugs. Available at most drugstores or at www.earplugstore.com
  • Assortment of stuff sacks and Ziploc bags
  • 1-2 bandanas/Buff
  • Reading material/journal and pens

Reef-Safe Essentials - please make sure the following are labeled as reef safe or eco-friendly:

  • Sunscreen and lip balm with SPF
  • Mosquito repellent wipes
  • Shampoo, conditioner, and body wash - The Coral II will provide approved hair and body care products; Wyndham Guayaquil will also provide similar products in the hotel.

Personal First Aid Kit

  • Prescription medicine you usually take (in original containers)
  • Personal epi pen (if you need one, don’t forget to pack it!)
  • Bandages, Gauze, Ace bandage, blister prevention
  • Antiseptic wipes/spray
  • Antibiotic ointment
  • Cotton-tipped applicators
  • Oral rehydration tablets/packets
  • Antidiarrheal medication
  • Mild laxative
  • Antacid
  • Cold remedies
  • Ibuprofen/acetaminophen
  • Eye drops
  • Tweezers, scissors (travel size), safety pins

If you prefer to buy a complete kit, we recommend the Smart Travel first aid kit.

If you're curious about this trip, we would be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Call us ~ 1.800.804.8686