Road Scholar educational adventures are created by Elderhostel,
the not-for-profit world leader in lifelong learning since 1975.


Call (800) 454-5768

Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. ET


Create an account                             Forgot your password?

or Log In via Facebook

Log in to see all you can do with your online Road Scholar account.

GALAPAGOS, ECUADOR

Adventures Afloat: Amazing Ecuador: The Andes and the Galápagos

Select a Date

 

SIGN UP

and receive your

FREE E-NEWSLETTER

&

E-Photo Book:



Top 10 Learning Experiences Around the World

Find A Program

Search By:

Location

Galapagos Islands

Interest

Adventure Afloat Study Cruise

Price Range

$3500 - $5000

Start Date

End Date

More Options


AnyInternationalSt. BartsUnited StatesCanadaAfghanistanAlbaniaAlgeriaAmerican SamoaAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanAzoresBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBoliviaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBrazilBritish Virgin IslandsBruneiBulgariaBurmaBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanary IslandsCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChileChinaColombiaComorosCongoCook IslandsCosta RicaCroatiaCubaCuracaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEaster IslandEcuadorEgyptEnglandEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland IslandsFaroe IslandsFederated States of MicronesiaFijiFinlandFranceFrance Southern TerritoriesFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench West IndiesGabonGalapagos IslandsGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuamGuatemalaGuernsey IslandGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard and Mc Donald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIranIrelandIsles of ScillyIsraelItalyIvory CoastJamaicaJapanJersey IslandJordanKazakhstanKenyaKoreaKosovoKuwaitKyrgyzstanLaosLatviaLebanonLiberiaLibyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacedoniaMadagascarMadeira IslandsMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMidway IslandMoldovaMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueNamibiaNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorthern Mariana IslandsNorthwest TerritoriesNorwayOmanPacific IslandsPakistanPalauPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPolandPortugalPuerto RicoQatarReunionRomaniaRussia (Siberia)Russian FederationRwandaSaint HelenaSamoaSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaScotlandSenegalSerbiaSeychellesShetland IslandsSierra LeoneSingaporeSlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSpainSri LankaSt Kitts and NevisSt. Eustatius (Statia)St. LuciaSt. Pierre & MiquelonSt. Vincent and the GrenadinesSurinamSurinameSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyriaTaiwanTajikistanTanzaniaTasmaniaThailandTibetTogoTongaTrinidad and TobagoTristan da CunhaTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and CaicosUS Virgin IslandsUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuelaVietnamWalesWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabwe
Road Scholar
Program #21548RJ
13 Days | 12 Nights
ACTIVITY LEVEL: Moderately Challenging
EasyFor people looking to exercise their minds more than their bodies. There’s minimal walking and not too many stairs.
ModerateThese programs get you on your feet and include activities such as walking up to a mile in a day through a city and standing in a museum for a few hours.
ActiveFor people who enjoy walking as much as two miles a day, perhaps to explore historic neighborhoods or a nature trail.
Moderately ChallengingFor hardy explorers who enjoy a good physical challenge, spending most of their days on the go.
ChallengingGet ready to keep up with our highest-energy group. These demanding — and rewarding — programs are for seasoned outdoor enthusiasts.
Elevation Note
Quito is at an elevation of approximately 9,400 feet.

Itinerary for Oct 27 — Nov 8, 2014

Expand all
Type: Hotel

Description: The Hilton Colon Quito hotel enjoys spectacular views of the city and surrounding mountains. The historic colonial section of the city (a UNESCO World Heritage Site) can be reached within a 10 minutes' walk. The hotel is well equiped to meet the needs of both the vacation and business traveler, with 15 meeting rooms, an executive lounge, and wireless internet access throughout.

Contact info:
Amazonas N 1914 Y Patria Avenida 1
Quito, Ecuador
phone: +593-2-2560666
web: www.hilton.com

Room amenities: Private bathroom, hairdryer, air conditioning, Hilton Serenity Bed, LCD Flat Panel TV, TV-Cable, iron/ironing board, safety deposit box, and coffee maker.

Facility amenities: Tour desk, automated teller (ATM), baggage storage, barber shop, concierge desk, florist, foreign currency exchange, gift shop, laundry/valet service, lounge, news stand, on-site convenience store, room service, safety deposit box, business center, fitness room, and pool.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Subject to availability.
Type of accommodations and rates are subject to hotel availability. Please contact the program provider at 1-800-866-7111 or roadscholarprograms@holbrooktravel.com for assistance in booking additional nights.

Check in time: 2:00 PM


Day One: Monday, October 27 - Arrive to Quito.
Note: The new Mariscal Sucre International Airport is located approximately one hour from downtown Quito.

Arrive To: Arrive at Quito's Mariscal Sucre International Airport.

Proceed through Immigrations, Baggage Claim and Customs before exiting the secured area of the airport. The Road Scholar representative will be waiting outside the exit door with a Road Scholar sign (only applies to Road Scholar group flights).

Transfer to the hotel and check-in.

Please note that this is an international travel day; no meals or program activities are scheduled on this day.

Lodging: Hilton Colon Quito Hotel

Type: Hotel

Description: The Hilton Colon Quito hotel enjoys spectacular views of the city and surrounding mountains. The historic colonial section of the city (a UNESCO World Heritage Site) can be reached within a 10 minutes' walk. The hotel is well equiped to meet the needs of both the vacation and business traveler, with 15 meeting rooms, an executive lounge, and wireless internet access throughout.

Contact info:
Amazonas N 1914 Y Patria Avenida 1
Quito, Ecuador
phone: +593-2-2560666
web: www.hilton.com

Room amenities: Private bathroom, hairdryer, air conditioning, Hilton Serenity Bed, LCD Flat Panel TV, TV-Cable, iron/ironing board, safety deposit box, and coffee maker.

Facility amenities: Tour desk, automated teller (ATM), baggage storage, barber shop, concierge desk, florist, foreign currency exchange, gift shop, laundry/valet service, lounge, news stand, on-site convenience store, room service, safety deposit box, business center, fitness room, and pool.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Subject to availability.
Type of accommodations and rates are subject to hotel availability. Please contact the program provider at 1-800-866-7111 or roadscholarprograms@holbrooktravel.com for assistance in booking additional nights.

Check in time: 2:00 PM


Day Two: Tuesday, October 28 - Quito – City Excursion to Colonial Quito.
Breakfast: Breakfast at hotel.

Morning: Orientation to the program. Visit El Panecillo for panoramic views of Quito.

Before the Spanish arrived, the hill known as El Panecillo (small bread roll) was used by the Inca for sun worshiping. In the early 1800s, the Spanish military took advantage of El Panecillo's strategic location and elevation (9,843 ft), and built a fortress to protect and monitor the city. In present times, the hill is the site of a city monument and lookout point where visitors can get 360° views of Quito. On clear days, it is even possible to spot Cotopaxi's snowy peak in the distance.

Enjoy a walking exploration of Quito's colonial center. Visit the Independence Square with an informative explanation of the Presidential and Bishop Palace, as well as the Cathedral. Visit La Compañía church, one of the most beautiful churches in Quito, legendary for its gold covered interior. Visit the historic San Francisco church and convent, raised up above a wide stone paved court originally known as “Tiangues,” a place used by the indigenous inhabitants of Quito to trade products.

Lunch: Lunch at local restaurant including an introduction to Ecuadorian food products.

Afternoon: After lunch, return to the hotel for the rest of the afternoon to relax.

Lecture: Ecuador; Ten Thousand years of History by Diego Quiroga PHD. A review of the most important events in Ecuador's history and its influence in today's' political and social situation.



Dinner: Dinner at hotel.

Lodging: Hilton Colon Quito Hotel

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Hotel

Description: This 150 year-old hacienda, with its towering palm trees and garden cottages with roaring log fires, is tucked in a lush mountain valley less than two hours north of Quito, Ecuador. A few miles north of the Equator at 8,500 ft, the valley has a climate of perpetual spring with day temperatures from 65-75 F and night temps from 55-60 F. The sun rises on sometimes snow-capped Cotacachi 16,298 ft and sets on the sacred Imbabura 15,210 ft.

Ship Information: n/a

Contact info:
P.O. Box # 123 Otavalo - Imbabura
Otavalo, 00000 Ecuador
phone: +59362918013
web: www.haciendacusin.com

Room amenities: Rooms have wood-beamed ceilings and log burning Kiva fireplaces, and are decorated with Andean crafts. Private bathrooms have thick cotton towels and hairdryers. Hot water bottles on request.

Facility amenities: Rooms have wood-beamed ceilings and log burning Kiva fireplaces, and are decorated with Andean crafts. Private bathrooms have thick cotton towels and hairdryers. Hot water bottles on request.

Smoking policy: Yes
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.


Day Three: Wednesday, October 29 - Otavalo - Exploring Ecuador's Highlands ...
Otavalo -
Exploring Ecuador's Highlands
Discover the Otavalo Indigenous Culture.


Note: Due to the August 2014 earthquake and aftershocks in Quito, Ecuador, the northern section of the Pan-American Highway connecting Oyacoto to Guallyabamba has been temporarily closed for maintenance. The driving route to the town of Otavalo will now depart from central Quito to bypass this section which will increase the driving time by approximately one hour each way. Driving times will also depend on local traffic congestion and rush hours during this temporary road closure.

Breakfast: Breakfast at the hacienda.

Morning: This morning we make our way to the province of Imbabura, also known as the Lakes Province, due to its numerous aquatic formations.

Depart early in the morning to visit a private hacienda dating back from the republican times for a country style breakfast. Here you will receive an introduction to one of the major economic activities in Ecuador, the floral industry. Learn about Ecuadorian roses, known worldwide for their beauty and fine quality.

Continue to the town of Otavalo to meet the Kichua-Otavalos, an indigenous group known for their fine textiles and tapestries.

Lunch: Lunch with local family.

Afternoon: After lunch return to the hotel for free time to relax.

Dinner: At the hotel.

Lodging: Las Palmeras Inn

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Hotel

Description: This 150 year-old hacienda, with its towering palm trees and garden cottages with roaring log fires, is tucked in a lush mountain valley less than two hours north of Quito, Ecuador. A few miles north of the Equator at 8,500 ft, the valley has a climate of perpetual spring with day temperatures from 65-75 F and night temps from 55-60 F. The sun rises on sometimes snow-capped Cotacachi 16,298 ft and sets on the sacred Imbabura 15,210 ft.

Ship Information: n/a

Contact info:
P.O. Box # 123 Otavalo - Imbabura
Otavalo, 00000 Ecuador
phone: +59362918013
web: www.haciendacusin.com

Room amenities: Rooms have wood-beamed ceilings and log burning Kiva fireplaces, and are decorated with Andean crafts. Private bathrooms have thick cotton towels and hairdryers. Hot water bottles on request.

Facility amenities: Rooms have wood-beamed ceilings and log burning Kiva fireplaces, and are decorated with Andean crafts. Private bathrooms have thick cotton towels and hairdryers. Hot water bottles on request.

Smoking policy: Yes
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.


Day Four: Thursday, October 30 - Otavalo - Train ride through Andean landscap...
Otavalo -
Train ride through Andean landscapes and sugarcane plantations
Meet Afro Ecuadorian community.


Breakfast: Breakfast a the hotel.

Morning: This morning we board a locomotive taking us through the natural landscapes formed by mountains and sugarcane plantations.

Arrive to the town of Salinas to meet the Afro-Ecuadorian community. Learn about the history of their ancestors who were brought as slaves during the colonial period and their struggles and liberation.



Lunch: Have lunch at local restaurant.

Afternoon: Visit a local handicraft project with an inspiring story of success and over coming adversity.



Dinner: Dinner at the hotel.

Lodging: Las Palmeras Inn

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Cruise Ship

Description: Twin main engines, twin electric generators, twin Radars, Eco-sounders and GPS, Reverse Osmosis Water Maker, coastguard required safety equipment and twelve knot cruising speed.

Ship Information: The Tip Top III is a First Class Steel-hulled Motor Yacht built in Guayaquil/Ecuador in 2001. Dimensions: 100 feet of length, 22 feet of beam and a 5 feet Draft.

Contact info:
000
Galapagos, Ecuador
phone: +0000000000
web: www.rwittmer.com

Room amenities: All cabins have private bathrooms, porthole or window, and a/c.

Facility amenities: The Tip Top III accommodates up to 16 guests in 10 cabins, each with private bathroom. The Upper Deck features four cabins with one double lower berth and one single lower berth. Cabins, Bar, dining room and lounge are fully carpeted. A beautiful teak floored sun deck creates a delightful place for resting and relaxing on board.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.


Day Five: Friday, October 31 - Galapagos - Flight to Galapagos. Baltra...
Galapagos -
Flight to Galapagos.
Baltra and Santa Cruz (Bachas Beach)


Note: There is a 44 lb weight limit for checked luggage on the flights to the islands. Please pack accordingly.

Breakfast: Breakfast at hotel.

Morning: Transfer to the airport.
Flight to Baltra Island, Galápagos (44 lb weight limit for checked luggage, please pack accordingly).

**Note: The Galápagos airline tickets are issued in Ecuador and held by the group leader for safekeeping. The airline tickets will be distributed to participants on-site.**

Lunch: Light snack served on the flight.

Afternoon: Arrive to Baltra Island.

Baltra Island hosts one of the two available airports in the Galapagos Islands. The other airport is located on San Cristobal Island.

Transfer to pier to board yacht.
Welcome orientation and light snack.

Field trip to Playa las Bachas on Santa Cruz Island with a site lecture about local flora and fauna. Visit the the flamingo lagoon.

Bachas Beach is an important nesting site for sea turtles and a great place to look for migratory birds, pelagic species and flamingos.

Optional swimming and snorkeling. The yacht also has 2 kayaks that may be utilized during this time which are on a first come, first serve basis.

Return to the yacht.


Dinner: Dinner onboard and welcome cocktail with the crew.

Evening: Orientation to the next day's activities.

Lodging: Tip Top III

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Cruise Ship

Description: Twin main engines, twin electric generators, twin Radars, Eco-sounders and GPS, Reverse Osmosis Water Maker, coastguard required safety equipment and twelve knot cruising speed.

Ship Information: The Tip Top III is a First Class Steel-hulled Motor Yacht built in Guayaquil/Ecuador in 2001. Dimensions: 100 feet of length, 22 feet of beam and a 5 feet Draft.

Contact info:
000
Galapagos, Ecuador
phone: +0000000000
web: www.rwittmer.com

Room amenities: All cabins have private bathrooms, porthole or window, and a/c.

Facility amenities: The Tip Top III accommodates up to 16 guests in 10 cabins, each with private bathroom. The Upper Deck features four cabins with one double lower berth and one single lower berth. Cabins, Bar, dining room and lounge are fully carpeted. A beautiful teak floored sun deck creates a delightful place for resting and relaxing on board.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.


Day Six: Saturday, November 01 - Galapagos - Santiago and Bartolomé islands
Breakfast: Breakfast onboard.

Morning: Field trip: Wet landing on the white sand beach in Sullivan Bay, Santiago Island. Enjoy a walking exploration of the lava flows to observe and learn about the island's fascinating geological features.

A volcanic eruption that took place on Santiago Island in the early 1900’s formed huge lava flows in the area that is now Sullivan Bay. As the lava cooled off, it solidified into a black sheet of interesting shapes and textures that made their way to the sea. The rope-like lava seen on this island is called pahoehoe lava. Other interesting formations include lava bubbles and tree shapes; ghosts of Santiago’s past. Few plant species have been able to root in this harsh environment.

Optional swimming and snorkeling.

Return to the yacht.


Lunch: Lunch onboard.

Afternoon: Dry landing on Bartolomé for a hiking field trip up a dormant volcano with a site lecture. View volcanic formations such as lava bombs, spatter, and cinder cones. From the summit, we will be able to enjoy post card views of Pinnacle Rock and nearby islands.

Pinnacle Rock, the "Guardian of the Isles" rises sharply from the coast of Bartolomé. The lunar-like landscape is home to one of the islands' most endearing residents: the Galapagos Penguin. The penguins make their home here, fishing in the waters nearby. After spending part of the year in the cooler waters off of Isabela and Fernandina, the penguins return in August in order to prepare for courtship in September.

Optional swimming and snorkeling.

Return to the yacht.


Dinner: Dinner onboard.

Evening: Orientation of next day's activities.

Lodging: Tip Top III

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Cruise Ship

Description: Twin main engines, twin electric generators, twin Radars, Eco-sounders and GPS, Reverse Osmosis Water Maker, coastguard required safety equipment and twelve knot cruising speed.

Ship Information: The Tip Top III is a First Class Steel-hulled Motor Yacht built in Guayaquil/Ecuador in 2001. Dimensions: 100 feet of length, 22 feet of beam and a 5 feet Draft.

Contact info:
000
Galapagos, Ecuador
phone: +0000000000
web: www.rwittmer.com

Room amenities: All cabins have private bathrooms, porthole or window, and a/c.

Facility amenities: The Tip Top III accommodates up to 16 guests in 10 cabins, each with private bathroom. The Upper Deck features four cabins with one double lower berth and one single lower berth. Cabins, Bar, dining room and lounge are fully carpeted. A beautiful teak floored sun deck creates a delightful place for resting and relaxing on board.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.


Day Seven: Sunday, November 02 - Galapagos - Genovesa Island (Darwin's Bay & ...
Galapagos -
Genovesa Island (Darwin's Bay & Prince Phillip's Steps)


Breakfast: Breakfast onboard.

Morning: Field trip to Prince Phillip's Steps, Genovesa Island for bird watching and site lecture.

Prince Phillip's Steps is a trail which leads up a steep rock staircase through squadrons of Frigatebirds and Red-billed Tropicbirds. Red-footed Boobies perch on the branches of Palo Santo trees, and Storm Petrels, which serve as prey for Short Eared Owls, are found in the open lava fields at the end of the trail. Along the beaches and rocky alcoves, sea lions are the main stars. Females give birth in August and by September, while still nursing their pups, begin searching for new mates. During this time, visitors should be particularly mindful of aggressive males fighting for territory and females protecting their young (pupping continues through November).

Optional swimming, snorkeling and sea kayaking.

Return to the yacht.

Lunch: Lunch onboard.

Afternoon: Wet landing in Darwin's Bay, Genovesa Island.

Genovesa's volcanic sea cliffs and salt bush offer a prime habitat for the birds of the Galapagos. August is a particularly active time, with large numbers of Red-footed Boobies congregating on the island while Nazca Boobies (aka Masked Boobies) and Swallow-tailed Gulls go about their nesting rituals.

Darwin Bay is the caldera of an extinct volcano which has been partially eroded and offers superb swimming and snorkeling.

Optional swimming and snorkeling.

Dinner: Dinner onboard.

Evening: Orientation of next day's activities.

Lodging: Tip Top III

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Cruise Ship

Description: Twin main engines, twin electric generators, twin Radars, Eco-sounders and GPS, Reverse Osmosis Water Maker, coastguard required safety equipment and twelve knot cruising speed.

Ship Information: The Tip Top III is a First Class Steel-hulled Motor Yacht built in Guayaquil/Ecuador in 2001. Dimensions: 100 feet of length, 22 feet of beam and a 5 feet Draft.

Contact info:
000
Galapagos, Ecuador
phone: +0000000000
web: www.rwittmer.com

Room amenities: All cabins have private bathrooms, porthole or window, and a/c.

Facility amenities: The Tip Top III accommodates up to 16 guests in 10 cabins, each with private bathroom. The Upper Deck features four cabins with one double lower berth and one single lower berth. Cabins, Bar, dining room and lounge are fully carpeted. A beautiful teak floored sun deck creates a delightful place for resting and relaxing on board.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.


Day Eight: Monday, November 03 - Galapagos - Santiago (Puerto Egas/James Bay...
Breakfast: Breakfast onboard.

Morning: Field trip to Puerto Egas, Santiago Island.

Also called San Salvador, this island is the fourth largest in the Galapagos. Puerto Egas, located on James Bay on the western side of the island, has black volcanic formations that provide shelter to a number of creatures. Here you will see marine iguanas sunning themselves on the rocks while sea birds fly overhead in search of food. Brightly colored Sally Lightfoot crabs live in the rock crevices and tide pools; a sharp contrast to the black lava formations they call home. Galápagos fur seals enjoy the inlets along the western shoreline and have been known to swim with visitors from time to time.

Optional swimming and snorkeling and sea kayaking

. Return to the yatch


Lunch: Lunch onboard.

Afternoon: Afternoon visit to Buccaneer Cove on Santiago's northwestern tip.

Navigate around the island's craggy cliffs searching for seabirds that come here to nest. In the 17th and 18th centuries, pirates and whalers reportedly used the cove as a safe place to rest and load up on supplies such as water and food. During that time, passing ships released goats on the island in the hopes that they would multiply and be a source of food for subsequent voyages. However, without any natural predators to hold their numbers in check, the animals became feral and depleted most of Santiago's vegetation. In the 1970s the national park began an extermination program in an effort to eradicate feral goats, pigs, and cats in the islands.

Optional swimming and snorkeling.

Later in the afternoon visit the Minas de Sal (Salt Mines) located northwest of Santiago Island.

Return to the yacht.


Dinner: Dinner onboard.

Evening: Orientation of next day’s activities.

Lodging: Tip Top III

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Cruise Ship

Description: Twin main engines, twin electric generators, twin Radars, Eco-sounders and GPS, Reverse Osmosis Water Maker, coastguard required safety equipment and twelve knot cruising speed.

Ship Information: The Tip Top III is a First Class Steel-hulled Motor Yacht built in Guayaquil/Ecuador in 2001. Dimensions: 100 feet of length, 22 feet of beam and a 5 feet Draft.

Contact info:
000
Galapagos, Ecuador
phone: +0000000000
web: www.rwittmer.com

Room amenities: All cabins have private bathrooms, porthole or window, and a/c.

Facility amenities: The Tip Top III accommodates up to 16 guests in 10 cabins, each with private bathroom. The Upper Deck features four cabins with one double lower berth and one single lower berth. Cabins, Bar, dining room and lounge are fully carpeted. A beautiful teak floored sun deck creates a delightful place for resting and relaxing on board.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.


Day Nine: Tuesday, November 04 - Galapagos - Isabela & Fernandina Islands (Pu...
Galapagos -
Isabela & Fernandina Islands (Punta Vicente Roca & Punta Espinoza)


Breakfast: Breakfast onboard.

Morning: Excursion: Panga ride to Punta Vicente Roca, Isabela Island in search of seabirds and marine life.

As cold currents flow around the northwestern tip of Isabela, food-rich waters are brought closer to the surface, attracting all sorts of marine life and birds. Punta Vicente Roca's coves, rich marine life, and well protected bay have turned this into a prized diving location in the islands. Flightless Cormorants, Masked Boobies and Blue-footed Boobies can be seen along the cliffs and the water's edge.

Optional swimming and snorkeling.

Return to the yacht.


Lunch: Lunch onboard.

Afternoon: Field trip: Dry landing at Punta Espinoza, Fernandina Island. During this afternoon hike, participants will have a chance to observe the island's unique volcanic formations and search for resident wildlife.

This young island is the third largest in the Galápagos and is also the westernmost; located next to Isabela Island. Fernandina has some of the most dramatic landscapes found in the archipelago. The aa and pahoehoe lava formations create a unique landscape and provide visitors with a great chance to study lava flows and the forces which gave birth to the Galápagos Islands. Although Punta Espinosa is better known for its large colony of marine iguanas, one can also expect to see sea lions, Flightless Cormorants and Galápagos Penguins (February - July).Flightless Cormornats begin exhibiting courting and nesting behavior in July.

Return to the yacht


Dinner: Dinner onboard.

Evening: Orientation of next day's activities and lecture.

Lodging: Tip Top III

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Cruise Ship

Description: Twin main engines, twin electric generators, twin Radars, Eco-sounders and GPS, Reverse Osmosis Water Maker, coastguard required safety equipment and twelve knot cruising speed.

Ship Information: The Tip Top III is a First Class Steel-hulled Motor Yacht built in Guayaquil/Ecuador in 2001. Dimensions: 100 feet of length, 22 feet of beam and a 5 feet Draft.

Contact info:
000
Galapagos, Ecuador
phone: +0000000000
web: www.rwittmer.com

Room amenities: All cabins have private bathrooms, porthole or window, and a/c.

Facility amenities: The Tip Top III accommodates up to 16 guests in 10 cabins, each with private bathroom. The Upper Deck features four cabins with one double lower berth and one single lower berth. Cabins, Bar, dining room and lounge are fully carpeted. A beautiful teak floored sun deck creates a delightful place for resting and relaxing on board.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.


Day Ten: Wednesday, November 05 - Galapagos - Isabela Island (Tagus Cove & Eli...
Breakfast: Breakfast onboard.

Morning: Wet landing on Urbina Bay. Search for resident wildlife and observe the remains of a coral reef on land during a walk along the bay.

Urbina Bay is situated approximately two fifths of the way along Isabela’s western coast. The flattened area of the bay exhibits signs of a coral reef on land; proof that the flat land we see today in that area was once uplifted from the sea. Cormorants, pelicans, marine iguanas, and Flightless Cormorants frequent this site in addition to marine turtles and rays which are sometimes seen swimming in the bay.

Optional swimming and snorkeling.

Later this morning, take a panga ride to Tagus Cove for a chance to spot resident seabirds and examine historical graffiti left on cliff walls by early sailors. A walk on the lower slopes of Volcan Darwin provides the perfect opportunity for a site lecture on lava formations.

Some of the most popular sites on Isabela are located on its western coast and take longer to reach (especially on smaller boats), so this island is oftentimes not included on shorter itineraries. Tagus Cove offers visitors the opportunity to see writings (carved and painted) left behind by pirates and whalers who frequented the area in years gone by. A short trail leads to the base of the Darwin Volcano where different lava formations can be studied. The island is home to Flightless Cormorants, Galápagos Penguins, Mangrove Finches, pelicans, marine iguanas and a variety of other birds.

Optional swimming and snorkeling.

Return to the yacht.


Lunch: Lunch onboard.

Afternoon: Panga ride to Elizabeth Bay with site lecture: Marine Species of the Galápagos Islands.

While following the lower western edge of this large island, we will reach a site that is well known for its marine life. Elizabeth Bay is situated in the crook of Isabela’s ‘arm’ as it begins to bulge and form the southern portion of the island. This site is reached by boat and generally does not include land excursions. The bay is home to a large number of sea and shore birds, as well as Marine turtles and rays. A short boat ride to the end of the bay, to the nearby Mariela Islands, is a nice option for those who wish to see Galápagos Penguins.



Dinner: Dinner onboard.

Evening: Orientation of next day's activities.

Lodging: Tip Top III

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Cruise Ship

Description: Twin main engines, twin electric generators, twin Radars, Eco-sounders and GPS, Reverse Osmosis Water Maker, coastguard required safety equipment and twelve knot cruising speed.

Ship Information: The Tip Top III is a First Class Steel-hulled Motor Yacht built in Guayaquil/Ecuador in 2001. Dimensions: 100 feet of length, 22 feet of beam and a 5 feet Draft.

Contact info:
000
Galapagos, Ecuador
phone: +0000000000
web: www.rwittmer.com

Room amenities: All cabins have private bathrooms, porthole or window, and a/c.

Facility amenities: The Tip Top III accommodates up to 16 guests in 10 cabins, each with private bathroom. The Upper Deck features four cabins with one double lower berth and one single lower berth. Cabins, Bar, dining room and lounge are fully carpeted. A beautiful teak floored sun deck creates a delightful place for resting and relaxing on board.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.


Day Eleven: Thursday, November 06 - Galapagos - Isabela Island (Volcan Chico, Br...
Galapagos -
Isabela Island (Volcan Chico, Breeding Center & Poza de las Tintoreras)


Breakfast: Breakfast onboard.

Morning: Dry landing on Isabela Island for a field trip to Las Tintoreras, located 10 minutes south of Puerto Villamil.

Las Tintoreras is an islet on Isabela known for its rich marine life. Tide pools provide visitors the perfect chance to view tropical fish as they are temporarily trapped within a crevice. The calm and crystal clear waters make it easy to view the marine life below.

After exploring Las Tintoreras, take an excursion around Sierra Negra Volcano.

Isabela Island, the largest island in the archipelago, is made of a chain of five volcanoes which are periodically active. Volcano Wolf is the highest point on the island and in the archipelago, but Sierra Negra is the largest of the five major volcanoes on Isabela. Sierra Negra is a shield volcano, with a large and shallow caldera and relatively flat slopes. In October of 2005, it erupted after a period of seismic activity and lava from the eruption covered up to 14 square kilometers of the caldera floor. Both old and new lava formations can be spotted in the area including cinder cones, tuff cones, and spatter cones.

Return to the yacht.
 

Lunch: Lunch onboard.

Afternoon: This afternoon, enjoy a field trip to the Breeding Center Arnaldo Tupiza, where visitors can view tortoises of different ages and sizes and learn about the local captive-breeding project. Be on the lookout for land iguanas exhibiting courtship behavior in preparation for the breeding season in January. The land iguana eggs begin hatching in April, a time when visitors can catch a glimpse of multiple generations of iguanas making their way around the island.

On the way back to the yacht, visit the wetlands or Humedales. Study the flora of this unique ecosystem and look for shorebirds and waders. The lagoons attract many migrant birds--making this site one of the best water-bird areas in the islands. Also nearby is the Wall of Tears, a historically important location where prisoners built a wall with lava blocks as punishment.

Return to the yacht.


Dinner: Dinner onboard.

Evening: Orientation of next day's activities.

Lodging: Tip Top III

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Hotel

Description: The hotel is located conveniently near the Quito international airport in the beautiful village of Puembo.

Contact info:
Manuel Burbano N6-66 y Francisco Ruiz
Puembo, 00000 Ecuador
phone: +593-2-2391106
web: http://www.rincondepuembo.com/en/

Room amenities: Air conditioning, iron/ironing board, hair dryer, telephone, Wi-Fi, and cable TV.

Facility amenities: Restaurants, large gardens, heated pool, sauna, Jacuzzi, gym
, business center, Wi-Fi, laundry service, room service, a chapel, and a TV and reading room. The hotel also provides a number of entertainment options such as: billiards, table football, karaoke room, and soccer, basketball, and volleyball courts.

Smoking policy: Yes
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Additional nights after: Subject to availability
Additional hotel nights are subject to availability. Please contact the program coordinator, Holbrook Travel, at 1-800-866-7111 or roadscholarprograms@holbrooktravel.com for information on availability and prices.


Day Twelve: Friday, November 07 - Galapagos - Santa Cruz Island. Flight t...
Breakfast: Breakfast onboard.

Morning: Morning instruction for the return to Quito. Transfer to the airport on Baltra Island to catch a flight to Quito.
br>

Lunch: Light lunch served on the flight.

Afternoon: Arrive to Quito.
Transfer to the hotel.



Dinner: Farewell dinner at the hotel.

Evening: Depending on the international carrier used, participants will either check-out of the hotel and transfer to the international airport for a late night/early morning flight or spend the night at the hotel and depart early the next morning.

Participants who depart on the evening of Day 10 will not miss any program activities.

Lodging: Hosteria Rincon de Puembo

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day Thirteen: Saturday, November 08 - Depart from Quito. Arrive to the USA.
Depart From: Transfer to Quito's Mariscal Sucre International Airport for flight to the U.S.

Note: Participants with independent travel arrangements and/or scheduled on later flights can keep their hotel rooms until check-out time on this day. Except for breakfast, all other meals are on your own on this day.

Breakfast: Early morning breakfast at the hotel restaurant (dependent on flight times).

Meals Included: Breakfast

Important information about your itinerary:
Please know that while we do everything we can to finalize all aspects of our programs well in advance, there are logistics that occasionally must be altered. Our website will reflect the most recent information, and we are committed to providing you with final program details no later than eight weeks prior to the start of programs outside the U.S. and three weeks prior to the start of programs within the U.S. If you ever have questions about your program, please don't hesitate to contact us and we will be happy to assist you.
Currently selected:Prices Starting At:
Oct 27 — Nov 8, 2014 waitlist only  

Our Value Promise To You

You won't find a better value.

Included
at no additional cost on this date ...
12 nights of accommodations
34 meals: 12 breakfasts, 11 lunches, 11 dinners
9 Expert-led lectures
16 Field trips
1 Hands-on experiences
3 Flights during the program

Ratings

4.6
Ratings are determined by participant evaluations.

Support Lifelong Learning

Our educational adventures are made possible by donors like you

Please support lifelong learning here

Free Catalog | Refer a Friend | Gift Certificates | Press | Site Map | Privacy Policy | Careers | Contact Us

© Elderhostel, Inc. 2014
11 Avenue de Lafayette | Boston MA 02111 | Toll-Free 1-800-454-5768