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Adventures Afloat: The Galápagos: Natural and Cultural History

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Road Scholar
Program #6043RJ

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11 Days | 10 Nights
ACTIVITY LEVEL: Moderately Challenging
Road Scholar has thousands of educational adventures to choose from. A good way to narrow down our list is to browse our collection of "Most Popular" programs.
See all of our Most Popular programs.
Love to learn in a small-group setting? This collection of programs has at most 10-24 participants.
See our Small Group programs.
EasyFor people looking to exercise their minds more than their bodies. 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.
Linda from Highland Park, IL Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 01/20/16 - 01/30/16
The Galapagos trip is extraordinary. We saw various stages of Island development from lava to jungle. We saw birds and reptiles unique to the Galapagos. The group was terrific. The leader was superb. I loved his trip and would turn around and go again tomorrow.

Jane from Princeton, NJ Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 11/08/15 - 11/18/15
This program was absolutely outstanding and the trip of a lifetime. Although I signed up with high expectations, the trip actually managed to exceed them! For someone like me who loves hiking, swimming, and snorkeling in remote outdoor areas, and who is interested in learning science in situ, it was an ideal combination of setting and activities. What we learned through the day trips and evening lectures spanned geology, biology, climatology and a bit of oceanography. Coupled with the recommended ("essential") readings, it was a wonderful learning experience. The snorkeling was a real treat, with up close swimming encounters with sea lions, sea turtles, marine iguanas, cormorants, penguins, sharks, and many, many kinds of fish. What a privilege to experience the Galapagos!

Donna from West Vancouver, BC Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 10/04/15 - 10/14/15
I found the tour of Quito and the Galapagos very interesting. The leaders were fantastic and gave us great information about their history, country and the Ecuadorian way of life. The opportunity to see the birds and animals of the Galapagos was amazing and the snorkelling was some of the best I have done.

Alvin from Eugene, OR Number of programs attended: 7
Date attended: 10/18/15 - 10/28/15
The experience was well organized. It strictly follows the Galapagos National Park restrictions. The leaders are well trained; the crew of the ship was friendly and helpful. The trip should be especially attractive to participants who like to snorkel.

Sue from Calgary, AB Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 09/23/15 - 10/03/15
Road Scholar not only met, but exceeded our expectations on our trip to the Galapagos Islands.

BETTY from Deerfield, NH Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 03/22/15 - 04/01/15
This program is exactly as described. Close attention should be payed to the clothing required and the activity level. It is a totally "outside the box" experience unlike anything else.

Judy from New Paltz, NY Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 01/23/15 - 02/02/15
My Galapagos adventure was definitely all I hoped for and more. It was one of the most exciting weeks of my life, living aboard a small boat and landing on the islands twice each day, and getting up close to such fascinating wildlife including nursing sea lions, courting bird couples, Marine Iguanas so ugly they were really cute! Fairly strenuous but I'm 80, in good health, and I could keep us.

Sandy from Houston, TX Number of programs attended: 3
Date attended: 01/23/15 - 02/02/15
We just returned from this trip, Jan. 23 - Feb. 2. It is amazing. Our guide was Edgar Vargas and he the best possible person for this trip. He offered talks every evening covering everything including history of the islands, geology, adaptation of the animals and much more. He is a Galapagos native and a former biology teacher. I encourage anyone who is interested in a fun filled, active, educational tour to sign up for this one.

Joyce from La Canada, CA Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 11/23/14 - 12/03/14
The program was very interesting and we thoroughly enjoyed meeting the people. The itinerary was good, we saw lots of things. The one big problem was the boat, which should have been mothballed several years ago. It was in very bad condition - motor failure, no ventilation in the rooms and rust and mold. The crew on the other hand was great

Robert from Thunder Bay, ON Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 11/23/14 - 12/03/14
Wonderful snorkeling. The abundance of marine and land based fauna was extraordinary. The climate at the end of November was perfect. No rain, but often overcast and usually cool. There was only 1 lecture. I had expected more when I signed up for a Roads Scholar trip. There was lots of free time travelling between islands, but we were offered nothing educational during it. Food was great. Ship size excellent - 20 people.

Aline from Gardiner, NY Number of programs attended: 15
Date attended: 10/26/14 - 11/05/14
If a trip to the Galapagos is on your bucket list, do it now. Don't hesitate.

Diane from Wheaton, IL Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 10/26/14 - 11/05/14
This program exceeded our expectations. We saw incredible wildlife on the Galapagos, including, sea lions, marine and land iguana, giant tortoises, and blue footed boobies.During my six snorkeling adventures I swam with sea turtles, sea lions, cormorants, and penguins!

Linda from Alameda, CA Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 10/26/14 - 11/05/14
Our 7 day tour of the Galapagos was wonderful! We saw and learned so much. What a special place! So glad they are taking such good care of the whole region. The food was great. Although all the land tours and hikes were awesome, the highlight of the program for me was snorkeling with sea turtles, sea lions, and the occasional penguin! I worried that the water might be too cold, but the long wet suit solved that issue. Even the zodiac rides on and off the boat were fun, as there was so much to see. The group areas on the boat were great so we had lots of time to get to know the other participants. The crew and guides took good care of us.

Jane from Cocoa Beach, FL Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 10/12/14 - 10/22/14
The Galapagos trip brought awe, smiles and tears. Seeing land and marine life that are being protected from people, seeing islands with no power lines, no litter and few tourist shops all helped make this a top of the line experience. Jane Cocoa Beach, FL

Michael from Saratoga Springs, NY Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 10/26/14 - 11/05/14
The Road Scholar website does a great job in describing their programs in words, pictures and video. It should be a must in deciding on future trips as well as understanding details of a trip prior to departure.

Joan from Lowell, MA Number of programs attended: 11
Date attended: 10/19/14 - 10/29/14
The Road Scholar trip to the Galapagos Islands was outstanding. An extremely compatible group of fellow travelers, an excellent guide who was both knowledgeable and passionate about his "home," and a boat crew that went out of its way to accommodate and please. Joan Kerzner, Lowell, MA

Lynne from Flourtown, PA Number of programs attended: 24
Date attended: 10/19/14 - 10/29/14
The Galapagos are truly special, and I feel that our tour was just about as close to perfect as can be. Wonderful group, passionately knowledgeable guide, hospitable crew, and magnificent close-up experiences with the animals.

Reiner from Bellevue, WA Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 10/19/14 - 10/29/14
Galapagos - an island group like no place in the world and Road Scholar does it right with experts who know it and love it!

Barbara from Rockton, IL Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 09/21/14 - 10/01/14
The Galapagos trip was a true adventure. While the trip was challenging, I truly enjoyed all of the unique experiences. The Galapagos group guides, Daniel and Elizabeth, were well educated and had superb knowledge of the Galapagos Islands and the wildlife, all imparted with great senses of humor.

Alice from New York, NY Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 09/21/14 - 10/01/14
A really wonderful adventure chock full of field trips and snorkeling excursions led by enthusiastic group leaders. If you are prone to seasickness, bring appropriate medications

Don from Morrilton, AR Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 08/17/14 - 08/27/14
This program was everything we dreamed it would be. Elizabeth, our guide, the Galaven crew, the Galapagos islands wildlife, and the weather all conspired to give us a picture perfect adventure in the archipelago. Travel was comfortable, the length of the hikes was just right, and we checked off animal after animal that we'd hoped to see. I only wish we'd snorkeled more.

Roger from Oro Valley, AZ Number of programs attended: 3
Date attended: 08/17/14 - 08/27/14
Our tour guide in the Galapagos, Elizabeth Coral S., was knowledgeable about everything there. She was friendly and courteous to all of us. Our dining experience was only a bit short of "gourmet." I am not aware of any participant being sick; they did not fall on the yacht or on shore. With the exception of being rained out of one destination, daily excursions were perfect.

Jennifer from Long Beach, CA Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 04/13/14 - 04/23/14
The trip was great and we saw amazing once in a lifetime animals and birds. The boat though the Galevan needs some serious upgrading-cleaning. I wouldn't go on this trip unless you are sure the boat has changed or has been improved. One bunk had no air conditioning the entire trip. It was in the bottom of the boat and absolutely horrible for those folks. Many folks got sick including me and my mother-be wary of the food and water but you have not option but to drink the water on the boat. The guides on the boat were ok but not very friendly or personable. Didn't make a connection with them. One was very opinionated and spouted a ton of his personal beliefs about biology and evolution that simply were not true. I had a hard time swallowing that as a biologist myself. RS received so many complaints about the trip they gave all the participants a credit for a future RS trip. We are all wary of doing another trip though

Marilyn from Phoenix, AZ Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 05/11/14 - 05/21/14
Awesome trip, amazing sights and wildlife. The guides were very knowledgeable and informative and passed on to us their love of the Galapagos and its uniqueness.

Ann from Buena Vista, CO Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 05/25/14 - 06/04/14
This program was outstanding in all ways. I would recommend it to anybody and would love to do it again.

Stewart from Columbia, SC Number of programs attended: 15
Date attended: 05/11/14 - 05/21/14
I found the Galapagos experience to be everything I wanted. The Galaven crew were very good and we had great meals. They catered to our individual needs and watched out for everyone.

Byron Wayne from Pensacola, FL Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 05/11/14 - 05/21/14
Excellent way to experience Galapagos.

Hyatt from Tucson, AZ Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 02/16/14 - 02/26/14
This was our first Road Scholar trip, and we thoroughly enjoyed it--seeing all the incredible wildlife and habitat was a true once-in-a-lifetime experience! It is extremely gratifying to know how dedicated Ecuador is to protecting it for the world to see. The boat, the guides, the staff were all great. The only downside was that 7 out of 20 passengers had intestinal problems--likely culprit was a food source. Perhaps the Galaven should reconsider serving salads! Otherwise, meals were very good.

Peggy from Reno, NV Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 02/16/14 - 02/26/14
The Galapagos trip was amazing! The guides were terrific, the boat and staff wonderful, and the land and snorkeling activities perfect. I also enjoyed the day in Quito before leaving for the Galapagos Islands.

Suzanne from Miami, FL Number of programs attended: 7
Date attended: 02/16/14 - 02/26/14
I enjoyed this trip immensely and would have enjoyed it more if I had not gotten diarrhea towards the end of the trip. Recommend that bring Immodium and not eat the lettuce or any other uncooked vegetable. I believe this is what caused my diarrhea. About 60% of us had this problem. Today my doctor told me it's never a good idea to eat the lettuce when in South America. The guides were wonderful and we had good weather. Recommend renting a wet suit as the water is cold. Bring earplugs, too.

Jill from Plymouth, MN Number of programs attended: 2
Date attended: 02/09/14 - 02/19/14
Here's a chance to push yourself out of your comfort zone and experience a one of a kind environment which reinforces how we must all care for the world we inhabit. This is not a luxury cruise experience but is an adventurous opportunity to see the beauty of Quito and the Galapagos Islands flora and fabulous, unique fauna. Lots of snorkeling and beach time is included as well as daily hikes with excellent well educated, articulate guides.

Bette from Mesa, AZ Number of programs attended: 1
Date attended: 02/09/14 - 02/19/14
Five days on the Galapagos Islands is perfect. To protect yourself vs the sun gloves, scarves and a large hat is a must. The guides were great and ever so accommodating for every visitor. This was a great experience. BP

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"Jerry & Carol Wood on their first day in Quito" Uploaded By: Jerry

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"Stopping for a group shot at Bartolome Is." Uploaded By: Holbrook

"Most difficult climb - week 1, Tip Top II" Uploaded By: Alex

"Marine iguanas basked by the thousands at Fernandina" Uploaded By: Dale

"A giant tortoise lumbered behind us; we meandered for our lives!" Uploaded By: Dale

"Two birds fight on Prince Phillip's Steps" Uploaded By: Dale

"Old Soul" Uploaded By: Ruth

"Galapagos Penquin" Uploaded By: Ruth

"Cormorants Drying Tiny Wings" Uploaded By: Ruth

"Marine Iguanas" Uploaded By: Ruth

"Orlando" Uploaded By: Ruth

"Frigate Bird - Male Warming Up" Uploaded By: Ruth

"Oyster Catchers w/ Egg(s)" Uploaded By: Ruth

"Flightless Cormorant" Uploaded By: Ruth

"Blue Footed Boobies" Uploaded By: Ruth

"Galapagos Green Turtle" Uploaded By: Ruth

"Western Pacific Sea Tortoise" Uploaded By: Ruth

"Old Quito+" Uploaded By: Ruth

"Lunch In Quito" Uploaded By: Ruth

"Indigenous" Uploaded By: Ruth

"Lunch In Quito" Uploaded By: Ruth

"In Action" Uploaded By: Ruth

"large land tortoises" Uploaded By: Ruth

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"Booting Up" Uploaded By: Ruth

"Back Off!!!!" Uploaded By: Ruth

"Marine Iguana" Uploaded By: Ruth

"Mama & Newborn Pup" Uploaded By: Ruth

"Introduced Species -- Young Adult 2" Uploaded By: Ruth

"Introduced Species -- Young Adult" Uploaded By: Ruth

"Immature Land Tortoises" Uploaded By: Ruth

"Briefing" Uploaded By: Ruth

"David At The Helm" Uploaded By: Ruth

"Rare Quiet Moment" Uploaded By: Ruth

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"Prince Phillp's Steps by Carol McCormack" Uploaded By: Carol Attended: 02/24/10 - 03/06/10

"Galapagos Dove by Carol McCormack " Uploaded By: Carol Attended: 02/24/10 - 03/06/10

"Blue-Footed Boobies by Carol McCormack" Uploaded By: Carol Attended: 02/24/10 - 03/06/10

"John and Baby Sea Lions by Carol McCormack " Uploaded By: Carol Attended: 02/24/10 - 03/06/10

"Sally Lightfoot Crab by Carol McCormack " Uploaded By: Carol Attended: 02/24/10 - 03/06/10

"Galapagos Land Iguana by Carol McCormack" Uploaded By: Carol Attended: 02/24/10 - 03/06/10

"Yellow-Crowned Night-Heron by Carol McCormack" Uploaded By: Carol Attended: 02/24/10 - 03/06/10

"Streets of old Quito" Uploaded By: Frank

"Colonial Quito" Uploaded By: Frank

"Bario Santa Ana, Guayaquil" Uploaded By: Frank

"Land iguana, Galápagos Islands" Uploaded By: Frank

"Red-footed Boobie, Galápagos Islands" Uploaded By: Frank

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"Wet landing in the Galápagos " Uploaded By: Frank

"Prince Phillip's Steps, Tower Is (a.k.a. Genovesa)" Uploaded By: Frank

"Prince Phillip's Steps, Tower Is (a.k.a. Genovesa)" Uploaded By: Frank

"Galápagos Islands" Uploaded By: Frank

"Charles Darwin Research Station, Sta Cruz Is" Uploaded By: Frank
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"Underwater Life in the Galápagos Islands" Uploaded By: Holbrook
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Our Value Promise To You

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at no additional cost on this date ...
10 nights of accommodations
28 meals: 10 breakfasts, 9 lunches, 9 dinners
3 Expert-led lectures
16 Field trips
2 Flights during the program


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