Amazon Basin & Galapagos Islands Family Adventure

From: $3,399

per person dbl occ

Dates: Feb-Dec - see all dates

Total Days: 10

Activity Level: 3

Reserve This Trip

1-800-622-2236

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Monday–Friday,
7 AM to 5 PM Pacific Time

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Price:

2014

REI member: $3,399

Non-member: $3,764

2015

REI member: $3,599

Non-member: $3,949

Additional Fees

Internal flights: $600 ($500 for kids under 12)

Galapagos National Park fee: $100 ($50 for kids age 8-11)

Holiday supplement: $200

Special payment and cancellation policy applies to all departures; see Trip Details tab for more information.

Kids' Discount: $400 Discount for kids 8-17 years old at the time of the trip when sharing a room with a full paying guest.

Trip Dates:

2014

  • Jun 20–29 Sold out
  • Jun 26 – Jul 5
  • Jun 29 – Jul 8 Sold out
  • Jul 6–15
  • Jul 13–22
  • Jul 14–23
  • Jul 20–29
  • Jul 27 – Aug 5
  • Jul 31 – Aug 9
  • Aug 10–19
  • Aug 17–26
  • Nov 23 – Dec 2
  • Dec 19–28 H
  • Dec 21–30 H
  • Dec 27 – Jan 5 H

H = Mandatory holiday supplement applies.

2015

  • Feb 13–22
  • Mar 7–16
  • Mar 20–29
  • Apr 3–12
  • Apr 10–19
  • Jun 19–28
  • Jun 25 – Jul 4
  • Jun 26 – Jul 5
  • Jul 3–12
  • Jul 10–19
  • Jul 17–26
  • Jul 24 – Aug 2
  • Aug 7–16
  • Aug 14–23
  • Nov 20–29
  • Dec 18–27 H
  • Dec 20–29 H
  • Dec 26 – Jan 4 H

H = Mandatory holiday supplement applies.


Or, book a
private departure.

Group Size: 4-14

Activity Level: 3

Activities:

  • Hiking
  • Rafting
  • Snorkeling
  • Sea Kayaking
  • Biking

Accommodations:

Hotel/lodges, 7 nights; Jungle lodge, 2 nights

Trip Highlights

  • Make memories on a world-class family vacation to the Galapagos and Amazon
  • Go rafting, kayak pristine waters, hike along volcanoes, and snorkel amid wildlife
  • Relax in hot springs and visit a secluded community to learn ancient traditions
  • Follow an itinerary designed with the whole family in mind

This dream-come-true family vacation is chock-full of fun as we journey from the steamy jungles of the Upper Amazon Basin to the primeval islands of the Galapagos archipelago.

From Quito, we head southeast over the Eastern Cordillera through the Andean highlands before dropping into the lush Amazon basin. Spend a day rock-and-roll rafting on the remote Rio Jatunyacu (Class III), visit with the people of a Shiripuno Kichwa village to learn about their ancient Amazonian traditions, and soak in the famed Papallacta Hot Springs high in the Andes.

Then it's off to Darwin's enchanting Galapagos Islands for several days of incredibly-close wildlife encounters while you kayak in turquoise waters, swim off white sandy beaches, hike near active volcanoes, bike through the tortoise highlands, and snorkel in this one-of-a-kind marine reserve. The Galapagos Islands are a treasure trove of natural history and biodiversity. Our active family adventure immerses you up-close-and-personal in the best of it!

REI Flash 18 Pack

Kids get an REI day pack — Kids traveling on our Family Adventures will receive an REI day pack for their adventure! Kids age 8-17 will receive the REI Flash 18 Pack (while quantities last, colors may vary). Learn more about REI Family Adventures.

Not traveling with kids under 18? Check out our Galapagos Islands & Otavalo Highlands Multisport trip.

Itinerary Summary

  • Day 1 - Welcome to Ecuador where our family adventure begins in Quito!
  • Day 2 - Boat to a community where we learn about Amazon Kichwa traditions.
  • Day 3 - Explore Llanganates National Park on a whitewater rafting adventure.
  • Day 4 - Say goodbye to the Amazon with a dip in the Papallacta Hot Springs.
  • Day 5 - Galapagos bound! Travel to the Chato Reserve to search for tortoises.
  • Day 6 - Kayak in search of iguanas, sharks, rays, and more!
  • Day 7 - Explore Isabela Island; bike the coast to the historic Wall of Tears.
  • Day 8 - Hike to the top of Sierra Negra volcano; enjoy a farewell dinner.
  • Day 9 - Return to Quito for a free day to explore this unique town.
  • Day 10 - Our Amazon Basin and Galapagos Islands Family Adventure ends.

See full itinerary

Trip Itinerary and Details

Important Notice: Day 1 is the day you should plan to arrive at the meeting point for the trip. This may require departing your hometown one or more days in advance and traveling on an overnight flight.

  • Day 1 - Welcome to Ecuador where our family adventure begins in Quito!

    Arrive in Quito any time today and REI provides the transfer to our hotel for the evening. All meals on your own.

  • Day 2 - Boat to a community where we learn about Amazon Kichwa traditions.

    We depart early from Quito and head east on a scenic road over a high Andean pass in the Eastern Cordillera (13,335') that descends into the upper Amazon Basin and the small Kichwa town of Tena. Continuing a short distance beyond the town, we arrive in time for lunch at our remote and comfortable riverfront jungle lodge. After a hearty meal we travel by motorized canoe along the Rio Napo to visit a local Shiripuno Kichwa village where we learn a bit about their way of life and their traditions. There's the opportunity to witness and participate in community activities that may include such things as making the traditional Amazon Kichwa drink "Chicha de Yuca", storytelling with a local shaman, visiting an ancient petroglyph site, and a demonstration of the use of the "serbatana," a traditional blowpipe used for hunting. Enjoy dinner back at the lodge and fall asleep tonight to the sounds of the jungle and the river. All meals included.

    Driving time: 4 to 6 hours depending on traffic and road conditions.

  • Day 3 - Explore Llanganates National Park on a whitewater rafting adventure.

    Today we visit Llanganates National Park, which extends from the high Andes to the Amazon Basin and has been declared a Biosphere Zone by the United Nations. Llanganates is singularly beautiful for its undisturbed nature and its colorful history. Legend has it that the fabulous gold treasure of Atahualpa (El Dorado) was hidden within this area by Rumiñahui, the famed 15th century Inca warrior. Since the first recorded history, adventurers in search of the treasure have ventured into the park – to no avail. Ours is an easier journey! We begin with a short hike to naturally formed swimming pools for a quick dip before our whitewater rafting adventure. Rafting the Rio Jatunyacu offers spectacular jungle scenery, crystal-clear water and glimpses of indigenous communities that live along its shores. Rock-and-roll waves make for an exciting several hours. Return to our jungle lodge for the evening. After dinner, we explore a nearby trail to learn about howler monkeys, bats, and other mammals that make up the incredible nocturnal wildlife of the Amazon basin. All meals included.

    Rafting: Class III / II river(s), 1/2 day. Depending upon water conditions and other factors we may raft the Anzu River, Class ll. Your guide will discuss this with the group. Hiking: up to 1 hour; Terrain: flat, dirt trails with muddy sections.

  • Day 4 - Say goodbye to the Amazon with a dip in the Papallacta Hot Springs.

    We depart the Amazon this morning, climbing from the lush jungle and over the Andes. We stop for lunch at Papallacta Hot Springs, located in verdant cloud forest between the Antisana and Cayambe volcanoes. Enjoy a soak in the mineral-rich thermal pools before continuing to our hotel in Quito. Breakfast and lunch included; dinner on your own.

    Driving time: 4 to 6 hours depending on traffic and road conditions.

  • Day 5 - Galapagos bound! Travel to the Chato Reserve to search for tortoises.

    This morning it's up and out to the Galapagos Islands! After flying to Baltra Island we drive to the lush highlands of the Chato Reserve on Santa Cruz Island, the natural habitat of the Galapagos tortoise. In addition to sighting these lumbering giants, we also enjoy great bird watching. There are finches, egrets, flycatchers and many, many more. If you haven't started a "bird life list," now is the time! Enjoy a delicious lunch at a highlands hacienda before heading to Puerto Ayora, Santa Cruz's lively town, to check into our hotel. Late this afternoon, a visit to the Charles Darwin Research Station is a must in order to appreciate the current and ongoing efforts to manage and conserve this archipelago. Overnight on the waterfront in Puerto Ayora, Santa Cruz. All meals included.

  • Day 6 - Kayak in search of iguanas, sharks, rays, and more!

    After breakfast we settle into our kayaks to paddle Santa Cruz Island's turquoise waters. Exploring the quiet side of Divine Bay, we paddle through waters that wind through high-walled lava channels where blue-footed boobies, herons and marine iguanas perch along jagged cliffs. Keep your eyes open for white-tipped sharks and rays below the waves. This afternoon we have the option of hiking to Tortuga Bay, a beautiful white sandy beach and nesting area for thousands of marine turtles. There's the possibility for a swim here as well. Overnight in Puerto Ayora. All meals included.

    Sea Kayaking: 2-3 hours in protected waters. Hiking: 3 miles (option up to 5 miles).

  • Day 7 - Explore Isabela Island; bike the coast to the historic Wall of Tears.

    We take a fast boat or fly (weather dependent) to Isabela Island, the largest in the Galapagos. Isabela is formed by five volcanoes and is one of the most volcanically active places on earth. After lunch we head to Las Tintoreras, a set of small islets within Isabela Bay, to explore this otherworldly, lava-formed landscape. The islets are filled with wildlife - marine iguanas, blue-footed boobies, sharks, marine turtles and much more. Late this afternoon we hop on mountain bikes for a ride along the scenic coastline and to the historic El Muro de las Lagrimas (Wall of Tears). This wall was built with lava blocks during the time when Isabela was used as a penal colony (1946-1959). Living in such an isolated area, the wall building project was implemented to keep prisoners busy. Overnight in Puerto Villamil. All meals included.

    Walking: 1 mile, flat, rocky terrain. Snorkeling: 1-2 hours. Biking: 5-10 miles on unpaved gravel and sand road with some hills; van supported.

  • Day 8 - Hike to the top of Sierra Negra volcano; enjoy a farewell dinner.

    We start the day with a hike in the highlands, up to and then along the rim of the Sierra Negra volcano which is roughly 6 miles wide. This huge, lava filled crater is the 2nd largest intact caldera in the world after the Ngorongoro Crater in Tanzania. The views from the top can be awesome – out to the Perry Isthmus, Fernandina Island and beyond! Next we head to the lovely white sand beaches in front of our hotel or to Concha y Perla for more snorkeling and marine wildlife viewing. We enjoy a final dinner together to celebrate our time in Ecuador. All meals included.

    Hiking: ~3 miles. Longer hiking option available.

  • Day 9 - Return to Quito for a free day to explore this unique town.

    This morning we transfer by boat or take a flight (weather dependent) to Baltra Island, where we board our flight to Quito. After checking into our hotel, the remainder of the day is free for sightseeing. Breakfast and lunch snack on flight included; dinner on your own.

  • Day 10 - Our Amazon Basin and Galapagos Islands Family Adventure ends.

    You can depart anytime today. REI provides the transfer to the Quito airport for flights home. Breakfast included.

Note on Itinerary

Although we do our very best to adhere to the schedule listed above, this itinerary is subject to change for numerous reasons beyond our control.

Air Travel

Please check with us before purchasing your airline tickets to ensure your trip has the necessary minimum number of participants required to operate.

In order to purchase airline tickets from Quito to the Islands on your behalf, we must have all family members' valid passport numbers as soon as possible after your initial trip sign-up and no later than 45 days prior to departure. Any delays in submitting your passport information may result in our inability to procure airline tickets for you on the trip dates. Standard trip cancellation penalties apply if your passport information is submitted after the deadline and airline tickets cannot be purchased.

Price Includes

Accommodations and meals as noted in the daily itinerary; private transfer to the Amazon Basin; airport transfers on international flights in and out of Quito on Day 1 and Day 10; airport transfers Quito-Galapagos-Quito; transit fee Quito-Galapagos; Galapagos transit card; boat transfer (or internal flight) from Santa Cruz-Isabela Island-Baltra Island; equipment necessary for itinerary including white water rafting, sea kayaks, bikes, snorkel/mask/fins; services of a skilled bi-lingual guide/naturalist throughout the trip.

Not Included

International airfare to and from Quito; round trip airfare from Quito to Galapagos (mandatory—subject to change); Galapagos National Park Fee(to be paid in U.S. dollars, cash, at the airport on arrival in the Galapagos Islands); 3 dinners; cost of medical immunizations as needed; insurance of any kind; cost of optional activities; optional wet-suit for snorkeling; excess baggage charges; airport taxes (if any); alcoholic beverages or soft drinks; optional gratuities to your guides; items of a personal nature.

Special Payment and Cancellation Policy

In addition to the required $400 deposit to reserve your space on this trip, the cost of the internal flight to the islands (Quito-Galapagos-Quito) is also due at the time of registration. The deposit and flight fee are non-refundable 90 days prior to departure. If you needed to cancel your participation on this trip for a reason covered by your optional Travel Insurance plan, this flight cost would be reimbursable by that plan.

Qualifications

This trip is rated Moderate [3]. It contains a variety of activities including moderate hikes, mountain biking, Class II / III rafting and sea kayaking. In general, the island hiking is moderate in both length and terrain. We are not moving at a fast pace as our primary objective is to take time to enjoy the abundant and unique wildlife. The biking on Isabela Island is on relatively flat terrain with some rolling hills (unpaved roads of gravel, dirt, and sand). You can choose not to bike this portion. Sea kayaking on Santa Cruz is in a bay with protected waters. Rafting is on a Class III river (although guides may determine that the Anzu Class II river is more appropriate for a number of reasons) – and, while you will be outfitted with the appropriate PFD, you should know how to swim and be comfortable in moving water.

Weather

Quito is at 9,200 feet above sea-level and maintains a spring-like climate year round. The temperature ranges from 55° at night to 70° at midday, with the average temperature being in the mid-60s. The average temperature in the Amazon Basin is in the low 80s with daily highs reaching the low 90s and nightly lows in the upper 60s. An occasional cold front during the "dry" season (May-October) can occur, bringing daytime temperature down into the upper 60s. You are in the tropics and in a jungle rainforest – showers are always a possibility. The Galapagos have two seasons. The warm and rainy season lasts from January to June, and the average air temperature ranges from the low 80s to the low 90s with the average water temperature around 75°. There are many warm, often hot, sunny periods interspersed by rain showers. From July to December, the cooler and dryer months, the average air temperature is in the 70s with an average water temperature hovering between 64-68°. There may be occasional mist and overcast skies due to the garúa (fog) that sometimes pervades the islands at this time of year. A sweater or jacket is often needed at night. Note that at any time of year, the highlands on the islands are often enveloped in mist and fog keeping them much greener than areas near their shores.

Single Travelers

If you are traveling alone and specifically request single accommodations, you will be asked to pay the single supplement fee. There is no single supplement fee for those willing to share accommodations, and we will assign you a roommate of the same gender if possible. Please be advised that there are a limited number of single accommodations available.

General Information

This trip is subject to the booking information set forth in the current REI Adventures Reservation Information. Please read this information carefully and call us if you have any questions. A full gear list and pre-departure information is sent upon sign-up. We highly recommend the purchase of travel insurance through REI Adventures. If coverage is purchased at the time of your initial reservation, the 'Pre-existing Conditions Exclusion' is waived (certain exclusions apply).

We look forward to having you join us for the trip of a lifetime! Why wait? Space is limited, reserve your adventure today.

Amazon Basin & Galapagos Islands Family Adventure Gear List

The key to staying comfortable during this trip is layering.  To obtain maximum comfort with minimum weight, you need versatile layers that mix and match to create the right amount of insulation, ventilation and weather protection.  This gear list has been created to help you choose your clothing and gear for this trip.  Bring only what is necessary, as this will help you and the field staff.  

Gear Checklist

Provided Gear
  • Hybrid bicycle
  • Bicycle helmet
  • Mask and snorkel
  • Rafting gear and PFD
  • Kayak & related safety gear
Official Papers
  • Passport
  • Airline tickets
Luggage
  • Duffel bag, sturdy and large enough to hold all your gear
  • Small duffel bag to leave extra clothes, souvenirs, etc. at the hotel in Quito
  • Small daypack to carry camera, water bottle, light jacket, sun screen, etc.
  • Passport pouch or money belt
  • Luggage tags and luggage locks (2 sets)
Clothing
  • Lightweight, easily washable items for city wear - casual and comfortable clothes are recommended
  • T-shirts, at least two synthetic
  • Lightweight long- sleeve shirts (for cool evenings and sun protection)
  • Hiking pants (zip-off legs are great)
  • Lightweight, quick drying hiking shorts
Clothing Accessories
  • Sun hat with brim - this is essential!
  • Bandana
  • Swimsuit(s) and cover-up
  • Lightweight 2 or 3mm neoprene short wetsuit
  • Hiking socks
Outerwear
  • Lightweight fleece / sweater
  • Lightweight rain / wind jacket
Footwear
  • Lightweight hiking shoes with good tread and sole support
  • Watersport sandals
Travel Accessories
  • Two 1-quart water bottles or hydration system
  • Personal first-aid kit
  • Toiletry kit
  • Sunglasses and retainer strap
  • Sunscreen and lip balm with high SPF rating and water-repellent
  • Flashlight or headlamp and spare batteries
  • Insect repellent
  • Lightweight travel towel or sarong
  • Plastic bags to keep your gear dry inside your daypack and to separate wet/dirty items from dry/clean items
  • 1 roll of toilet paper (useful for public restrooms)
  • Hand sanitizer gel
Optional Field Gear
  • Guide books to the Galapagos Islands for identification of species
  • Journal or writing materials
  • Stuff sacks, various sizes for organizing clothing and gear inside duffel
  • Camera, memory, spare batteries and charger
  • Disposable underwater camera
  • Binoculars - highly recommended
  • Small dry bag for camera gear while rafting/kayaking – highly recommended
  • Watch with alarm or travel alarm

Things to Consider

  • Always pack essential items such as your passport, money, eyewear, medications, hiking shoes and one set of spare clothes in your carry-on baggage, in case your luggage is delayed.
  • Copies of birth certificates – It's become quite common these days for a family to have more than one surname. Maybe a mother has kept her maiden name, or perhaps the children are from different unions. Whatever the reason, you'll want to be able to prove that, yes, these kids are yours. (Even if you are the nuclear family, birth certificates aren't a bad thing to have along if your passports are lost or stolen.)
  • Parental permission – If you're traveling with your kids without your spouse, you may need proof that the absent parent has given permission for the child to travel with you. It's simple enough to write up a letter, sign it, have it witnessed and notarized.
  • Pack lightly. Quick-drying, synthetic items are recommended; laundry facilities are available in the Galapagos allowing for a 24-hour turn around.
  • The sun is particularly strong on the equator, so a good sun hat and a long-sleeved, light-colored shirt are important. Bring plenty of water-resistant sunscreen.
  • A short 2 or 3 mm wetsuit is highly recommended for snorkeling. While it is possible to snorkel without one, you will be much more comfortable and be able to snorkel and enjoy the marine life longer while wearing one (especially from June - December).
  • Sarongs make excellent lightweight, quick-drying and compact travel and beach towels. Another good option is the REI MultiTowel Lite (available in various sizes) or similar. See www.rei.com for details.
  • NOTE: If the weather dictates the need to fly rather than to boat between islands, the flight(s) between the islands have a strict luggage limit of 25lbs. If luggage exceeds this limit, luggage may be transferred by sea transportation with possible delay.

 

Feel free to give us a call at (800) 622-2236 should you have any questions regarding the gear list. The staff at our stores and Direct Sales (800-426-4840) will also be happy to help you with gear questions. Or check out www.rei.com/learn. The Expert Advice section on our "Learn" page has great information to help you prepare for your trip.

REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

by PowerReviews
REI AdventuresAmazon Basin & Galapagos Islands Family Adventure
 
4.9

(based on 19 reviews)

100%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Activity level (19)
  • Guides (18)
  • Well organized itinerary (18)
  • Accommodations (17)
  • Exceeded expectations (16)

Cons

    Best Uses

        • Reviewer Profile:
        • Avid adventurer (9), Casual adventurer (9)
        • Why Did You Choose to Travel with REI Adventures?:
        • Destination (18), I liked the itinerary (18), Active adventures (17), All the details planned for me (15), Good value (13)

      Reviewed by 19 customers

      Sort by

      Displaying reviews 1-10

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      5.0

      Amazing Trip

      By Thankful Philippe

      from Richmond, Virgnia

      About Me Avid Learner, Foodie

      Site Member

      Pros

      • Accommodations
      • Activity Level
      • Exceeded Expectations
      • Food
      • Guides
      • Well Organized Itinerary

      Cons

      • Casa Marita Rooms

      Best Uses

        Comments about REI Adventures Amazon Basin & Galapagos Islands Family Adventure:

        Ecuador is an amazing country with a great variety of environments. The Ecuadorian people (guides and others we met) were welcoming, helpful and friendly. Food was awesome! The trip is truly at a moderate activity level and our guides were completely in tune with our abilities, goals and concerns.
        Our main guide Felipe's amazing combination of talents was responsible for making this trip one of the best experiences of our lives. He was extremely knowledgeable, very energetic, kind and patient. He encouraged us to try things with a gentle assuredness that made all of our experiences fulfilling. His knowledge of history, biology, white water sports and adventure guiding was astounding. He also seemingly knows everyone in the various locations we visited (and everyone seems to like him). He responsibly and tirelessly took care of every detail with great skill. All transitions, transportation, food, and activities went very smoothly. He is a true professional! Kudos also to: Diego (Kayak safety and more on the Jatunyacu River). Arturo (the best driver ever -- took us through twisty roads in the Andes with efficiency and amazing skill). Christian (our bike back-up on Isabella island -- very friendly and told us interesting stories about life on the Galapagos). The whole team made this trip the unforgettable experience that it was!
        Our entire family was thrilled with the experience. My wife said when we got home "I want all of our vacations to be adventure vacations from now on".

        • Why Did You Choose to Travel with REI Adventures?:
        • Active Adventures, All the Details Planned for Me, Commitment to Sustainability, Destination, Good Value, I Liked the Itinerary
        • Why did you choose this trip?:
        • Great locations. Timing was ideal.
        • What was the highlight of your trip?:
        • The depth added to all of the great things we did and saw by our excellent guide Felipe. White water rafting! Meeting Ecuadorian people! Galapagos!
        • What would be your advice to potential travelers?:
        • Do it! Bring lots of sunscreen, technical tee shirts and a rugged, waterproof camera we took 1,007 pictures.
         
        5.0

        Fantastic Family Experience

        By LaraS

        from White Plains, NY

        About Me Casual Adventurer, International Traveler

        Pros

        • Accommodations
        • Activity Level
        • Exceeded Expectations
        • Food
        • Group Camaraderie
        • Guides
        • Once in a Lifetime Experience
        • Well Organized Itinerary

        Cons

          Best Uses

            Comments about REI Adventures Amazon Basin & Galapagos Islands Family Adventure:

            We initially thought that the cost of the trip was quite high, but we now see that it is actually excellent value. Having all of the logistics of the trip planned was truly priceless, and then our guide was able to tailor smaller, impromptu activities between all of the major planned activities.
            Alfredo was a fantastic guide, with great knowledge about his country and the activities we participated in, and also about how to entertain 7 boys all between the ages of 8 and 13! Major props to our driver, Arturo as well!
            Everyone in our group had a great time on the trip and with each other...whether we were rafting down the breathlessly beautiful Jatunyacu in the Amazon, playing a game of pick-up soccer with the local kids, walking with giant tortoises or making chocolate with freshly picked cacao beans at our jungle lodge, every moment was a wonderful experience.

            • Why Did You Choose to Travel with REI Adventures?:
            • Active Adventures, All the Details Planned for Me, Commitment to Sustainability, Destination, I Liked the Itinerary, International Travel With
            • Why did you choose this trip?:
            • We wanted to travel internationally as a family, and wanted to have activities planned to hold the interest of our 10 and 13-year old boys. The itinerary sounded very interesting and suitable to us.
            • What was the highlight of your trip?:
            • White-water rafting in the Amazon and sea-kayaking at Santa Cruz Island, Galapagos.
            • What would be your advice to potential travelers?:
            • Follow the recommended packing guidelines. Bring a small, waterproof and shockproof camera to keep on hand at all times.

            (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            Amazing Amazon Basin and Galapagos trip

            By Cookiemeter

            from Seattle, WA

            About Me Casual Adventurer

            Site Member

            Pros

            • Accommodations
            • Activity Level
            • Exceeded Expectations
            • Food
            • Group Camaraderie
            • Guides
            • Once in a Lifetime Experience
            • Quality Equipment Provided
            • Well Organized Itinerary

            Cons

              Best Uses

                Comments about REI Adventures Amazon Basin & Galapagos Islands Family Adventure:

                We loved our guide!
                The hotel accomodations were amazing!
                Lunch was at a unique and fun place each day.
                The village experience with the Kichwa people was very cool. I would plan to buy most of your souvenirs there, as otherwise there is little time to shop!
                This is a very busy trip with little down time!
                If going in April, the wetsuits weren't needed.

                • Why Did You Choose to Travel with REI Adventures?:
                • Active Adventures, All the Details Planned for Me, Commitment to Sustainability, Destination, Good Value, I Liked the Itinerary
                • Why did you choose this trip?:
                • We wanted to see the Amazon Basin and Galapagos while being active. My kids would have definitely been bored with a boat trip around the Galapagos!
                • What was the highlight of your trip?:
                • Sliding down the waterfalls and whitewater rafting with the very fun guides.
                • What would be your advice to potential travelers?:
                • Follow the recommendations for gear and activity preparation. Come prepared to have an amazing time!

                (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                5.0

                Amazing trip

                By katemfox

                from Cheyenne, Wyoming

                Site Member

                Pros

                • Activity Level
                • Guides
                • Well Organized Itinerary

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                    Comments about REI Adventures Amazon Basin & Galapagos Islands Family Adventure:

                    The trip was great in every way, and the excellent guide made it even better. One criticism: it's a bit misleading to call this a 10-day trip, when day 1 and day 10 are the days you travel to and from on your own. It's really an 8-day trip.

                    • Why Did You Choose to Travel with REI Adventures?:
                    • All the Details Planned for Me, Destination

                    (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    5.0

                    Fabulous Amazon and Island Adventure

                    By Upnatum

                    from Providence, RI

                    About Me Casual Adventurer

                    Site Member

                    Pros

                    • Accommodations
                    • Activity Level
                    • Exceeded Expectations
                    • Group Camaraderie
                    • Guides
                    • Well Organized Itinerary

                    Cons

                      Best Uses

                        Comments about REI Adventures Amazon Basin & Galapagos Islands Family Adventure:

                        This trip is an excellent adventure for a 10-14 year old child. It has a reasonable level of activity and will expose both the child and adult to amazing things. Our guide, Felipe, was excellent!

                        The bus ride to the Amazon is pretty long the first day but that's a necessity to get to the jungle. Once there, the adventure starts!

                        • Why Did You Choose to Travel with REI Adventures?:
                        • Active Adventures, Good Value, I Liked the Itinerary, Travel with Like-minded Outdoor Enthusiasts
                        • Why did you choose this trip?:
                        • I take each of my grandkids on a trip when they are about ten. I took my grandson on this one. He is a pretty active kid and I was looking for an adventure that would expand both our horizons, have a physical challenge and allow us to bond. This adventure fit the need perfectly.
                        • What was the highlight of your trip?:
                        • River rafting in the jungle, seeing the giant tortises, enjoying a great group of folks!
                        • What would be your advice to potential travelers?:
                        • Plan for a day in Quito before the trip and, possibly, one after to see the city and visit the Otavalo market. The trip leaves really early the first day and if you just fly in the evening before it can be a bit of a tough first day.
                         
                        5.0

                        Amazing! Miguel is the best!

                        By birdman999

                        from Salt Lake City, Ut

                        About Me Avid Adventurer

                        Site Member

                        Pros

                        • Accommodations
                        • Activity Level
                        • Exceeded Expectations
                        • Food
                        • Group Camaraderie
                        • Guides
                        • Miguel and Arturo
                        • Once in a Lifetime Experience
                        • Quality Equipment Provided
                        • Well Organized Itinerary

                        Cons

                          Best Uses

                            Comments about REI Adventures Amazon Basin & Galapagos Islands Family Adventure:

                            no

                            • Why Did You Choose to Travel with REI Adventures?:
                            • Active Adventures, All the Details Planned for Me, Commitment to Sustainability, Destination, Good Value, I Liked the Itinerary
                            • Why did you choose this trip?:
                            • I got it as a Christmas present. Best present ever!
                            • What was the highlight of your trip?:
                            • I really liked the climb my dad and I did on the day before the trip started up the ridge of Rucu Pichincha. With rei it was rafting.
                            • What would be your advice to potential travelers?:
                            • Put on lots of sunscreen!
                             
                            5.0

                            An awesome trip - 5 star all the way

                            By Edward5158

                            from New Jersey

                            About Me Avid Adventurer, Very experienced traveler

                            Pros

                            • Accommodations
                            • Activity Level
                            • Exceeded Expectations
                            • Food
                            • Group Camaraderie
                            • Guides
                            • Once in a Lifetime Experience

                            Cons

                              Best Uses

                                Comments about REI Adventures Amazon Basin & Galapagos Islands Family Adventure:

                                We have made over 20 international adventure travels with various groups. The guide on this trip, Tomas [@] was as good as they come. Easy going, related well to the adults and children, always in control without seeming like being in control, very pleasant to travel with. Very deserving of special recognition.

                                • Why Did You Choose to Travel with REI Adventures?:
                                • Active Adventures, Destination, I Liked the Itinerary
                                • Why did you choose this trip?:
                                • Something for everyone - great scenery, great activities, great food,

                                (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                                 
                                5.0

                                Fantastic Family Adventure!

                                By Scraig

                                from Boston, MA

                                About Me Avid Adventurer

                                Pros

                                • Accommodations
                                • Activity Level
                                • Exceeded Expectations
                                • Food
                                • Group Camaraderie
                                • Guides
                                • Once in a Lifetime Experience
                                • Quality Equipment Provided
                                • Well Organized Itinerary

                                Cons

                                  Best Uses

                                    Comments about REI Adventures Amazon Basin & Galapagos Islands Family Adventure:

                                    - We came away with a deep understanding of the culture, history and geology of Ecuador because of our guide's knowledge and eagerness to answer every question we asked!
                                    -The accommodations and food exceeded our expectations- we particularly loved the Inn on Santa Cruz and the highland lunch we had on that island.
                                    -Each and every activity was amazing and each member of our family especially loved something different- the four top votes: whitewater rafting, seeing the Sierra Negra volcano, the giant tortoises, snorkeling w/ sea lions and sea turtles.

                                    • Why Did You Choose to Travel with REI Adventures?:
                                    • Active Adventures, All the Details Planned for Me, Destination, Good Value, I Liked the Itinerary, Travel with Like-minded Outdoor Enthusiasts
                                    • Why did you choose this trip?:
                                    • Loved the destinations and itinerary-had been on the Alaska multi-sport which was spectacular but wanted to travel to South America- this trip enabled us to do that easily and our family of four experienced this beautiful country together while also doing exciting activities.
                                    • What was the highlight of your trip?:
                                    • Our guide Tomas was the reason that the trip was such a memorable one for our family. His passion for outdoor adventure, wildlife, and his country of Ecuador inspired us. Because of his enthusiasm and gift for working with children he easily captured the attention and respect of our teenage boys (12/14) while imparting insight and guiding us seamlessly from one fantastic activity to another!
                                    • What would be your advice to potential travelers?:
                                    • The activities could be adjusted to many different levels of fitness but we enjoyed everything that much more because we were in pretty good shape. Also, try the local food- almost every new dish to us was delicious and healthy!

                                    (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                                     
                                    5.0

                                    Once in a Lifetime Vacation

                                    By Colorado Family

                                    from Arvada, CO

                                    About Me Avid Adventurer, Casual Adventurer

                                    Site Member

                                    Pros

                                    • Accommodations
                                    • Activity Level
                                    • Exceeded Expectations
                                    • Group Camaraderie
                                    • Guides
                                    • Once in a Lifetime Experience
                                    • Well Organized Itinerary

                                    Cons

                                      Best Uses

                                        Comments about REI Adventures Amazon Basin & Galapagos Islands Family Adventure:

                                        My kids really loved the Angermeyer Inn and Iguana Crossing hotels. We saw sharks and Blue Footed birds when kayaking, loved the volcano hike, and enjoyed going in a day early to explore Quito. Unfortunately, due to very high tides, we didn't snorkel. Would love to go back and do that some day. Felipe was a great guide!

                                        • Why Did You Choose to Travel with REI Adventures?:
                                        • Active Adventures, All the Details Planned for Me, Commitment to Sustainability, Destination, Good Value, I Liked the Itinerary, Travel with Like-minded Outdoor Enthusiasts
                                        • Why did you choose this trip?:
                                        • My family met two other families on an REI Adventure and we decided to take another one together. Kids range from 12-18 and this was a once-in-a-lifetime trip!
                                        • What was the highlight of your trip?:
                                        • The Jatunyaca river rafting, the kayaking, hiking to Sierra Negra. And the unique lodging in the Amazon Basin and the Galapagos was great!
                                        • What would be your advice to potential travelers?:
                                        • In the guara season (we went in August), it rains. There is mud. Bring mud shoes, rain clothes, sunscreen, strong bug spray for the Amazon basin. The Amazon basin is loud at night, you might want earplugs.

                                        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

                                         
                                        5.0

                                        Outstanding trip

                                        By Luis Valente

                                        from Palo Alto, CA

                                        About Me Casual Adventurer

                                        Pros

                                        • Accommodations
                                        • Activity Level
                                        • Exceeded Expectations
                                        • Food
                                        • Group Camaraderie
                                        • Guides
                                        • Once in a Lifetime Experience
                                        • Well Organized Itinerary

                                        Cons

                                        • Quality Equipment Provided

                                        Best Uses

                                          Comments about REI Adventures Amazon Basin & Galapagos Islands Family Adventure:

                                          The trip was very well organized and went on at the right pace. We never felt we were rushed and, yet, we were always doing something. The activity level was just right for a family particularly if you have kids on the younger side or you are not very athletic. Do expect to work up a sweat while whitewater rafting, sea kayaking and mountain biking. The mountain biking was the only activity we thought might be a bit hard for those not used to the sport, not so much because of the physical effort involved (no major hills to climb) but the trail had a fair amount of sand and gravel that required some bike skills. The quality of the bikes was poor which is the only negative thing I can say about this trip.
                                          Our guide was absolutely amazing. He was very knowledgeable about Ecuadorean history, culture, its flora and fauna and went out of his way to make us comfortable, to tend to our needs and, where possible, to customize the trip to our group.
                                          We were also very lucky to have an amazing group of travel companions. It was indeed the trip of a lifetime

                                          • Why Did You Choose to Travel with REI Adventures?:
                                          • Active Adventures, All the Details Planned for Me, Commitment to Sustainability, Destination, Good Value, I Liked the Itinerary, Travel with Like-minded Outdoor Enthusiasts
                                          • Why did you choose this trip?:
                                          • We have wanted to go to the Galapagos for a long time and when the opportunity for this trip presented itself we could not resist. We liked the proposed itinerary and the fact that we wouldn't have to worry about where to eat and what to do. We were traveling with our 16 year old son and wanted to have a fairly active vacation without going into extremes.
                                          • What was the highlight of your trip?:
                                          • We loved everything about it but visiting the Galapagos was definitely the highlight. The itinerary was perfect and we got to see a lot. Wouldn't have changed a thing.
                                          • What would be your advice to potential travelers?:
                                          • Make sure you bring lots of sunscreen, comfortable hiking boots, closed-toe sandals and flip-flops or similar. Rain gear is a must and you want to be able to dress in layers.

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