Galapagos Islands Cruise – Northern & Western

From: $3,900

per person dbl occ

Dates: - see all dates

Total Days: 8

Activity Level: 2

Reserve This Trip

1-800-622-2236

Chat Online

Monday–Friday,
7 AM to 5 PM Pacific Time

This is an example of a HTML caption with a link.

Price:

See Dates & Prices tab.

Trip Dates:


See Dates & Prices tab.

Group Size: up to 20

Activity Level: 2

Activities:

  • Wildlife Viewing
  • Walking
  • Snorkeling

Accommodations:

Comfortable 2-berth cabins with private bathroom and shower

Trip Highlights

  • Explore the Galapagos Islands, home to a vast array of exotic wildlife
  • Visit Genovesa, Santa Cruz, Fernandina, Isabela, and more
  • Hike, snorkel, and kayak through the islands for an up-close view
  • Stay aboard a first-class 20-passenger yacht with naturalist guides
  • See giant tortoises, flamingos, iguanas, penguins, and much more

Ecuador's remote Galapagos Islands are a paradise for photographers and wildlife lovers. Because of the Islands unique isolation, the animals here have no fear of humans, allowing for unparalleled interaction. Giant tortoise, flamingo, colorful iguana, and penguins are just a taste of the remarkable creatures we spot on our adventure.

Staying aboard 20-passenger luxury yachts, each day brings us to a new island where we can explore by foot and snorkel. On our journey, we stop at Genovesa, Fernandina, and Isabela—among others in the northern and western regions of the archipelago.

Expert, naturalist guides accompany us on every outing, explaining the amazing array of diversity that makes these islands so incredible. We also visit historical sites, like that of the first human settlement, to learn about the special honor these islands hold in the world of biology and Darwin's Theory of Evolution.

Also see our Central and Southern Galapagos Islands itinerary for even more options.

Special Pricing
On select departures we are offering promotional discounts. These offers are based on available cabins at the time of booking, cannot be combined with any other cruise discounts and are valid on new bookings only. Offers end May 6, 2014. See "Dates & Prices" tab for additional information.

Itinerary Summary

  • Day 1 - All aboard and set sail for the enchanting Galapagos Islands today.
  • Day 2 - Tower Island is one of the most spectacular for bird watching.
  • Day 3 - Spot pink flamingos, reef sharks, land iguanas, and many more.
  • Day 4 - On Fernandina, see the flightless comorant's nest and Galapagos hawks.
  • Day 5 - Walk to an overlook of the ocean, lava fields, and volcanic formations.
  • Day 6 - Rabida is known for the most diversified volcanic rocks of the islands.
  • Day 7 - Visit a tortoise reserve and the Charles Darwin Research Station.
  • Day 8 - Complete your exploration of the Galapagos Islands.

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 - All aboard and set sail for the enchanting Galapagos Islands today.

    Board your early flight to the Galapagos either from Quito (via Guayaquil) or Guayaquil. Upon arrival to Puerto Baquerizo Moreno, San Cristobal Island, airport travelers pass through the entrance formalities and proceed to the baggage area where the boat crew is waiting to escort you by bus and then zodiac to your anchored yacht. After the welcome briefing and safety drill, a delicious buffet lunch is served. We travel by bus into the interior of San Cristobal to visit La Galapaguera Cerro Colorado, where the National Park has established a breeding program for the giant land tortoises and where you will encounter them in their natural habitat. Learn about their origin, evolution and threats by introduced animals at the information center for visitors. Along the trail, we find the San Cristobal (Chatham) mockingbird and Calandrinia plant, both endemic to this island. Join your fellow yacht mates this evening for your first briefing followed by our Captain's welcome cocktail party and dinner prepared by our well-trained chefs. All meals included when aboard ship.

  • Day 2 - Tower Island is one of the most spectacular for bird watching.

    We spend the entire day on Tower (Genovesa), considered to be one of the most spectacular Islands in Galapagos for bird species. We have a wet-landing on Darwin Bay, a coral sand beach where swallow-tailed and lava gulls gather near the tide pools. Enter a forest of Optuntia cactus and mangroves where colonies of great frigate birds nest. The males inflate their red-throated pouches to attract females as they fly overhead. The trail leads through a rich inter tidal zone where we find a wide diversity of wildlife. After lunch, we have a dry landing at Prince Philip's Steps. Red-footed boobies nest here in Palo Santo trees and Nazca boobies nest near the trail. In an open lava field, we find storm petrels in large numbers. If you are lucky, we will see the elusive short-eared owl. Choose to have a picnic lunch on deck or dine inside. Look for the beautiful red-billed tropic bird found in the crevices along the cliff by kayak or Zodiac. You can choose to swim or snorkel from the beach with sea lions in these northern warmer waters or for those with experience, we offer snorkeling in deeper water. Return to the yacht for briefing and dinner before we cross the equator.

  • Day 3 - Spot pink flamingos, reef sharks, land iguanas, and many more.

    This morning we visit, Las Bachas, which is the Spanish translation for "barges". There is a long stretch of a soft white sand beach and interior lagoons where we find the greater flamingo. There is also a wonderful chance to snorkel here from the beach. At Black Turtle Cove aka Caleta Tortuga Negra we have a zodiac ride through a series of coves and inlets surrounded by mangroves. Here you can view pairs of mating sea turtles (Sept to Feb), white-tipped reef sharks and golden cow-nosed rays. Located on the northern tip of Santa Cruz is Cerro Dragon which means Dragon Hill. Along the trail, we find Darwin finches, Galapagos flycatchers, yellow warblers, Audubon shearwater and the endemic land iguanas, orange-yellow in color with large spines along their backs, were once part of the Darwin Station's breeding program. We find pink flamingos feeding in the salt-water lagoon as well as other lagoon birds; stilts, pintail ducks, sandpipers and more. From the top of the hill, we enjoy a majestic view of the bay island covered in Opuntia cactus, Palo Santo and Cordia Lutea (muyuyu). After the briefing and dinner, we sail toward the western islands and cross the equator line for the second time.

  • Day 4 - On Fernandina, see the flightless comorant's nest and Galapagos hawks.

    We have a semi-wet landing at Punta Espinoza, Fernandina, the youngest and most pristine Island in Galapagos with no introduced mammals. Recent lava flows formed by an active volcano stretch their way around the coast. Hundreds of marine iguanas, the largest colony in Galapagos, bask in the sun along the rugged shoreline. Observe sea lion harems with resident bulls carefully guarding their territory. Flightless cormorants build their nest on the point and Galapagos hawks fly overhead. There is a chance to snorkel here with sea turtles. After lunch, we cross the Bolivar Chanel where we often spot whales and dolphins riding the bow wave. We disembark at Urbina Bay, Isabela, where we find four miles of its coastal seabed, with marine life exposed due to a dramatic uplift in 1954 when the volcano erupted. The marine remnants of coral skeletons, some of them waist-high, are visited after a wet landing on the beach. Urbina is home to the very large and colorful Galapagos land iguanas, occasionally giant tortoises, and Darwin finches. Brown pelicans and flightless cormorants also nest here. Giant marine iguanas are seen along the coast. You may encounter penguins while snorkeling here. At Punta Vicente Roca, a Zodiac ride offers an incredible view of the tuff walls. We can enter the wave-sculpted cave and find sea turtle who frequent this area. You may spot the dorsal fin of a Mola Mola, an odd looking giant sun fish. Return to the yacht for briefing and dinner.

  • Day 5 - Walk to an overlook of the ocean, lava fields, and volcanic formations.

    We visit Elizabeth Bay, Isabela by zodiac starting with a visit to a secluded cove, lined with large red mangrove trees. Here, turtles, rays, and shore birds can be seen. We motor to the rocky islets known as "Las Marielas", where a colony of nesting penguins, flightless cormorants and giant marine iguanas are found. Isabela was created when six volcanoes flowed together and formed the largest Island in Galapagos. We have a dry landing at Tagus Cove, located on the western island of Isabela and a favorite anchorage for pirates and whalers over the centuries. Old graffiti dating back to the 1800's is written on the rocky cliffs. Explore the coves by Zodiac or kayak to find Galapagos penguins, boobies, pelicans and other seabirds. An uphill hike brings us to a salt-water lagoon, a scenic overlook with a spectacular view of the ocean, lava fields and volcanic formations. An excellent snorkeling site is offered from the zodiac or take out a kayak and explore the shoreline. After dinner, a sky full of stars beckons to go on deck and observe the galaxy while crossing the equator for the last time.

  • Day 6 - Rabida is known for the most diversified volcanic rocks of the islands.

    Today, we have a wet landing at Puerto Egas, Santiago (James). Stroll along the shoreline looking for octopus, starfish and other sea life caught in the tide pools. At low tide, catch a glimpse of marine iguanas as they feed on exposed green algae. Watch for great blue herons, lava herons, American oystercatchers and yellow-crowned night herons. Our walk ends at the grottos, deep pools of clear water where we encounter fur sea lions once on the verge of extinction. Before returning to the yacht, there is a snorkeling opportunity. After lunch, take a seat on deck to view the dramatic landscape and dolphins that are often spotted here.This afternoon, we disembark on Rabida Island (Jervis), located off James Island. Rabida sports the most diversified volcanic rocks of all the islands and is considered the geographic center of the Galapagos. The dark red sand beach originated from the high content of iron in the volcanic stones. While strolling along the trail, you may find marine iguanas, mocking birds, yellow warblers and several species of Darwin finches leading to a salt water lagoon where greater flamingos migrate. After the walk, there is not to miss snorkeling option with a large colony of sea lions. We return to the yacht for the Captain's Farwell cocktail party and dinner as well as a special slide show presentation by your guides.

  • Day 7 - Visit a tortoise reserve and the Charles Darwin Research Station.

    We travel by bus to the highlands of Santa Cruz Island. The scenery gradually changes as we wind our way through all seven vegetation zones found in the Galapagos. Here, we visit the tortoise reserve at "Las Primicias" one of the private farms in the highlands where we encounter giant tortoises in their natural habitat. We visit Los Gemelos, a pair of large pit craters where we find the bright red male vermilion flycatcher. We stop at "the tunnels", the largest lava tubes found in the Galapagos.After lunch we visit the Centro de Crianza Fausto Llerena (aka the Charles Darwin Research Station). Here, we can see all three tortoise corrals and the breeding center with new hatchlings and miniature tortoises not yet ready to be repatriated. Scientists from all over the globe work at the station and conduct biological research from anatomy to zoology. We stop at Van Straelen Hall where there are exhibits and a presentation. Visitors can also see the tortoise and land iguana corrals. From here we walk into Puerto Ayora, the social heart of the island with a population of 24,000 inhabitants. This evening you have the option to return to your yacht for a buffet dinner or remain in town on your own account. Those who return to the yacht will be provided zodiacs to return to town to shop for souvenirs or stop at a pub or internet café. Zodiacs will be provided for your return to your yacht.

  • Day 8 - Complete your exploration of the Galapagos Islands.

    This morning, we drop anchor in Puerto Baquerizo Moreno, San Cristobal. We visit the Interpretation Center opened on San Cristobal Island in 1999. Here we gain a more complete understanding of the natural and human history of the Islands. Afterwards, we spend some time in port before heading to the airport for our flight back to the mainland departing noon time. We will arrive in Guayaquil around 2:00pm or in Quito by 4:00pm.

Note on Itinerary

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

REI Adventures shares non-exclusive departures with their Galapagos cruise partner Ecoventura.

Price Includes

Cabin accommodation, all meals and snacks, non-alcoholic beverages, purified water, Captain's welcome and farewell cocktail, local beer with dinner, guide services, shore excursions, use of wet suits, snorkeling equipment and sea kayaks, transfers in the Islands between the airport and dock.

Not Included

Airfare from US to Quito or Guayaquil and the Galapagos Islands; land transfers, hotels and meals on the mainland; excess baggage charges; airport departure tax from Ecuador; gratuities to guides and crew and items of a personal nature such as alcoholic beverages, laundry fees, purchases onboard and insurance of any kind. Flights from the mainland to the Galapagos, National Park fee and transit card are not included in cruise cost, but these fees are collected by REI Adventures and arrangements are made and pre-paid in conjunction with your cruise booking.

Rates

Park fees and the price of fuel sometimes increase the cost of cruise arrangements significantly, and we reserve the right to alter our prices or introduce surcharges accordingly, even if payment has been received in full.

Payment and Cancellation Policy

REI Adventures standard payment and cancellation policies do not apply to Galapagos cruises. A special cancellation policy applies to all Galapagos trips, which is stricter than the REI policy. A non-refundable deposit of $500 per person and $1,000 for singles is due at time of booking. Full payment for the Galapagos trip is due at 90 days before departure. When a trip cancellation is received 90+ days prior to departure, full deposit is non-refundable. When a trip cancellation is received inside of 90 days from departure, all trip costs are 100% non-refundable. Holiday weeks: Apr 1-8, Dec 23-30, Dec 30 - Jan 06, 2013 and Mar 31 - Apr 7, Dec 22-29, Dec 29 - Jan 05, 2014. A deposit of $1,000 per person (double occupancy) and $2,000 (single occupancy) is required - $500 of that is non-refundable. Full payment is due 120 days prior to departure. Cancellations received; 179-90 days prior to departure, full deposit is non-refundable. When a trip cancellation is received inside of 90 days from departure, all trip costs are non-refundable. This policy is in accordance with the cruise company.

Weather

Although Ecuador lies on the equator, the country has a wide range of climates due to the varying altitudes. The city of Quito, located at 9,350', has an average temperature of 55 to 75 degrees. The cold Humboldt Current flowing from the Antarctic modifies the Galapagos Islands weather. Fall and winter months tend to be drier with cooler water. Summer months tend to have more chance of warm water and some rain. Days year-round are warm; shorts and a t-shirt are fine. Nights will often be cool aboard the ship. For extended snorkeling, a thin wet suit is recommended.

Qualifications

This trip will be enjoyed by anyone who is in good health and leads an active life. Daily excursions from the boat to the islands will be made in pangas (dinghies). Trip members will hike from the landing point to specific areas for wildlife observation. Hiking time for most landings will be a couple of hours roundtrip with lots of time to stop to study, photograph and enjoy the flora and fauna. Some landings are dry but many are "wet", requiring cautious footing on slippery rocks. The boat staff will be on hand to assist.

Single Travelers

Single cabins are assigned by the cruise company to the best cabin available at the time of sailing.

Share Basis for Single Travelers: If you are traveling alone and wish to share accommodations, same share gender requests are available on the Iguana deck on seasonal departure dates only. On peak departure dates, the single rate will be confirmed, a share request can be placed on wait list and only if matched will the share rate apply. There is a maximum of one share confirmed per sailing. We cannot accept any share requests on cruises that fall over the holiday weeks.

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.

Galapagos Islands Cruise – Northern & Western Gear List

The key to staying comfortable while on an active 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. Try to bring only what is necessary—this will help you and the field staff.

Weather

Weather in the Galapagos and Quito, despite a 9000 foot elevation difference, are not so different. Both experience warm days and cool evenings. In the Galapagos year round can be 90 degrees with night temperatures dipping into the 50s. The cold, deep waters of the Humbolt Current keep these equatorial Islands and waters cooler than one might expect. Quito is quite temperate with daytime highs in the 70s and average nighttime temperatures in the 40-50s.

Gear Checklist

Official Papers
  • Valid passport
  • Airline itinerary and confirmation
Luggage
  • Duffel bag—sturdy and large enough to hold all of your gear
  • Small daypack for day hikes (to carry water bottle, light jacket, etc.)
  • Passport pouch or money belt
  • Luggage tags and luggage locks
Outerwear
  • Lightweight fleece or sweater
  • Lightweight rain/wind shell
Clothing
  • Lightweight easily washable items for city and boat wear - casual and comfortable clothes are recommended
  • Walking or hiking shorts
  • T-shirts
  • Long-sleeve shirt for cool evenings and sun protection
  • Walking or hiking pants
  • Underwear
  • Socks
Clothing Accessories
  • Swimsuit(s) and cover-up
  • Sun hat
  • Bandanna
  • Lightweight 2 or 3mm neoprene wetsuit if you prefer to use your own (available for use on boat)
Footwear
  • Comfortable walking/hiking shoes
  • Watersport sandals
  • Boat shoes or flip flops to wear on board
Travel Accessories
  • Mask and snorkel if you prefer to use your own (fins, mask & snorkel are available on board)
  • Water bottle
  • First-aid kit
  • Toiletry kit
  • Sunscreen and lip protection SPF 30+, biodegradable
  • Lip balm
  • Sunglasses and strap
  • Watch with alarm or travel alarm
  • Flashlight / headlamp and spare batteries
  • Small dry bag for camera gear while on ship-to-shore rides
Optional Field Gear
  • Camera, memory cards, spare batteries & charger
  • Underwater camera
  • Binoculars
  • Field guide to the Galapagos Islands
  • Stuff sacks, various sizes for organizing clothing and gear inside duffel
  • Reading and writing materials
  • Insect repellent
  • Plastic bags to keep your gear dry inside your daypack, and to separate wet/dirty items from dry/clean items
  • Laundry detergent for hand washing /universal sink stopper
  • Ear plugs

Things to Consider

  • Always pack essential items such as your passport, money, eyewear, medications and one set of spare clothes in your carry-on baggage, in case your luggage is delayed.
  • A sweater and wind shell are often needed for travel from July to November and for evenings any time of year. Note: You'll need the sweater if you want to spend the night up on deck, under a very bright, star-studded sky.
  • Cotton is wonderful in warm weather. Quick-dry items are advisable, since laundry facilities are not available. Clothes should be casual and loose fitting. Long and short sleeve shirts are recommended.
  • All bedding and towels are provided on the boats including beach towels.
  • 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.
  • Most passengers opt to wear the wetsuits provided due to the cold water temperatures while snorkeling. If you do not plan on wearing a wetsuit, please bring a layer to protect yourself from the sun while in the water, such as a rashguard.
  • To keep baggage to a minimum you may wish to leave items not necessary for your Galapagos travel at your hotel in Quito or Guayaquil. Plan to bring a spare duffel bag for this purpose.


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 AdventuresGalapagos Islands Cruise
 
4.7

(based on 18 reviews)

100%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Guides (16)
  • Once in a lifetime experience (14)
  • Well organized itinerary (14)
  • Exceeded expectations (13)
  • Group camaraderie (13)

Cons

    Best Uses

        • Reviewer Profile:
        • Casual adventurer (11), Avid adventurer (6)
        • Why Did You Choose to Travel with REI Adventures?:
        • Destination (13), I liked the itinerary (12), Active adventures (10), Commitment to sustainability (9), Good value (9)

      Reviewed by 18 customers

      Sort by

      Displaying reviews 1-10

      Back to top

      Previous | Next »

      (7 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      An amazing trip!

      By JulieNW

      from Albuquerque, NM

      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 Galapagos Islands Cruise:

          The quality of the tour operator exceeded my expectations - I learned so much from the guides, felt pampered by the crew, was amazed by the animals every day, and took amazing photos. I'd suggest combining this trip with a few days on the mainland on your own - I spent time in Quito, Bellavista, Otavalo, and Cotacatchi before and after the Galapagos cruise. While nothing compares to the Galapagos, it was great to see these areas, and ensured that I didn't have any time crunches between flights and the cruise.

          • Why Did You Choose to Travel with REI Adventures?:
          • Active Adventures, Commitment to Sustainability
          • Why did you choose this trip?:
          • I've always wanted to see the Galapagos, and was happy to find out that I could book the local tour company that I wanted to travel with (great reputation for sustainability and safety) through REI to have the security of booking through an American company, using a credit card. The cruise-based trip makes the most of the time so you can see several islands in depth, and combine hiking, snorkeling, and kayaking. I really wanted to be on a small boat for a more intimate experience. I chose itinerary B after researching which islands I was most interested in seeing, and am so glad that I chose an itinerary that included Genovesa.
          • What was the highlight of your trip?:
          • Every inch of the Galapagos that we saw was amazing - to be within a few feet of tortoises, iguanas, nesting frigates and other birds, etc. was incredible. Also snorkeled with sea lions, sea turtles, etc. Visiting in late May/early June was perfect - got to see baby sea lions nursing, cormorant chicks in nests, mating dances of frigates and other birds, and mating of iguanas and tortoises. The ship was very comfortable, food and equipment were great, crew and guides were amazingly knowledgeable and friendly. The whole group of 20 guests on our boat got along well, and having just 20 guests and 2 guides meant that we saw everything in very small groups compared to other tour companies.
          • What would be your advice to potential travelers?:
          • Don't hesitate - book this trip, there is something to see every time of year (although the guides said Sept-Oct has rough seas and the transitional months of May and November are often the most interesting times). The water was cold but the ship had ample selection of wetsuits to fit all sizes. Ship provides towels, trekking poles, masks, etc. so don't worry about bringing those items - focus on multiple shoe options (hiking sandals and closed hiking shoes with socks), shorts, swimsuit, sunscreen, bandanna, etc. I recommend a hat with a chin strap for wind. Make sure you have 2 camera batteries, charger, and sufficient memory card(s) - you'll take an amazing number of photos and videos. I took a disposable underwater camera and the pictures were disappointing - next time I'd try one of the underwater bags/cases for my regular camera instead. Wish I had brought a swim cap for snorkeling. This is a very active trip - typically 2 hikes plus a swim/snorkel each day, with meals/breaks on the ship in between activities. I went to bed early each night... Folks on this trip ranged from 18 to in their 70s, and no one had a problem completing the hikes or getting in and out of the panga boats.
           
          5.0

          Wonderful Galapagos Cruise

          By George Hu

          from Davis, Ca

          About Me Casual Adventurer, First-Time 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 Galapagos Islands Cruise:

              I felt like I got to experience and see all that the Galapagos island had to offer. This is good because I felt like it was time well spent and we left with no regret. The itinerary was packed without exhausting us. Overall it was very well thought out. The food and service were amazing and definitely part of what made the cruise so good. The guide was well informed, approachable, and friendly, and presented the information clearly. If you are planning to do go, do get some motion sickness help. the ride could get rough.

              • 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

              (0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Never should have returned.

              By jgavrin

              from Philadelphia, PA

              About Me Avid Adventurer

              Site Member

              Pros

              • Activity Level
              • Best trip ever
              • Exceeded Expectations
              • Food
              • Group Camaraderie
              • Guides
              • Just right
              • Once in a Lifetime Experience
              • Plentiful great fruit
              • Quality Equipment Provided
              • Well Organized Itinerary

              Cons

              • None

              Best Uses

                Comments about REI Adventures Galapagos Islands Cruise:

                Everything was perfect.

                • Why Did You Choose to Travel with REI Adventures?:
                • Active Adventures, Commitment to Sustainability, Destination, Good Value, I Liked the Itinerary, Known REI for 35 years, Travel with Like-minded Outdoor Enthusiasts
                • Why did you choose this trip?:
                • Have always wanted to go the Galapagos Islands. I'd go again in heart beat.
                • What was the highlight of your trip?:
                • Hard to choose. The guides were incredible. The place is unworldly. Pack lightly.
                • What would be your advice to potential travelers?:
                • Pack lightly. Don't bother bringing your own snorkeling gear--what is provided, from wet suits to fins, snorkel, mask first rate.

                (5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                4.0

                Good mix of land walks & snorkeling

                By leswes

                from Gibsonia, PA

                About Me Casual Adventurer

                See all my reviews

                Site Member

                Pros

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

                Cons

                • Accommodations

                Best Uses

                  Comments about REI Adventures Galapagos Islands Cruise:

                  A small boat cruise (20 passenger) is the best way to see the Galapagos. Our guide had 35 years of experience in the Galapagos, some as a ranger and researcher. He spoke very good english. We recommend this trip and would take it again!

                  • Why Did You Choose to Travel with REI Adventures?:
                  • Active Adventures, Commitment to Sustainability, Destination, Good Value, I Liked the Itinerary, Travel with Like-minded Outdoor Enthusiasts
                  • Why did you choose this trip?:
                  • We decided to go to the Galapagos this year. After lots of research, we selected the itinerary used by REI because it included most of the islands we wanted to visit. The trip had a good mix of land walks and opportunities to snorkel or kayak. And the price was reasonable compared to other tours.
                  • What was the highlight of your trip?:
                  • The opportunity to see and walk (or swim) among all of the unique animals, birds, reptiles found no where else in the world. The wildlife is everywhere and not afraid of people. Sometimes you have to watch your step or you'll bump into a sea lion, iguana or booby!
                  • What would be your advice to potential travelers?:
                  • The boat is relatively small. The rooms are essentially a bed (either 2 twins or a double), plus 4 feet of walking space and a narrow bathroom/shower. There were ample drawers for storage, but the room overall was smaller than I had envisioned. Choose the top deck if you can afford it. The boat moves between islands mostly during the night, andboth of the lower decks suffer from engine noise.

                  (0 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  5.0

                  What a great trip!

                  By HappyHula

                  from test wa

                  See all my reviews

                  Site Member

                  Comments about REI Adventures Galapagos Islands Cruise:

                  love it love it love it

                  (5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  4.0

                  amazing destination but some caveats

                  By galapagos traveler

                  from quito, ecuador

                  About Me Casual Adventurer

                  Site Member

                  Pros

                  • Once in a Lifetime Experience

                  Cons

                  • Activity Level
                  • Fell Short of Expectations

                  Best Uses

                    Comments about REI Adventures Galapagos Islands Cruise:

                    agree with previous comments (including repetitiveness, if i´m not just exacerbating that!).

                    pros - multiple passengers got free cabin upgrades bc business reportedly slower than usual for peak season. nice crew/effort, but male guide seemed like a performer/charmer-type and was a deliberate heavy breather over pa system (i would have been more comfortable with female guide). enjoyed the relative solitude and communion with animals in their natural habitats.
                    apparently we did longer around-the-island hikes because travelers were younger than their usual (very senior) clientele.

                    cons - hikes when topography was amazing (no animals to photograph) were rushed. thought we would see greater variety of animals and spend more time ashore during the day (not always moving at night). most off-beach snorkeling was unimpressive, though we had two better off-panga (raft) snorkels. though iguana deck cabins technically have windows, they were so dirty that you couldn´t actually see outside. also these were noisiest cabins (water, anchor, bar/dining room).

                    • Why Did You Choose to Travel with REI Adventures?:
                    • All the Details Planned for Me, Destination, Travel with Like-minded Outdoor Enthusiasts
                    • Why did you choose this trip?:
                    • rei member, friend had spoken highly of a different rei tour, had wanted to go to galapagos for a while, price/timing seemed to work best for me at time of booking.
                    • What was the highlight of your trip?:
                    • the islands, hiking on "mars"
                    • What would be your advice to potential travelers?:
                    • consider booking directly with tour company [...] and/or with ecuador specialists. unfortunately i ended up being disappointed with rei´s level of assistance (ie none) for advertised tour extensions. none of the other travelers had booked via rei and had their travel agents had arranged discounted hotel rooms etc.

                    (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    3.0

                    Not enough activity, got repetitious

                    By Jennie

                    from Guayaquil, Ecuador

                    About Me Avid Adventurer

                    Site Member

                    Pros

                    • Accommodations
                    • Guides
                    • Quality Equipment Provided

                    Cons

                    • Activity Level

                    Best Uses

                      Comments about REI Adventures Galapagos Islands Cruise:

                      see advice to potential travelers

                      • Why Did You Choose to Travel with REI Adventures?:
                      • Recommended by a Friend
                      • Why did you choose this trip?:
                      • We had chosen REI for Machu Picchu, so we thought that since we were already spending $3000 with REI that they would give us a discount on a second trip to the Galapagos. They only gave us a $100 discount.
                      • What was the highlight of your trip?:
                      • Diving with Scuba Iguana, which we could have organized ourselves and probably spent less.
                      • What would be your advice to potential travelers?:
                      • If you have a high activity level, you will be disappointed with the hikes. If I were to do this again, I would take a shorter cruise (3-4 nights) and spent the rest of the time on land and do excursions from land so you have a chance to go out and get off the boat. The itinerary does not allow for a single night off the boat.

                      (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

                       
                      4.0

                      It's a GREAT trip

                      By Tulsahikers

                      from Tulsa, Oklahoma

                      About Me Avid Adventurer

                      Site Member

                      Pros

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

                      Cons

                      • Food

                      Best Uses

                        Comments about REI Adventures Galapagos Islands Cruise:

                        The crew and guides were of the highest quality. The itinerary was full and kept everyone busy but allowed time to relax if you chose to skip the activities and just read a good book while sitting on the sundeck. The rooms are not huge but very adequate. Everyone has a private bath and the rooms are air-conditioned.

                        • Why Did You Choose to Travel with REI Adventures?:
                        • Active Adventures, Commitment to Sustainability, Destination, I Liked the Itinerary, Travel with Like-minded Outdoor Enthusiasts
                        • What was the highlight of your trip?:
                        • The wildlife was wonderful.
                        • What would be your advice to potential travelers?:
                        • I highly recommend this trip but don't expect the food to be anything special. It was very average at best. You won't go hungry as there is plenty of food and snakes are provided twice a day following morning and afternoon activities.

                        (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                         
                        5.0

                        Wonderful time...

                        By AD

                        from Atlanta, GA

                        About Me Avid Adventurer

                        Site Member

                        Pros

                        • Accommodations
                        • Exceeded Expectations
                        • Guides

                        Cons

                          Best Uses

                            Comments about REI Adventures Galapagos Islands Cruise:

                            The overall experience with REI Adventures and their local vendor, [...]was excellent. Accommodations were as expected for a small boat and food was reasonably good. The guides were extremely knowledgeable; my spouse and I both have graduate degrees in evolutionary biology and the guides knew what they were talking about. They and the captain were also very flexible, moving things around to avoid 100-passenger tours and other groups. Our boat actually broke down and only had one engine, which meant that we couldn't make it to the farthest west island. The crew handled it very professionally. And in actuality we didn't miss it, since there was so much to see everywhere.

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

                            (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

                             
                            5.0

                            A trip of a lifetime!

                            By Autumn

                            from Sheboygan, WI

                            About Me Casual Adventurer

                            Pros

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

                            Cons

                            • Too many children

                            Best Uses

                              Comments about REI Adventures Galapagos Islands Cruise:

                              Once we got to the Galapagos Islands, everything was very organized. The [...]crew and the guides communicated all agendas and directions very well.Traveling through the Quito airport was a bit confusing, even when the [...]staff was there. I would recommend flying into and out of the Guayaquil airport. That airport seemed more organized, and it's also cheaper to fly out from there. The time spent on the islands was wonderful! There was plenty of time on the boat to just relax, but most of the time was filled with expeditions. It was very active but not strenuous.

                              • Why Did You Choose to Travel with REI Adventures?:
                              • Active Adventures, Commitment to Sustainability, Destination, Good Value, Travel with Like-minded Outdoor Enthusiasts
                              • Why did you choose this trip?:
                              • We chose this trip because it was with a small group, and the value seemed the best.
                              • What was the highlight of your trip?:
                              • The highlight of the trip was seeing the animals so closely.
                              • What would be your advice to potential travelers?:
                              • Bring more sunscreen than you think you'll need.

                              Displaying reviews 1-10

                              Back to top

                              Previous | Next »



                              Dates & Prices:

                               2014 (scroll to bottom for 2015)

                              M/V Eric, Flamingo, Letty
                              DateNotesIguana Deck
                              double
                              Iguana Deck
                              triple
                              Booby DeckDolphin DeckSingle
                              Apr 13-20, 2014 - Sold outF$3,900$3,800$4,350$4,700$5,825
                              Apr 27 - May 4, 2014 - Sold out$3,900$3,800$4,350$4,700$5,825
                              May 11-18, 2014 - Sold out$3,900$3,800$4,350$4,700$5,825
                              May 25 - Jun 1, 2014 - Sold out$3,900$3,800$4,350$4,700$5,825
                              Jun 8-15, 2014 - Sold outF, T$3,900$3,800$4,350$4,700$5,825
                              Jun 22-29, 2014 - Sold outF, T$3,900$3,800$4,350$4,700$5,825
                              Jul 6-13, 2014 - Sold outF, T$3,900$3,800$4,350$4,700$5,825
                              Jul 20-27, 2014 - Sold outF, T$3,900$3,800$4,350$4,700$5,825
                              Aug 3-10, 2014F, T$3,900$3,800$4,350$4,700$5,825
                              Aug 17-24, 2014F, T$3,900$3,800$4,350$4,700$5,825
                              Aug 31 - Sep 7, 2014$3,705$3,610$3,915$3,995$5,534
                              Sep 14-21, 2014$3,705$3,610$3,915$3,995$5,534
                              Sep 28 - Oct 5, 2014$3,705$3,610$3,915$3,995$5,534
                              Oct 12-19, 2014$3,900$3,800$4,350$4,700$5,825
                              Oct 26 - Nov 2, 2014$3,705$3,610$3,915$3,995$5,534
                              Nov 9-16, 2014$3,900$3,800$4,350$4,700$5,825
                              Nov 23-30, 2014$3,900$3,800$4,350$4,700$5,825
                              Dec 7-14, 2014$3,900$3,800$4,350$4,700$5,825
                              Dec 21-28, 2014 - Sold outF$3,900$3,800$4,350$4,700$5,825


                              Promotional discounts are based on available cabins at the time of booking, cannot be combined with any other cruise discounts and are valid on new bookings only.

                              F = Family: 1 of 3 yachts is designated for families traveling with children, ideal for ages 7-12.

                              T = Teen: 1 of 3 yachts is designated for families traveling with teens, ideal for ages 13-19.

                              Child Discounts: Children 7-11 years receive a 25% discount off of the cabin cost. Children 12-17 years receive a 15% discount off the cruise cost only. Child discounts are not available during holiday departures. Discounts cannot be combined with any promotional rates and will be taken from the full double occupancy rate. Only one child discount is allowed per every adult fare paid with a limit of two per family.

                              Additional Fees:
                              Island flight: $545
                              Galapagos National Park fee: $100
                              Transit fee: $10


                              Prices are per person double occupancy. Prices and fees are subject to change.


                              Vessels

                              REI Adventures partners with one of the finest first class small boat cruise operators in the Galapagos. A small boat cruise is the perfect way to explore the Galapagos Islands. The vessels are large enough to allow comfortable and spacious cabins with a host of amenities, yet small enough for an intimate and personalized experience without the "crowds."

                              Cabin Descriptions

                              Dolphin Deck
                              Cabins 1,3 & 4 have two twin lower beds or one double bed and picture windows
                              Cabin 2 has one double bed and picture window.
                              (cabins average 95 square feet)

                              Booby Deck
                              Cabins 5 & 6 have one double bed and picture windows.
                              (cabins average 90 square feet)

                              Iguana Deck
                              Cabins 7 & 8 have two twin lower beds and port lights.
                              Cabins 9 & 10 have two twin lower beds and one upper berth with port lights and are available for triples.
                              (cabins average 110 square feet)

                              Single
                              Single cabins are limited and assigned by the cruise company to the best cabin available at the time of sailing.

                              Triple
                              Triple cabins are available on the Iguana deck only in cabins I9 and I10.

                              For more boat specifications and deck plans, feel free to review this web site.



                              Dates & Prices:

                               2015

                              M/V Eric, Flamingo, Letty
                              DateNotesIguana Deck
                              double
                              Iguana Deck
                              triple
                              Booby DeckDolphin DeckSingle
                              Jan 4-11, 2015$4,100$4,000$4,550$4,900$6,100
                              Jan 18-25, 2015$4,100$4,000$4,550$4,900$6,100
                              Feb 1-8, 2015$3,895$3,800$4,323$4,655$5,795
                              Feb 15-22, 2015F$4,100$4,000$4,550$4,900$6,100
                              Mar 1-8, 2015$3,895$3,800$4,323$4,655$5,795
                              Mar 15-22, 2015T$4,100$4,000$4,550$4,900$6,100
                              Mar 29 - Apr 5, 2015F, T$4,100$4,000$4,550$4,900$6,100
                              Apr 12-19, 2015T$4,100$4,000$4,550$4,900$6,100
                              Apr 26 - May 3, 2015$4,100$4,000$4,550$4,900$6,100
                              May 10-17, 2015$3,895$3,800$4,323$4,655$5,795
                              May 24-31, 2015$4,100$4,000$4,550$4,900$6,100
                              Jun 7-14, 2015$4,100$4,000$4,550$4,900$6,100
                              Jun 21-28, 2015T$4,100$4,000$4,550$4,900$6,100
                              Jul 5-12, 2015T$4,100$4,000$4,550$4,900$6,100
                              Jul 19-26, 2015T$4,100$4,000$4,550$4,900$6,100
                              Aug 2-9, 2015T$4,100$4,000$4,550$4,900$6,100
                              Aug 16-23, 2015T$4,100$4,000$4,550$4,900$6,100
                              Aug 30 - Sep 6, 2015$4,100$4,000$4,550$4,900$6,100
                              Sep 13-20, 2015$3,895$3,800$4,323$4,655$5,795
                              Sep 27 - Oct 4, 2015$3,895$3,800$4,323$4,655$5,795
                              Oct 11-18, 2015$4,100$4,000$4,550$4,900$6,100
                              Oct 25 - Nov 1, 2015$3,895$3,800$4,323$4,655$5,795
                              Nov 8-15, 2015$3,895$3,800$4,323$4,655$5,795
                              Nov 22-29, 2015F$4,100$4,000$4,550$4,900$6,100
                              Dec 6-13, 2015$3,895$3,800$4,323$4,655$5,795
                              Dec 20-27, 2015 - Sold out$4,100$4,000$4,550$4,900$6,100


                              Promotional discounts are based on available cabins at the time of booking, cannot be combined with any other cruise discounts and are valid on new bookings only.

                              F = Family: 1 of 3 yachts is designated for families traveling with children, ideal for ages 7-12.

                              T = Teen: 1 of 3 yachts is designated for families traveling with teens, ideal for ages 13-19.

                              Child Discounts: Children 7-11 years receive a 25% discount off of the cabin cost. Children 12-17 years receive a 15% discount off the cruise cost only. Child discounts are not available during holiday departures. Discounts cannot be combined with any promotional rates and will be taken from the full double occupancy rate. Only one child discount is allowed per every adult fare paid with a limit of two per family.

                              Additional Fees:
                              Island flight: $555
                              Galapagos National Park fee: $100
                              Transit fee: $10


                              Prices are per person double occupancy. Prices and fees are subject to change.


                              Vessels

                              REI Adventures partners with one of the finest first class small boat cruise operators in the Galapagos. A small boat cruise is the perfect way to explore the Galapagos Islands. The vessels are large enough to allow comfortable and spacious cabins with a host of amenities, yet small enough for an intimate and personalized experience without the "crowds."

                              Cabin Descriptions

                              Dolphin Deck
                              Cabins 1,3 & 4 have two twin lower beds or one double bed and picture windows
                              Cabin 2 has one double bed and picture window.
                              (cabins average 95 square feet)

                              Booby Deck
                              Cabins 5 & 6 have one double bed and picture windows.
                              (cabins average 90 square feet)

                              Iguana Deck
                              Cabins 7 & 8 have two twin lower beds and port lights.
                              Cabins 9 & 10 have two twin lower beds and one upper berth with port lights and are available for triples.
                              (cabins average 110 square feet)

                              Single
                              Single cabins are limited and assigned by the cruise company to the best cabin available at the time of sailing.

                              Triple
                              Triple cabins are available on the Iguana deck only in cabins I9 and I10.

                              For more boat specifications and deck plans, feel free to review this web site.

                              Ecuadorian Amazon Eco Lodges Extension

                              Activity: Wildlife viewing

                              Explore more of Ecuador's diverse landscape and wildlife by extending your adventure with a visit to the Amazon. Journey down the Napo River and discover the world of a tropical rainforest where toucans, parrots, caimans, and a hundred species of butterflies and insects exist within an incredible biodiversity of plants.

                              Our jungle experiences include accommodations at comfortable eco-lodges. Each lodge offers a unique and unforgettable glimpse into this amazing tropical ecosystem.

                              Highlights include:

                              • Visiting a parrot clay lick where you will enjoy an amazing display as parrots and parakeets come down to a clay bank to eat this soil rich in minerals.
                              • Learning first hand of the Kichwa community with a visit to a local village or family home.
                              • Climbing to a canopy observation platform located 130 feet atop a kapok tree with an enchanting view of the rainforest canopy and the flora and fauna that live in the tree tops.
                              • A jungle night walk in search of insects, amphibians, reptiles and mammals hiding in the darkness of the forest.

                              Days: 4 or 5

                              Price: from $950 per person

                              Hide Details

                              Sacha Lodge

                              The lodging at Sacha was carefully designed to offer comfort to the traveler yet preserve the environment and rainforest ambience. All the cabins, with high thatched roofs and private shaded terraces, are constructed with traditional materials and hidden among the lush surroundings. Each of the 26 rooms provide a private bathroom with flushing toilet and hot shower. All cabins are screened against insects, and contain ceiling fans above two comfortable double beds. During free time, visitors may overlook the jungle from hammocks and often report seeing wild fauna such as toucans, agoutis and monkeys right from their own cabin! Added features at Sacha are a 900' long canopy walk suspended 120' above the forest floor and a butterfly house where guests can wander through 'the flying room".

                              2014 Rates

                              AccommodationDoubleSingle
                              4 days / 3 nights$950$1,425
                              5 days / 4 nights$1,190$1,785

                              Airfare - per person roundtrip from Quito $206 (subject to increase).

                              Flights do not operate on Sunday.

                              Yasuni National Park fee - $25 per person (to be paid locally).

                              Napo Wildlife Center

                              Lodging at NWC has been designed to offer maximum privacy and comfort to the world traveler, providing lake and forest views from their private porches, as well as preserving one of the most pristine spots of Amazon forest in Ecuador. Each of our 16 individual large luxury cabanas are prepared for receiving guests in double occupancy or arranged in advance for a 3 family member visit. Rooms include a king size or twin size beds, private bathrooms with on demand hot water, a multi-speed ceiling fan, electricity provided by silent generators supplemented by solar panel power system, plenty of lights and 120 v outlets, screened windows and mosquito nets. An added feature at Napo is its amazing location on the Anangucocha Lake and the chance for views of giant otters, black caiman and capybaras right from the dock or opportunities to jump in for a refreshing swim. Guest can also spend free time in the observation tower located next to the dining hall offering good opportunity for birding or discovering more wildlife right next to the lodge.

                              2014 Rates

                              AccommodationDoubleSingle
                              4 days / 3 nights$1,100$1,380
                              5 days / 4 nights$1,370$1,710

                              Airfare - per person roundtrip from Quito $206 (subject to increase).

                              Flights do not operate on Sunday.

                              Prices Include

                              Accommodations in double room with private bath; all meals from lunch on Day 1 to breakfast on last day; bilingual jungle guide; native guide; jungle tours; transfers; taxes and use of rubber boots.

                              Not Included

                              International airfare to Ecuador; alcoholic beverages or soft drinks; guide gratuities; excess baggage charges or insurance of any kind. The price for roundtrip flights from Quito to Coca is not included in the lodge package. The flight cost will be collected by REI Adventures and arrangements are made and pre-paid in conjunction with your lodge booking.

                              Single Travelers

                              Rates for single travelers vary based on lodge and length of stay.

                              Payment and Cancellation Policy

                              REI Adventures standard cancellation policy does not apply to the Amazon Lodges. A special cancellation policy applies which is stricter than the REI policy. A deposit of $400 per person is required for confirmation. $200 of the deposit is nonrefundable from confirmation. Within 90 days, REI Adventures' standard policy applies.

                              Qualifications

                              This trip is rated Easy Active [2] and contains a variety of activities ranging from easy day walks to moderate hikes in a warm, tropical climate and swimming. Participants should be in good physical condition and consider beginning a regular exercise regimen 1-2 months prior to departure consisting of walking/hiking, running and/or swimming to prepare for this adventure. The better shape you're in, the more you'll be able to take advantage of the lodges' nature trails and optional activities.

                              Days: 4 or 5

                              Price: from $950 per person

                              Show Details

                              How are we doing? Give us feedback on this page.

                              • Join REI today!
                              • REI Membership
                              • REI members enjoy discounts on REI Adventures trips and more benefits.
                              • Join REI today!
                              • Sign up for REI Gearmail®
                              • and get 15% off selected items!
                              • Store Locator
                              • Locate an REI store near you.
                              • Find a Store
                              © 2014 Recreational Equipment, Inc. All rights reserved. REI, the REI Tree and Mountain design, Novara, and
                              REI Adventures are trademarks of Recreational Equipment, Inc.

                              Find REI on: FacebookTwitterYouTubeFlickrMobile site