Small Group Discoveries

+ Our signature Small Group sightseeing brings Quito to life! Explore the architectural treasures of this UNESCO World Heritage capital and meet city residents eager to share insight into their life and culture.
+ With never more than 16 guests in a landing party, you’ll enjoy deeper engagement and more personalized attention from our expert naturalists, a more comfortable pace, and unforgettable up-close encounters with some of the most amazing animals on the planet.    
+ Informative and entertaining shipboard lectures enhance your voyage and deepen your understanding of the island’s unique geology and wildlife.
+ Complimentary wet suits, snorkeling gear, sea kayaks and a glass-bottom boat enrich your exploration of the Galapagos’ colorful undersea realms.
+ Includes 2 UNESCO World Heritage sites.
  • Day 1 - Welcome to Ecuador

    Upon arrival at the airport, you’ll be met and escorted to Casa Gangotena, our luxury boutique hotel in the historic heart of Quito.
  • Day 2 - Discover Quito c

    Your exploration of this World Heritage city begins with San Francisco, a magnificent 16th-century Roman Catholic church and convent. At a local hat shop, the owner will share her millinery skills and the techniques learned from her father that have allowed her to produce some of the city’s finest hats for nearly 60 years. You’ll also visit Chez Tiff, a boutique chocolate shop that produces fine confections from locally-sourced cocoa, herbs and fruits. In the historic heart of the city, you’ll behold important Colonial-era landmarks including the Presidential Palace and Cathedral. Your sightseeing ends in La Ronda, a charming historic district filled with inviting shops and galleries. Meals B+L
  • Day 3 - to the Galapagos Islands c

    You’ll be escorted to the airport this morning for your included flight to Baltra Island in the center of the archipelago. On arrival, you’ll be met and escorted to the pier to board our intimate Galapagos cruiser, La Pinta. You’ll have time to settle in to your Upper Deck outside stateroom before a welcome briefing and safety drill. Sit down to lunch with your fellow passengers as we chart a course for South Plaza Island, the site of your first naturalist-guided shore expedition. From the white sand beach, edged with black lava formations, you can see groves of prickly-pear cactus and a vast expanse of sesuvium, an unusual succulent that changes from bright green to red, orange and purple depending upon the season. This small island is home to colonies of sea lions, small yellow-grey land iguanas, and marine iguanas. Red-billed tropicbirds and swallow-tailed gulls are just some of the many birds that can be seen nesting along the rocky shoreline. After dinner, an evening briefing with our expert shipboard naturalists offers an entertaining and informative look at the adventures to come.  Meals B+L+D
  • Day 4 - Santa Fe Island + San Cristobal Island

    After breakfast, our panga boats will bring you from La Pinta to an idyllic white sand beach on the northeast coast of Santa Fe Island. The beach is inhabited by a large number of sea lions that can sometimes be seen surfing in the waves just off shore – it’s an exciting sight to behold! With our sharp-eyed naturalist, this morning’s walk also offers a chance to see Galapagos hawks, Santa Fe land iguanas (unique to this island), and the impressive Santa Fe Opuntia cactus. After the walk, you can swim and snorkel in the bay or ride in our glass-bottom boat.

    After lunch, you’ll step off in the town of Puerto Baquerizo Moreno for an excursion to the Cerro Colorado Tortoise Reserve. The visitor center here is a great place to learn about the San Cristobal tortoises and their relationship to the various tortoise species found on other Galapagos islands. Exploring the reserve along a network of trails allows you to observe these remarkable giant tortoises as well as other endemic species including Chatham mockingbirds, flycatchers, yellow warblers and a variety of finches.  Meals B+L+D
  • Day 5 - Morning + Afternoon Landings on San Cristobal Island

    Today finds you exploring San Cristobal Island at the far eastern edge of the archipelago. In the morning, you’ll join our naturalists to land on the small beach at Punta Pitt, home to a raucous bachelor colony of sea lions. The trail that ascends from the beach offers great views and the only place in the archipelago where all three varieties of boobies (red-footed, blue-footed and Nazca) can be found nesting together! This landing site also offers another chance to observe two species of frigatebirds, swallow-tailed gulls and storm petrels. The hardy vegetation that thrives in this harsh volcanic landscape offers insight into the unique fauna of the archipelago and includes saltbush, spiny shrubs, Palo Santo trees and a variety of small cacti. Conditions permitting, you can end your morning ashore with some swimming or snorkeling from the beach.

    In the afternoon, you’ll explore by panga boat along the rugged, tuff-cone shoreline of Cerro Brujo, one of the first places in the Galapagos visited by Charles Darwin. You’ll go ashore on an expansive white coral-sand beach that’s great for swimming and snorkeling. Narrated exploration with our expert naturalist reveals a diversity of coastal and migratory birds including pelicans, blue-footed boobies and swallow-tail gulls as well as sea lions and marine iguanas.  Meals B+L+D
  • Day 6 - Punta Suárez + Gardner Bay

    Your first shore expedition on Española Island is at Punta Suárez, hailed as one of the best landing sites in the Galapagos and noted for its amazing variety and abundance of wildlife. At the rocky landing site, you’ll likely be greeted by groups of resting sea lions; the young ones are often nearby cavorting in the shallow waters offshore. Unusual, vividly colored red and green marine iguanas are also a common sight when you first step ashore. As you venture inland with our knowledgeable naturalist, you’ll see and learn about many other creatures including Galapagos doves, Española mockingbirds, three species of Darwin’s finches and thriving colonies of blue-footed and Nazca boobies. Near the end of the trail, a lava fissure has created a blowhole where water can be sprayed up to 100 feet into the air during high tide. From April to December, visitors can walk along the edge of a waved albatross breeding colony. With up to 30,000 birds in residence during these months, this represents nearly the entire world population of these fascinating birds that mate for life and produce just a single egg each year.

    Following lunch onboard, you’ll return to Española Island for a relaxing afternoon at Gardner Bay. Extending for almost one mile, this expansive white coral-sand beach is one of the loveliest in the Galapagos Islands. It’s a great place to swim or take advantage of our complimentary snorkeling gear, kayak and glass-bottom boat. From November to March, green sea turtles can often be seen in the waters of Gardner Bay. If you stay ashore to explore along the beach, you’re likely to encounter Darwin finches, resting sea lions and Española mockingbirds.  Meals B+L+D
  • Day 7 - Charles Darwin Research Station + Back to the Mainland

    After breakfast, you’ll disembark on Santa Cruz Island to visit the esteemed Charles Darwin Research Station. Here you’ll see giant Galapagos tortoises and learn about the center’s ongoing conservation work to ensure the survival of this remarkable creature as well as the overall health of the archipelago’s fragile environments. Then travel via motorcoach and ferry across the channel to nearby Baltra Island for your included flight back to the South American mainland. You can fly to Guayaquil at the Hotel del Parque or Quito at the JW Marriott: we include your overnight accommodations and a transfer to the airport in the morning. Or you can connect to your international flight on the same day.  Meals B
  • Day 8 - Farewell, Ecuador

    We transfer you to the airport today.  Meals B

Extend Your Trip

  • Discover Peru after your Galapagos Cruise

    6-Day Extension from $3,299

    Enhance your travels in South America with our fully-guided 6-day tour to Lima, Cuzco and Machu Picchu. We include all on-tour transportation, luxury hotels and extensive sightseeing.

    View Day by Day »

  • Add the rainforest before your journey!

    4 days from $1,499

    Discover the amazing diversity of Ecuador’s rainforests! We include transportation, one night at the Caso Gangotena in Quito, two nights at Mashpi, a new luxury jungle lodge, all meals, and guided rainforest activities like nature walks and canopy tours.

    View Day by Day »

Similar Trips

Check In!

  • Casa Gangotena - Quito, Ecuador

    Set in an elegantly restored mansion in the historic heart of Quito, the Casa Gangotena is the best luxury hotel in the capital. Hailed by Condé Nast Traveler and Travel + Leisure, our intimate boutique hotel offers 31 lavish guestrooms of eye-catching style, contemporary design and fine antiques.

  • Hotel del Parque - Guayaquil, Ecuador

    The luxurious Hotel del Parque is a lovingly restored 19th century estate, surrounded by lush tropical forest and gardens.  Its spacious 44 guestrooms are exquisitely decorated with modern amenities and views of the courtyard or gardens.  Its riverside location in a peaceful setting is only a 15 minute drive from the city center or airport.

  • Hilton Colon Guayaquil, Ecuador

    Set by the Guayas River, the Hilton Colon Guayaquil hotel just minutes away from local cultural spots and Heritage Park. The hotel features an outdoor pool and spa and fitness center and onsite casino. Italian cuisine is available in the Portofino Restaurant and Ecuadorian fare in Café Colon or enjoy cake and coffee in the Hilton Colon Guayaquil hotel's deli. All rooms have high-speed internet access.

  • JW Marriott Quito, Ecuador

    The Marriott Hotel is located within walking distance of major sites in Quito, including shopping and cultural events. All guest rooms have views of the Pichincha Volcano or the City of Quito, air-conditioning, satellite TV, internet, and telephone. Additional amenities include restaurant, bar, swimming pool, Jacuzzi, tennis, nearby golf, and spa services.

Welcome Aboard!Deluxe

  • Standard Cabins

    Standard Cabins

    The stylish 24-cabin La Pinta is a deluxe and intimate yacht-style cruiser, the only Galapagos vessel with floor-to-ceiling windows in every stateroom! Enjoy wonderful meals with your fellow guests in the congenial single-seating dining room, an inviting lounge with panoramic windows and a fitness room. The ship also offers complimentary wifi and snorkeling gear, and comes with its own sea kayaks and a glass-bottom boat.

    Ship Preview
    Ship DeckPlan

Our Small Ship Adventure Value

+ Our exclusive sightseeing in Quito with never more than 16 guests including all entry fees
16 meals: 7 breakfasts, 5 lunches and 4 dinners
+ 2 nights at the luxurious Casa Gangotena in Quito before your cruise and 1 night after your cruise in either Guayaquil or Quito
+ 4-night cruise aboard La Pinta in a deluxe Upper Cabin outside stateroom with floor-to-ceiling windows
+ A complete program of naturalist-guided Small Group shore excursions in the Galapagos with never more than 16 guests in your landing party
Enriching shipboard lectures, complimentary WiFi and snorkeling gear throughout your cruise, sea kayaks and a glass-bottom boat
+ Complimentary, unlimited soft drinks onboard La Pinta
+ All port charges, national park fees and the required Transit Control card
+ All on-tour transportation and both internal flights
+ All hotel taxes & service charges and all airline taxes & fees for your included roundtrip flights to the Galapagos

Trip Pricing

  • Traveling as a single?

Begins Quito - Per Person Double

Dates   Deluxe
Departure Return   Regular Deal
8/27/2019
Guaranteed
9/3/2019 $6899 $6399
 
9/10/2019
Sold Out
9/17/2019 $6899 $6399
 
9/24/2019
Guaranteed
10/1/2019 $6899 $6399
 
10/8/2019
Sold Out
10/15/2019 $6899 $6399
 
10/22/2019
Guaranteed
10/29/2019 $6899 $5899
Our Best Savings Ever
11/5/2019
Sold Out
11/12/2019 $6899 $6399
 
12/17/2019
Guaranteed
12/24/2019 $6899 $6399
 
12/31/2019 1/7/2020 $7399 $6899
 
1/14/2020
Guaranteed
1/21/2020 $7399 $6899
 
1/28/2020
Guaranteed
2/4/2020 $7399 $6899
 
2/11/2020 2/18/2020 $7399 $6899
 
2/25/2020
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3/3/2020 $7399 $6899
 
3/10/2020 3/17/2020 $7399 $6899
 
3/24/2020
Guaranteed
3/31/2020 $7399 $6899
 
4/7/2020 4/14/2020 $7399 $6899
 
4/21/2020
Guaranteed
4/28/2020 $7399 $6899
 
5/5/2020 5/12/2020 $7399 $6899
 
5/19/2020
Sold Out
5/26/2020 $7399 $6899
 
6/2/2020 6/9/2020 $7399 $6899
 
6/16/2020
Guaranteed
6/23/2020 $7399 $6899
 
6/30/2020 7/7/2020 $7399 $6899
 
7/14/2020
Guaranteed
7/21/2020 $7399 $6899
 
8/11/2020
Guaranteed
8/18/2020 $7399 $6899
 
8/25/2020 9/1/2020 $7399 $6899
 
9/8/2020
Guaranteed
9/15/2020 $7399 $6899
 
9/22/2020 9/29/2020 $7399 $6899
 
10/6/2020
Guaranteed
10/13/2020 $7399 $6899
 
10/20/2020 10/27/2020 $7399 $6899
 
11/3/2020
Sold Out
11/10/2020 $7399 $6899
 

Select all Deals that apply for best available price.

  • Save $1000 per couple + $500 solo on all of our Small Group, Small Ship and Private Journeys when you pay-in-full at time of booking.
  • Travel is one of  life's most rewarding experiences, perhaps even more so when it's shared with those you love! Combine our limited-time pay-in-full discount with our Family & Friends offers and save even more:
    • Save $50 more per person when 3 guests go
    • Save $100 more per person with 4 people
    • Save $150 more per person with 5 people
    • Save $200 more per person with 6 or more people!
    For Groups of 8 or more please call 800.221.2216
  • Save $2,000 per couple | $1,000 solo on this select date. Cannot be combined with any other offer.

Prices are per person, land only. We offer air on LAN. Add extra nights.

Extend Your Trip

  • Discover Peru after your Galapagos Cruise

    6-Day Extension from $3,299

    Enhance your travels in South America with our fully-guided 6-day tour to Lima, Cuzco and Machu Picchu. We include all on-tour transportation, luxury hotels and extensive sightseeing.

    View Day by Day »

  • Add the rainforest before your journey!

    4 days from $1,499

    Discover the amazing diversity of Ecuador’s rainforests! We include transportation, one night at the Caso Gangotena in Quito, two nights at Mashpi, a new luxury jungle lodge, all meals, and guided rainforest activities like nature walks and canopy tours.

    View Day by Day »



There are no upcoming departures for this tour, but our Custom Travel Team can arrange a private departure just for you at an affordable price and on the dates you want.  With your own private car, driver and guide and custom tailored hotels, meals, and sightseeing we can create the journey of a lifetime exactly to your specifications.

Contact our Custom Travel Team:    800-221-2216  or  Email Us

 

Extend Your Trip

  • Discover Peru after your Galapagos Cruise

    6-Day Extension from $3,299

    Enhance your travels in South America with our fully-guided 6-day tour to Lima, Cuzco and Machu Picchu. We include all on-tour transportation, luxury hotels and extensive sightseeing.

    View Day by Day »

  • Add the rainforest before your journey!

    4 days from $1,499

    Discover the amazing diversity of Ecuador’s rainforests! We include transportation, one night at the Caso Gangotena in Quito, two nights at Mashpi, a new luxury jungle lodge, all meals, and guided rainforest activities like nature walks and canopy tours.

    View Day by Day »

Private Tour Add-Ons

  • Ecuador Amazon Lodge

    5-Day Tour Freestyle

    Explore Ecuador’s largest tract of Amazon jungle from the Napo Wildlife Center, our 5-star eco-lodge in a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. Includes roundtrip air from Quito and native-guided rainforest excursions.

  • Cuenca

    3-Day FreeStyle Tour

    Fly roundtrip from Quito to this handsome Colonial-era town set high in Ecuador’s southern Andes. Enjoy a city tour and then personalize your stay with a second countryside excursion of your choice.

Trip Reviews

Average Traveler Rating:  Review This Trip »

(44 Traveler Reviews)

  • Elaine from IN gives this tour 

    The trip was well planned and paced with a variety of excursions from which to choose. The naturalists were knowledgeable, patient and well versed. Accommodations were very comfortable.


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    Date Traveled: 3/25/2019

  • Beverly from MI gives this tour 

    Casa Gangotena and Mashpi Lodge were spectacular, both aesthetically and in terms of service. The guides at Mashpi--Anderson in particular--were wonderful. Our A&R representative in Quito did a very good job of expediting us through airports, and she was always on time and smiling.


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    Date Traveled: 2/23/2019

  • Melissa & Rolf from DE gives this tour 

    Loved visiting the artisans in Quito and the La Pinta Galapagos tour.


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    Date Traveled: 1/15/2019

  • Melissa from DE gives this tour 

    The water and on-shore excursions and activities to see animals were fantastic.


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    Date Traveled: 1/14/2019

  • Rolf from AK gives this tour 

    Hard to believe how close one was able to get to the animals. Also liked learning about the culture.


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    Date Traveled: 1/14/2019

Save $1000 Per Couple
+ $500 Solo

Pay in full at time of booking.

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