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Eric and Letty Galapagos Yachts

$4,500$5,600

4.88 out of 5

First-class 20 passenger sister yachts that offer active and very personalized tours due to a small guide to traveler ratio (1 naturalist per 10 travelers). Great guides, great itineraries, great service make these memorable trips, and these are the first boats in the Galapagos to have Stand Up Paddleboards on board.

Trip Length: 8 Days
Destination:
Galapagos Islands
Accommodations:
20 passenger, First Class Yacht
Activities: Wildlife viewing, naturalist walks, snorkeling, kayaking

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SKU: Ecoventura-ELF Categories: , , Tags: ,
Local Operator:

WHY THIS TRIP
The Eric and Letty, 20-passenger first-class sister ships, are some of our traveler’s favorite Galapagos boats. In addition to a great reputation for their guides and comprehensive 8-day itineraries, you’ll have 1 naturalist guide per every 10 travelers (compared with the usual 1:16 ratio), plenty of snorkeling excursions and opportunities to kayak and now even Stand Up Paddleboard. During school holidays the boats offer family trips with guides and food that kids will love, and the guarantee to have other families on board with you. You’ll also be supporting one of the most environmentally friendly Galapagos cruises out there.

WHY CHOOSE THE ERIC, LETTY, FLAMINGO I YACHTS?

Watch this video to hear what our Expert Travel Advisors have to say:

TRIP DESCRIPTION

Ecoventura has a well-deserved reputation for offering quality trips while also being leaders in sustainable tourism. They are dedicated to using tourism in the Galapagos as a means to protect the islands for perpetuity, and were among the first Galapagos companies to receive the Smart Voyager certification.

A trip on the Eric or Letty will be a top Galapagos cruise experience, as the boats have well thought out itineraries designed to allow passengers to really experience the best of the Galapagos Islands. They visit many of the more remote but less visited sites in the islands.

Additionally, the yachts have 20 passengers each so that there are 2 naturalists on board each boat, giving a guide to passenger ratio of 1:10 instead of the standard 1:16 on most other boats. By traveling together on the same itinerary, the boats are able to coordinate land visits so that each group has a more private experience. Additionally the boats are separated by demographics so that families with children travel together on a boat and people of similar ages are put together on the same cruise.

The yachts share the same design, and each has ten double cabins on 3 decks; upper level cabins are either twins or double beds and have large picture windows; main level cabins have double beds and picture windows; lower deck cabins have portholes and bunk beds, with triples available. Each cabin has air conditioning, private bathrooms with hot and cold water and hair dryers. The rooms also have storage cabinets and drawers, and have separate climate controls.

The yachts have polished teak interiors with spacious shared areas for passengers to relax, sit outside to watch wildlife while traveling, or to watch movies or play games in the conference area. The upper two decks have large picture windows so passengers are always able to look out and enjoy the sights of the Galapagos Islands.  The yachts were built in 1991 and are upgraded and refurbished yearly.

Menus have recently been updated to provide more fresh tasty food, and dining will be a highlight of the trip.

Ecoventura welcomes families with children ages twelve and up on all expedition vessels throughout the year. Families with children ages five and up can travel on any of our designated Family Departures. Family departures, including Family TEEN departures and Family College departure are geared towards families who prefer to travel with other families with similar aged children. Designated family departures are offered over school breaks and feature age-appropriate activities depending on the ages and number of children on board. Our naturalists know how to bring these Islands they love to life and to balance learning with fun for the entire family.

The use of snorkeling equipment (mask, fins, snorkel), wetsuits, beach towels, kayaks  and even stand up paddleboards (SUPs) are all included in the cost of the cruise. Likewise mineral water, soda, juice, coffee and tea are available at no cost.

Stand Up Paddle Boards and Kayaks can be used at these sites:

  • Itinerary A: Gardner Bay, Floreana, and Cerro Brujo San Cristobal
  • Itinerary B: Tagus Cove, Isabela and Darwin Bay, Genovesa (Tower)

HIGHLIGHTS

  • One naturalist for every 10 passengers
  • Observe amazing wildlife
  • Excellent meals and snacks
  • Hike volcanoes
  • Comfortable accommodations
  • Snorkel with sea lions
  • Visit historic, interpretive and cultural centers
  • Explore remote coves and beaches
  • Kayak or SUP beautiful bays

LOCAL OPERATOR: ECOVENTURA

Since 1990 Ecoventura has been providing thoughtful, fun cruises in the Galapagos Islands. For travelers who appreciate small groups, quality accommodations, ideal guide-to-passenger ratio and eco-friendly, sustainable cruises, a trip on the Eric, Letty and Flamingo Galápagos Yachts provides a safe, thrilling adventure in which great care is taken to keep the Galapagos biologically pristine. The cruise ships are comfortable, eco-friendly and becoming friendlier in order to further reducing the company’s carbon footprint. The company supports environmental education and marine conservation projects in the Galápagos and Galápagos communities by employing locals, purchasing local supplies and sponsoring a local school and a nonprofit.

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Eric, Letty, Flamingo Itinerary A

DAY 1 (Sunday): San Cristobal Airport & Cerro Tijeretas

Upon arrival to Puerto Baquerizo Moreno on San Cristobal Island, the crew is waiting at the airport to escort you by bus to the main deck and then by zodiac to your yacht anchored in the bay. After the welcome briefing and safety drill, a delicious buffet lunch is served. The group travels by bus to Cerro Tijeretas, or “Frigatebird Hill,” situated just outside town near La Predial. A fishing community from 1952 to 1960, La Predial is one of two sites where you can spot nesting colonies of both the Great and Magnificent species of frigate birds. The trail leads to Playa Mann where you will witness beautiful scenery and vistas. The group returns to the yacht and departs at 3 p.m. to cruise around Leon Dormido aka Kicker Rock, a vertical tuff cone formation that rises abruptly nearly 500 feet from the ocean. On the cliffs, you will spot blue-footed boobies, Nazca boobies and Magnificent frigate birds. After joining your fellow yacht mates this evening for the island briefing, you will enjoy our captain’s welcome cocktail party and dinner prepared by our well-trained chefs. (Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 2 (Monday): San Cristobal: Cerro Brujo & Punta Pitt

You arrive in Cerro Brujo, a breathtaking white coral beach considered one of the most spectacular in Galapagos and perfect for a peaceful walk. On the walk, you will enjoy expansive views and good bird watching. You can take an opportunity to snorkel or kayak from the beach or swim with sea lions as well as a Zodiac ride. During lunch, the cruise heads toward the northeastern tip of San Cristobal Island to Punta Pitt, a tuff formation that serves as a nesting site for many sea birds including all three types of boobies: Blue-footed, Nazca and Red-footed boobies, both frigate species, swallow-tailed gulls, Storm petrels and a colony of sea lions. Punta Pitt is considered a first-class site for birds and on par with Genovesa, or Tower, Island. You will return to the yacht for a briefing followed by dinner. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 3 (Tuesday): Espanola Island: Punta Suarez & Gardner Bay

You disembark at Punta Suarez on Espanola Island (Hood), where you witness the highest rate of endemic species in Galapagos. Sea lions noisily greet our landing on their beach. Curious Hood mockingbirds peck at your shoelaces. From April to December, the waved albatross, found only on Espanola, perform their wild mating ritual. Colonies of blue-footed boobies engage in “sky-pointing” to show off for potential mates. Nazca boobies busily care for their young. Stunning swallow-tailed gulls are the only nocturnal gulls in the world and fish at night. Red-billed tropicbirds take shelter under the cliffs. Also found here are Darwin’s finches, Galapagos doves and Galapagos hawks. This is a great place to observe a unique species of marine iguana identified with traces of red and green colorings. Colorful Sally light-foot crabs crawl along the shoreline near to the famous “blow hole.”

After lunch and a wet landing in Gardner Bay on Espanola Island (Hood), you walk along a seemingly endless stretch of this white sandy beach where you’ll find large colonies of sea lions. With no trail to follow this is a chance to explore or take a long walk. You may find a Galapagos hawk, Darwin’s finches or Hood mockingbird. Swim with sea lions right from the beach, explore the bay and islets by kayak or just relax on the beach. There’s an excellent snorkeling site off Gardner Islet with a colorful diversity of sea life near Tortuga Rock. Explore caves by Zodiac covered with invertebrates. We return to the yacht for a briefing followed by dinner. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 4 (Wednesday): Floreana Island: Punta Cormorant, Devil’s Crown & Post Office Bay

Step ashore at Punta Cormorant on Floreana Island (Charles), one of the few populated islands in the Galapagos. Floreana presents a rich human history full of mystery and intrigue and the wildlife is abundant. Your first step on the green-sand beach is greeted by the sounds of sea lions. You’ll follow a trail to a brackish lagoon, and the home of pintail ducks, common stilts, and the Greater Flamingos, the pinkest in the world. Continuing on, you wind your way past a rich variety of plants including Morning Glory, Cut Leaf daisies, Palo Verdes and Scalesia leading to a beach with powder-soft sand. Sea turtles lay their eggs in the sand dunes and rays swim in the shallow water. After the walk, take the opportunity to snorkel at Devil’s Crown or Champion, a shallow sunken crater colonized by a brilliant array of colorful fish and corral. Choose to have a picnic lunch on deck or dine inside. After lunch, enjoy a visit to Post Office Bay, which is not the most scenic but definitely one of the most famous sites in Galapagos. Here is where a wooden barrel was erected and put into use by whaling ships in the late 18th century. Mail was put into the barrel and picked up and delivered by ships heading home, mostly to Europe and the United States. You are invited to leave a post card and to pick up any mail from your home area. Our group returns to the yacht for a briefing followed by dinner. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 5 (Thursday): Santa Cruz Island: Highlands & Charles Darwin Center

Our bus takes us to the highlands of Santa Cruz Island. The scenery gradually changes as the route winds through all seven vegetation zones found in Galapagos. Here, you visit the tortoise reserve at Las Primicias, one of the private farms in the highlands where giant tortoises are found in their natural habitat. Next, a stop at “the tunnels,” which are the largest lava tubes found in Galapagos. Then it’s off to visit Los Gemelos (“the twins”), a pair of large pit craters where the bright red male vermilion flycatcher is right at home. After lunch, a visit to the Centro de Crianza Fausto Llerena (aka the Charles Darwin Research Station) puts us among several tortoise species and the breeding center where new hatchlings are studied and protected until they’re ready for release back to the wild. Scientists from all over the globe work at the station where they conduct biological research from anatomy to zoology. A stop at Van Straelen Hall provides the opportunity to view exhibits and a presentation. Visitors can see the tortoise and land iguanas. Puerto Ayora is the social heart of the islands with the largest population of 24,000 people. 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 to stop in at an internet café and connect with home. Zodiacs will be provided for your return to your yacht. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 6 (Friday): Bartolome Island & Sombrero Chino

At Bartolome Island, after a dry landing you’ll swear you’re walking on the moon. This young Island is inhospitable to most plants and animals. From the beach you climb stairs for 30 minutes to arrive at the summit of a once-active volcano. Along the way, pause to marvel at lava bombs, spatter cones and cinder cones. From the top of the wooden stairs, gaze out across the island for a panoramic view of the island and “Pinnacle Rock,” an eroded tuff cone. Crystal-clear water is an invitation to snorkel from the beach with schools of tropical fish and Galapagos penguins or take a Zodiac ride. After lunch, enjoy a visit to Las Bachas (“barges”). Just off this long stretch of beach with soft, white sand are interior lagoons where the Greater flamingo forages for food. This stop also provides a wonderful chance to snorkel from the beach. Located off the southern tip of Santiago is Sombrero Chino aka Chinese Hat, a place owing its name to its shape. After a wet beach landing near sea lion colonies, the trail gives way to a primeval landscape of volcanic rubble including cracked lava formations and lava tubes. Marine iguanas and pairs of oystercatchers like it here, where you have the option nearby to snorkel at a site frequented by Galapagos penguins. After a briefing, enjoy a great dinner at anchor in a calm protected area. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 7 (Saturday): South Plazas Island & North Seymour Island

Today we visit South Plaza Island, a small geological uplift with tall cliffs offering spectacular views. After a dry landing, the trails lead us through prickly pear cactus, or opuntia, and sesuvium. Here you can find the Galapagos Land iguana feeding on the cactus leaves. Toward the end of the hill, you encounter a colony of bachelor sea lions. The dominant bulls are in various stages of recovery from battles lost over prime beach territory. Swallow-tailed gulls, Shearwaters and Red-billed tropicbirds build their nests along the cliffs. After a dry landing at North Seymour Island, a small geological uplift, you follow a trail that leads to Swallow-tailed gulls, Blue-footed boobies and the endemic Land iguanas. Visit the largest colony of Magnificent frigate birds found in Galapagos. Strolling the beach, witness Marine iguanas and sea lions body surf the northern swells. After the walk you can take a snorkeling opportunity offered in deep water. Back at the yacht, you’ll partake in the Captain’s farewell cocktail party and dinner as well as a special slide show presentation by your guides. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 8 (Sunday): San Cristobal Interpretation Center & Airport

With a visit to the Interpretation Center on San Cristobal Island you gain a more complete understanding of the natural and human history of the Islands. Afterwards, the group spends time in port before heading to the airport for our flight back to the mainland, departing at noon on Aerogal. (Breakfast)

* 7-day/ 6-night cruise option (Sunday to Saturday)
Passengers can disembark on Saturday from Baltra for a shorter, 6-night cruise. This is available only on seasonal or peak departure dates and not on holiday weeks. The 6-night rate is a 10% discount off the 7-night cruise rate and cannot be combined with any other promotional or child discounts. For passengers departing early who require a transfer to the airport, there is an additional charge of $15 per person (2 passenger minimum, or $30). The return flight from Baltra is subject to availability and confirmation is requested at the time of booking.


 

Galapagos-Itinerary-B-map-large

DAY 1 (Sunday): San Cristobal Airport & La Galapaguera Cerro Colorado

Upon arrival to Puerto Baquerizo Moreno on San Cristobal Island, the crew is waiting at the airport to escort you by bus to the main deck and then by zodiac to your yacht anchored in the bay. After the welcome briefing and safety drill, a delicious buffet lunch is served. The group travels by bus to the highlands to visit Centro de Crianza Jacinto Gordillo aka La Galapaguera Cerro Colorado where the national park has established a breeding program for the giant land tortoises that you will encounter in their natural habitat. Learn about their origin, evolution and threats by introduced animals at the information center. Along the trail, you find the San Cristobal (Chatham) mockingbird and Calandrinia plant, both endemic to this island. After joining your fellow yacht mates this evening for the island briefing, you will enjoy our captain’s welcome cocktail party and dinner prepared by our well-trained chefs. (Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 2 (Monday): Tower (Genovesa) Island: Darwin Bay & Prince Philips Steps

Spend the entire day on Tower Island (Genovesa), considered to be one of the most spectacular Islands in Galapagos for bird species. Your wet landing at Darwin Bay will land you on a coral sand beach where Swallow-tailed and Lava gulls gather near the tide pools. Enter a forest of Opuntia cactus and mangroves where colonies of Great frigate birds nest. The males inflate their red-throated pouches to attract the females flying overhead. The trail leads through a rich intertidal zone with a wide diversity of wildlife. After lunch and a dry landing at Prince Philip’s Steps, a trail leads to Red-footed boobies nesting in Palo Santo trees and Nazca boobies nesting near the trail. In an open lava field, find large numbers of Storm petrels. If you are lucky, we will see the elusive Short-eared owl. Chose 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. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 3 (Tuesday): Santa Cruz Island: Las Bachas & Cerro Dragon

Today we visit Las Bachas (“the barges”). Just off this long stretch of beach with soft, white sand are interior lagoons where the Greater flamingo forages for food. This stop also provides a wonderful chance to snorkel 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 aka 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. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 4 (Wednesday): Fernandina Island: Punta Espinoza & Isabela Island: Urbina Bay

Today you start with a semi-wet landing at Punta Espinoza on Fernandina Island, the youngest and most pristine Island in Galapagos where no mammals were introduced. Recent lava flows formed by an active volcano stretch around the coast. Hundreds of Marine iguanas, members of 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 nests on the point and Galapagos hawks fly overhead. There is a chance to snorkel here with sea turtles. After lunch, you will cross the Bolivar Chanel where whales are often spotted and dolphins ride the bow wave.

We disembark at Urbina Bay on Isabela Island, where four miles of coastal seabed and its marine life was 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 iguana. You will osee here occasionally giant tortoises and Darwin finches. Brown pelicans and Flightless cormorants nest here, and 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, and can enter the wave-sculpted cave where a sea turtle could be lurking. You may spot the dorsal fin of a Mola Mola, an odd-looking giant sun fish. You return to the yacht for a briefing and dinner. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 5 (Thursday): Isabela Island: Elizabeth Bay & Tagus Cove

Today you visit by zodiac Elizabeth Bay on Isabela Island, starting with a visit to a secluded cove lined with large red mangrove trees. Here, turtles, rays, and shore birds can be seen. You then 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.

You have a dry landing at Tagus Cove, 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 you 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, if you prefer, take a kayak and explore the shoreline. After dinner, a sky full of stars beckons all on deck to observe the galaxy while crossing the equator for the last time. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 6 (Friday): Santiago Island: Puerto Egas & Rabida Island

 We stroll along the shoreline at Puerto Egas on Santiago Island (James) 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 you encounter fur sea lions. 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. You begin the day by disembarking on Rabida Island (Jervis), located near James Island. Rabida is considered the geographic center of Galapagos because this island sports the most diversified volcanic rocks. 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 saltwater lagoon where Greater flamingos migrate. After the walk, there is not-to-miss snorkeling option with a large colony of sea lions. You return to the yacht for the Captain’s Farwell cocktail party and dinner as well as a special slide show presentation by your guides. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 7 (Saturday: Santa Cruz Island: Highlands & Charles Darwin Station

The bus takes the group to the highlands of Santa Cruz Island. The scenery gradually changes as the route winds through all seven vegetation zones found in the Galapagos. Here, you visit the tortoise reserve at Las Primicias, one of the private farms in the highlands where giant tortoises are found in their natural habitat. Next, a stop at “the tunnels,” which are the largest lava tubes found in Galapagos. Then it’s off to visit Los Gemelos (“the twins”), a pair of large pit craters where the bright red male vermilion flycatcher is right at home. After lunch, a visit to the Centro de Crianza Fausto Llerena (aka the Charles Darwin Research Station) puts you among several tortoise species and the breeding center where new hatchlings are studied and protected until they’re released back into the wild. Scientists from across the globe work at the station where they conduct biological research from anatomy to zoology. A stop at Van Straelen Hall provides the opportunity to view exhibits and a presentation. Visitors can observe the tortoise and land iguanas. Puerto Ayora is the social heart of the islands with the largest population of 24,000 people. This evening you have the option to return to the 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 to stop in at an internet café and connect with home. Zodiacs will return you to the yacht. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

DAY 8 (Sunday): San Cristobal Interpretation Center & Airport

By bus you visit the Interpretation Center on San Cristobal Island. Opened in 1999, here you gain a more complete understanding of the natural and human history of the islands. Afterwards, you spend some time in port prior to heading to the airport for your flight back to the mainland. (Breakfast)

* 7-day/ 6-night cruise option (Sunday to Saturday)
Passengers can disembark on Saturday in Baltra for a shorter, 6-night cruise. This is available on seasonal or peak departure dates only and not holiday weeks. The 6-night rate is a 10% discount off the 7-night cruise rate and cannot be combined with any other promotional or child discounts. For those passengers departing early and require a transfer to the airport, there is an additional charge of $90 for three or fewer passengers. The return flight from Baltra is subject to availability and confirmation is requested at the time of booking.

Getting To and From the Trip: 

The trip begins with the flight to the Galápagos from either Quito or Guayaquil, Ecuador, on the first morning of the trip, and ends with the return flight from the Galápagos to either Quito or Guayaquil, Ecuador, on the last day of the trip, arriving in the late afternoon. These flights are not included in the trip price, but they will be arranged for you and the cost added to your bill.

You need to overnight in your choice of departure city, either Quito or Guayaquil, at least one night before the trip begins as you will fly to the Galápagos early in the morning of the first day of your trip. At the end of the trip we recommend overnighting in Ecuador one night before moving on to your next adventure or flying home, although it is possible to catch a late night flight out on this day.

We do not sell international airfare but partner with a flight specialty company, Exito Travel, who can arrange all of your flights for you, simplifying the process of this part of your trip.

Trip Start: Trip begins on the first day with flight from Quito or Guayaquil, Ecuador, to the Galápagos (flights arranged for you). You will need to overnight in either Quito or Guayaquil the night before this flight (see our Quito and Guayaquil packages here).

Trip End: Trip ends with the flight from the Galápagos to either Quito or Guayaquil, Ecuador, arriving late afternoon on the last day of the trip. You may want to overnight there that night (see our Quito and Guayaquil packages here) before continuing with your adventure.


This trip is sold a la carte, meaning it is just the yacht trip and does not include hotels or services before or after the trip. We sell the trip this way so you can choose whatever hotels or services you want, rather than us forcing you into something particular. You will need to overnight at least one night in Quito or Guayaquil before the cruise, and one night after the cruise. That said, to make it simple for you to complete the package, we offer Quito Hotels and Tours.

In addition to the Galápagos cruise, we suggest you visit the Amazon jungle, the highlands of Ecuador, or Machu Picchu in Peru.

2017 PRICES: 

PRICE PER PERSON: 8 DAYS / 7 NIGHTS

Iguana Deck: Double Cabin $4,500.00; Triple Cabin $4,300.00; Single Cabin $7,700.00
Booby Deck: Double Cabin $4,900.00
Dolphin Deck: Double Cabin $5,400.00

On Family departures , one or both yachts will be designated for families traveling with children. We do not recommend these weeks for adult couples who are traveling without any children.   Children age 7 to 11 get 25% discount off the cruise rate and teens age 12 to 17 get 15% discount off the cruise rate (excluding holiday weeks) and cannot be combined with other discounts.

Holiday Week Departures have additional supplement of $225 per person.

2018 PRICES: 

PRICE PER PERSON: 8 DAYS / 7 NIGHTS

Iguana Deck: Double Cabin $4,700.00; Triple Cabin $4,500.00; Single Cabin $8,225.00
Booby Deck: Double Cabin $5,100.00
Dolphin Deck: Double Cabin $5,600.00


INCLUDED: 

•    cabin accommodation on board
•    all meals and snacks
•    shore excursions
•    guide services
•    use of snorkeling equipment, sea kayaks, and wet suits
•    filtered drinking water
•    non-alcoholic beverages
•    welcome and farewell cocktails
•    transfers between the airport and dock in the Galapagos.

 

NOT INCLUDED: 

•    International flights (our partner Exito Travel can arrange these for you)
•    Airfare to Galapagos (will be arranged for you and billed separately)
•    Galapagos National Park entrance fee (can be prepaid)
•    Transit Control Card fee (can be prepaid)
•    gratuities for guide(s) and crew
•    purchases on board (payable on board with cash or credit card)
•    alcoholic beverages
•    purchases from the boutique
•    Personal and medical expenses
•    Insurance (we can help with this – please ask)


ADDITIONAL EXPENSES TO CONSIDER:

•    Airfare to Galapagos
•    Galapagos National Park entrance fee ($100 per person; $50 per child age 11 or younger)
•    Transit Control Card fee ($20 per person)
•    gratuities for guide(s) and crew (optional – suggested at $200 per passenger per week)
•    Insurance
•    Ecuador departure tax


 

 

 

Plan Your Trip

Trips Depart Every Sunday

Ecoventura welcomes families with children age 12 and up on all expedition vessels throughout the year. Families with children age 7 and up can travel on any of our designated Family Departures. Family departures, including Family TEEN departures and Family GRADUATION departure are geared towards families who prefer to travel with other families with other similar aged children. Designated family departures are offered over school breaks and feature age-appropriate activities depending on the ages and number of children on board. Our naturalists know how to bring these Islands they love to life and to balance learning with fun for the entire family.

On Family departures , one or both yachts will be designated for families traveling with children. We do not recommend these weeks for adult couples who are traveling without any children.   Children age 7 to 11 get 25% discount off the cruise rate and teens age 12 to 17 get 15% discount off the cruise rate (excluding holiday weeks) and cannot be combined with other discounts.

2017 FAMILY DEPARTURES

March 123 – 19, March 19 – 26, March 26 – April 2, Ap;oil 2 -9, April 9 – 16, June 4 – 11, June 11 – 18, June 18 – 25, June 25 – July 2, July 2 – July 9, July 9 – 16, July 16 – 23, July 23 – 30, July 30 _ August 6, August 6 – 13, August 20 – 27, November 19 – 26, December 17 – 24, December 24 – 31, December 31 – January 7.

(F) = Family departures are ideal for children ages 7 to 12
Kids can visit the bridge and learn about navigational charts and tie nautical knots with our Captain. Special parties include games with prizes, drawing contests, ice cream social sundaes and our King Neptune costume party and talent show. We also have board games, books and DVDs on board that are suitable for children. There are masks, fins, wet suits and life vests in child sizes available. A separate briefing geared toward the younger ones and kid-friendly menus are offered on family departures (in addition to the regular menu for adults: Here is a sample: Breakfast: hot chocolate, milk, apple juice, fruit loops, lucky charms, pancakes, fresh fruit, bagels with crème chese, muffins, Lunch: hot dogs, hamburgers, turkey or tuna sandwich, plain pastas, mac and cheese. Dinner: spaghetti with marinara sauce, chicken fingers, steaks, French fries or baked potato, vegetables. Desert: Ice crème, Jello, cakes. Snacks: pizzas, pop corn, pretzels, chips.

(T) = Family TEEN departures are ideal for children ages 12 to 17
These trips will be more physically active than an all-adult or family departures with younger children, our guides will optimize the longest trails and all kayaking and snorkeling opportunities. Special parties include movies and popcorn and our King Neptune costume party. We also have board games, books and DVDs that teenagers enjoy.

(T-EPI) = Family TEEN departures with EPI volunteer project are ideal for ages 13 and up
Ecoventura will offer five family teen departures in 2014 that will include a cultural exchange and volunteer project with local students from Galapagos through Ecology Project International (EPI).  On Thursday/ itinerary A when the yacht is in Santa Cruz, the activities include collecting research data at the tortoise breeding center or eradication of invasive species in the highlands, followed by a tour of Puerto Ayora given by the EPI Ecology Club students.  Ideal for ages 13 and up traveling with their parents.

(G) = NEW – Family Graduation departures are ideal for ages 17-21
These trips will be more physically active than an all-adult or family departures with younger children, our guides will optimize the longest trails and all kayaking and snorkeling opportunities. You will be in the company of other high school and college graduates and their families and siblings. We will offer special parties include movies and popcorn and our King Neptune costume party. We also have board games, books and DVDs that teens enjoy.

Note: please inquire which weeks have TEENS on board at the time of booking as family departures dates are subject to change. Occasionally, a family departure could be a group of mixed ages 7-17 or mixed adults and children

TERMS & CONDITIONS: Child discounts

Children age 11 years and younger at the time of sailing are entitled to a 25% discount off the cruise rate and also 50% discount off the airfare and park tax with photocopy of the child’s passport showing date of birth.

Children ages 12-17 years are entitled to a 15% discount off the cruise rate only.

Child discounts are applied to cabins on the iguana deck unless not otherwise available. No child discounts are permitted on holiday departures (H) over the Christmas, New Year and Easter holidays.

Age restrictions: Children under 7 years of age are not accepted unless the parents or legal guardians sign a hold harmless release. Children age 11 and younger are permitted only on a designated family departure. Children under the age of 5 are only permitted on exclusive charter basis.

Other conditions: We allow only one child discount to be given per every adult fare paid. And, Ecoventura may limit the number of child discounts permitted on any one departure. Children under 18 years of age must be accompanied by an adult over age 21. Children under 12 cannot be confirmed on Booby deck cabins. When children are accommodated in a triple cabin, the discount is calculated from the double iguana deck rate.

Trip Start: Trip begins on the first day with flight from Quito or Guayaquil, Ecuador, to the Galápagos (flights arranged for you). You will need to overnight in either Quito or Guayaquil the night before this flight (see our Quito and Guayaquil packages here).

Trip End: Trip ends with the flight from the Galápagos to either Quito or Guayaquil, Ecuador, arriving late afternoon on the last day of the trip. You may want to overnight there that night (see our Quito and Guayaquil packages here) before continuing with your adventure.

How Do I Get To and From the Trip: 

The trip begins with the flight to the Galápagos from either Quito or Guayaquil, Ecuador, on the first morning of the trip, and ends with the return flight from the Galápagos to either Quito or Guayaquil, Ecuador, on the last day of the trip, arriving in the late afternoon. These flights are not included in the trip price, but they will be arranged for you and the cost added to your bill.

You need to overnight in your choice of departure city, either Quito or Guayaquil, at least one night before the trip begins as you will fly to the Galápagos early in the morning of the first day of your trip. At the end of the trip we recommend overnighting in Ecuador one night before moving on to your next adventure or flying home, although it is possible to catch a late night flight out on this day.

We do not sell international airfare but partner with a flight specialty company, Exito Travel, who can arrange all of your flights for you, simplifying the process of this part of your trip.

Your round trip flights from Quito or Guayaquil, Ecuador (your choice), to the Galápagos Islands and back will be arranged for you through Ecoventura, the trip operator. Flights generally depart early in the morning to the Galápagos, and return mid morning, arriving in the late afternoon back into Quito or Guayaquil. The cost of the tickets will be added to your invoice.  Ecoventura uses the following flights:

Quito (UIO) to Guayaquil (GYE):
AVIANCA 1636 ETD 9:00AM ETA 9:50AM

Guayaquil (GYE) to San Cristobal (SCY):
AVIANCA 1636 ETD 10:35AM ETA 11:30AM

San Cristobal (SCY) to Guayaquil (GYE):
AVIANCA 1637 ETD 12:30PM ETA 3:25PM

Guayaquil (GYE) to Quito (UIO):
AVIANCA 1637 ETD 4:05PM ETA 5:00PM

This trip is sold a la carte, meaning it is just the yacht trip and does not include hotels or services before or after the trip. We sell the trip this way so you can choose whatever hotels or services you want, rather than us forcing you into something particular.You will need to overnight at least one night in Quito or Guayaquil before the cruise, and one night after the cruise. That said, to make it simple for you to complete the package, we offer Quito Hotels and Tours.

In addition to the Galápagos cruise, we suggest you visit the Amazon jungle, the highlands of Ecuador, or Machu Picchu in Peru.

Trips to the Galapagos begin and end with a flight from mainland Ecuador (either Guayaquil or Quito), so it is very easy to explore more of Ecuador before or after the Galapagos trip.

Quito is a fascinating city with a colonial center that is a World Heritage Site, and it is worth some time. Additionally, in just a few days it is easy to visit high Andean volcanoes, stay in historic haciendas, explore the cloud forest, or visit the Upper Amazon Basin.

Additionally it is quite possible to fly to Peru and add a visit to Machu Picchu to your Galapagos trip.

Countries Visited: Ecuador

Destinations Visited: 

Galapagos Islands:

Itinerary A: San Cristobal Island (Cerro Tijeretas, Leon Dormido, Cerro Brujo, Punta Pitt, San Cristobal Interpretation Center); Española Island (Punta Suarez, Gardner Bay); Floreana Island (Punta Cormorant, Devil’s Crown, Post Office Bay); Santa Cruz (Highlands, Charles Darwin Center); Bartolome Island; Sombrero Chino; South Plazas Island; North Seymour Island.

Itinerary B: San Cristobal Island (La Galapaguera Cerro Colorado, San Cristobal Interpretation Center); Tower (Genovesa) Island (Darwin Bay and Prince Philip’s Steps); Santa Cruz Island (Las Bachas, Cerro Dragon); Fernandina Island (Punta Espinoza); Isabela Island (Urbina Bay, Punta Vicente Roca, Elzabeth Bay, Tagus Cove);  Santiago Island (Puerto Egas); Rabida Island; Santa Cruz Island (Highlands, Charles Darwin Center).

Green Certifications: Smart Voyager

Trip Sustainability: 

Ecoventura was the first company to earn and maintain the voluntary ecological certification, SmartVoyager since 2000. The company offset carbon emissions from 2006 to 2011 and also reduced CO2 by 10% through the installation of solar panels and wind generators to the Eric, the first hybrid yacht in Galapagos.

In 2006, Ecoventura established the Galapagos Marine Biodiversity Fund in partnership with the World Wildlife Fund to support environmental education and marine conservation by strengthening the local communities’ ability to manage natural resources. In 2012, Ecoventura gave support to the The Ecology Project  by sponsoring 12 high school age students living in Galapagos a one week field ecology course and offering four students to explore a career in tourism by the opportunity to “shadow” an Ecoventura naturalist guide. Guides serve as mentors to the students in the field during a week-long cruise and provide a valuable link to motivate and encourage local students to choose a career as a professional naturalist guide.

Ecoventura helps to support the population of San Cristobal Island through employment opportunities, purchasing local products and sponsorship of a local school. Through employment opportunities, purchasing local products and sponsorship of a local school and non-profit foundation “Gotas de Esperanza.” Ecoventura has become a recognized leader in responsible tourism to the Galapagos Island through its core commitment to the on-going sustainability of this fragile and at-risk ecosystem.

Activities: Birdwatching, Day Hike, Expedition Cruise, Family Adventure, Sea Kayak, Snorkel, Wildlife Viewing and Safaris

Activity Description: 

Each full day in the islands will have two shore excursions, each in a different site. During the shore excursions you will spend 3-4 hours at each site. You will walk at a leisurely pace with your naturalist guide, sticking to the marked trails set by the National Park and the guide will interpret and explain all about the flora, fauna, and geology that you are seeing. There will plenty of time to explore and photograph the abundant wildlife, and there are opportunities to swim or snorkel almost every day during the week and sometimes twice a day. Kayaks are available but can be used only at designated sites approved by the National Park.

Trip Difficulty: Not Strenuous

Fitness Level: 

You will need to be able to step off a boat into shallow water, walk on uneven ground, and climb steps or short ladders. The daily walks are slow-paced and only travel 1-2 miles at a time, twice a day. In addition, there will be opportunities to snorkel each day, although this is generally in calm water and you do not need to cover much distance. Days can be hot with direct sunshine and / high humidity.

Minimum Age: 5

Maximum Age: 120

Minimum Group Size: 10

Maximum Group Size: 20

Typical Group Size: 20

Months Offered: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December

Best Time to Go: 

The Galápagos Islands is a fantastic destination at all times of the year, with there being no one best time to visit. The wildlife viewing is good all year round, as the temperatures don’t vary much and most wildlife does not migrate and thus is on each island year round. The major exception to this is the waved Albatross, which leaves the Galápagos from January to March, so if you want to see the Albatross you need to visit from April to December.

There are two seasons in the Galápagos, and each will have some precipitation. The Galápagos only receives about 10 inches of rain a year, so it is not a very rainy destination. From June to November the cold Humboldt Current sweeps northward from Antarctica, cooling the air and creating an inversion over the islands, meaning the lowlands are dry and the highlands are cool and misty, and the days are often cloudy. The air temperatures are pleasant during this season, but the water temperatures are chilly and wetsuits are recommended for snorkeling. Additionally, the seas are rougher during this season, with the roughest seas occurring in September.

From December to May, the Humboldt Current is not present in the Galápagos, so the water is warmer, and the air is generally clear and warm. There are periods of heavy rain during this season, but the rain usually doesn’t last long and then sunshine returns. The water is generally warm enough that wetsuits aren’t needed for snorkeling, and the seas are relatively calm.

Peak season in the Galápagos is not based on when the best wildlife viewing occurs, but rather on holiday travel and school holidays.

Food and Special Diets: 

Special-needs diets can be accommodated: vegetarian or vegan, gluten free and low sodium/low fat.

The chefs are watching out for you with reduced-calorie, health-conscious preparations (avoiding fried and heavily sauced foods) that are also low in fat and sodium content.

Ecoventura has recently transformed the culinary offerings on their fleet and now offer locally sourced, healthy and gourmet style menus designed by the culinary talent of Chef Francisco Ventimilla, Director of the esteemed gastronomy school in Guayaquil, University Espiritu Santo. Chef Francisco trained our on board chefs in his techniques, many of whom have worked in the kitchens of Ecuador’s finest hotels or in popular restaurants in the upscale suburb of Samborondon.

While cruising in the Galápagos, you will look forward to each thoughtfully prepared meal. From breakfast through dinner the kitchens or galleys focus on using only the freshest ingredients, with fully 60% of the food used are  sourced from these islands.  Many fruits, meats and dairy products come from farms on islands blessed by rain. Organic fruits and vegetables thrive on San Cristobal and meat and dairy come from Santa Cruz. And of course the region is famous for fish and seafood. Minimizing the need for food that has to be shipped from the mainland helps protect the islands from invasive plant species, insects and even animals that can be unwelcome.

TYPICAL MENU:

 VEGETARIAN OPTION

Breakfast & Lunch – same as above (served buffet style)

Dinner
Apples and dried fruit timbale served with fennel salad, red pepper, oil and yogurt dressing
Vegetables stew with pineapple and wheat gluten
Berries panna cotta (soy milk)

KIDS MENU

Breakfast options:

Hot chocolate, fresh fruit juice, kid-friendly cereals, pancakes, toast, bagels, scrambled eggs, fruit

Lunch options:

Peanut butter jelly sandwich Tuna club sandwich,  Ham and cheese pizza, Chicken wraps, Hamburger with cheese & french fries

Dinner options:

Chicken tenders with BBQ sauce   Fusilli primavera with garlic sauce Steak with mac and cheese Chicken and vegetable soup   Fish fingers with baked potatoes,  Chicken quesadilla Spaghetti with tomato sauce,   Chicken nuggets

Dessert options:

Cupcakes / ice cream / brownies / cookies / milk shakes

Drinking Water: 

Clean, fresh, drinking water is available at all times on the boat. Please bring a refillable water bottle so you can fill your bottle before heading off on shore excursions.

Equipment Provided: 

Ecoventura provides two double and one single sit-on-top kayaks for guests to enjoy while on their Galápagos cruise at the kayaking spots designated by the Galápagos National Park. Wet suits and snorkeling equipment are provided for snorkeling excursions.

Snorkeling equipment: There are many opportunities to snorkel during the cruise, sometimes twice a day from the beach and in deep water. Masks, fins and snorkels in average sizes are available on board free of charge for use during the cruise.  If you anticipate taking advantage of all snorkeling opportunities you may prefer to bring your own mask and snorkel for a proper fit.

Wet suits: Full 3mm wet suits are available for passengers to use during the cruise at no additional charge on a first come first serve basis. Wet suits are most popular from June to November when water temperatures are between 65 and 72 degrees.

Reserve a wet suit: Passengers who would like to reserve a wet suit prior to the cruise may do so for a charge of $25.00 for the week. The fee will be charged to onboard account and paid at the end of the cruise. Reserved wet suits will be removed from the inventory and set aside for your exclusive use during the cruise.  In order to reserve a wet suit, we need to know your approximate size (size selection may vary by yacht):  Men: S, M, MT, L, XL, XXL, XXXL; Women: S, M, MT, L, XL; Children: S, M, L

Sea Kayaks: Each yacht carries two tandem and one single sea kayaks. They are available at designated sites during the cruise at no charge on a first-come first-serve basis.

Boat Specifications:

Type: Superior first class motor yachts
Year Built: 1990-1993 specifically for Galapagos Islands cruising
Capacity: 20 exclusive guests in ten double cabins
Crew: 11 including your Captain and two naturalist guides
Cruising Speed: 8 knots

L.O.A.: 83 feet / 25 meters
BEAM: 24 feet / 7 ½ meters
DRAFT: 6 feet / 1.8 meters
GROSS TONS: 240

Engines: (2) 402 HP Caterpillar, 8-cylinder turbo diesel
Generators: (1) Perkins 90 KW and (1) John Deere 65KW
Water Capacity: 5,000 gallons / 18,921 liters
Watermaker Production: 1,200 gallons per day/ 4536 liters per day
Fuel Capacity: 5,400 gallons / 20,435 liters

Navigational Equipment: 24 mile Furuno radar, Furuno GPS, Electronic compass, magnetic compass, barometer
Communication: VHF-DSC CH70 and MF/HF with DSC radios

Safety Equipment: 
Viking 25-person inflatable capsule lifeboat (SOLAS certified)
40 life vests Type I approved with whistles and lights, 6 circular buoys with emergency lights,
Portable fire extinguishers, CO2 fix station, smoke detectors, SART (radar transponder)
EPIRB (Emergency Position Indicator Radio Beacon)

Classification: IRS (International Register of Shipping)
Certification: Passenger Ship Safety Certificate (Ecuadorean authority under SOLAS 1974 modified by protocol 1988) Safety Management Certificate (Under SOLAS 1974 as amended).

Registry: Ecuador

Special Equipment You Should Bring: 

In addition to a swimsuit we recommend that if you have a mask and snorkel that fit well and work well for you, that you bring it with you on your trip. This way you are guaranteed to have a mask that fits you well.

 

HOTEL / LODGE AMENITIES:  You do not stay in any hotels on this trip (enquire to add hotels on either end of the trip

BOAT AMENITIES: Bar, Cards/Games, Dining Room, Exercise Equipment, Library, Lounge, Movies, Satellite Phone, Sun Deck

CAMP AMENITIES: You will not be camping on this trip

ROOM AMENITIES: Bunk Beds, Twin Beds, Double Beds, Air Conditioning, Beach Towels, Closet, Picture Window, Porthole, Public Address System, Hairdryer, Hot Water, Private Bathroom, Shower, Soap and Shampoo, Towels

ROOMING OPTIONS: Double, Triple, Single, Willing to Share, Single Supplement

DESCRIPTION:

DOLPHIN DECK

Dolphin Deck Twin Cabin

 

Cabins #1,3 & 4 have two twin lower beds or one double bed and picture windows.

 

 

Dolphin Deck Double Cabin

 

Cabin # 2 has one double bed and picture window.
(cabins average 95 square feet/ 8.8 square meters)

 

 

BOOBY DECK

Booby Deck Cabin

 

Cabins # 5 & 6 cabins have one double bed and picture windows.(cabins average 90 square reef/ 8.4 square meters)

 

 

 

IGUANA DECK

Iguana Deck Twin Cabin
Cabins #7 & 8 have two twin lower beds and port lights.

 

 

 

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Cabins # 9 & 10 have two twin lower beds and one upper berth with port lights and can be sold as triples. (cabins average 110 square feet/ 10.2 square meters)
SINGLE cabins are limited and assigned by Ecoventura to the best cabin available at the
time of sailing.

Females willing to share (WSF) or Males Willing to share (WSM) are available on the Iguana deck only. Shares that remain unmatched 60 days prior to departure are subject to pay the difference for a single rate.

TRIPLE cabins are available on the Iguana deck only in cabins 9 and I10

 

 

Local Tour Operator:

Since 1990 Ecoventura has been fascinating nature lovers with out-of-this-world experiences in the Galápagos Islands. Travelers are made to feel special on an Ecoventura cruise, a well-informed choice for active adults and families who appreciate traveling with a small group, quality accommodations, an ideal guide-to-passenger ratio and thoughtful (and fun!) itineraries. Travelers can also feel good knowing they are supporting a company on the forefront of sustainable cruise operations and leading the way in protecting the Galápagos Islands, Ecuador’s main tourist attraction and the planet’s first World Heritage Site.

The family-owned expedition cruise company is based in Guayaquil, where it is able to provide impeccable care to the operation of its fleet of three identical sister yachts: Eric, Flamingo, and Letty. As owner and operator, Ecoventura is in full command of the operation, receiving its guidance from a philosophy expressed by the company’s president, Santiago Dunn: “We want to give our passengers the assurance that Ecoventura has taken every measure to ensure that passengers enjoy a safe, thrilling adventure without harming the unique wildlife or the fragile environment. We all live in this world and breathe the same air, the least we can do is try to preserve it for our children and future generations to come.”

The philosophy is taken to heart by a staff of nearly 30, all of whom are Ecuadorian with the exception of a handful of employees in Miami who facilitate travel to the Galápagos. The guides, captains and crew are top-notch, several of whom have been working with Ecoventura since its beginning. To optimize each passenger’s Galapagos’ experience, the company chose to build the yachts to accommodate no more than 20 guests, which with two naturalist guides per vessel creates an ideal traveler-to-guide ratio of 10-to-1, the smallest traveler-to-guide ratio found in Galápagos.

From day one, the professional, knowledgeable and friendly guides are fostering camaraderie among the group. Because they operate three nearly identical yachts on each cruise, they make a strong effort to put people of similar ages and interests on each boat, allowing them to offer family and teen trips on some departures, while still offering entire yachts for adults only. They are one of the few companies to specialize in family trip, and their guides and staff on these trips are great with kids!

Ecoventura maintains a strong leadership role in keeping the Galápagos biologically pristine. Driven by President Dunn, the company’s initiatives are focused on environment sustainability as well as social responsibility. Even its cruise ships are eco-friendly and becoming friendlier in order to meet the company’s own stringent environmental standards. With the installation of solar panels and wind generators on the Eric, the ship’s carbon emissions dropped by 10 percent. The Letty is next to receive the carbon-reducing installations and the Flamingo will be replaced with an eco-friendly ship, further reducing the company’s carbon footprint.

Travelers who embark on an Ecoventura adventure are not just on a comfortable, high-quality cruise, they’re riding high on an activity-filled experience with a two-fold benefit to the Galápagos. Their money supports directly the local Galápagos communities and marine conservation in the islands. Ecoventura that it was the first company to earn the Smart Voyager certification, which guarantees for travelers that they are booked with an operator who cares about the conservation of its place of operation and is eco-friendly and socially responsible.

The company also established the Galápagos Marine Biodiversity Fund with the World Wildlife Fund to support environmental education and marine conservation in the Galápagos. It is important to Ecoventura to directly support Galápagos communities which it does by employing locals, purchasing local supplies and sponsoring a local school and a nonprofit. One school program sponsors an ecology course for Galápagos students who are further benefited with an opportunity to explore a career in tourism as a professional guide.

Guides:

Our Captains

Victor Mayorga
Victor Mayorga Master Level Captain on the M/Y FLAMINGO
Captain Mayorga has years of experience sailing high tonnage ships. He is charismatic and popular with both passengers (young and older) and crew. He enjoys sharing his knowledge of the sea with passengers. Victor is athletic and enjoys going for a run while in port or taking the kayaks for a spin.

Peter Vallejo
Peter Vallejo2nd Officer in the Ecuadorian Navy on the M/Y ERIC
Captain Vallejo enjoys inviting passengers to his table for dinner and telling stories of the high seas while in the Navy. He lives in the Galápagos with his family including three small children. His joy of being a father shows, especially on our family departures, with the dedication and attention given to the children on board.

Pablo Salas
Pablo SalasPablo was born and raised in Quito, Ecuador. In 1990, he obtained a scholarship granted by the Brazilian Merchant Maritime Academy. Since his graduation in 1994 as a former officer he’s been working in the Galápagos Marine Reserve, Merchant Commercial vessels as an officer in worldwide navigation and foreign private Yachts. Pablo worked as a Ranger of the Galápagos National Park in 2004 in charge of the control and surveillance of the Marine Reserve fighting against the illegal fishing activity. He took several and advanced STCW courses in Brazil, Ecuador, Sweden and USA. Pablo likes sports, he is very active and practices diving, football, running and swimming. He is an excellent team player and enjoys working with the crew on board.

 

Our Naturalist Guides

Cecibel Guerrero
Orlando Romero Year licensed to guide:1992
Ecuadorian born, “Ceci” spent 15 years living in Toronto Canada. It is here where she obtained her bachelor in Business Administration. After attending a training given by the Galápagos National Park Service and the Charles Darwin Research Station, she obtained her license as a Level III Naturalist Guide, and guided until 2001. After having two children, Ceci came back in 2008 to Galápagos, to work in the place she loves the most. It is here where she enjoys her favorite activity while guiding; snorkeling. No doubt she also has a special interest in reptiles and a real enthusiasm for sharing this special place with our guests. ¨If you love wildlife, people and photography, this is the ideal job for you, I feel blessed and honored to work in one of the most pristine places on earth.¨

Orlando Romero
Orlando Romero Year licensed to guide: 1988
Orlando worked with the Galápagos National Park Service (PNG) for ten years during which time he completed 13 one-month courses on interpretation of park programs among others. He has been a senior guide with Ecoventura since 1995 and often guides our affinity groups. Orlando received his Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and studied Agronomy at the Universidad Tehnica Yachala.
His favorite Galápagos topics of conversation include: Geology and reptiles, National park programs, human history, Ecuador ecology and climate. When Orlando is not guiding, he enjoys watching his favorite teams play futbol (soccer).

Karina Lopez
Karina LopezYear licensed to guide: 
1997
Level: Naturalist 2
Karina studied Tourism National Guide at the Universidad de Babahoyo and earned a Bachelor degree in Tourism and Hotel Professional.
Karina is a divemaster and also took courses in Service Quality and Social Etiquette. She enjoys diving, snorkeling kayaking and swimming. She and her brother Ivan often guide together on our family departures.

Harry Jimenez
Harry Jimenez
Year licensed to guide: 1996
Harry studied Business Administration specializing in tourism and English in Ecuador. Harry was born in the Galápagos Islands and has been working with Ecoventura since 1998. Harry has completed several dive courses including open water, advanced, rescue and technical divemaster. His preferred topics of conversation include: arrival and establishment of species, marine currents, creation of the islands and plate tectonics. When Harry is not guiding, he enjoys scuba diving and driving his speed boats that operate as day trips from San Cristobal Island where he lives.

Mauricio Garcia
Harry Jimenez Mauricio was born in Guayaquil, Ecuador in 1954, at the age of 5 years old he moved to Quito with his mother, and when he was in 5th grade,  he moved to the United States  to a town called Pleasantville located on the state of  New Jersey place where he finished the 6th grade. In 1972, Mauricio jointed the United States Marine Corps where he spent 6 years during this time he studied Architecture also in the marines and became a Refrigeration and Electrician Technician, at the end of 1978 I came back to Ecuador as vacations and stayed working for an American airline called Braniff International. He worked for different boats all small ones they were actually fishing boats that had been accommodated for tourism like the Tiburon, Aton, and Wind Shadow. In 1989 he went through a diving course and became a certified diver. In 1993 Mauricio wrote a book, Galápagos Field Observations. Two years later he worked with the New Zealand TV, doing a film on Galápagos Penguin, the next year he worked with David and Elizabeth Parer from New Zealand while they were filming on the documentary “The Dragons of the Galápagos.” In 1999 he did a documentary with Jack Hanna for the American show Animal Planet.

Ivan Lopez
Ivan LopezYear licensed to guide: 
2005
Ivan studied Environmental Management and Tourism at the University of Babahoyo and also took a Seminar of Photography techniques. He enjoys swimming, diving, snorkeling and kayaking. Ivan is an accomplished diver with certification as an SSI Scuba Instructor and Master Scuba Trainer and also emergency first Responder Instructor. She and his sister Karina often guide together on our family departures. Páginas 1 al 3 del anexo del brochure.

Jose Luis “Pepe” Castillo
Pepe CastilloYear licensed to guide: 
1997
Pepe completed his courses with the PNH including interpretation Techniques and Footpath Analysis of PNG. He was born in Loja, Ecuador and grew up in San Cristobal Island where he fell in love with nature and decided to protect this unique place becoming a Naturalist Guide. At the age of 18, Pepe studied at the University of Guayaquil and got his degree in Hotel management. He took some English courses at the SECAP institute to learn English but he mainly studied by his own. Pepe is studying computer science and Italian language now. In 1995 He became a member of FEDEGAL which is a foundation that helps with the conservation of Galápagos Islands. Pepe used to work as a free lancer for many different ships and he became part of our team in 2002. Pepe is a very popular guide and likes to tell passengers stories about the enchanted Galápagos Islands. Preferred topics for discussion include: geology (islands, volcanoes and rocks), astronomy and giant tortoises. When he is not guiding, he enjoys chess, playing the guitar and swimming with sharks.

Magdalena “Malena” Cruz
Magdalena “Malena” Cruz Year licensed to guide:1994
Magdalena studied Tourism Professional Guide at the Universidad Internacional del Ecuador and also took courses on Interpretation Techniques in the PNG. Her favorite Galapagos topics of conversation include: sea currents, geology and the marine reserve. When Malena is not guiding, she manages her family’s hotel on the Island of San Cristobal. She also enjoys reading, music and fishing.

Alexis Navia
Alexis NaviaYear licensed to guide: 1984
Alexis has since attended up to ten different training courses given by the Galápagos National Park. He lived and studied in the United States until he moved to the Galápagos and attended his first naturalist training. In 1990, he became a Master Scuba Diver and has lead diving expeditions for over 17 years. He enjoys scuba diving, snorkeling and underwater photography and is certified in underwater security, and underwater archaeology. In 2002, Alexis received his Master’s degree in Computer Science and Telecommunication at the University.

 

TMI (Too Much Information)

Luggage 

It’s always a good idea to travel light by bringing only what you need for your trip. Being over burdened with luggage can make transfers and travel difficult. For your flights, always wear or carry on the items that are absolutely necessary to your trip. 

Luggage Restrictions

Keep in mind that flights between mainland Ecuador and the Galápagos limit you to a maximum of 20 kg or 44 lbs for your checked luggage. You are allowed one carry-on, which is limited to a maximum of 7 kg or 15 lbs.  If you are traveling in the Galápagos on a land-based trip (not on a cruise), you may have a flight between two or more of the islands.  Please check your itinerary. These flights operate in much smaller airplanes, and have different luggage restrictions.  On these flights, you are limited to a maximum of 11 kgs or 25 lbs in one bag for your checked luggage, and you are allowed one small carry-on, such as a purse or day pack.These allowances should be enough for what you’ll need to bring, but if you have extra items you wish to leave in Quito or Guayaquil during your trip to the Galápagos—such as items you may have acquired at Otavalo—arrangements can be made to leave extra bags at your hotel.

Following are our recommendations for luggage for this trip: 

• Daypack or Fanny pack: This bag stays with you at all times, will most likely be your carry-on and is where you will keep such Galápagos necessities as your camera—unless you have a camera bag—sunscreen, glasses, windbreaker and other similar objects during your hikes. Some people prefer both a daypack and a small fanny pack. Because you will be the one to carry this bag(s) you’ll want to keep the weight down.

• Duffel Bag: In addition to your carry-on bag you should only need one duffel bag to serve as your main luggage for the trip. This can also be a carry-on but check with your airline to insure it meets specifications. Your duffel or suitcase should be well made and durable to take the punishment the airlines and traveling can dish out. A medium size duffle or suitcase of 30” X 15” X 14” with a capacity of 110 liters or slightly larger should be sufficient.

• Spare Duffel: It’s a good idea to carry a spare duffel rolled up in your main luggage piece. This is not only good in case you want to leave belongings in Quito while you are in the Galápagos or Amazon, but it comes in handy for those who like to do a good deal of shopping.

• Small Padlocks: These are always a good idea when traveling and discourages anyone inclined to zip open your bag to see what they might find.

• Plastic Bags: Sturdy zip lock bags are great to keep important items dry while in the Galápagos or Amazon.

Footwear  • Comfortable walking or hiking shoes with good traction.

• Teva style sandals are good for hiking the island beaches and you do not have to worry if you get your feet wet. Thongs are acceptable but are not good for hiking though they are good on deck. A security strap is a good idea in the surf.Note: The shoes you wear during landings are kept in a bin on the yacht. If you want to wear them on board the yacht we can wash the bottoms but you may want to have a light pair of deck shoes or thongs for the yacht. Bare feet are also acceptable.

Outerwear 

• Wind shell (ideal for the islands) and or rain jacket or poncho with hood.

• Medium to light fleece jacket or fleece sweater (wool is fine too)

• Cotton sweat shirt

• The above are frequently needed when it gets cooler in the islands during the evenings, which is the time you will experience more breezes as we cruise to another location. Also remember that Quito can be cool and it can get downright cold if you go higher into the mountains.

Shirts & Blouses 

• T-Shirts / Polo shirts / Light blouses (can be purchased along the way)

• A long sleeve shirt or blouse for cooler evenings and sun protection. 

For Swimming  • Two swimsuits.

• Women report getting a lot of mileage out of swim suite wraps that can be worn as a dress or skirt.

• Lightweight neoprene wetsuit: Optional. This allows you to spend more time in the water. A less expensive substitute is long underwear made from a water resistant fiber such as capilene. You can also inquire about renting a wetsuit or body glove. 

Trousers & Skirts 

• Hiking shorts.

• Lightweight full length pants either synthetic or cotton is fine and great for cooler nights in the highlands or islands

• Pair of dressier shorts

• Women may want to bring a casual dress or skirt (see below). 

Head Gear 

• Sun hat or cap. Wide brim hats should have chin strap in case they blow off your head. Unless you have a really thick head of hair and never burn sun visors are out.

• Bandana (great to shield your neck).

• Dark glasses with security strap (polarized lenses will help you to see more when looking in the water to spot turtles and rays). It’s a good idea to bring two pairs, especially if you need prescription glasses. 

Socks 

• Comfortable athletic type socks for walking and hiking.

Underwear 

• Regular underwear.

Travel Accessories 

• Snorkel gear.  Most trips include the use of snorkel gear (fins, mask, and snorkel) in their rates.  If this gear is not included, it will be available to rent (please check the included / not included information of your trip).  However, you may want to bring your own mask, so you will be sure to have a mask that fits you.

• First-aid Kit.  While we do carry first aid kits on our yachts, you are responsible for bringing along your own personal medical kit including medications, especially prescription drugs, or vitamins you regularly take (fill prescriptions BEFORE you travel), including any over the counter drugs you might take such as pain relievers, motion sickness pills or indigestion tablets.

• Seasickness medication.  While Galápagos waters tend toward calm, there are at least two crossings during the typical cruise. In case you are susceptible to sea sickness or if the seas do get high please bring along medication for seasickness if you are susceptible.

• Toiletry kit: Tooth paste, toothbrush, shaving kit, etc.

• Insect repellent (for those going to the Amazon see above / Galápagos travelers sensitive to bites).

• Sunscreen with SPF rating of 15 or higher (you are on the equator so bring a full bottle).

• Aloe gel of a high quality.

• Lip gloss with sunscreen of SPF rating of 15 or higher.

• Hand sanitizers like Purell for a quick way to keep hands clean when traveling on your own.

• That book you have wanted to read and the stationery for the letters you have wanted to write.

• Binoculars: Even though you can get up close to much of the wildlife in the Galápagos you will still want a good pair of binoculars. Water resistance is a plus.

• Water resistant travel alarm watch.

• Water resistant compass.

• Small flashlight or headlamp (good for searching in your duffel and when in Amazon).

• Spanish / English pocket dictionary or electronic pocket translator.

• Batteries.

**********************************************************************************************

CAMERAS AND VIDEO

Photography is a highlight of any trip to the Galápagos. With the transition to digital, the best advice is to bring a camera and a format that you are familiar with and know will give you the results you are looking for. If you want to try something new, take time to become familiar with your gear before you head out on the trip. A good rule is to always bring more film or memory space than you think you will need. If you are looking for the results of those glossy catalogs, look into a high color saturation slide film or more mega pixels. While a good zoom lens can come in handy and render excellent up-close results, you probably don’t need anything larger than a hand held lens that does not require a tripod in the Galápagos, and that’s because it’s fairly easy to get close to wildlife. However, if you are looking for professional results you may want to bring both a long lens and tripod. If you plan to visit the Amazon to get shots of wildlife a telephoto lens and tripod are musts.The Galápagos is a great place to bring along a disposable underwater camera as well. Sand and seawater are the enemies of any optical or electronic instrument. Keep this in mind when considering what to bring. A good measure to take for any photographic equipment is to bring large high quality zip lock bags with a zipper locks to keep your camera in, especially when crossing to shore. Bring a few, as they are hard to dry out or clean once wet. Whether photographing wildlife in the Galápagos or people at Otavalo, please be respectful and considerate. Your guide will advise you on the “dos and don’ts.”

Guides

• A Field Guide to the Birds of Galápagos, by Michel Harris
A Field Guide to the Fishes of Galápagos, by Godfrey Merlen
A Guide to the birds of the Galápagos Islands, by Isabel Castro and Antonia Phillips
Flowering Plants of the Galápagos, by Dr. Conley K. McMullen
Galapagos Wildlife, a Visitor’s Guide. David Howell & Pete Oxford
Lonely Planet Ecuador and the Galápagos Islands, by Rob Rachowiecki (Lonely Planet Publications)
Marine Life of the Galápagos, by Pierre Constant
Reef Fish Identification, by Paul Humann
Subtidal Galápagos, by James Cribbs
Photography 
Galápagos, Islands Lost in Time, by Tui de Roy
Galápagos, A Terrestrial and Marine Phenomenon, by Paul Humann
Galápagos, Discovery on Darwin’s Islands, by Steadman and Zousmer
Galápagos, Back to Nature, by Steve Lu
Galápagos, by Nathan Farb
Other Recommendations 
The Voyage of the Beagle, by Charles Darwin
Charles Darwin, A Biography, by Janet Browne
Floreana, by Margaret Wittmer
The Beak of the Finch, by Jonathan Weiner
The Encantadas, by Herman Melville
The Galápagos Affair, by John Treherne
My Father’s Islands, A Galápagos Quest, by Johanna Angermeyer

110 volt outlets are in each cabin, and 220 volt outlets are in the lounge area. Plugs are the same as in the USA.

Every passenger has an open tab at the bar and boutique, which are paid the last day of the cruise. Beer, wine, liquor, and soft drinks are available at the bar. Hats, t-shirts, sunscreen, and other items also available. Payments for these purchases can be made with credit card (Visa or Mastercard) or with cash. Gratuities for the crew can be paid with credit card on-board, however the crew does prefer to receive tips in cash.

Smoking is prohibited in enclosed areas aboard the vessels and on the Islands. Smoking is only allowed on the outside deck in a designated smoking area.

Safety:

Safety Equipment: 

  • Viking 25-person inflatable capsule lifeboat (SOLAS certified)
  • 40 life vests Type I approved with whistles and lights
  • 6 circular buoys with emergency lights
  • Portable fire extinguishers
  • CO2 fix station
  • Smoke detectors
  • SART (radar transponder)
  • EPIRB (Emergency Position Indicator Radio Beacon)

Medical Attention:

The yachts carry first-aid kits and medical supplies. The captain and guides are trained in basic first-aid procedures. All yachts have radio contact with the mainland for any medical emergencies.

Staff/ Crew on Trip: 11

DETOUR'S POLICIES

DETOUR’S DISCLAIMER
Detour acts only as an agent for the various independent suppliers that provide hotel accommodations, transportation, sightseeing, activities, or other services connected with this tour. Such services are subject to the terms and conditions of those suppliers. Detour, LLC and their respective employees, agents, representatives, and assigns accept no liability whatsoever for any injury, damage, loss, accident, delay, or any other incident which may be caused by the negligence, defect, default of any company or person in performing these services. Responsibility is not accepted for losses, injury, damages or expenses of any kind due to sickness, weather, strikes, hostilities, wars, terrorist acts, acts of nature, local laws, or other such causes. All services and accommodations are subject to the laws and regulations of the country in which they are provided. Detour, LLC is not responsible for any baggage or personal effects of any individual participating in the tours /trips arranged by Detour, LLC. Individual travelers are responsible for purchasing a travel insurance policy, if desired, that will cover some of the expenses associated with the loss of luggage or personal effects.

Cancellations: If you cancel the trip at any point after confirmation, you will forfeit a $100 per person handling fee to Detour. This is separate and in addition to the fees, deposits, and payments potentially owed to the tour operator (see information below).

Trip Changes:  If you decide to make any changes to your trip (changes to your itinerary, travel dates, tours, or accommodations) after it is booked, you will incur a $50 change fee per person, per change.  Unavoidable changes (such as those imposed by an international flight schedule change) will not incur this fee.  Adding on services before or after your confirmed tour will not incur this fee.

Rate Changes to Domestic Flights, Park Entrance Fees, Government Taxes and Fuel Surcharges:  The rates for all these items are subject to change at any point and these fees or fee changes can be imposed on any trip, even after a trip has been confirmed and paid for in full.  These rate changes are beyond the control of Detour or our local operating partners.  Oftentimes, these changes are imposed by government decree and take effect immediately.  While this is a rare occurence and the rate changes themselves are typically quite small, these changes are unpredictable and sometimes unavoidable.  Travelers are responsible for any additional costs or fees due to these rate changes, even after the trip is paid in full.

Passports and Traveler Details:  Passengers are responsible for sending up-to-date and correct information that is requested in the “Trip Reservation Form.”  If any of those details change, it is the passenger’s responsibility to notify Detour of the change before the trip departure.  If you need to renew your passport prior to your trip, you must notify Detour that you will be renewing your passport and you will have to email a scanned copy of both your old and new passports to Detour.  Additionally, you will have to bring both passports with you on your trip. Please make sure that you request to receive your old passport at the start of the renewal process.

Airport Transfers:  Airport transfer rates are based on group size with the assumption that all travelers will be taking the same transfer.  If some travelers in your personal group arrive or depart on different days or at different times, additional airport transfers will have to be booked and the passenger is responsible for this additional cost.

DETOUR’S DISCLAIMER

Detour acts only as an agent for the various independent suppliers that provide hotel accommodations, transportation, sightseeing, activities, or other services connected with this tour. Such services are subject to the terms and conditions of those suppliers. Detour, LLC and their respective employees, agents, representatives, and assigns accept no liability whatsoever for any injury, damage, loss, accident, delay, or any other incident which may be caused by the negligence, defect, default of any company or person in performing these services.  Responsibility is not accepted for losses, injury, damages or expenses of any kind due to sickness, weather, strikes, hostilities, wars, terrorist acts, acts of nature, local laws, or other such causes.  All services and accommodations are subject to the laws and regulations of the country in which they are provided. Detour, LLC is not responsible for any baggage or personal effects of any individual participating in the tours /trips arranged by Detour, LLC. Individual travelers are responsible for purchasing a travel insurance policy, if desired, that will cover some of the expenses associated with the loss of luggage or personal effects.

DETOUR’S CANCELLATION POLICY
If you cancel the trip at any point after confirmation, you will owe a $100 per person handling fee to Detour.  This is separate and in addition to the fees, deposits, and payments potentially owed to the tour operator (see information below).

 

ECOVENTURA TERMS AND CONDITIONS

INDIVIDUAL BOOKINGS (1-5 Passengers)

DEPOSITS
A deposit of $500 per person and $1000 for singles ($1000 per person and $2000 for singles on Holiday weeks) is required within five days of written confirmation to guarantee any reservation.

FINAL PAYMENT
Full payment is due 60 days prior (90 days prior for holiday weeks) to the sailing date and must be accompanied with a passenger information form.

CANCELLATION POLICY
Cancellations received up to 90 days prior to departure will be refunded in full except for a $250 per person service charge; 89-60 days prior to departure, the full deposit will be forfeited, 59-0 days prior to departure, the entire cruise rate is forfeited.

CANCELLATION POLICY FOR HOLIDAY WEEKS (APRIL 5-12, DEC 20-27, DEC 27-03 JAN)

Cancellations received up to 180 days prior to departure will be refunded in full except for a $250 per person service charge;

– 179 – 120 days prior to departure: $500 per person will be forfeited,
– 119-90 days prior to departure: the full deposit will be forfeited,
– 89-60 days prior to departure: the entire cruise rate is forfeited.

SMALL GROUP BOOKINGS (3 or more cabins excluding charter)

DEPOSITS & FINAL PAYMENT
Same as above. In addition, a second deposit of $500 per person and $1000 for singles ($1000 per person and $2000 for singles on holiday weeks) is due 180 days prior to departure.

CANCELLATION POLICY (for 6 or more passengers excluding exclusive charter)

Cancellations received up to 180 days prior to departure will be refunded in full except for a $250 per person service charge:

179-120 days prior to departure,
Can cancel 1 cabin with a penalty of $250 per person, additional cabins released are subject to penalty charge of $500 per person.

119-90 days prior to departure,
Can cancel 1 cabin with a penalty of $250 per person, additional cabins released are subject to a penalty of $1000 per person

89-60 days prior to departure,
Can cancel one cabin with a penalty of $500 per person, additional cabins released are subject to a penalty of $1000 per person

59-0 days prior to departure,
Full penalty for any cancellation

FULL EXCLUSIVE CHARTER

DEPOSITS
A deposit of $10,000 for seasonal and peak weeks or $20,000 for holiday weeks is due to guarantee the charter.

A second deposit of $10,000 for seasonal and peak weeks or $20,000 for holiday weeks is due 180 days prior to departure to guarantee all cabins.

Final payment is due in full at 60 days prior (90 days for holiday weeks) to departure together with passenger information forms and cabin assignment.

All reservations are subject to cancellation if payments are not received by the due date. Reservations will not be considered firm until a deposit has cleared our account.

CANCELLATION POLICY
Cancellations received in writing up to 180 days prior to departure will be refunded in full except for a $1500 service charge for season and peak weeks or $3000 for holiday weeks.

179-150 days prior to departure,
Cancellation incurs penalty of 100% first deposit.

149-120 days prior to departure
Cancellation incurs penalty of 100% first deposit and 50% of second deposit.

119-60 days prior to departure or 119-90 days on holiday weeks,
Cancellation incurs penalty of 100% of the first and second deposits. 59-0 days of departure
– 90-0 days (on holiday weeks) cancellation incurs full penalty.

REDUCTION OF CABINS ON CHARTERS
The number of cabins blocked for a particular charter can be reduced. However, cabins must be released according to our time schedule in order to avoid penalties; they are outlined as follows:.

179-150 days prior to departure
Can release 3 cabins with a penalty of $250 per person, additional cabins released are subject to penalty charge of $500 per person.

149-120 days prior to departure
Can release 2 cabins with a penalty of $250 per person, additional cabins released are subject to penalty charge of $250 per person

119-60 days prior to departure,
Can release 1 cabin with a penalty of $250 per person, additional cabins released are subject to penalty charge of $500 per person.

89-0 days prior to departure
Full penalty for any cancellation.

Wake up early for breakfast in the dining room before going ashore with your naturalist for 2-4 hours for a nature walk, snorkel, and or panga ride.

Return to the boat for lunch, then the boat will navigate to a new island or a different site on the same island, as per the itinerary.

Another shore excursion with your naturalist of 2-4 hours for a nature walk, snorkeling and / or a panga ride.

Return to the boat for snacks and time on the sundeck while the boat moves to a new site or island.

Dinner in the dining room, followed by a naturalist briefing about what you will see the next day.

Most telecommunication providers have signal in Galapagos and passengers can use their smart phones that are activated for international calling on days when the yachts are in close range to port. The yachts do not offer WiFi service. There are internet cafes in Puerto Ayora and other towns in the Galapagos.

Aboard our yachts, gratuities are not included. We prefer that our guests reward our crew based on their performance. Tipping is a personal matter and passengers are encouraged to tip an amount they find appropriate. For those passengers who inquire, we suggest they follow our guidelines of $200.00 per passenger (per week). Gratuities are divided among all crew members including guides. Tips can be paid with Visa or Mastercard on-board, however the crew prefers to receive their tips in cash so that there is no delay or fees taken out.

Laundry: Laundry service may be available in Puerto Ayora upon arrival there. Ask your guide or crew on the boat.

Food and Special Diets: 

Special-needs diets can be accommodated: vegetarian or vegan, gluten free and low sodium/low fat.

The chefs are watching out for you with reduced-calorie, health-conscious preparations (avoiding fried and heavily sauced foods) that are also low in fat and sodium content.

Ecoventura has recently transformed the culinary offerings on their fleet and now offer locally sourced, healthy and gourmet style menus designed by the culinary talent of Chef Francisco Ventimilla, Director of the esteemed gastronomy school in Guayaquil, University Espiritu Santo. Chef Francisco trained our on board chefs in his techniques, many of whom have worked in the kitchens of Ecuador’s finest hotels or in popular restaurants in the upscale suburb of Samborondon.

While cruising in the Galápagos, you will look forward to each thoughtfully prepared meal. From breakfast through dinner the kitchens or galleys focus on using only the freshest ingredients, with fully 60% of the food used are  sourced from these islands.  Many fruits, meats and dairy products come from farms on islands blessed by rain. Organic fruits and vegetables thrive on San Cristobal and meat and dairy come from Santa Cruz. And of course the region is famous for fish and seafood. Minimizing the need for food that has to be shipped from the mainland helps protect the islands from invasive plant species, insects and even animals that can be unwelcome.

TYPICAL MENU:

 VEGETARIAN OPTION

Breakfast & Lunch – same as above (served buffet style)

Dinner
Apples and dried fruit timbale served with fennel salad, red pepper, oil and yogurt dressing
Vegetables stew with pineapple and wheat gluten
Berries panna cotta (soy milk)

KIDS MENU

Breakfast options:

Hot chocolate, fresh fruit juice, kid-friendly cereals, pancakes, toast, bagels, scrambled eggs, fruit

Lunch options:

Peanut butter jelly sandwich Tuna club sandwich,  Ham and cheese pizza, Chicken wraps, Hamburger with cheese & french fries

Dinner options:

Chicken tenders with BBQ sauce   Fusilli primavera with garlic sauce Steak with mac and cheese Chicken and vegetable soup   Fish fingers with baked potatoes,  Chicken quesadilla Spaghetti with tomato sauce,   Chicken nuggets

Dessert options:

Cupcakes / ice cream / brownies / cookies / milk shakes

Drinking Water: 

Clean, fresh, drinking water is available at all times on the boat. Please bring a refillable water bottle so you can fill your bottle before heading off on shore excursions.

 

25 reviews for Eric and Letty Galapagos Yachts


  1. Carol G.
    5 out of 5

    :

    It has always been a dream of mine to go to the Galapagos. If you have to have one thing in your bucket list, definitely the Galapagos it is. Our vessel was the Letty and we were very pleased with the service we got. The crew was amazing. I’ll start with the guides – Ceci and Gaby. Both of them with so much knowledge and a pleasant attitude for everything. The housekeeper Claudia was exceptional. We never found our room dirty and she made sure we had everything we needed. Roland – the bartender/waitress/host was so pleasant and very efficient. It was nice to see how nice he treated everyone. Chef Robert was extraordinary. Since I’m lactose intolerant, he made sure, as soon as he was told that I couldn’t have dairy, to make special meals for me. He and Roland made sure that I wasn’t deprived from any meals because of my dietary restrictions. The food was out of this world and I would have brought him back with us if that could have been possible. The captain and his crew were all so attentive and my family and I were so delighted to be in this vessel. I don’t know about the other boats, but I strongly recommend the Letty. A couple of things that I need to point out, without taking the 5 star rating, are: 1) The snorkeling excursions could be longer, it felt a little rushed. They were too short. 2) The kayaking excursions could also be a little longer. 3) The wet suits could use a little more cleaning in between groups. I know it’s hard to do, but they kind of have a moldy smell and some of them were in very bad shape. 4) I wish the afternoon gap wasn’t that long after lunch and before activities, for it would be nice to do more. I was so glad we got to see all the wild life we saw. I fell in love with this paradise on earth and I am not sure how one can top this trip. Gracias por todo!

  2. John G.
    5 out of 5

    :

    Our Ecoventura tour of the Galapagos Islands was fabulous and it is hard to think of what could have been better. Our two naturalists (Yvonne and Adrian) were very knowledgable and enthusiastic about their islands and the beautiful wildlife. The size for the tour groups of 10 people that accompanied each naturalist was perfect, giving everyone a chance to hear them talk. The trails on each island were actually easier to walk than I had expected. The crew of the Flamingo was excellent. Diego the bartender was a lot of fun, and always had snacks and drinks ready for us when we returned after an outing on the pangas. The food was out of this world, I even took a picture of the dessert on the last night because it was so beautiful. The highlight of the trip was, of course, the animals. The animals were everywhere and beautiful far beyond what we had expected. We would take this trip again and again, and recommend it to our friends!

  3. Joyce
    4 out of 5

    :

    The Ecoventura trip was a very enjoyable week.  We would have liked more kayak trips, as there was only about a hour and a half of time, and the boat that we were on, The Flamingo 1 could have used a little refurbishing.  Al and I did some snorkeling, but if we didn’t go there was nothing to do other than just remain on the boat.

  4. Cynthia
    5 out of 5

    :

    We enjoyed our trip to the Galapagos and give the overall experience high marks!  Our guide was excellent and the activities kept us very active! The food and service on board was very good. We lucked out with a small group of 11 and enjoyed the company of our fellow travelers. The only negative was the boat had just come from dry dock and there were smells of varnish and the shade canopy on the sun deck was missing for us. Loved seeing all the animals and while the water was quite cold, the snorkeling was fun! We covered 500 Nautical miles and crossed the equator 6 times with a couple of nights of real rocking and rolling due to rough seas but the trip certainly met our expectations!

  5. Cathy
    5 out of 5

    :

    We were on the Letty the beginning of May and had a wonderful time We had a triple cabin because we brought our adult daughter with us. The itinerary and activities were great. Everything was extremely well organized. Our fellow cruise mates were all lots of fun, enthusiatic and everybody seemed to get along well. Our guides, Ceci and Gaby, were just wonderful – really, they made the whole trip. I can now understand why good guides are so important on a vacation such as this. As well, it was nice having a guide with only ten people in each group. The accommodations were fine, small but adequate. Our cabin was cleaned every day and a small cocolate bar on each bed at night. The crew (although I didn’t see alot of them because the majority were working behind the scenes) were great, though, because everything seemed to run smoothly. Any request was dealt with promptly. I was not a big snorkeler but definitely enjoyed it on this trip. Be sure and give it a try. The whole trip was amazing .. no wonder they call it a trip of a lifetime.
    (submitted June 2013).

  6. Jan B.
    5 out of 5

    :

    All staff were pleasant, helpful and did a great job. One of the guests contracted a nasty flu just prior to her arrival on the boat, but her room was bleached on a daily basis and even her roommate did not get sick. This was not much short of a miracle and testimony to the outstanding effort put forth to take care of the guests. It was the best week of meals of my life. Guides did a great job finding the wildlife and were knowledgeable about it. The snorkeling with sea lions, golden rays, sea turtles, penguins and a zillion fish was a highlight for me. The hot climate made us really appreciate being greeted with cold beverages, tasty, interesting snacks, and air conditioning upon our arrival back on board after outings.

  7. Dorothy
    5 out of 5

    :

    My trip was fantastic. It was everything I hoped for and more. My 10 year old granddaughter was delighted – and learned so much!!!

  8. Layna
    4 out of 5

    :

    We had a great time on the trip. We were so impressed with the naturalists. They were amazing and they really made the trip! We had Ceci and Yvonne. Their knowledge and the way they ran the trip was so impressive and professional. Overall the crew was great and I would definitely recommend this trip.

    The Galapagos are incredibly beautiful. I was so impressed with the beauty of the island and was surprised by how different the islands were.

    The hikes and snorkels were great. I wished the water was warmer but nothing anyone can do about that.

  9. Marc L
    4 out of 5

    :

    Well run, hard working crew, demanding turnover for them.

    However, the last 24 hrs felt to us like a waste of time – perhaps somewhat unavoidable due to getting our group out and the next in, but still 1 of 7 days at what the trip costs, is significant.

    And, although our boat only had 19 tourists, we were a group of 60 when we showed up at any given location due to the two sister ships (and sometimes the 4th dive boat). The visits were staggered, but often the 60 people were visible, or we passed them, etc. Is this unique to Ecoventura or if it was not sister ships, would it be 60 people from three different companies? Hmmm.

    Tipping (how much to whom) again became all people talked about, worried about the last day: seems an unfortunate that last thoughts about a trip are about money.

    Ceci (guide) and Jairo (waiter/Bar tender) were standouts – but the whole crew worked very hard at doing a good job and making us feel welcome. Kitchen made a consistent effort to provide vegetarian dishes.

    Re the itinerary: without having been to other places it is hard to judge, but the feeling is that due to Park restrictions? – or what works for Ecoventura? – or the length of the motoring? that there might have been some improvements.

  10. Rita W
    5 out of 5

    :

    I have to tell you we had the most wonderful trip. The five of us were blown away by the whole adventure. Every time we thought that we saw wonderful things, something better happened. The snorkeling was beyond incredible. On our last day of snorkeling, we were playing with two seal lions. It is hard to describe how surreal it is to share a habitat with wild animals. Ecoventura was the best. The boat was fine, the food was excellent – better than we could have hoped and our naturalist guides were top notch. Casa Aliso in Quito is a gem and should be highly recommended. The only complaint I have is that the representative from Ecoventura never met us at the airport in Quito. The company should be aware of that. I would not hesitate to book with Detour again if this is the quality type of trip you can provide. Thanks for all of your help.

  11. Lois K
    5 out of 5

    :

    Excellent trip. Great itinerary, efficient crewf on boat and lots of birds, sea lions, penguins etc.

    The only problem we had was a virus that spread rampantly through passengers and crew, but the captain dealt with it very efficiently and even brought a doctor on board to assess everyone. Because I (Lois) was one of the first to get sick and had it for most of the trip, I did manage to do one activity a day. I saw the red footed boobies, blue footed boobies, frigate birds, sea lions and even swam with the penguins. It was a great trip overall.

    Thank you for all your help in planning our trip. We now have thousands of photos and 10 hours of video to go through. I would recommend all of our tour companies and of course Detour Destinations to anyone planning a trip. I really enjoy picking and choosing what I want to see and do and also I like to visit my destinations in more detail than most tour companies allow. All our pickups and drop-offs went extremely well and the hotels we stayed in were great. Also all our local tour guides and drivers were very knowledgeable about the local history and nature.

  12. Michael G
    5 out of 5

    :

    A GREAT experience, passengers and crew a pleasure to deal with. Professionally run!!!!

    Everyone is now exchanging DVD’s of the trip.

    The trip was GREAT, the weather was good, it was a memorable experience. All the passengers got along and everyone made sure to switch tables each meal to spent time with the others – MOST IMPORTANT. The itinerary was reasonable and we got to a good number of places that were on my wish list. I found the level of difficulty to be very easy, but that’s me and I know for others it was a strain. For those who have not snorkeled before they should be warned to learn before they come on a trip like this. I hadn’t snorkeled before but my wife and I took to it right away and we were able to stay in the water for over an hour each time. We were twelve passengers with one guide which at times was a little thin, I believe that a few people felt their noses out of joint because of this but for me it was passable. The Galapagos is a gift and a wonder. I felt privileged to have been able to experience it. Thank you for helping make it happen. A few of the 1500 photos I took are attached. It’s a photographers paradise!!!

  13. Abbi P
    5 out of 5

    :

    This was a dense, active and visually and experientialy amazing trip! A nature walk on steroids. Loved the biodiversity, incredible landscapes, deep water snorkeling, the wow factor at every turn. I was happy to be with a small group of 19 active adults (no kids) and more often than not, we were the only group visiting a particular site. This was a great trip!

    Would have liked more local dishes, but food was plentiful and good.

  14. J McCabe
    5 out of 5

    :

    We had a wonderful time in the Galapagos Islands. Pictures and words cannot describe the islands and innocence of all the different kinds of wildlife. Snorkeling with the many variety of aquatic mammals and fish is another world. Ship accommodations were above our expectations. Weather was great. Our vacation could not have been more eventful. In 15 plus national and international travel trips, this is the first time we rate a destination Excellent.

  15. Detour's Review
    5 out of 5

    :

    Ecoventura is one of the premier agencies operating Galapagos trips. They have been leaders in sustainable tourism in the Galapagos Islands, and continue to add environmental initiatives to help protect the fragile ecosystem of the islands. They are well-known for providing top-quality Galapagos tours. Small guide-to-passenger ratio (one expert guide for every 10 passengers) ensures intimate visits on shore.

    Their trips emphasize outdoor activities, such as nature walks, snorkeling, and kayaking, in addition to birdwatching and marine biology. All cabins onboard are outside-facing with a window or portholes, air-conditioning and private bath, hair dryers and beach towels.

    Ecoventura is the only company in Galapagos that provides snorkeling equipment (masks, fins and snorkels), custom wet suits (in various sizes for men, women and children) and clear-bottom sea kayaks (two doubles per yacht) at no additional cost.

  16. jillmiller
    5 out of 5

    :

    Great trip – excellent size of boat; excellent itinerary (this may change with new 15 day routes); excellent (level 3) guides; excellent staff; excellent daily plan of activities; very good matching of passengers’ interests and ages across 3 boats; much appreciated free sea kayaks, wet suits and snorkeling equipment;; good but not great food; adequate staterooms and bathrooms but small beds.

    Moderate level of exertion involved in both hiking and snorkeling, but guides very good at accommodating passengers who chose not to participate in the most difficult activities.

  17. Lorie B
    5 out of 5

    :

    First of all, arrangements through Detour were great! Kate and Allie were extremely helpful and patient, and they never made us feel guilty about calling or asking a lot of questions.

    As far as the experience with Ecoventura, I do not know how the decision was made regarding exactly who went on which of the boats (Eric, Letty, Flamingo), but we feel we were exceptionally lucky to have secured a slot on the Flamingo! The itinerary was fabulous and the crew was exceptional, making sure that they provided a quality experience for us. We know that the Eric had difficulty as they did not even depart for their cruise when scheduled (which seems grievously irresponsible) and they also grounded the ship which resulted into a huge misfortune and disappointment for the passengers. I would be curious as to if they appropriately remediated the situation for the passengers involved and it would be important in deciding to commit to the company for a future vacation. Although we experienced a fabulous trip, I would be cautious about future plans.

    A huge part of why we booked specifically with Ecoventura was because the itinerary offered on their ships, which seemed to be superior to others that were available. We actually incurred a higher price than alternative options to secure accommodations because this factor was extremely important.

    I must also make mention of our guides Ivan and Karena, who were amazing together! I think because they are brother and sister they added an intangible chemistry that proved invaluable! Their knowledge, personality and enthusiasm was absolutely contagious and they definitely contributed to the positive experience of a most incredible adventure!

    For us personally, big THANKS in appreciation for the help offered by Detour and the crew and guides of the Flamingo who gave us a most memorable experience!

  18. Fred B
    5 out of 5

    :

    I want to particularly thank the Detours staff for taking the
    initiative to contact my daughter and let her know that you had been informed that everyone was safe after the Tsunami scare that occurred during our trip. That was thoughtfulness “above & beyond”.

    Thanks for everything. We have been singing the praises of both Detours and Ecoventura to all our friends.

  19. Susan D
    5 out of 5

    :

    Our family had an awesome time on our trip to the Galapagos Islands. We had great guides and unbelievable experiences.

  20. Joyce P
    5 out of 5

    :

    The trip was fabulous!! We were on the Letty and everything was perfect. The weather even cooperated. Our naturalists, Ceci and Maria, were wonderful. I would highly recommend this trip to anyone. All the arrangements worked great and I thank you.

    Again, this was a trip of a life time. Thanks Detour!

  21. badger1
    5 out of 5

    :

    Our tour of the Galapagos Islands on the Flamingo I was a trip of a lifetime. We went in mid-September, which is the low season in the Galapagos Islands, because the temperatures are a bit cooler (highs usually in the mid-70s) and the open seas are a bit rougher than at other times of year. But we found it to be a wonderful time to visit, and a great trip. At that time of year the blue footed boobies were not mating, so we did not see their dance, but frigate birds on one island were mating, so we saw their inflated pouches on their necks. And we saw amazing wildlife of all other sorts. On land we saw thousands of marine iguanas, along with a much smaller number of land iguanas, as well as turtles and sea lions. We also snorkeled and dove with playful sea lions, saw innumerable red footed boobies, blue footed boobies, frigate birds, herons, penguins, flightless cormorants, finches, hawks, and other birds. Snorkeling and diving we saw not only the sea lions, but also swimming penguins, more colorful tropical fish than I expected, schools of eagle rays, manta rays, eels, many, many turtles, and probably about a dozen sharks (white tip reef sharks, black tip reef sharks, galapagos sharks, and some in our group saw hammerheads), among other things. While on the Flamingo I we were also very fortunate to see whales on several occasions, and twice we saw pods of dolphins.
    This trip has a particularly attractive itinerary, compared to some of the other itineraries offered by other companies. In addition to the usual islands visited by most companies, Ecoventura boats travel to some of the more distant islands, including Genovesa and Fernandina. Genovesa was the only place we saw red footed boobies, and had some of the best up-close encounters with large numbers of birds. Fernandina is a very beautiful island with huger numbers of marine iguanas, impressive lava formations, and lots of sea turtles. I would not want to miss either island.
    The boat and crew were fantastic. The boat is very spacious and comfortable. Our cabin was on the dolphin deck, which is the top deck. Our cabin was clean and attractive, and had a large picture window that offered beautiful views. The public areas–including the ship-top decks and the bar, lounge, and dining areas, were also attractive and comfortable. The crew was friendly and a lot of fun, including offering some surprise entertainment that was a lot of fun. The food was always delicious, abundant, and presented beautifully. Our guide was knowledgeable and spoke English well, even though it obviously was his second language. I have noted that other reviewers have not been fully satisfied with their guides. I did not have that experience, but do note that the guides in the Galapagos are not regular employees of the various trip providers. Rather, they are all independent contractors who move around from boat to boat. Therefore, I don’t think you can get a guarantee of a good or a bad guide on any of the trips with any of the companies. On our trip, we had good guides.

  22. Judy W.
    5 out of 5

    :

    Ecoventura offered exactly the itinerary we were interested in. We saw the islands we wanted to see with excellent interpretation from our guides. The hiking and snorkeling were first rate. The food was excellent and abundant,
    the crew was friendly and helpful.

    We would have preferred not to have been in the farthest forward cabin on the lower deck – we kept being awakened by the slapping of the waves against the bow. Also, when the anchor was raised or lowered it was VERY loud!

    However, that didn’t interfere with our total enjoyment of the trip. The small size (20 passengers) was ideal. Ecoventurarepresentatives in Guayaquil were very helpful in getting us on our flight to the islands. We also really appreciate the environmental consciousness of this company.

    Katie French with Detour was very helpful to us in booking our trip. It was a great experience all the way around!

  23. Wendy K.
    5 out of 5

    :

    We had a great time on the Galapagos Cruise. Our guides were very engaging and informative and everything was timed just right. We had the right amount of activity, food and leisure time every day. We are not “cruising” people and were apprehensive at first about being stuck on a boat for 7 days but we didn’t feel “stuck” given the number of excursions we had each day and the fact that we snorkeled at least once or twice a day. We also extended our trip on the Islands and stayed at a hotel but definitely would recommend a cruise over staying on the islands. The islands gets very hot and there are lots of mosquitoes but on the boat there is shade, wind and no bugs! Great amount of variety of animals and geography we saw. Sad to leave!

  24. Jamie B
    5 out of 5

    :

    This trip was a gem for people like us who like nature, hiking andsnorkeling. It had 20 guests on board with eight crew. The ship was very
    well laid out with room for sunning or shade. The guides were EXCEPTIONAL!!! They set the tone of the tour. They were fun, knowledgeable
    and tried to make your trip a pleasure. Please understand the ship is not a luxery cruise ship, but it was clean, comfortable and able to get us in close to all island destinations. From there we would take a zodiak raft to shore. With just 20 passengers this was accomplished very quickly. The islands were everything we had imagined and more. There were tons of birds,
    reptiles and fish to see. All the time. The snorkeling was a great way to see some that you see on land operate in the ocean, ie: penguins, sea lions and marine iguanas. The fish were large, in large schools and many
    beautiful colors. In short, we would highly reccommend the destination and the ship too.

  25. Stacy A
    5 out of 5

    :

    The trip was fabulous. I appreciated that the boats were divided up by age. Our group was well matched and we got along very well. The activities were great fun and the staff were a part of the fun. They got along well and enjoyed each other which made our trip even better. Loved the snorkeling and the animals. So amazing. Thanks for such a great trip!

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