The Galapagos is one of the world’s inimitable destinations and this unique journey brings the region to life via the expertise of The Classic Safari Company’s in-house zoologist Julia Salnicki. Imagine stepping on the same soils as Charles Darwin and other famous explorers as the itinerary reveals the landscapes and animals that have led to evolutionary theories and raised some of the biggest questions of how we came to be on earth. Guests are not only escorted around the region’s major cities but also have opportunities to immerse themselves in the environment, swimming with sea lions, kayaking around islands and snorkelling with turtles.
The tour begins in Quito, the capital of Ecuador located at 2800m. After overnighting at the beautiful boutique Anahi Hotel the next day gives guests a chance to relax and acclimatise with a visit to the lively Otavalo Market.
On day three the adventure begins with a flight to the main destination to board the Galapagos Grand Odyssey. Here guests embark on a magnificent six day cruise through the major islands and regions of San Cristobal, Espanola, Floreana, Santa Fe, South Plaza, North Seymour, Mosquera and Santa Cruz. The Grand Odyssey itself is a gracious vessel with spacious cabins, jacuzzis, several decks, lounge and dining areas plus a bar and library.
Each island and destination has unique and fascinating features. For instance, Espanola is the oldest island at 3.5 million years old, with its own species of lava lizard, turtle and mockingbird. Fernandina is famous for its marine iguanas which bask on solidified black lava, as well as penguins, pelicans, sea lions and fur seals. Flamingos and green sea turtles abound on Floreana, named after the first president of Ecuador. Floreana is also the site of Post Office Bay where 18th century whalers deposited mail in a wooden barrel to be picked up by sailors on their way through to Europe and the United States. North Seymour Island is where guests can witness enormous flocks of blue-footed boobies and swallow-tailed gulls.
On the sixth day it is back to terra firma when guests farewell the Odyssey for luxurious tented accommodation at the Galapagos Safari Camp on Santa Cruz Island. Set high on a ridge the camp has views of the National Park, ocean and islands. During a two night stay at the camp, guests will have the chance to explore lava tunnels in the highlands, mountain bike through extraordinary landscapes and sea kayak in Tortuga Bay.
This fascinating and educational trip concludes with a flight to Guayaquil and overnight stay in the boutique Oro Verde Hotel.
When: From November 4 – 14, 2012
Source = The Classic Safari Company