Planning an Amazon + Galapagos Trip
Any trip to the Amazon jungle is a dream vacation for nature and adventure enthusiasts, so take your natural exploration to the next level with an extension to the sacred Galapagos Islands, where wildlife and nature are in a world of their own.
Sacha Lodge’s 13-day adventure takes you on a whirlwind tour of both the Amazon and the Galapagos, including even a few days in Quito.
Start your excursion with a tour of Quito’s historic center– one of the best-preserved colonial neighborhoods in South America – including sites like the presidential palace, the churches of the colonial neighborhood (La Compania, El Sagrario, and San Francisco Church & Convent), plazas, and more. The program includes two nights of lodging at a boutique hotel in Quito – one at the beginning and the other at the end of your itinerary.
After exploring the nation’s capital, you will head back to the airport for a short domestic flight to the Galapagos Islands, where your land-based Galapagos island-hopping tour begins.
You’ll arrive to Baltra Airport and then ferry across the Itabaca Channel to the central island of Santa Cruz, in the heart of the Galapagos Islands. You’ll have time to explore Santa Cruz in greater depth later on in the week, but the first stop is Isabela Island in the western archipelago.
Isabela, among the youngest of the Galapagos Islands, is also the biggest island, with six active shield volcanoes that have formed one large landmass. You will stay in Scalesia Lodge, in the lush highlands of Isabela. From here, you can head down to the coast to enjoy swimming and snorkeling in the crystal waters of Concha Perla Bay. It’s also just a short trip to Las Tintoreras – the islets where a dinghy ride will put you right over these shark-infested waters! Get to know a bit about the history of Isabela with a sombering visit to the Wall of Tears, where prisoners were forced to build a pointless wall of lava rock under the hot equatorial sun when Isabela was used as a penal colony.
Following your exploration of Isabela, you will head back to Santa Cruz to the luxurious waterfront Finch Bay Hotel. From your base here in Santa Cruz, you will have the chance to explore the major sites of the central archipelago, including snorkeling, swimming, dinghy rides, and nature hikes on one of these islands: Bartolome, Santa Fe, South Plaza, North Seymour, or Santa Cruz.
Hopefully, you haven’t exhausted your energy yet, because you’ve only just reached the halfway point of your Ecuador adventure. Once your Galapagos excursion has concluded, you will head back to Quito and transfer right on to the Amazon port town of Coca, where a motorized canoe is waiting to take you on your 2-hour journey up the Rio Napo to the remote Sacha Lodge.
Arriving at Sacha Lodge, you will have some time to rest in the warm comfort of your room, but make sure to participate in all of the exciting activities Sacha offers, in the morning, after lunch, and in the evening. Bird-watching, monkey-spotting, nature hikes, swimming, canopy walks, and a community visit are just a few of the highlights of a Sacha tour. You will also have chances to visit a parrot clay lick, paddle around the water in search of caiman, and climb the observation tower to get a closer look at the mysterious life of the rainforest canopy.
These last four days of adventure will certainly fly by, but by the end of your experience you will have so many memories to cherish forever.
The trip includes all accommodations, meals at the lodges and hotels (including breakfast in your Quito hotel), guided excursions & tours, and transportation to each destination.
The trip does not include any drinks, gratuities, any airfare, the Galapagos National Park entrance fee ($100/ person) or the Transit Card ($20/person), or any meals you have in Quito (except for breakfast in your hotel).