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Audley Travel specialist Caroline

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Tour highlights

  • Explore the UNESCO colonial cities of Quito and Cuenca.

  • Stay in a centuries-old traditional hacienda.

  • Barter at traditional, colourful markets in Otavalo and the Gualaceo valley.

  • Learn about the numerous indigenous Ecuadorian cultures that retain proud heritage today.

  • Shop for Panama hats.

  • See the fearless wildlife of the Galapagos Islands.

Price includes

  • Scheduled international and domestic flights
  • In-destination transfers
  • Activities and excursions as detailed
  • All accommodation

Itinerary idea in detail

Includes international flights from a choice of UK airports, including London, Birmingham, Manchester, Newcastle, Edinburgh and Glasgow.

  • Today you begin your journey by boarding your international outbound flight to Quito. On arrival in Quito you will be met and transferred to your hotel.

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  • Enjoy a guided city tour of Quito.

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  • Travel north along the Pan-American highway through pretty villages to your rural hacienda.

  • An early start to visit the colourful and vibrant market at Otavalo. You will have time to explore and perhaps barter for goods before returning to Quito for the night.

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  • Travel down the Avenue of Volcanoes with your private guide, exploring en route and enjoying the views of Cotopaxi.

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  • Onward to Cuenca, with a train ride along the Devils Nose.

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  • Explore Cuenca colonial city with your guide, including one of the famous panama hat factories.

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  • Travel by road through the beautiful El Cajas National Park all the way to sea level and Guayaquil.

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  • Transfer to the airport in time for your flight to the Galapagos islands. Here you will be met by a member of your hotel who will take you to your accommodation.

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  • Today you'll take a yacht trip to either North Seymour Island or Santa Island. At North Seymour, you can take a guided walk through woods of palo santo trees in order to observe colonies of blue-footed boobies and magnificent frigate birds. At Santa, you'll follow your guide on a short hike through opuntia cacti, looking out for land iguanas, lava lizards and sea lions.

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  • Today you'll visit the crescent-shaped Plazas Islands by yacht. These small islands are dense in wildlife and plant life. Prickly pear cacti and the low-lying succulent plant sesuvium (which changes hues with the seasons) carpet the island. You have a good chance of seeing sea lions, swallow-tailed gulls and land iguanas.

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  • Today you'll visit Bartolomé Island. Here, you can climb to the island's summit for far-reaching views over the surrounding islands. It's a geologically intriguing place, with tuff cones and lava formations. The sea here is often busy with sea lions and penguins so it's worth keeping your eyes peeled.

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  • You will fly back to the mainland to connect with your international flight home.

  • Arrive home today to complete your journey.

Accommodation options

While the itinerary price reflects the suggested accommodation, Audley trips are 100% tailor-made, and a specialist can help you select the option best suited to your tastes and budget.

When to go

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
July is one of the best times to visit
Place Daily max temperature (°C) Monthly rainfall (mm)
Quito
 
Otavalo
 
Avenue of Volcanoes
 
Cuenca
 
Guayaquil
 
The Galapagos Islands
 
Audley Travel specialist Caroline

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