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Andean Journey with the Galápagos on the Santa Cruz II

Andean Journey with the Galápagos on the Santa Cruz II

18 Day Package from Lima to Guayaquil

Vacation overview

Local Host

In Lima, Cusco, Machu Picchu, Lake Titicaca & Quito; Naturalist in the Galápagos

Meals

Buffet breakfast daily; 7 lunches; 5 three-course dinner

Sightseeing & Activities

Sightseeing with a Local Guide, inside visits, and special features are shown in UPPERCASE

Transportation

As outlined in the day-by-day itinerary below and private airport transfers to/from intra-vacation flights; intra-vacation flights not included

Budapest
ISLE Map

Itinerary

 

Day 1   ARRIVE IN LIMA

Welcome to Lima. Your hotel is available for mid-afternoon check-in.

Day 2   LIMA

Your included CITY TOUR focuses on Lima’s rich colonial history as well as the modern city. Lima was the bastion of Spanish South America from its founding in 1535 until the independence of the South American republics in the early 19th century. See the cathedral, where the remains of Francisco Pizarro are sealed in a wooden coffin, the SANTO DOMINGO CONVENT to see the relics of three famous Peruvian saints—Santa Rosa de Lima, San Martin de Porres, and San Juan Macias.

Day 3   LIMA–CUSCO–SACRED VALLEY

Fly to Cusco, high in the Andes. Upon arrival, begin your scenic drive into the lush Urubamba Valley, also known as the Sacred Valley of the Incas and your home for the next two nights.

Day 4   SACRED VALLEY

Today, your PRIVATE SIGHTSEEING of the Sacred Valley begins in the market town of PISAC. Handmade rugs, alpaca sweaters, and jewelry can be bought here at bargain prices. After time in the market, your next visit is the Inca Fortress of OLLANTAYTAMBO. Here, some of the finest examples of Inca masonry can be seen. Enjoy an included lunch before returning to your hotel this afternoon.

Day 5   SACRED VALLEY–MACHU PICCHU

Board a TRAIN TRIP bound for MACHU PICCHU and cut a path through the Sacred Valley to this “Lost City of the Incas,” discovered by American explorer Hiram Bingham in 1911. On a GUIDED TOUR, explore this intact fortress with its temple remains, holy houses, and mile-long aqueduct. For hikers, a brisk one-hour walk leads to the Sun Gate, the ancient entrance used by the Incas.

Day 6   MACHU PICCHU–CUSCO

A morning at leisure allows you to wake up early to see the sunrise over MACHU PICCHU with your included second entrance to the ruins. Return to Cusco by TRAIN TRIP.

Day 7   CUSCO

Your GUIDED TOUR of Cusco visits the Plaza de Armas and its CATHEDRAL and the SANTO DOMINGO MONASTERY, previously the Koricancha Temple, one of the most important temples devoted to worship of the sun. It is said it was covered in gold leaf and filled with golden representations of nature. This afternoon, in your free time, perhaps visit the Inca Museum or wander through the artisan district of San Blas.

Day 8   CUSCO–JULIACA–LAKE TITICACA (PUNO)

Fly to Juliaca, where you will be transferred to Puno on the shores of Lake Titicaca.

Day 9   PUNO. EXCURSION TO LAKE TITICACA

Today, enjoy a full-day sailing on LAKE TITICACA and take a motorboat to some of the lake’s more unique islands. Start with TAQUILE ISLAND, once part of the Inca Empire and one of the last areas of Peru to be conquered by Spain in the 16th century. The Spanish banned traditional dress on the island, which is why the Spanish peasant dress can still be found today. Next, travel to the fascinating UROS ISLANDS, home to the Uros Indians who were forced to live on the lake as the Incas pushed farther into their territory. These islands are completely made from reeds, which are continually added to as they disintegrate to the bottom of the lake.

Day 10   PUNO–SILLUSTANI–JULIACA–LIMA

Depart for Juliaca this morning, visiting the ruins of SILLUSTANI en route. At this pre-Incan burial ground, see where the ancient Aymaras buried their high priests in chullpas, above-ground cylinder-shaped tombs dating back to the 1400s. Transfer to the airport for your return flight to Lima, where the remainder of the day is at your leisure.

Day 11   LIMA–QUITO, ECUADOR

Fly to Quito, where you will be met by your Local Host.

Day 12   QUITO

Your included PRIVATE CITY TOUR showcases the rich legacy left by the Incas and, later, the Spaniards. See Independence Square dominated by its formidable Cathedral, San Francisco Plaza Church, and the basilica.

Day 13   QUITO–BALTRA (EMBARKATION)–GALÁPAGOS CRUISING: SANTA CRUZ ISLAND

Fly to the Galápagos Islands and board the Santa Cruz II. Visit Las Bachas on SANTA CRUZ ISLAND, an important nesting area for the East Pacific green sea turtle. See brackish lagoons just steps away from the sea, a feeding ground for various wading birds—from stilts to flamingos.

Day 14   CRUISING: SANTIAGO ISLAND

Arrive at Buccaneer Cove on SANTIAGO ISLAND to explore the dramatic coastline inhabited by a large number of marine birds, sea lions, and inter-tidal organisms. You will also have the opportunity to snorkel and take a ride on the panga or the glass-bottom boat. Later, at Puerto Egas—known for its black-sand beach, tuff-stone layers and lava flows—see land and marine birds, as well as a colony of fur sea lions, marine iguanas, and marine turtles.

Day 15   CRUISING: RÁBIDA & BARTOLOMÉ ISLANDS

Visit RÁBIDA ISLAND with its red-colored beach, caused by the unusually high content of iron in the volcanic material. Your Naturalist will point out large colonies of sea lions, marine iguanas, mockingbirds, yellow warblers, and several species of Darwin’s finches. Very close to the beach, a salt pond occasionally hosts American flamingos. Snorkel from the beach to see the unique combination of underwater species and submarine landscapes. At BARTOLOMÉ ISLAND, hike to the summit for a stunning view of Pinnacle Rock. Take a snorkel or a ride on the glass-bottom boat and possibly see Galápagos penguins in tropical waters!

Day 16   CRUISING: GENOVESA ISLAND

On GENOVESA ISLAND, take a walk up Prince Phillip’s Steps as your Naturalist reveals large colonies of masked boobies, blue- and red-footed boobies, frigatebirds, storm petrels, and short-eared owls. In the afternoon, disembark on a beautiful beach at Darwin Bay to observe frigatebirds, red-footed and masked boobies, herons, finches, and mockingbirds. Return to the beach for snorkeling, kayaking, and swimming.

Day 17   CRUISING: SANTA CRUZ (DISEMBARKATION)–BALTRA–GUAYAQUIL

Disembark at the north shore of SANTA CRUZ ISLAND for a visit to a TORTOISE RESERVE in the highlands. Here, you will see and learn about the Giant Galápagos Tortoises living in the wild and what is being done to help preserve these ancient creatures. Later, fly to Guayaquil.

Day 18   GUAYAQUIL

Your vacation ends with breakfast this morning.

Vacation Highlights

Sightseeing with a Local Guide, inside visits, and special features are shown in UPPERCASE

No Excursions are available at this time.


Travel Terms & Conditions
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Important Notes
  • Vacation departures, itineraries and prices are subject to change.
  • A non-refundable, non-transferable deposit is required for Monograms to reserve space for you. View Terms & Conditions for limited exceptions.
  • The following charges are not included in the land vacation price unless otherwise noted: airfare to and from the start of your vacation; Intra-vacation air unless specified in the itinerary; airline baggage fees including checked and/or excess baggage fees; Federal inspection fees for the Federal U.S. Customs and Immigrations; International Air Transportation tax; agricultural tax; other per person taxes imposed by government entities; airport taxes and fees including the September 11th Security fee up to $10 per person, passenger facility charges up to $18 per person, Federal domestic flight segment fees up to $3.70 per segment, and U.S. and International arrival and departure and other government-imposed added by the airline and applicable at time of booking; port taxes; passports; visas and vaccinations; tips to your Cruise Director, Local Host, driver, Local Guides, and/or ship's crew; gratuities on ferries, trains, and cruise ships; laundry; telephone; minibar; alcohol, beverages, and food outside of the contracted Monograms menu as presented at a hotel or restaurant or onboard your vessel (these extra items will be billed to you before leaving the hotel, ship, or restaurant); airport transfers on non-qualifying flights; optional excursions; additional activities and excursions purchased online; porterage at airports and train stations; Travel Protection; and all other items of a personal nature.

Booking your Vacation with Air
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