The Galapagos Islands

Experience the natural wonders of the Galapagos Islands

Join us for a journey to one of the most unique places on Earth as we cruise amongst this remote volcanic archipelago 600 miles off the coast of Ecuador. Enjoy an 8-day/7-night cruise with expert guides leading on-board lectures and taking you on fantastic shore excursions amongst the serene and approachable wildlife. There is no other destination like this!

At a glance

What: The Galapagos Islands

When: Feb 6-17, 2018

Cost: $7,849

For additional information, contact: Doug Whittle» 608-263-7787 or Kim Seymour» 608-262-3731.

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What you'll experience

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One of the most important names left to scratch off of our travel bucket list, the Galapagos Islands occupy a crucial place in the fields of education, philosophy, science, politics, and religion that is probably unmatched anywhere else on our planet. This extraordinary archipelago, isolated in the Pacific Ocean more than 600 miles off of Ecuador’s coast, is one of the few biologically unique places left on Earth and rightly deserves our attention as educated travelers.

Sailing between these volcanic islands from the comfort of your ship, the M/V Legend, you will learn about the geologic history of the islands, the natural history that has unfolded in this place over the sweep of time, and the impact of the human race on such a pristine biological environment. With expert guides leading your shore excursions, and onboard lectures putting everything in context, you will experience one of your life’s most beautiful and spellbinding encounters with the natural world.

On this 8-day/7-night cruise, you will visit the islands of Santa Cruz, Isabela, Fernandina, Santiago, North Seymour, Mosquera, Santa Fe, South Plaza, and San Cristobal, enjoying onshore walking excursions, hiking, swimming, and snorkeling activities that put you face-to-face with the creatures inhabiting this group of tropical islands. Amongst the unique vegetation and varied landforms found on the Galapagos you will encounter giant tortoises, sea lions, marine iguanas, flightless cormorants, seasonal whales, penguins, blue-footed boobies, sea turtles, octopuses, Darwin finches, a cactus forest, rare flowers, Galapagos hawks, albatrosses, manta rays, tropical fish, many varieties of birds, and much, much more.

Known as much for the astonishing variety of life contained thereon as they are for the extraordinary approachability of the animals that inhabit them, the Galapagos Islands are truly unlike any other place on Earth. Please join us on this wonderful journey to learn about the history, geology, and the remarkable flora and fauna of this beautiful and remote ecological outpost.

Itinerary

Feb 6

  • Depart the USA, arrive in Guayaquil, Ecuador, and transfer to hotel.

Feb 7

  • Enjoy a guided half-day tour of Guayaquil, and then relax for the rest of the afternoon.

Feb 8

  • Fly to the Galapagos Islands and begin your cruise aboard the M/V Legend.

Feb 9

  • Sail north from Santa Cruz Island to the western side of Isabela for stops at Vicente Roca Point for some snorkeling amongst the rays, turtles, and tropical fish; and Espinosa Point on the island of Fernandina, the most volcanically active island, to see countless iguanas sunning on the lava formations, penguins, turtles, and sea lions.

Feb 10

  • Spend the entire day making shore excursions along the coast of Isabela, with stops at Urbina Bay and Tagus Cove where you will walk amongst flightless cormorants, giant tortoises, land and marine iguanas, and sea lions.

Feb 11

  • On Santiago Island you’ll see the crab-filled lava pools at Egas Port and snorkel with fur seals, moray eels, and octopuses; while, at Sullivan Bay, you’ll take a hike across the lava fields to learn about the various volcanic formations that are the basis of the islands themselves.

Feb 12

  • Tour the Highlands of Santa Cruz to walk in the lava tubes, discover the unique flora, see many rare birds, and enjoy a stop at the Fausto Lierena Breeding Center where you can observe a variety of tortoises, including hatchlings, juveniles, and full-grown adults.

Feb 13

  • Mosquera Islet is the perfect location to observe sea lion behavior, and, on North Seymour, you'll find yourself surrounded by blue-footed boobies, the magnificent frigate bird, and a multitude of sea life.

Feb 14  

  • Spend Valentine’s Day with the sea lions and see the massive cacti on Santa Fe Island, then catch sight of the many tropical birds on South Plaza Island.

Feb 15

  • Conclude your cruise with a stop at the National Park Interpretation Center and a hike to the Cerro Tijeretas Overlook. Then take your return flight to Guayaquil.

Feb 16

  • Enjoy a free day to explore Guayaquil on your own. In the evening, join the group for a farewell dinner before your flight home.

Feb 17

  • Arrive in the USA.

Details

Important Information: Everyone is welcome on our trips.

In the Galapagos, there will, of course, be a good deal of walking over uneven, sandy, and rocky surfaces on our shore excursions, but there will not be any technically difficult hikes or climbing required. Snorkeling opportunities will require you to be able to swim, and there is always the likelihood of rough seas on any ocean journey. Please consult with your physician if you have any questions about your ability to safely and comfortably join us.

Price: $7,849 per person based upon double occupancy. This price includes your roundtrip international flight from Chicago to Ecuador; roundtrip flight between Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands; your 8-day/7-night cruise on the M/V Legend; all Galapagos Islands landing and entrance fees; Galapagos Migration Control fee; all fuel surcharges; all lodging in Guayaquil; all guides, tours, snorkeling gear, and shore excursions; all tips; and all meals on board, daily breakfasts in Guayaquil, and a farewell dinner. Single supplement is $3,718.

TRAVEL INSURANCE IS REQUIRED FOR ALL PARTICIPANTS FOR OUR INTERNATIONAL PROGRAMS.

The cost of your insurance policy is not included in this price, nor does the university sell insurance. Information on how to obtain travel insurance is included in your confirmation packet upon registration.

Lodging:

Guayaquil: Wyndham Guayaquil, en.wyndhamguayaquil.com»
Galapagos Islands: M/V Legend, galapagoslegend.com.ec»

Questions about this trip or other upcoming Educational Travel destinations? Contact Doug Whittle, 608-263-7787, doug.whittle@wisc.edu, or Kim Seymour, 608-262-3731, kimberly.seymour@wisc.edu.

Registration: To register, complete the registration form and mail it to:
Kim Seymour
Educational Travel Program
21 N Park St., 7th Floor
Madison, WI 53715

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