Visiting the Galapagos Islands
There are two visits per day to the islands, one in the morning and another in the afternoon. Our naturalist guides will take you directly to the most fantastic and emblematic locations on each island and introduce you to the mysterious and wonderful secrets of its flora, fauna and geology, walking, hiking, snorkeling or kayaking.
You will be part of a group(up to 16 people) named: albatross, boobies, cormorants, dolphins or other.
Depending on the itinerary, you will also alternate these activities with swimming on colorful sand beaches, watching sea lions on a rocky shore, taking a tour of the Darwin Research Station, and souvenir shopping. To get to our various sites, we have two types of landing:
Dry Landings: Passengers step directly from a dinghy onto rocks or a dock. We recommend: walking shoes. Special care is highly recommended when walking on wet rocks.
Wet Landings: The dinghy edges toward the beach, where you step into knee-deep water assisted by crew members and guides. We recommend: swimming suit or shorts, walking shoes or sandals, towel (provided by the crew while disembarking)
General Activities: Unlike the usual cruise, your visit to the Galápagos Islands offers a variety of activities, so you must come prepared. The main leisure interest is admiring the wildlife and the amazing topographic features. Various hikes along well-marked paths have been chosen to offer you the best views and sites. Hiking may involve various degrees of difficulty (easy, intermediate or difficult: see below for details). While hiking, you will be able to bird-watch, take pictures, stroll on the beach, take walks, visit museums and naturalist parks, as well as trek up mountainsides. Other activities include snorkeling, kayaking and swimming, so for each activity you wish to participate in, you must take appropriate clothing and gear with you. KT is not liable for accidents at excursions on water sports, children are under parent’s responsibility. Level of difficulty in hiking: We have divided the levels of difficulty in three groups: Flat terrain without any climbing. The surface can be rocky, though usually it means sand or dirt. The hike doesn’t last more than one hour. Intermediate: Flat terrain or with some slope. The surface is mostly rocky and/or slippery. The hike lasts about one and a half hours. Difficult: A hike on steep surfaces, mostly comprised of rocks and broken up lava flows. The hikes usually last between two and three hours.Please note: The degree of difficulty gives a general idea about what to expect. Most hikes are all right for the majority of people and the degree of difficulty should not be a deterrent to take part in them. Only if you have some major handicap should you consider staying aboard for the hardest hikes. Please consult your guide if you have any questions.
The best way to experience the Galapagos Islands is by cruising on board m/v Galapagos Legend, m/y Coral I & Coral II. Deluxe cruise-ships to explore the Galapagos Islands with daily small group excursions, multilingual speaking naturalists, specialized lectures and conferences, exquisite gastronomy all inclusive, snorkeling and kayaking activities. A fleet in a class of its own with matchless spacious outdoor decks for lounging, sea-gazing, BBQ terrace, chill out area, Jacuzzi or even a pool.
Our vessel also exhibits spacious interior social areas; auditorium, interpretation center, library, comfortable lounges and dinning rooms, Kids’ Corner. Special services such as; satellite internet, long distance calls, 24h doctor, sauna & steam room, special menus for kids or vegetairans are available to fulfill guests´ needs.
Cabins; The extra room offers unique facilities such as: outside double and triple cabins and suites with large spaces or balconies, interconnected doors, and lower adjoiningberths fully-equipped with ocean view for your confort, with A/C, electricity of 110v and 220v, safe-deposit box, international phone calls service, TV with an internal circuit and a menu that will let you choose from different movies in various languages, music, documentaries, itineraries, conferences or check the balance of your bill.
*Services and fascilities are different based on your cruise ship.
Galapagos Islands Cruises
“The Enchanted Islands”
This is a paradise where animals have no fear of man; it is a magical realm where creatures seem to be enchanted. They have fantastic, unique and fascinating forms with behaviors impossible to find anywhere else in the world. , this archipelago is unique and one of the wonders of world.
UNESCO declared the Galapagos Island a World Natural Heritage this archipelago is unique and one of the wonders of world.
Biodiversity thrived in a territory of volcanic material that emerged frm the deep waters of the Pacific Ocean millions of years ago. Comorants forgot to fly,iguanas learned to swim, turtles became gigantic, andsharks mild. This is a place where sea lions show off their swimming skills and blue-footed boobiesperform their elegant two-step mating dance right under your nose. The archipelago is located in the Pacific Ocean 600 miles, or 965 km, off the Ecuadorian mainland. Its wonders include impressive geological formations, old and new outcrops, various types of cones and tunnels formed by underground streams and currents.
White, red and black sand beaches with extraordinary landscapes highlight the diversity of life itself. This is where Charles Darwin was inspired to draw up his theory on evolution and the origin of species.
Ecuador is located at GMT -5 (Eastern Standard Time zone). The Galapagos Islands are one hour behind mainland Ecuador, although vessels Galapagos Legend and Corals I & II all run on mainland time.
Ecuador has a population of about 13.5 million people. Spanish is the country’s official language, while Quechua is widely spoken amongst many indigenous groups.
Religion: 95% Roman Catholic.
Currency: U.S. Dollar.
In Quito and Guayaquil, most stores, banks, businesses, and foreign exchange offices are open from 9:00 A.M. to 6:00 P.M., Monday through Friday. On Saturday, many stores and some businesses are open from 9:00 A.M. to 1:00 P.M. Shopping malls, however, are open every day, including weekends, from 10:00 A. M. to 8:00 P.M. and have bank branch offices, ATMs and foreign exchange facilities.
January 1 New Year’s Day
February or March Mardi Gras (Carnival)
March or April Holy Week (Good Friday)
May 1 Labor Day
May 24 Battle of Pichincha
July 25 Foundation of Guayaquil (local)
August 10 National Independence Day
October 9 Independence Day of Guayaquil
November 2 All Souls Day
November 3 Independence Day of Cuenca
December 6 Foundation of Quito, celebrated in Quito the first week of December with bullfights, parades and street dancers.
December 25 Christmas
Although December 31st is not a holiday, there is a special end-of-year celebration with the burning of life-size effigies throughout the city on New Year’s Eve (young people disguised as widows grieving for the dying year stop people in the streets and beg for money).
Sometimes holidays are shifted to the following Friday so a long weekend can be enjoyed.
Main Indigenous Market Days:
Saturday: Otavalo, Latacunga, Zumbahua, Pelileo, Guaranda, Riobamba, Cotacachi, Guano, Azogues, Loja.
Sunday: Chordeleg, Guano, Machachi, Malacatos, Loja, Pujilí, Machachi, Peguche, Cuenca, Salcedo, Tulcán, Saraguro, Misahuallí, Lago Agrio, Penipe, Sangolquí, Santo Domingo de los Tsáchilas, Salasaca.
Government taxes such as the Galapagos National Park tax, the Galapagos National Institute Migration Control Card and International Airport taxes are not included in the tours and need to be paid in cash by every passenger. Credit cards and traveler’s checks are NOT accepted.
Government taxes are subject to change without prior notice:
Galapagos National Park fee: US$100.00
Galapagos National Institute Migration Control Card: US$10.00
International Airport Departure Taxes:
Quito: US$ 40.80
Guayaquil: US$ 28.27
Tipping is optional and personal. If you feel you have been given excellent service, you may acknowledge it by tipping as suggested below:
Restaurants and coffee shops 10% of the bill
Hotel/airport portage / suitcase US$ 1 / suitcase
Guides on mainland Ecuador US$10 / day, / person
Driver on mainland Ecuador US$ 8 / day / person
Domestic Flights & Luggage Allowance:
There is a 20-kg luggage allowance and your carry-on bag mustn’t exceed 7-kg per passenger for all DOMESTIC flights, including the Galapagos Islands. Check-in time at the counter is usually AT LEAST one hour before departure for all domestic flights, EXCEPT for flights to GALAPAGOS which require all passengers to be at the counter TWO HOURS BEFORE DEPARTURE.
099-456-205 KLEINTOURS OPERATIONS
MOBILE PHONE AVAILABLE 24 HOURS.
Business hours: Mon-Fri 09:00-18:00.
From overseas, please dial (593-9) 945-6205.
For emergencies dial 911
Red Cross 258 2482 / 295 6004
Medical Service: 911
There are very good hospitals and medical services both in Quito and Guayaquil. Almost all hotels have a doctor on call for emergencies. There are also pharmacies and drugstores open 24 hours a day. Please contact the front desk of your hotel for assistance.
Pharmacy: “Fybeca” is the most established chain. Branches open 24 hours are:
Quito: Ave. Amazonas N42-72 & Tomás de Berlanga, Phone: 245-9082.
Guayaquil: Ave. 9 de Octubre 827 & Rumichaca, Phone: 253-0290.
Cuenca: Ave. Huaynacapac 6-15 & Juan Jaramillo, Phone: 284-4501.
Air mail to the US and Europe usually takes 8 to 15days. To the rest of the world you should expect a few more days. Hotel receptionists can help you mail your postcards.
Cell phones: 09 and then the seven-digit number.
To call another country, dial 00 + country code + area code + phone number.
We suggest you drink bottled water throughout your trip instead of tap water.
Hotels in mainland Ecuador: 110 volts.
Galápagos Vessels: 110 & 220 volts.
Ecuador has a well-developed network of ATMs. Almost every bank in the country features ATMs, especially in major cities, towns, and tourist destinations.
Pickpockets are a problem in all large cities. But if you keep an eye on your belongings at all times, you should be fine. Never put anything valuable in your backpack.