Colombia, Andes & Galápagos

Colombia · About Escorted or Guided Tour

Got two months? Want to make the most of them? There can be no better way to do so than one of the most sprawling of all our South American trips. Imagine 60 solid days spent exploring Colombia’s Lost City, ambling around Machu Picchu after conquering the Inca Trail in Peru, enjoying a homestay deep in the Amazon jungle, and snorkeling with sea lions in the Galápagos Islands. With a week of camping in the Galápagos included, there’s no possible way you’ll go home feeling like you missed out on anything in South America.

What's Included

G Adventures for Good: Floreana Community Restaurants, Floreana Island
G Adventures for Good: Floreana Community Guesthouse, Floreana Island
Local Living: Indigenous Community Homestay, Otavalo
Local Living: Amazon Jungle Experience, Tena
Hands-On: Huacachina Winery Visit, Huacachina
Big Night Out: Cusco
Local Living: Lake Titicaca Homestay, Lago Titicaca. Lost City of Teyuna trek (5 days). Overnight excursion to Tayrona NP. Visit to Otavalo Market. Highlands visit (Floreana Island). Loberia snorkelling excursion. Visit to Flamingo Lagoon and Tortoise Breeding Centre (Isabela Island). Full-day hike of Sierra Negra Volcano. Charles Darwin Research Station (Santa Cruz Island). Lava tunnels. Opportunities for snorkelling, swimming, and incredible wildlife encounters (Galápagos Islands). Orientation walks in Medellin, Bogotá, and Quito. Beach time in Taganga, Mancora, and Huanchaco. Pachamanca ceremony (Nazca). Guided tour of Machu Picchu. Inca Trail hike with a local guide, cook, and porters (4 days). Amazon Jungle and Colca Canyon excursions. Lake Titicaca excursion. Internal flights. All transport between destinations and to/from included activities.

Highlights

Trek to the Lost City of Teyuna, snorkel with sea lions in the Galápagos, experience local life in Ecuadorian and Peruvian homestays, conquer the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu.

Dossier Disclaimer

The information in this trip details document has been compiled with care and is provided in good faith. However it is subject to change, and does not form part of the contract between the client and the operator. The itinerary featured is correct at time of printing. It may differ slightly to the one in the brochure. Occasionally our itineraries change as we make improvements that stem from past travellers, comments and our own research. Sometimes it can be a small change like adding an extra meal along the itinerary. Sometimes the change may result in us altering the tour for the coming year. Ultimately, our goal is to provide you with the most rewarding experience. Please note that our brochure is usually released in November each year. If you have booked from the previous brochure you may find there have been some changes to the itinerary.

VERY IMPORTANT: Please ensure that you print a final copy of your Trip Details to review a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans.

Itinerary Disclaimer

While it is our intention to adhere to the route described below, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable to make alterations. The itinerary is brief, as we never know exactly where our journey will take us. Due to our style of travel and the regions we visit, travel can be unpredictable. The Trip Details document is a general guide to the tour and region and any mention of specific destinations or wildlife is by no means a guarantee that they will be visited or encountered. Aboard expedition trips visits to research stations depend on final permission.

Additionally, any travel times listed are approximations only and subject to vary due to local circumstances.

Important Notes

1) Please note that this tour combines with other G Adventures tours. Some staff and travel companions may be continuing together on another G Adventures tour after your trip concludes.

2) Galapagos notes:
ITINERARY
The itinerary is subject to further changes dependent upon new regulations made by the Galápagos National Park or seasonal points of interest.

GALÁPAGOS ISLAND PARK ENTRY FEE
The Ecuadorian government currently levies a Galápagos Islands Park entry fee of $100 USD per person. This is payable at the airport upon arrival in the park. It is not included in the cost of the tour, and must be paid in CASH. This fee funds Park maintenance and supervision in Galápagos, as well as ecological study, conservation and infrastructure development in Ecuador’s other National Parks. Entry fees and the funds they generate for the National Park System are among measures taken by the Ecuadorian government to protect its natural heritage.

TRANSIT CONTROL CARDS
The Consejo de Gobierno (local government council) have implemented a system of Transit Control Cards at a fee of $20 USD per person. This card is to be purchased in CASH at a counter in the Quito airport before boarding the flight to the Galapagos. Please retain this card along with your passport as you will be required to present this upon arrival to the Galapagos Islands. Please note that this applies to all tourists entering the Galapagos Islands and is a supplement to the existing entry fee to the National Park and is not controlled by tour operators or travel agencies. It is the first of a number of initiatives to track, control and maintain the sustainable tourism targets set out by the Galapagos National Park and the Ecuadorian government in an attempt to preserve the fragile environment of the archipelago.

MUNICIPAL TAX
There will be a municipal tax of $5 USD per person charged locally upon departure from Isabela Island.

3) In our continued effort to support the rights of the porters on the Inca Trail, we would like ensure that they never exceed the weight limit for their packs as set out by the Peruvian authorities. Porters are allowed to carry no more than 6kg of personal belongings per hiker (for all other Peru treks the limit is 8kg). That means that including your sleeping bag, toiletries, clothing, etc, you are allowed a total weight of 6kg for the hike which will be carried in a duffle bag provided by our local office. Any additional weight must then be carried by you in your day pack. To help achieve this goal we recommend that you carry travel sized toiletries, that you bring sport sandals that can be worn with socks (which are lighter than running/walking shoes) and that you limit electronics to those that you are willing to carry. Any additional baggage can be left in Cusco, but is advised that you bring anything of value (eg. money, passport, credit cards, camera, etc) with you on the trek.

If at the end of your trek you felt your trekking guide and support team did an outstanding job, tipping is appreciated. The amount is entirely a personal preference, however as a guideline, we suggest each hiker contributes the following to a collective pool. We suggest a tipping amount of $40 per person for the Inca Trail and $35 per person for the Lares Trek.

4) Lost City Trek
Please Note: The Lost City Trek is closed for the month of September each year in order to preserve the trail and complete general maintenance and upkeep.

Hiking days are between 4-6 hours a day, and the highest altitude reached is 1,200 m (3,937 ft) at the Lost City itself. The humidity and the heat makes the trek challenging. Throughout the year the temperature is generally between 35-45 degrees, and there can be heavy rain and muddy conditions.

Along the trek, you will be required to carry your own gear. We recommend not carrying more than is necessary for the route. One or two changes of clothes is enough to give you a change for each day on the trek. Please bring a bag that is sufficient in size to carry what you might need. It is possible to hire a mule to carry equipment for the trek, at a cost of 25USD per day.

Dry season (December – March), the trail can be dry and dusty. When the rains arrive (April – November), the trail can be muddy and slippery underfoot. This also affects the numerous river crossings, as the rainy season brings higher rivers. This can mean that river crossings can be as high as waist height, so we recommend that you bring a dry bag or a plastic bag to cover your daypack as you might need to carry this above your head to keep it out of the river.

As the majority of this trek is through the jungle, please be aware of the presence of mosquitos and other bugs. We highly recommend bringing some form of insect repellent. While the campsites have mosquito nets over the beds and hammocks, mosquitos can be unavoidable at times. A sleep sheet can help to prevent bug bites at night as well.

YELLOW FEVER
It may be required to show a Yellow Fever certificate upon entering the country visited. Please check in with your local health expert for advice on Yellow Fever and other inoculations required for this area.

Group Leader Description

ll G Adventures group trips are accompanied by one of our Chief Experience Officers (CEOs), a G Adventures representative, or an expedition team. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. They will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the countries visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. We also use local guides where we think more specific knowledge will add to the enjoyment of the places we are visiting- we think it’s the best of both worlds.

Our CEOs leading tour tours in the Galápagos are all certified naturalist guides.

Group Size Notes

Max 18, avg 14

Meals Included

40 breakfasts, 14 lunches, 18 dinners

Meals

Eating is a big part of traveling. Travelling with G Adventures you experience the vast array of wonderful food that is available out in the world. Generally meals are not included in the trip price when there is a choice of eating options, to give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat. It also gives you more budgeting flexibility, though generally food is cheap. Our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other’s company. There is no obligation to do this though. Your CEO will be able to suggest favourite restaurants during your trip. For all trips please refer to the meals included and budget information for included meals and meal budgets.

Transport

Local bus, 4×4, boat, truck, speedboat, van, motorized canoe, train, hiking, plane, minibus.

About our Transportation

This trip combines a variety of transportation types. At G Adventures, we believe that getting there is half the fun. When it comes to getting around, public transport is often the best and most colourful way to go. You’ll be using a combination of public buses, private vans, ferries, boats and taxis to get from here to there.

Local Flights

All local flights are included in the cost of your tour unless otherwise noted. It is important that we have your passport information at the time of booking in order to process these tickets. Internal flight tickets are issued locally and will be given to you prior to the flight departure.

Solo Travellers

We believe solo travellers should not have to pay more to travel so our group trips are designed for shared accommodation and do not involve a single supplement. Single travellers joining group trips are paired in twin or multi-share accommodation with someone of the same sex for the duration of the trip. Some of our Independent trips are designed differently and solo travellers on these itineraries must pay the single trip price.

Accommodation

Simple hotels (36 nts, some multi-share), camping (6 nts), G Adventures-supported community guesthouse (2 nts), hammock or rustic bunks (5 nts), overnight buses (5 nts), homestays (5 nts).

My Own Room Exceptions

Nights 4-7: Lost City trek, Night 9: Tayrona Park (Hammocks), Nights 19-25: Galápagos camping, Nights 27-29: jungle homestay, Nights 54, 56 and 59: overnight buses, Nights 45-46: Colca Canyon, Nights 52-54: Inca Trail or Nights 52-53 Lares Trek, Night 57: Lake Titicaca homestay.

About Accommodation

Please note that hot water shortages and power outages can be fairly common in Latin America (even in upgraded hotels and private homes). We appreciate your patience and understanding that these occurrences are outside of our control.

Please note if you are a single traveller, you can expect to share accommodation with one or two other travelers of the same sex for the duration of your trip. Using multi-share accommodation when available helps us to keep our operating cost down, and these savings are passed onto you. If you are traveling with a friend or companion, we will attempt to keep your accommodation on a twin or double basis, however, ask you to be open to the idea of occasional multi-share rooms.

G-supported Floreana Guesthouse
We are investing in community training and infrastructure to develop the first ecological, community tourism program in the Galapagos Islands that sees both the islands small entrepreneurs and its unique wildlife as the primary beneficiaries of this project.

Joining Hotel

For details of your joining hotel please refer to your tour voucher, G Account, the G Adventures App or contact your travel agent.

Joining Instructions

To take a taxi to your destination, pick up a taxi voucher from the official stand in the baggage area before getting into a cab which will have the price printed on it depending on where you’re headed. The price to get to the old city or anywhere in the “Centro” area Zone 1 including hotels in Getsemani should not cost more than COP $18,000.
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The supply of yellow taxis in Cartagena is abundant and cheap so if needed they are the preferred choice. This said, one does not need them within the boundaries of the old town so what is left are the so called Boca Grande development and Convento de la Popa /Castillo San Felipe direction. The first makes sense but the Convento is a bit awkward and the taxi drivers know it so tough negotiations are a prerequisite for not being gauged on the way. Airport rides are regulated and cost no more than 5USD.

Please note that Day 1 is an arrival day and no activities have been planned for that day other then your welcome meeting in the evening, so you can arrive at any time. Similarly the last day is a departure day during which no activities have been planned.

A G Adventures Representative will organize a short meeting soon after arrival, during which you will meet other tour participants and receive information about general and specific aspects of the trip. A welcome note will be left for you in the hotel so you have all the necessary information regarding the meeting time. If you arrive late, s/he will leave you a message detailing what time and where you should meet the next morning.

Arrival Complications

We don’t expect any problems, and nor should you, but if for any reason you are unable to commence your trip as scheduled, please refer to the emergency contact details provided in this dossier and contact us as soon as possible. If you have a pre-booked transfer, and you have not made contact with our representative within 30 minutes of clearing customs and immigration, we recommend that you make your own way to the Starting Point hotel, following the Joining Instructions. Please apply to your travel agent on your return for a refund of the transfer cost if this occurs.

What to Take

Most people automatically assume that the weather is hot in South America, but because of the higher altitude in the Andes, the temperature can feel quite cold, especially at night. It’s best to layer clothes rather than bring a heavy parka so that you can take layers off.

We recommend using a backpack for your convenience, or a medium-sized suitcase if you prefer. A daypack is also essential for carrying everyday items and for the Lost City Trek. Space is limited on transportation, so there is a limit of one main piece of luggage per person. You will be responsible for carrying your own luggage.

Checklist

Amazon:
• Knee-length socks
• Loose-fitting, light coloured hiking pants
• Loose-fitting, light coloured long-sleeved shirts
• Pack liners to waterproof bags

Available for Rent:
• Camping mattress/sleep mat (45 soles)
• Sleeping bag (45 soles)
• Walking poles (15 soles each (30 per pair))

Cold Weather:
• Long-sleeved shirts or sweater
• Scarf
• Warm gloves
• Warm hat
• Warm layers

Documents:
• Flight info (required) (Printouts of e-tickets may be required at the border)
• Insurance info (required) (With photocopies)
• Passport (required) (With photocopies)
• Required visas or vaccination certificates (required) (With photocopies)
• Vouchers and pre-departure information (required)

Essentials:
• Binoculars (optional)
• Camera (With extra memory cards and batteries)
• Cash, credit and debit cards
• Day pack (Used for daily excursions or short overnights)
• Ear plugs
• First-aid kit (should contain lip balm with sunscreen, sunscreen, whistle, Aspirin, Ibuprofen, bandaids/plasters, tape, anti-histamines, antibacterial gel/wipes, antiseptic cream, Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrhea, rehydration powder, water purification tablets or drops, insect repellent, sewing kit, extra prescription drugs you may be taking)
• Flashlight/torch (Headlamps are ideal)
• Fleece top/sweater
• Footwear
• Hat
• Locks for bags
• Long pants/jeans
• Moneybelt
• Outlet adapter
• Personal entertainment (Reading and writing materials, cards, music player, etc.)
• Reusable water bottle
• Shirts/t-shirts
• Sleepwear
• Small travel towel
• Sunglasses
• Toiletries (Preferably biodegradable)
• Watch and alarm clock
• Waterproof backpack cover
• Windproof rain jacket

Inca Trail:
• Hiking pants (Convertible/Zip-off and quick dry recommended)
• Pack liners to waterproof bags
• Rain gear
• Sleeping bag (Also available for rent)
• Thermal base layer
• Travel pillow
• Walking poles, rubber-tipped (Also available for rent)
• Waterproof hiking boots

Warm Weather:
• Sandals/flip-flops
• Shorts/skirts (Longer shorts/skirts are recommended)
• Sun hat/bandana
• Swimwear

Note: The best clothing for trekking is either wool or synthetic materials in layers, as this is quick-drying and can keep heat in better. We suggest a base-layer, then a mid-layer such as a light fleece jacket or similar, then a windproof and waterproof layer.

Laundry

Laundry availability is dependent on the location you’re in or the amount of time spent in that location.

We suggest packing enough clothing in case laundry is not available and/or packing laundry soap so you can wash things if needed.

Laundry is available on this trip in Cartagena (Day 1-2), Bogotá (Day 13-14), Floreana (Day 19-20), Isabela (Day 21-22), Santa Cruz (Day 23-24), Quito (Day 25-26), Baños (Day 30-31) and Cusco (Day 48-49).

Spending Money

Every traveller is different and therefore spending money requirements will vary. Some travellers may drink more than others while other travellers like to purchase more souvenirs than most. Please consider your own spending habits when it comes to allowing for drinks, shopping and tipping. Please also remember the following specific recommendations when planning your trip.

Money Exchange

Credit cards and debit cards are very useful for cash advances. Visa cards are the most widely accepted cards. While ATMs are widely available, there are no guarantees that your credit or debit cards will actually work in Latin America. Check with your bank.

You should be aware that to purchase products or services on a credit card a fee of 5%-10% usually applies.

Do not rely on credit or debit cards as your only source of money, a combination of US dollar cash and cards is best. Please bear in mind that cost of living in the southern cone countries (Argentina, Brazil, Chile) is much higher than the rest of South America, and in the case of Argentina, more comparable with Europe. Always take more rather than less, as you don’t want to spoil the trip by constantly feeling short of funds.

We do not recommend bringing travellers cheques as they are very difficult to change in country.

CURRENCY EXCHANGE TIP: Please be advised that slightly torn notes, notes that have been heavily marked or are faded may be difficult to exchange. It is best to bring notes in fairly good condition, in denominations lower than 100USD (or equivalent).

As currency exchange rates can fluctuate often we ask that you refer to the following website for daily exchange rates: www.xe.com

Emergency Fund

Please also make sure you have access to at least an additional USD $200 (or equivalent) as an ‘emergency’ fund, to be used when circumstances outside our control (ex. a natural disaster) require a change to our planned route. This is a rare occurrence!

Tipping

It is customary in Latin America to tip service providers such as waiters, at approximately 10%, depending on the service. Tipping is an expected – though not compulsory – component of your tour program and an expression of satisfaction with the persons who have assisted you on your tour. Although it may not be customary to you, it is of considerable significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels. There are several times during the trip where there is opportunity to tip the local guides or drivers we use. Recommendations for tipping drivers and local guides would range from $5-10 USD per day depending on the quality and length of the service; ask your CEO for specific recommendations based on the circumstances and culture.

If at the end of your trek you felt your trekking guide and support team did an outstanding job, tipping is appreciated. The amount is entirely a personal preference, however as a guideline, we suggest each hiker contributes the following to a collective pool.

Inca Trail:
Head guide: 10-15 USD
Assistant guide: 5-10 USD
Your trekking crew: 40 USD

Lares Trek
Head guide: 10-15 USD
Assistant guide: 4-8 USD
Your trekking crew: 35 USD

Also at the end of each trip if you felt your G Adventures CEO did an outstanding job, tipping is appreciated. The amount is entirely a personal preference, however as a guideline $20-25 USD per person, per week can be used.

Optional Activities

Please see the itinerary for information on optional activities and estimated pricing.

Huayna Picchu: Although this hike may be promoted by others, we cannot verify that this hike meets G Adventures minimum safety standards. We do not include the Huayna Picchu hike in any of our itineraries, and our CEOs and support staff are prohibited from providing advice or assistance with booking this activity.

Health

Please note inoculations may be required for the country visited. It is your responsibility to consult with your travel doctor for up to date medical travel information well before departure.

You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information well before departure. We recommend that you carry a First Aid kit and hand sanitizers / antibacterial wipes as well as any personal medical requirements. Please be aware that quite often we are in remote areas and away from medical facilities, and for legal reasons our leaders are prohibited from administering any type of drug including headache tablets, antibiotics, etc. When selecting your trip please carefully read the brochure and itinerary and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please refer to the Physical and Culture Shock ratings for trip specific information. G Adventures reserves the right to exclude any traveller from all or part of a trip without refund if in the reasonable opinion of our CEO they are unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group.

Please note your trip travels to high altitude. This is medically defined as anything over 8,000 feet (2,440 meters). Most people can travel to 8,000 feet with minimal effects. However, everyone reacts to altitude differently and altitude sickness can on set with some people irrespective of fitness and age. For details on how to best prepare and what to do in the unlikely event you are effected on your Adventure, please consult your physician.

Safety and Security

Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government’s advice for their latest travel information before departure. We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe keeping of your passport, air tickets, travellers’ cheques, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewelery at home – you won’t need it while travelling. Many of the hotels we use have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage. When travelling on a group trip, please note that your group leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it deemed necessary, due to safety concerns. Your Chief Experience Officer (CEO) will accompany you on all included activities. During your trip you will have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy and explore at your leisure. While your CEO will assist you with options available in a given location, please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your itinerary, and we offer no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgement when selecting an activity in your free time. Although the cities visited on tour are generally safe during the day, there can be risks to wandering throughout any major city at night. It is our recommendation to stay in small groups and to take taxis to and from restaurants, or during night time excursions.

Water based activities have an element of danger and excitement built into them. We recommend only participating in water based activities when accompanied by a guide(s). We make every reasonable effort to ensure the fun and adventurous element of any water based activities (in countries with varying degrees of operating standards), have a balanced approach to safety. It is our policy not to allow our CEOs to make arrangements on your behalf for water based activities that are not accompanied by guide(s).

Swimming, including snorkeling, is always at your own risk. Read more about travel safety for ways to further enhance your personal safety while traveling.

Medical Form

Our small group adventures bring together people of all ages. It is very important you are aware that an average level of fitness and mobility is required to undertake our easiest programs. Travellers must be able to walk without the aid of another person, climb 3-4 flights of stairs, step on and off small boats, and carry their own luggage at a minimum. Travellers with a pre-existing medical condition are required to complete a short medical questionnaire, which must be signed by their physician. This is to ensure that travellers have the necessary fitness and mobility to comfortably complete their chosen trip. While our leaders work hard to ensure that all our travellers are catered for equally, it is not their responsibility to help individuals who cannot complete the day’s activities unaided. Please refer to the physical ratings in this Trip Details document for more information.

Please note that all passengers traveling to Antarctica are required to fill out this questionnaire.

The medical questionnaire can be found online at www.gadventures.com/medical-form.

A Couple of Rules

Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on any trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for our travellers. Our philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter, and in particular the local people who make the world the special place it is. The exploitation of prostitutes is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our group leader has the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they use prostitutes.

Travel Insurance

Travel insurance is compulsory in order to participate on any of our trips. When travelling on a group trip, you will not be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance has been sighted by your leader, who will take note of your insurance details. When selecting a travel insurance policy we require that at a minimum you are covered for medical expenses including emergency evacuation and repatriation. A minimum coverage of USD200,000 is required. G Adventures can provide you with the appropriate coverage. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. Some tours include adventure activities that require extra coverage (e.g. crampon use); please review your itinerary and make sure that you are covered for all included activities. If you have credit card insurance we require proof of purchase of the trip (a receipt of credit card statement) with a credit card in your name. Contact your bank for details of their participating insurer, the level of coverage and emergency contact telephone number.

Planeterra-The G Adventures Foundation

The Planeterra Foundation planeterra.org is a Canadian non-profit organization that helps empower local people to develop their communities, conserve their cultures, and create humane and supportive systems for their endeavours. Planeterra provides capacity building and catalyst grants to get community social enterprises off the ground. These businesses address local challenges by providing benefits for indigenous people, empowering marginalized women, and granting disadvantaged youth access to education, employment, and brighter futures. Planeterra also works to ensure these businesses have a thriving customer base by integrating programs into G Adventures’ itineraries globally.

G Adventures is Planeterra’s largest corporate donor, covering all operating costs so 100% of your donation will bring opportunity to people in need.

Dollar-a-Day Program
G Adventures’ Dollar-a-Day Program provides travellers with the opportunity to give back to the people and places visited on our tours by donating one dollar for every day you are on trip. 100% of these donations go directly to support community development projects worldwide that are implemented by Planeterra.

Feedback

After your travels, we want to hear from you! Your feedback information is so important to us that we’ll give you 5% off the price of your next G Adventures trip if your feedback is completed on-line within 30 days of finishing your trip. Your tour evaluation will be e-mailed to you 24 hours after the conclusion of your trip. If you do not receive the tour evaluation link in the days after your tour has finished, please drop us a line at customerservice@gadventures.com and we will send it on to you.

Newsletter

Our adventure travel e-newsletter is full of travel news, trip information, interesting stories and contests. To avoid missing out on special offers and updates from G Adventures, subscribe at www.gadventures.com/newsletters/

Stay current on how our company invests in our global community through our foundation – Planeterra. Sign up for Planeterra’s monthly news to learn more about how to give back and support the people and places we love to visit.

Minimum Age

Minimum age of 18 years for this trip.

International Flights

Check-in times and baggage allowances/restrictions vary by airline and can change at any time. For the most up-to-date information for your flight, please contact your airline. We recommend checking in online in advance to avoid potential delays at the airport.

Group Leader

Chief Experience Officer (CEO). Local naturalist guide for included activities in the Galápagos Islands (certified by the Galápagos National Park Service). Specialist Inca Trail CEO on hike. Local guides.

PRODUCT_LINE: SMCG, ID: 23381

Itinerary

Day 1: Cartagena

Arrive at any time.

Included Activities:
Arrival Day and Welcome Meeting

Day 2: Cartagena (1B)

Free day to explore this coastal colonial city. Wander the historic old town, check out the San Felipe fortress, or get dirty with a mud bath and massage at Totumo Volcano.

Day 3: Cartagena/Santa Marta (1B)

Travel by public bus to this coastal port town. Free time to visit the Gold Museum with its collection of Lost City artifacts, chill out on the beach and pick up any last minute necessities for the upcoming trek.

Additional Notes:
Please note hot water is uncommon in the Caribbean region of Colombia. Showers are likely to only have cold water while visiting this area.

Transport:
Local bus (4.00 hour(s))

Day 4: Santa Marta/Adán Camp (1L, 1D)

Transfer to Machete Pelao, where the trek to the Lost City of Teyuna begins. Trek for 4-5 hrs each day through farmland, steamy jungle, and rural Kogi communities. Get a glimpse into the local way of life in the remote river valleys of the Sierra Nevada Mountains.

Included Activities:
Lost City Trek Day 1

Transport:
4×4

Day 5: Adán Camp/ Wiwa Camp (1B, 1L, 1D)

The route starts along the Buritaca River, taking you further into the vivid green jungle past small villages en route to the camp for the evening. After a long day of trekking, enjoy a refreshing dip in one of the natural swimming pools.

Included Activities:
Lost City Trek Day 2

Day 6: Wiwa Camp /Teyuna Paraiso Camp (1B, 1L, 1D)

Continue trekking along the route to Ciudad Perdida. Today is a tough portion of the trek with a lot of steep inclines, make sure to rest and take in the beautiful views.

Included Activities:
Lost City Trek Day 3

Day 7: Teyuna Paraiso Camp/ Wiwa Camp (1B, 1L, 1D)

Get started early to climb the 1,200 steps up to the Lost City. The view of the surrounding Sierra Nevada Mountains makes it well worth the hike. Explore the Lost City and learn what is known of its origins from the indigenous guide, before making the descent back to Wiwa Camp for the night.

Included Activities:
Lost City Trek Day 4

Day 8: Ciudad Perdida/Taganga (1B, 1L)

After a final morning trek back to Machete Pelao, transfer to the fishing village of Taganga for an afternoon of rest and relaxation.

Included Activities:
Lost City Trek Day 5

Transport:
4×4

Day 9: Taganga/Parque Nacional Natural Tayrona (1B, 1D)

Enjoy an overnight excursion to beautiful Tayrona NP. Explore the park’s lush greenery, extended beaches and turquoise Caribbean waters.

Additional Notes:
Please note that Tayrona National Park is usually closed during the month of February. The indigenous groups in the area believe that mother nature needs a month of rest, and maintenance to the park is done during this time. If your trip falls in February, you will visit the laid-back town of Minca. Enjoy a visit to a coffee plantation, a hike to a waterfall and learn about local cacao production.

Transport:
Private Vehicle (0.75 hour(s))

Day 10: Parque Nacional Natural Tayrona/Taganga (1B)

Enjoy a half-day in the park, then return to Taganga for one more night on the Caribbean.

Transport:
Private Vehicle

Day 11: Taganga/Medellín (1B)

Fly inland to infamous Medellín, now one of Latin America’s safest cities. Enjoy an orientation walk upon arrival and an optional night out with the group.

Included Activities:
Orientation Walk

Transport:
Plane (1.50 hour(s))

Day 12: Medellín/Bogotá

Opt to go paragliding over the city or catch a ride on the cable car. Board a night bus to Bogotá.

Transport:
Overnight bus (9.00-10.00 hours)

Day 13: Bogotá

Orientation walk around the vibrant La Candelaria area. Free time to explore Colombia’s capital city; check out the riches at the Gold Museum, take a funicular car up Monserrate Hill for sweeping views of the city, or catch a fútbol (soccer) match if it’s game day.

Included Activities:
Orientation Walk

Day 14: Bogotá (1B)

Enjoy a second day to explore Colombia’s capital.

Day 15: Bogotá/Otavalo (1B, 1D)

Fly to Quito and transfer to Otavalo and spend one night at an indigenous community. Interact with the locals and learn about their traditional ways during a homestay. Opt to enjoy a cultural evening and show with typical food.

Included Activities:
Indigenous Community Homestay

Transport:
Plane (4.00 hour(s))
Private Vehicle (2.00 hour(s))

Day 16: Otavalo/Cotopaxi

Visit the famous Otavalo artisan market for a morning perusing colourful textiles, art, carvings and jewelry made by people from nearby communities. Afternoon bus to Cotopaxi to enjoy a couple of nights in Andean beauty.

Included Activities:
Otavalo Handicrafts Market Visit

Transport:
Local bus (2.00 hour(s))
Private Vehicle (2.00 hour(s))

Day 17: Cotopaxi (1B)

Opt to visit a lagoon at elevation, hike national park trails or go down Cotopaxi Volcano by mountain bike.

Included Activities:
Cotopaxi National Park Visit

Day 18: Cotopaxi/Quito (1B)

Enjoy the morning in Cotopaxi before travelling back to Quito for an orientation walk and optional night out.

Included Activities:
Orientation Walk

Transport:
Private Vehicle (2.00 hour(s))

Day 19: Quito/Santa Cruz Island (1B, 1L, 1D)

Fly to the Galápagos Islands and transfer to the campsite located in highlands of Santa Cruz. Explore the highlands to see giant tortoises in the wild and hike to the lava tunnels.

Additional Notes:
The National Park charges a visitor fee of USD100, payable on arrival, which funds park maintenance and supervision in the Galápagos, as well as ecological study, conservation, and infrastructure development in Ecuador’s other National Parks. Entry fees and the funds they generate for the National Park System are among measures taken by the Ecuadorian government to protect its natural heritage.

The flight from Quito to Baltra is unaccompanied. You will have G Adventures representatives assisting on both sides to ensure everything goes smoothly. Flights from Quito to Baltra depart between 6:40am and 9:40am depending on the day of the week. These flights will arrive into the Galápagos between 9:30am and 12:30pm with a short refuelling stop in Guayaquil (you will not disembark the plane).

Included Activities:
Lava Tunnels Visit
Highlands Giant Tortoises Visit
Santa Cruz Highlands Camping

Transport:
Plane (3.00 hour(s))

Day 20: Santa Cruz Island/Floreana Island (1B, 1D)

In the morning, visit the Charles Darwin Station to see Galápagos giant tortoises. After, transfer by speedboat to Floreana Island. Get settled at the G Adventures-supported community guesthouse and opt to explore the small town or catch the sunset at Playa Negra beach.

Additional Notes:
Please note that travel between islands is done by speedboat. The ride can be quite rough, especially from July to December. Make sure to bring sea sickness medication if you are prone to sea sickness.

Included Activities:
Charles Darwin Research Station Visit
Floreana Community Restaurants
Floreana Community Guesthouse

Transport:
Speedboat (2.00 hour(s))

Day 21: Floreana Island (1B, 1L, 1D)

Enjoy an included snorkelling excursion to Loberia, and visit the highlands of Floreana.

Included Activities:
Loberia Snorkelling Excursion
Floreana Highlands Excursion
Floreana Community Restaurants
Floreana Community Guesthouse

Day 22: Floreana Island/Isabela Island (1B, 1D)

Take a speedboat over to Isabela Island and hike the Sierra Negra Volcano for spectacular views from above.

Included Activities:
Isabela Highlands Camping
Sierra Negra Volcano Hike

Transport:
Boat (2.00 hour(s))

Day 23: Isabela Island (1B)

Enjoy free time in the morning for optional activities, opt to go snorkelling, surfing or hit the beach. In the afternoon, visit the Flamingo Lagoon and the Tortoise Breeding Centre.

Included Activities:
Flamingo Lagoon Visit
Isabela Highlands Camping
Giant Tortoise Breeding Centre Visit

Day 24: Isabela Island/Santa Cruz Island (1B)

Transfer by speedboat back to Santa Cruz Island, and enjoy a night in the town of Puerto Ayora. Hike to beautiful Tortuga Bay, and opt to go kayaking or just lounge on the beach.

Additional Notes:
Please note, the accommodation for the night is multi-share in a hostel.

Included Activities:
Tortuga Bay Hike

Transport:
Boat (2.00 hour(s))

Day 25: Santa Cruz Island/Quito (1B)

Say goodbye to the Galapagos Islands, and take a morning flight back to Quito. Upon arrival in Quito, transfer to the hotel and enjoy a night in the city.

Transport:
Plane (4.00 hour(s))

Day 26: Quito

Enjoy a free day to explore Ecuador’s capital. Stay in the city, take a day trip to the equator, or the nearby hot springs.

Day 27: Quito/Tena (1B, 1L, 1D)

Travel overland to Tena, located on the edge of the Amazon. From there, transfer for 45 minutes by truck to the local community of Pimpilala that will be our home for three nights. Stay with a Quichua family, enjoy the hospitality of these wonderful people, and experience life in the jungle first-hand.

Included Activities:
Amazon Jungle Experience

Transport:
Local bus (6.00-7.00 hours)

Day 28: Days 28-29 Tena

Head out on nature walks and learn about local traditions at an overnight homestay.

Included Activities:
Amazon Jungle Experience

Day 29: Day 30 Tena/Baños (1B)

Baños is the perfect setting for outdoor pursuits, including horseback riding, canyoning, hiking, mountain biking, climbing, and rafting in the surrounding mountains and on the River Patate.

Transport:
Pickup truck (0.75 hour(s))
Local bus (3.00-4.00 hours)

Day 30: Day 31 Baños

Opt to soak in the nearby hot springs or get active by hiking, horseback riding, or mountain biking.

Day 31: Day 32 Baños/Cuenca

Ecuador’s third largest town, Cuenca, retains a pleasant provincial air with its colonial architecture, art galleries, and museums. The surrounding countryside is an outdoor playground. Visit national parks, take walks in the beautiful countryside, and see Ecuador’s only Inca ruin site.

Explore the city’s sights including cobbled streets, red-tiled roofs, art galleries, flower markets, shady plazas, and museums.

Transport:
Local bus (2.00 hour(s))
Local bus (6.00 hour(s))

Day 32: Day 33 Cuenca

Enjoy a free day to visit Cajas NP or the Inca ruins of Ingapirca.

Day 33: Day 34 Cuenca/Máncora

The adventure continues as we travel from Cuenca through the busy border town of Huaquillas and across the Peruvian border into Mancora. We follow the Pan-American Highway south to the seaside town of Mancora, a village populated by fishermen and surfers from around Peru and the world. Enjoy the relaxing beach atmosphere.

Included Activities:
Border Crossing (Ecuador – Peru)

Transport:
Local bus (5.00-6.00 hours)
Local bus (4.00-5.00 hours)

Day 34: Day 35 Máncora

Opt to relax on the beach, discover Mancora, go horseback riding, or take a surf lesson.

Day 35: Day 36 Máncora/Huanchaco

Free time in Mancora. Overnight bus to Huanchaco.

Transport:
Overnight bus

Day 36: Day 37 Huanchaco

We continue heading south along the coast to Trujillo, the largest city in northern Peru. It is known for its beautiful colonial structures and nearby attractions of Chan-Chan ruins and the resort town of Huanchaco, where we spend the night.

Day 37: Day 38 Huanchaco/Lima

Full day in Huanchaco before boarding a night bus to Lima.

Transport:
Overnight bus (8.00 hour(s))

Day 38: Day 39 Lima (1B)

To get a feel for colonial Lima, take a cab to the Plaza de Armas and watch the changing of the Palace Guard in the afternoon. Walk around the streets surrounding the Jirón de la Unión for great examples of Spanish-colonial architecture and to experience life in a large South American city. There are many fine museums in and around the city, including the Museo Rafael Larco Herrera. An optional city tour visits many of the cities highlights.

Day 39: Day 40 Lima

Enjoy the day exploring the city.

Day 40: Day 41 Lima/Paracas (1B)

Savour a pisco sour while staying in Pisco’s neighbouring town of Paracas.

Transport:
Local bus (4.00 hour(s), 250km)
Minibus (0.50 hour(s))

Day 41: Day 42 Paracas/Nazca (1D)

There is time in the morning for an optional excursion to the popular Ballestas Islands, which provide an excellent chance to view a lively sea lion colony, pelicans, penguins, and other varieties of birdlife.

Back on land, catch a bus south to Nazca. On the way, pass by the pleasant colonial town of Ica.

Ica enjoys a dry, sunny climate year-round and is known for its huge sand dunes. Located around the nearby oasis of Huacachina, the dunes are perfect as subjects for photographs and for a favourite local past time: sandboarding. Apart from the dunes, Ica is famous for its wines and there are several wineries and distilleries in the area.

Included Activities:
Huacachina Winery Visit

Transport:
Private Vehicle (4.00 hour(s), 175km)

Day 42: Day 43 Nazca/Arequipa

Opt for a flight over the Nazca Lines. Overnight bus to Arequipa.

Transport:
Overnight bus (8.00-9.00 hours, 570km)

Day 43: Day 44 Arequipa

Those with an interest in history and architecture may opt to visit the Convent of Santa Catalina, which offers a brief respite from the outside world and a unique view into a bygone way of life. Other optional excursions include rafting and mountaineering.

For spicy food lovers, checking out one of the “Picanterías” is a must. Arequipa has a variety of regional food: alpaca, shrimp, pork, lots of soups, and spicy sauces.

Day 44: Day 45 Arequipa/Colca Canyon (1B)

Enjoy an overnight excursion to the impressive Colca Canyon – one of the deepest canyons in the world. Stop in fascinating villages and at “miradors” (scenic lookouts), where, with a little luck, visitors can see Andean condors soaring over the majestic Andes. Other unusual animals that can be spotted in the Andean landscape include three different species of camelids: alpaca, llama and vicuña.

Included Activities:
Colca Canyon Guided Tour

Transport:
Private Vehicle (4.50-5.00 hours, 165km)

Day 45: Day 46 Colca Canyon/Arequipa (1B)

Get an early start to go on the lookout for flying condors. Travel from Chivay town to a condor viewpoint to admire these magnificent birds in the air. On the way back, stop by some local villages and viewpoints to see old terraces and sections of Colca Canyon, the deepest canyon in the world.

Included Activities:
Colca Canyon Guided Tour

Day 46: Day 47 Arequipa/Cusco (1B)

In the morning head back to Arequipa and enjoy a free day. Overnight bus to Cusco.

Transport:
Private Van with Wi-fi (4.50-5.00 hours, 165km)
Overnight bus (10.00 hour(s))

Day 47: Day 48 Cusco

Free time to explore Cusco. Opt for a city tour or go whitewater rafting, horseback riding or mountain biking.

Day 48: Day 49 Cusco (1B)

Enjoy another free day in Cusco.

Day 49: Day 50 Cusco/Ollantaytambo (1B)

Ollantaytambo is a major Inca ruin site and a first taste of what lies ahead. For those craving more before they head out on the Trail, opt to take a Sacred Valley tour which includes not only Ollantaytambo and the ruin site of Pisac, but also a visit to a G Adventures-supported women’s weaving co-op.

Transport:
Private Vehicle (2.50 hour(s), 95km)

Day 50: Day 51 Inca Trail (1B, 1L, 1D)

Trek through beautiful scenery, with a variety of flora that changes with the seasons, passing several smaller ruin sites like Llactapata.

Additional Notes:
A crew of local porters, cooks, and guides will take care of all the details for the duration of the hike. Porters carry the majority of the gear so you’ll only need to carry a small daypack with water, rain gear, snacks, a camera, etc.

Included Activities:
Inca Trail Hike

Transport:
Private Vehicle (0.75 hour(s))

Day 51: Day 52 Inca Trail (1B, 1L, 1D)

Start early to climb the long steep path to Warmiwañusca, better known as Dead Woman’s Pass. This is the highest point of the trek at 4,198m (13,769 ft). Most hikers reach camp by early afternoon, with ample time to rest and relax.

Included Activities:
Inca Trail Hike

Day 52: Day 53 Inca Trail (1B, 1L, 1D)

Cross two more passes and ruins along the way. The first pass is Runquraqay at 3,950m (13,113 ft) where, on a clear day, hikers can catch a glimpse of the snow-capped Cordillera Vilcabamba. Hike through cloud forest on the gentle climb to the second pass of the day, walking through original Incan constructions. The highest point of the pass is 3,700m (12,136 ft). On a clear day, enjoy the spectacular views of the Urubamba Valley.

At 3,650m (11,972 ft), reach the ruins of Phuyupatamarca, the “town above the clouds.” Camp here or go another 1.5 hrs to the Wiñay Wayna ruins (“forever young”) located at 2,650m (8,694 ft).

Included Activities:
Inca Trail Hike

Day 53: Day 54 Machu Picchu/Cusco (1B)

The final day of the hike starts pre-dawn to reach the Sun Gate before sunrise. Wake up around 03:30 and walk to the checkpoint. Catch the first views of the breathtaking ruins of Machu Picchu on a clear day. Hike down to Machu Picchu for a guided tour of the site and free time to explore. Opt to visit the Inca Bridge, if time allows.

Catch the bus to Aguas Calientes to meet any non-hiking members of your group. Eat and relax before your train back to Cusco in the afternoon.

Included Activities:
Inca Trail Hike
Machu Picchu Guided Tour
Big Night Out

Transport:
Train (1.50 hour(s), 118km)
Private Vehicle (2.00 hour(s))

Day 54: Day 55 Cusco (1B)

Free day to explore more of Cusco or just relax.

Day 55: Day 56 Cusco/Puno (1B)

Travel through the high Altiplano region to travel to Puno on Lake Titicaca.

Transport:
Local bus (7.50 hour(s), 390km)

Day 56: Day 57 Puno/Lago Titicaca (1B, 1D)

Head out by boat across Lake Titicaca. Visit the community on Taquile Island and enjoy a local lunch with spectacular views.

After, cruise to another village for an overnight homestay on the shores of the lake (the homestay location can vary based on community availability). This experience provides an opportunity to learn more about rural life in the Peruvian highlands and to participate in local traditions. Eat with the family, learn some Quecha and Spanish language skills, try on traditional costumes, and help out with daily chores around the village.

Included Activities:
Lake Titicaca Guided Boat Tour Day 1
Lake Titicaca Homestay

Day 57: Day 58 Lago Titicaca/Puno (1B, 1L)

Leave the homestay families late morning, and visit the Uros Islands on the way back to Puno. A popular optional activity in Puno is a visit to the spectacular chullpas (funerary towers) of Sillustani, a pre-Inca archaeological site only a short drive away.

Included Activities:
Lake Titicaca Guided Boat Tour Day 2

Day 58: Day 59 Puno/La Paz (1B)

Enjoy a full-day drive around the lake and through the Altiplano to La Paz. Bolivia is filled with spectacular views of the countryside. La Paz sits nearly 4,000m (13,120 ft) above sea level, so be prepared for cool evenings and mornings.

Included Activities:
Border Crossing (Peru – Bolivia)

Transport:
Local bus (2.50 hour(s), 300km)
Local bus (3.00 hour(s))

Day 59: Day 60 La Paz

Depart at any time.

Included Activities:
Departure Day

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