Exploring Ecuador and the Galápagos
- Duration:14 nights
- Key Facts: Saturday departure
- Suitable for: Children aged 8 years and over (younger children may join the holiday, but may not be able to participate in all the activities). Please see terms for details
Flights: Internal return flights from Quito to the Galápagos Islands and one inter-island flight is included
Transfers: Group airport and activity transfers (private airport transfers may incur a supplement), as well as inter-island ferry transfer, are included
Accommodation: 4 nights Hotel Quito, 1 night Hacienda El Porvenir (Tierra del Volcán), 1 night Hacienda Leito, 2 nights Cotococha Amazon Lodge, 2 nights Casa Opuntia, 2 nights Iguana Crossing, 2 nights Angermeyer Waterfront Inn
Meals: 14 breakfasts, 11 lunches, 11 dinners
The following activities are included: Quito City Tour, páramo hiking and horse riding through the Avenue of the Volcanoes, Cotopaxi Volcano cycling, mountain bike descent of Tungurahua Volcano and Baños town visit, white-water rafting in the Amazon Basin, Papallacta Hot Springs visit, Frigate Hill hike and snorkelling at Carola Beach, sea kayaking, snorkelling and Kicker Rock visit, Wall of Tears mountain biking and Tintoreras Islets visit, Sierra Negra Volcano hike, hiking with giant tortoises and lava tunnel visit on Santa Cruz, sea kayaking and Tortuga Bay, Charles Darwin Research Station visit (the order of activities subject to change)
All equipment, tuition and supervision from fully qualified instructors
Services of our representatives or local guides
Please note: International flights are not included to or from Ecuador. Please contact us for a quotation
Ecuador is one of the smallest countries in South America but it has more than its fair share of the continent’s diverse wonders. From the dramatic Andes and the Amazon Rainforest to the wealth of history in its fascinating indigenous cultures and Inca remains, Ecuador is a remarkable land of contrasts with so much to offer adventurous families.
We have included all activities in the holiday price to help you and your family appreciate these natural surroundings in a thrilling way. Get mountain biking down volcanoes, explore the lush cloud forest, ride on horseback through the Cotopaxi National Park, and white-water raft through the Amazon Rainforest. There will also be time to explore the capital of Quito with its colonial buildings and bustling markets.
The family activity itinerary then moves you to the incomparable Galápagos Islands. The world famous wildlife and award-winning national parks need little introduction, surpassing all expectations.
You will spend four nights on the islands, in specially designed eco-friendly hotels, experiencing a range of activities including snorkelling, mountain biking, and hiking amongst the area’s stunning land and marine wildlife.
This adventure to an extraordinary part of the world is sure to create holiday memories your family will cherish forever.
Image credits: Totypix, Neotropic Expeditions
Day 1 Arrival and Transfer
Today your thrilling family adventure begins! Upon arrival at Quito Airport, a guide will be waiting to transfer you to your hotel. On the way, they will provide you with an introduction to this remarkable city, which has been named a UNESCO World Heritage Site.Included Meals: None
Day 2 Quito City Tour
After breakfast, your first morning is free for you to relax and acclimatise to the altitude in Quito (at 2850 metres above sea level, it is one of the highest cities in the world!).
After an afternoon meeting with your guide, you will head out on a tour of this vibrant city, exploring the market stalls, eateries and shops which line its bustling, centuries-old streets, getting your first taste of traditional Ecuadorian culture and colonial Spanish architecture.
This evening, dinner is included at the hotel restaurant. We recommend getting an early night to prepare for the start of your adventures tomorrow.Included Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Day 3 Páramo Hiking and Horse Riding Through the Avenue of Volcanoes
Once you’ve had breakfast, you will join your guide on a drive along the Pan-American Highway through the stunning Avenue of Volcanoes. Reaching the family-owned Hacienda El Porvenir, which will be your accommodation for the night, you will head off into the surrounding páramo for a scenic hike. ‘Páramo’ is high, level ground with no trees, providing outstanding vistas of the surrounding natural beauty.
After lunch at a hacienda, you saddle up in Chagra (Andean cowboy) style to head out on a stunning scenic horseback ride up the slopes of the Rumiñahui Volcano. As well as appreciating superb views you will learn more about the tradition and customs of the Chagras whose skill on horseback and knowledge of the Ecuadorian outback are legendary.
You will then have dinner and overnight at Hacienda El Porvenir.Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 4 Cotopaxi Volcano Cycling Adventure
After breakfast, you head towards Cotopaxi, one of the world’s highest active volcanoes. Seen as a sacred mountain by local people, it was worshipped as a ‘sender of rain’ and a home of the gods. The day will begin with a hike to visit some fascinating pre-Incan ruins – along the way, be sure to keep a watch for some of the local fauna, which includes birds and wild horses.
You will then set off on mountain bikes to explore and take in the panoramic volcanic views. En-route, a visit will be made to the crystalline Limpiopungo Glacier Lake, which reflects Cotopaxi on its surface. After this, you will head to the visitors’ centre to learn more about the local plants and animals.
A lunch break will be had on the way to Leito, your second hacienda. During the afternoon, a hike will be had in the nearby cloud forest. In the evening, you will have dinner and stay at Hacienda Leito.Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 5 Mountain Bike Descent of Tungurahua Volcano and Baños Town
After breakfast, you will head to a fantastic viewpoint in Llanganates National Park to gaze at one of Ecuador’s most active volcanoes. The park is home to diverse plant life, as well as llamas and alpacas. Here, you will be reunited with your mountain bike for a thrilling descent of Tungurahua Volcano.
At the lively town of Baños, you will stop for lunch and travel by cable car to the Avenue of the Waterfalls – a spectacular sight to witness. From here you will travel to the Cotococha Amazon Lodge and enjoy dinner listening to the sounds of the rainforest.Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 6 White-Water Rafting in the Amazon Basin
Following breakfast in the lodge, you will travel to the Amazon Basin where you will raft down the Jatunyacu River, one of Ecuador’s most renowned river runs. These crystal-clear waters provide big waves and lots of fun but there are also quieter stretches where you can catch glimpses of the local communities and wildlife that live on the shore.
On the way back to the lodge after lunch, you will visit a Kichwa Amazonian Indian community who will introduce you to their traditional way of life in the jungle. Their relationship with the rainforest is a privilege to behold.
You will have dinner and overnight at the Cotococha Amazon Lodge.Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 7 Cloud Forest Hot Springs
It will be time to head back to Quito after breakfast, with a stop en-route to lounge in the Papallacta Hot Springs on the edge of the cloud forest – extremely relaxing!
After lunch, you will complete the journey to Quito, with the afternoon and evening free to make the most of the city.Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Day 8 The Galápagos Islands – Frigate Hill Hike and Snorkelling in Carola Beach
Today your Galápagos Islands adventure begins as you take a short flight after breakfast, going from Quito to the beautiful island of San Cristóbal.
After transferring the short distance to the Casa Opuntia Hotel for lunch, you will head to the fascinating ‘Galápagos Interpretation Center’ to learn more about some of the species which reside here and how the archipelago as a whole has evolved.
Next up is a hike up Frigate Hill, following lava trails which offer scenic views over the coastline and potential encounters with the famous frigate birds which live here along with gulls, herons and pelicans.
This afternoon you will have your first snorkelling experience off Carola Beach which is home to a remarkable array of sea creatures including sunbathing sea lions, turtles, colourful crabs and shoals of tropical fish.
Dinner will be served at Casa Opuntia. Afterwards, it is well worth heading to the boardwalk close by to greet the many sea lions that have made a home there.Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 9 Sea Kayaking, Snorkelling and Kicker Rock
Following breakfast, today’s island adventure will include exploration of some of the most beautiful kayaking routes of the islands, with lunch included.
After a short boat ride, you will kayak along a rocky shore, which allows you to get up close to both marine and bird life without disturbing them. It is common to see sea lions, blue-footed boobies and frigate birds. After lunch, you will spend the afternoon snorkelling in a bay popular with turtles and marine iguanas – just magical!
A short boat trip then takes you to the impressive rock formations at Kicker Rock where you might see spotted eagle rays, golden rays, hammerheads, and white-tipped sharks.
Dinner will be had at Casa Opuntia.Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 10 Wall of Tears Mountain Biking
With breakfast finished, you will take a light aircraft across to Isabela Island, the largest island of the Galápagos Archipelago. Here your mountain bike guide will meet you to explore the inland trails to the Wall of Tears: a link back to the days when the island was a penal colony. Prisoners built this wall to give themselves a purpose and avoid going crazy – an impressive construction with a tragic history. The cycling route is varied and passes white sand beaches, lava features, and mangroves. You may even bump into a giant tortoise or flamingo as they cross your path!
After lunch, you will explore the beautiful Tintoreras Islets, home to the recognisable Galápagos Penguin. After that, it will be time to unwind at the Iguana Crossing Hotel and its lovely infinity swimming pool. Dinner will be served in the on-site restaurant.Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 11 Sierra Negra Volcano Hike
Once you’ve had breakfast, a hike to one of the most spectacular spots on the islands will get underway! The active Sierra Negra Volcano has dramatic landscapes of spectacular lava formations and puffing fumaroles. Reaching the rim of the gigantic caldera is incredibly rewarding. From here, it will be possible to hike further to the Chico Volcano caldera, where the land is coloured by deposits of sulphur.
Returning from the volcano, you will stop at a tortoise reserve for lunch. This afternoon you are free to relax - we highly recommend enjoying the rooftop hot tub and infinity swimming pool at Iguana Crossing. Dinner will be served at the hotel.Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 12 Giant Tortoises and Lava Tunnels on Santa Cruz
After breakfast, there will be a speedboat trip to the island of Santa Cruz. Whales and dolphins are commonly seen on this crossing so be sure to keep an eye out for these impressive sea mammals.
Docking at the Angermeyer Waterfront Inn, you will drop off your bags before being taken to the island’s highlands to walk alongside its famous giant tortoises. You will then explore some of the island’s wonderful lava tunnels which were historically used by pirates to hide their plundered Incan gold. A hike will also be made to two immense sinkholes known as ‘Los Gemelos’, or ‘The Twins’. Lunch is included.
Towards the end of the afternoon, you will head back to the Angermeyer Waterfront Inn. Enjoy dinner here and look out over the beautiful bay.Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 13 Sea Kayaking and Tortuga Bay
This morning you will use sea kayaks again to explore a very different coastline. Following breakfast, you will paddle across turquoise waters and through dramatic lava caves. Below the surface, you might see rays and white-tipped reef sharks swimming around whilst. Keep a look out for the crabs, iguanas and birds which perch along the cliffs.
Lunch leads into a hike to the picturesque Tortuga Bay - one of the most beautiful locations in the Galápagos Islands. Here you and your family can enjoy the idyllic white sandy beaches, bright turquoise water and picture-perfect views of the ocean. What a way to end your time on the islands! A final Galápagos dinner will be had at the Angermeyer Waterfront Inn.Included Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 14 Charles Darwin Research Station
Having had breakfast, you will make a visit to the Charles Darwin Research Station to learn about current conservation efforts from local scientists and to find out about the evolution of the archipelago’s outstanding range of flora and fauna.
A transfer will then be made to Baltra Island for a flight back to the mainland. You will have a free afternoon in the capital and overnight at Hotel Quito.Included Meals: Breakfast
Day 15 Departure
Following your last Ecuadorian breakfast, it will be time to fly back home. If you would like to extend your stay in South America then please speak to our Travel Experts to discuss your options.Included Meals: Breakfast
Please note that for summer 2019, we may use alternative accommodation options for Hotel Quito and Cotococha Amazon Lodge. All alternatives will be of a similar standard to those detailed below. Details will be finalised shortly.
Included in price
This family-friendly hotel is located approximately 45 minutes from the airport on the northern edge of the city of Quito, enjoying incomparable views across the city and the surrounding valleys.
This hotel is known for its welcoming feel and personal service and offers a wonderful base from which to explore the area.
- The restaurant is one of our favourite things about this hotel - it is located on the top floor of the hotel and offers panoramic views of the city and surrounding dramatic, mountain scenery. The food served here is a mix of international and Ecuadorian gastronomic delights so there will be a variety of dishes for all the family to enjoy
- Families can enjoy the heated outdoor swimming pool with terrace and gym area
- There are a small number of shops available
- Free Wi-Fi throughout
Double or twin rooms: The spacious hotel rooms, the majority with views of the surrounding nature, are all en-suite and typically have either two queen-size beds or one king. They are very comfortably furnished and provide a TV, complimentary toiletries and hairdryer.
Hacienda El Porvenir (Tierra del Volcan)
This friendly Hacienda accommodation is set in 1000 hectares of private land and provides a fantastic welcome that is sure to make you feel like one of the family.
Built from locally-sourced materials, the hacienda has been designed to be in keeping with traditional architecture and colour palette throughout. The thatched roof and the unique furniture create a cosy atmosphere and the log fires (in addition to the heating) add to the feel.
Families can enjoy stunning views over the Rumiñahui volcano from the accommodation’s privileged position (at an altitude of over 3600 metres).
- The restaurant here specialises in traditional Andean recipes with a touch of international cuisine. It uses locally-sourced produce where possible in the menus and meals are served in a relaxed, family-style atmosphere
- The products used are fresh and locally-grown and all the bread, jams and dairy goods served at breakfast are produced on the farm
- There are also numerous lounge areas with fireplaces to enjoy in the evening and a bar will also be open to purchase drinks
- Internet access is available at the hacienda
- A neighbouring playground and a garden for children to enjoy
Hacienda rooms: There are only 22 rooms here and they offer various styles of accommodation. Our families will stay in the traditional hacienda rooms which are fully heated and beautifully furnished in a rustic and comfortable style.
The rooms are en-suite and have two queen-size beds.
Close to the Llanganates National Park and at the base of Tungurahua Volcano, Hacienda Leito is a calm and cosy spa resort surrounded by mountainous beauty. Outside, there are close to five acres of gardens with some 200 different types of local plants. Take in the scenery while relaxing after a day of activities.
- Spend time splashing around as a family in the swimming pool
- Parents will love visiting the Turkish Baths or treating themselves to a gentle massage
- Enjoy delicious local and international cuisine at the hacienda’s ‘El Rey de la Leña’ restaurant
- The bar has an excellent selection of drinks from different parts of the world
Double or triple room: These have a double bed or three single beds, an en-suite bathroom with a bathtub, a fireplace and a private balcony with views of the gardens or mountains.
Cotococha Amazon Lodge
Located in the upper Amazon basin overlooking the majestic Napo River, this delightful lodge has bungalows scattered across four hectares of the jungle environment, allowing families to experience the unique and dramatic beauty of the rainforest.
The lodge is as eco-friendly as possible, working closely with the Rainforest Alliance. To encourage this staff will give you guidelines to follow in order to minimise your impact on this wonderful environment during your stay.
- The semi-open air restaurant serves a variety of delicious dishes, combining favourite Ecuadorian dishes with international fare
- Families can make the most of the terrace area with hammocks and reclining chairs (perfect for lying back and listening to the sounds of the rainforest)
- The lodge does not have electricity but in the evening many oil lamps light the pathways around the bungalows and each accommodation has their own oil lamp. This adds to the magical atmosphere in this area at night. If necessary, electrical devices can be charged at reception
Bungalows: The lodge has 22 spacious bungalows which have been built in keeping with traditional architecture. All have a private bathroom with hot water and eco-friendly products for guests to use, as well as two queen-size beds.
Each bungalow also has its own veranda for you to relax in the evenings.
Named after the local prickly pear cactus, Casa Opuntia is a small cosy hotel located right at the end of the boardwalk on San Cristobal Island. Its location, only a few metres from Playa de Oro beach, offers one of the best locations on the island in our opinion.
The hotel has strong environmental practices, with a focus on recycling and using sustainable resources to help to maintain its unique and beautiful local environment.
- The open-air terrace area at the front of the hotel is where you will enjoy your meals, looking out across the waterfront. These are a mix of traditional and locally-sourced seafood dishes (such as the hotel’s famed ceviche) and some international flavours. Fresh produce and delicious tropical fruits feature throughout
- The hotel has an outdoor swimming pool with terrace and enjoys close proximity to the beach (very popular with the local sea lion colony in the late afternoon and evening) ensuring a relaxing hideaway with lots of opportunities to photograph the local wildlife
- We also highly recommend taking a walk along the boardwalk to pick up some souvenirs, and enjoy a refreshing cold drink
- Free Wi-Fi is available in public areas
- The hotel has an honour system for the bar (including alcoholic drinks) so we would recommend bringing some cash if you would like to indulge in a cold drink around the hotel swimming pool
Hotel rooms: The hotel only has 13 bright and modern rooms in total. All rooms are en-suite and offer air-conditioning and an in-room safe for valuables. They are very bright and the decor is in keeping with their beachside location.
The rooms at the hotel vary in size and can accommodate between two and four people in double, triple and family rooms (subject to availability).
This boutique-style hotel boasts a beautiful location opposite one of the most beautiful beaches in the Galapagos Islands, which, as you would expect from the name, is home to native marine iguanas. These animals can regularly be seen crossing the road to take a quick dip in the lagoon behind the hotel before wandering back into the sea when the tide changes.
The hotel has a strong environmental focus and has a strict policy throughout. During construction of the hotel, local materials were used wherever possible and all were sustainably sourced.
- There is an infinity pool on the terrace area and a rooftop Jacuzzi and bar area at your disposal. These are wonderful places to relax in after a day’s exploration
- The restaurant serves a delicious range of cuisines including some excellent regional dishes such as sancocho (an authentic Ecuadorian soup) and dishes regularly feature locally-grown, organic vegetables and freshly caught seafood. The restaurant also boasts a carved lava stone grill
- Downstairs there is a games room for the children and the beautiful lounge area is a wonderful place to watch the sunset over the beach
Double/twin rooms: The hotel offers both volcano and ocean-view rooms – either is a very special option – with twin beds or a king size bed.
The rooms have been designed with large windows to help maximise your enjoyment of your surroundings. All rooms are spacious and modern and have air-conditioning, hairdryer, safe, TV and telephone.
Angermeyer Waterfront Inn
This hotel is based in the south of Santa Cruz Island, sat looking out over the water at the town of Puerto Ayora. Just a short walk from Alemanes Beach, it has its own docking area for taxi boats and can only be accessed by water. Built around the famous Angermeyer ‘Cave’, a home constructed by early Santa Cruz settler Gus Angermeyer, the hotel keeps its heritage very much alive, welcoming families from all around the world.
- Gaze over the sea as you dine in the waterfront restaurant
- Unwind in the comfy bar and lounge area, which is part of the original ‘Angermeyer Cave’
- Look out from the deck at marine iguanas and sea lions swimming by
Triple room: three single beds or one double and one single bed, a private bathroom with a bathtub, air-conditioning, a cable television, ceiling fan and minibar.
Dates & Prices
We include more, no hidden costs
Prices based on a minimum 4 people
Private departures: This tour can be run as a private departure on any date (subject to availability) based on min 2 people travelling. Please contact our Travel Experts for a quotation.
Sat 13 Jul 2019
to Sat 27 Jul 2019
|Price (pp) based on 2 sharing: £5595.00||: £5465.00||Child (5-10yrs): -||Book|
Sat 03 Aug 2019
to Sat 17 Aug 2019
|Price (pp) based on 2 sharing: £5595.00||: £5465.00||Child (5-10yrs): -||Book|
Sat 10 Aug 2019
to Sat 24 Aug 2019
|Price (pp) based on 2 sharing: £5595.00||: £5465.00||Child (5-10yrs): -||Book|
Next season’s pre-sale dates and prices
You can make a pre-reservation to secure your holiday at this stage by paying an initial deposit of only £50pp. The provisional departure dates, prices and itineraries remain subject to change. We will contact you when the final dates, prices and itineraries are confirmed, and you will have 14 days to decide if you would like to go ahead. A further deposit payment of £250pp is due by 01 February 2020 or at the time of us confirming the trip details to you, whichever is sooner. If you decide not to travel, we will refund your initial £50pp payment. Our Travel Experts will happily provide you with full terms and a complete quotation.
Sat 11 Jul 2020
to Sat 25 Jul 2020
|Price (pp) based on 2 sharing: £6270.00||: £6120.00||Child (5-10yrs): -||Enquire|
Sat 01 Aug 2020
to Sat 15 Aug 2020
|Price (pp) based on 2 sharing: £6270.00||: £6120.00||Child (5-10yrs): -||Enquire|
Sat 08 Aug 2020
to Sat 22 Aug 2020
|Price (pp) based on 2 sharing: £6270.00||: £6120.00||Child (5-10yrs): -||Enquire|
For our full booking terms and conditions please click here
Holiday group size (approximate)
Minimum 4 persons, maximum 20 persons (approximately)
We always try to provide an approximation of the group size you can expect to be with for the duration of each of our holidays. It may be that you are joined by others for parts of your holiday (such as transfers and particular activities) but the above number reflects those you can normally expect to be with from beginning to end. If group size is something which is particularly important to you, please speak to our Travel Experts and they can suggest the best holidays for you.
Tailor-made holiday group sizes will vary for all activities as will the group size for any additional activities you book.
Minimum numbers required for a holiday to operate
Some of our holidays require a minimum number of participants to operate (as listed in the ‘Group Size’ section). If your holiday departure has not yet reached the minimum number, you will be told at the time of booking. In the unlikely event that your chosen date is not guaranteed by nine weeks before your scheduled departure date, we will contact you to discuss the available options as per our booking conditions.
The order of activities is always subject to change and you will be provided with your final itinerary upon arrival at your destination.
Please note that some of our holidays may incur a single supplement. Please speak to one of our Travel Experts who will provide you with a quotation.
Medical history and advice
We want our holidays to be accessible as they can be and will do our best to accommodate any special requests and requirements where possible. We have a wide range of holidays and destinations and so our travel experts will help find the best holiday for you.
In order to give us the best possible chance to do this we ask that if you or any member of your party has any medical condition or disability which may affect your holiday or has any special requirements, that you tell us at the time of enquiry or booking. You must also promptly advise us if any medical condition or disability which may affect your holiday develops after your booking has been confirmed. You may need to provide a doctor’s note and proof of insurance in some cases as the health and safety of our clients is absolutely paramount.
In providing this information you are allowing us to work with our expert local partners to ensure that your whole party can enjoy the holiday. By letting us know in advance we can discreetly work with you to adapt any part of the holiday which may potentially be challenging. Being able to prepare for this in advance makes an incredible difference to what we can offer and minimises any impact on your party and the rest of the group.
Unfortunately, if you choose not to share this information with us in advance then it may limit some or all of the itinerary you have booked, and we cannot be held accountable for any additional costs or missed activities resulting from this.
Insurance is not included in your holiday, but it is a pre-requisite to travelling with us. You will need to ensure that you have cover for all the activities that you will be participating in during your holiday.
It is extremely important that you take out a suitable travel insurance policy at the time of booking. Plans do sometimes change, and you will need this policy should you need to cancel your holiday.
If you are struggling to find a suitable policy then details of our preferred provider, who will cover you for all the activities we offer, can be found on our website by clicking here. Please note that this policy is available to EU residents under the age of 75 only.
If you have a reduced level of mobility, then please contact our travel experts to discuss the suitability of this holiday in relation to your requirements.
Experience and fitness
Most of the activities we offer have been designed for beginners who have no prior experience and are of all age ranges and fitness levels. Our guides provide expert advice, tuition and instructions prior to any activity going ahead. Activities are designed to be enjoyed and not endured, but some, do require a more basic level of fitness than others. If you have any questions, then please contact one of our Travel Experts who can provide first-hand advice.
The only holidays which are not as suitable for complete beginners are the multi-night safaris which involve several days in wilderness cabins travelling by either snowmobile or husky safari. Again, this all depends on the individual taking part, but some prior experience and understanding of these types of activities can be very helpful and a greater level of fitness is recommended.
Guides & Safety
When partaking in any activity, it is imperative that everyone in your group listens very closely to the instructions provided by the guide and that they are abided by at all times. Our guides are experts in their field and no one knows the environment better than these highly knowledgeable and experienced providers.
Prior to starting any activity, please make it clear to your guide if there is any element of the safety briefing you are unsure of or would like to clarify before you set off.
Our guides will always take local conditions into account when considering whether an activity can go ahead. This is, in part, why your itinerary is subject to change at short notice. This rarely happens, however, if it does, we will always endeavour to reschedule the activity for later in your holiday. If this is not possible then the cost of the activity will be refunded to you when you return home.
Our guides' word on activities is always final and your safety is their principal concern at all times; please respect their decisions. By following their instructions, your safety and enjoyment during each activity will be greatly enhanced.
NB: In order to participate in our holidays, all guests must be able to understand instructions given in English. These instructions may be delivered verbally or in writing and will include vital safety information and ongoing instruction during activities.
Minimum and Maximum Age
The minimum age for this holiday can be found in the ‘Key Facts’ section of the holiday overview.
Younger family members may be able to participate but may not be able to take part in all activities. Please contact one of our Travel Experts if you have any questions.
Booking activities locally and equipment hire
Additional activities can be booked locally in almost all our destinations. However, as per our booking conditions, we cannot be held responsible for any injury or loss incurred through participation in activities which are booked at your destination outside of our holiday itinerary (see our ‘Terms and Conditions’ for further details).
When arranging any such activity please always ensure that safety is your primary concern.
In some of our destinations, you can borrow or hire equipment for use in your free time. You do so entirely at your own risk. You must ensure that you are properly prepared, have the necessary equipment and knowledge (maps, etc) and ensure that where applicable, you follow marked routes. We recommend discussing your plans with the local teams who will be able to advise on the most suitable options for you.
Always let the reception/guide know where you are planning to go and take a torch and mobile phone (with the hotel/guide’s phone number stored). It is also a good idea to leave your contact number and the time you expect to return to the hotel should the hotel need to contact you.
If your trip includes car hire the named driver must have a credit card registered in their name which they can present when they collect their car along with their driving licence, as a deposit will be held on the credit card. Please see your trip dossier for full details.
Travel Safety and Foreign Office Advice
Our clients’ safety is at the centre of everything we do, and our operations team continually assesses and monitors the destinations we feature. We carry out thorough risk assessments and work closely with all of our suppliers to continually follow best practice. For up to date travel advice the UK government offers its Travel Aware website as well as the advice detailed below.
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office Advice
We receive all updates from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) with regards to travel advice and we always ensure that we follow this advice in our operations. The FCO issues travel advisories for countries based on a very wide range of factors. They may provide notification about things as simple as a football match and crowds, or they may go so far as to advise against all travel to a region. We ask all our clients to refer to the relevant Travel Advice by Country for the destinations they are visiting in order to make an informed decision on the safety of the destination based on the details provided. It also provides vital information regarding entry requirements, embassy information, local laws and customs as well as specific safety and health. Guests should take responsibility for keeping themselves up to date with this advice. Please also ensure that, if you are transiting through another country, you have read the advice and meet the entry requirements for that destination too.
The FCO travel advice is applicable to British Passport Holders. Most governments will issue their own travel advice for a region and, if you are not a UK resident then you can find some helpful links below:
Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade http://www.smartraveller.gov.au/ New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade http://www.safetravel.govt.nz/ Canadian Consular Affairs Bureau http://voyage.gc.ca/ The U.S. Bureau of Consular Affairs http://travel.state.gov/content/travel/english.html
If the FCO deems that there is an unacceptable level of risk for UK citizens then, together with the government, they may issue an advisory against all travel to a region or country. If such an advisory is published, then we will act accordingly, and this may require the cancellation, curtailment or amendment of a holiday itinerary. These decisions are made on the basis of ensuring our clients’ safety and will affect all clients on the holiday, regardless of their nationality.
If one of our local experts suggests an amendment due to a situation which develops locally then we may also take the decision to amend an itinerary appropriately.
If we have to cancel your holiday prior to departure you will be offered the option of an alternative trip (where any price difference will either be refunded to or covered by you) or a full refund of the monies paid.
If we have to curtail a holiday, then you will be refunded for any costs for the elements we have been unable to deliver, where we have been able to secure a refund from our suppliers. If we must reroute a holiday, then any basis for refund is determined on a case by case basis and dependent on whether the central holiday experience was provided or not.
Flight schedule changes and connecting transportation
On your documentation, we will confirm your flight schedule. Sometimes the flight number, routing and timings might change prior to your departure. If the change is classed as a significant change then we will contact you to discuss this. Please see our booking conditions for details.
Flight schedule changes can impact on your pre and post-holiday travel arrangements if these have been booked separately to your holiday. We strongly recommend that you do not book transport (such as trains or transfers), car parking or non-connecting flights to the departure point for your holiday until you have received your final confirmed travel times when your final travel documents are issued. We are not responsible for the effect of any schedule change on your pre or post travel arrangements. We strongly recommend that you do not purchase non-flexible or non-refundable tickets to avoid cancellation and penalty charges.
Booking your own flights - cancellation disclaimer
If you have chosen to book your own flights, then you will need to wait until we confirm to you that the holiday departure has met the minimum numbers required to run (if applicable to your chosen holiday). Once the holiday is guaranteed to run, you will be informed and you can then make your arrangements.
If transfers are included in your holiday, please ensure that any potential flights will be met by our standard transfers (speak to one of our Travel Experts for advice) otherwise private transfer supplements may be applicable. Once your flights are booked, please send us a copy of your detailed flight itinerary.
Please be aware that most tickets are non-refundable in the case of cancellation. For this reason, we strongly advise you check the rules of the ticket and check the limitations of your cancellation insurance before booking. We cannot be held liable, in the unlikely eventuality that we should be forced to cancel or amend your trip, for losses incurred relating to any flight booking you have made.
Please note that there will be a fee of $100 (Galapagos entrance fee) and $20 (Transit Control Card) payable locally.
Payment and cancellation terms:
Please note that the following payment and cancellation terms supersede those mentioned in sections 2 and 7 of our general booking terms and conditions.
- A deposit of 25% of the total holiday cost is required at the time of booking. Full payment is required 63 days prior to departure.
- More than 63 days prior to departure - Loss of deposit (including the full cost of flights or other services where paid at the time of booking)
- 63 to 43 days prior to departure - 40%
- 42 to 32 days prior to departure - 60%
- 31 or less days - 100%
Whilst travel insurance is always a prerequisite to travelling with the Artisan Travel Company. On the 1st May 2018, a new law came into power which states that all tourists entering Ecuador are required to have travel insurance that covers them in Ecuador for the duration of their stay. This policy must include cover for any necessary medical treatment (including emergencies) during your stay. This is now an entry requirement from the Ecuadorian Government and evidence must be provided at Immigration at all of the major airports and ports to be granted entry to the country. Failure to do so is likely to result in entry to the country being denied. It is your responsibility to ensure that you are in possession of all necessary travel and health documents before departure. All costs incurred in obtaining such documentation must be paid by you. We regret we cannot accept any liability if you are refused entry onto any transport or into any country due to failure on your part to carry correct documentation.
We couldn't pick a single fault 04 July 2015 by The Newman Family