Galapagos without boats? Sounds almost contradictory given the fact that it is an archipelago. Rest assured; land-based programs does not necessarily mean you will not enjoy the islands to its fullest – if done right, that is. Of course, you won’t be able to reach the farthest islands such as Genovesa or Fernandina. Nevertheless, there are plenty of “magic” going on elsewhere. What is more, thanks to the development of the archipelago’s private and public infrastructure, hotel-based “island-hopping” tours offer a great alternative to cruises, which in the past were the only way you could visit the archipelago. On this type of trip, you will stay in two or three different accommodations, each on a different island. After exploring an island or islet during the day, you can then return to your room in the evening, instead of remaining on board a rocking cruise ship for the rest of the night. For light sleepers, or anyone who is sensitive to motion sickness, or those who might suffer from cabin fever from being confined on board a yacht for several days, a hotel-based itinerary might be your best option for getting the most from your once-in-a-lifetime experience in this enchanting islands.
So, what are the pros? We would recommend land-based tours to Galapagos for the following travelers: those who look to complement their cruising program – let’s add to this, flexibility too, those traveling with children, and those with “weak sea legs”.
Let’s start with those looking to complement their cruise itinerary. There may be spots you weren’t able to explore so you may cross it out by visiting them from inland. In this manner, you can focus on finding a cruise that reaches the farthest islands and complement it with day tours that are operational from inland. Otherwise, you can simply choose to end this enchanting journey on a relaxing way – just the perfect way to give closure to an exceptional journey. As we always mention, within this close relationship with the archipelago, we are constantly inspecting the luxury hotels of Galapagos. Regarding flexibility, as you will soon realize, all cruises have fixed departure dates. If your dates doesn’t match any available cruise, tailoring a land-based tour might be the solution. Moving on, we have Galapagos with children. To start with, one has to be careful which cruises allow children and if so, make sure it is suitable for your family. Some simply “allow” children to get onboard but the programs aren’t really suitable for kids. Land-based programs allow you to have the flexibility to put together the spots and excursions suitable for your children’s age and preference. What is more, there are special programs that, as a matter of fact, are only available on land excursions. For instance, learn how the water system and ecosystem of one island works. You will also visit an organic farm and explore the highlands where you will witness the system actually working. You child will definitely learn from it – and with fun! Finally, we have those concerned with sea sickness or motion sickness. Now, have in mind that some visits require more than two hours of dinghy ride and during windy seasons, the sea becomes choppy and hence the ride may not be as pleasant as you might have expected. But in case you want to avoid any way of maritime transportation, there are still ways to enjoy the marvels of the archipelago; well, in this case, Santa Cruz. The only “boat” (actually, a ferry) you will be getting on would be the one crossing from Baltra (where the main airport is located) to Santa Cruz. Here, is where all your excursions will take place. We assure you, there are plenty of things to do. You can even “upgrade” the experience by adding an adventurous touch and of course, the up-close encounters. Let’s say, Safari in the Galapagos. There are even some luxury tents you can stay.
This destination may be complicated to arrange given the fact that it is so variable to the site’s and traveler’s conditions. Yet then again, here is where we come in. Tell us what you are looking for, what you are concerned of; but above all, tell us what you bluntly want. Our journey designers will be more than happy to tailor your unique experience here.
“We loved every moment of our trip and could not have done it without Ligia and Surtrek. I highly recommend them!”