Imagine an early stroll along the quay in Puerto Ayora, the pelicans and sea lions gathering in hope of some fisherman’s scraps. The sea lions have been known to relax on the sun loungers whilst waiting. Or picture the sun rising across snow covered Chimborazo on the barren altiplano.
Perhaps the most diverse of all our Latin American holidays, this is as good a microcosm of Latin America as you will find. Starting in the Andes at Quito, the most charismatic of capitals; its colonial centre makes it the most attractive of South America’s capital cities. After some time to explore we head south along the corridor of volcanoes, walking under Chimborazo (6,263m). You will learn how the summit of Chimborazo is the furthest point on earth from its centre, ride on the Devil’s Nose train, and observe and learn more of local life visiting homes, markets and communities along the way. Look out for the classic village scene of women in bowler hats and brightly coloured skirts. These clothes are not for show, they are everyday wear for the Andean ladies.
Cuenca is a beautifully preserved colonial city well worth exploring. Continuing from here we walk in the Cajas National Park where at up to 4000m, this lakeland landscape will be at the highest altitude we reach on this tour. From Cajas we descend to Guayaquil with time to walk the impressive Malecon, the redeveloped river front.
We fly to Baltra Island, a small island of the Galapagos where after lunch we enjoy a boat journey from Puerto Ayora to Isabella Island. We will enjoy some great walking through volcanic terrain, visit a turtle interpretation centre and hopefully encounter a myriad of diverse Galapagos wildlife.
Returning to Puerto Ayora we explore the area and spend a day, travelling by boat, to one of the other islands with more diverse habitat, flora and fauna. On each island, we’ll walk with an expert naturalist guide to make sure we get plenty of exercise whilst enjoying the huge natural diversity of each island for which the Galapagos are world famous, including sightings of Sea Iguanas and Blue Footed Boobies.