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ADVENTURE IN THE GALAPAGOS ISLANDS WITH GALAKIWI

We shared a ton of photos from our time in the Galapagos Islands in our latest photo essay, so now it's time to share a bit more (ok a lot more) about the tour itself. The Galapagos has always been high on our "wish list" of destinations, and we are so happy that we finally had the chance to visit. The islands are, of course, known for their abundance of wildlife, but they offer so much more than that when you have the chance to dig just a little bit deeper.
Our trip started off with a couple of days on our own in Quito, Ecuador, and then it was time for our tour with Galakiwi to begin. Galakiwi is one of the few companies offering land based tours through the Galapagos Islands, and they hosted us on the tour as part of a media/press trip. Galakiwi focuses on sustainable travel throughout the islands, and since the owners and staff live and work on the islands themselves, they really know the Galapagos well.
We had such an incredible time throughout the entire trip, and I have to say the experience came in at one of our all-time favorite trips we've taken to date. Not only did we see some amazing wildlife, we also had the chance to participate in some of our favorite adventure activities, such as kayaking, snorkeling, SUP (stand up paddle boarding), hiking, and biking. And, because we weren't exploring via a cruise ship, we had a unique look into the culture and life of Galapaguenos who live on the islands. It was the perfect combination and filled with everything we love about travel: adventure, culture, wildlife and plenty of wonderful people.
In addition to everything above, our tour departure was actually a special filmed media tour. Basically, this meant that we participated in the tour as a normal guest, but there was someone filming us along the way for a TV Show and a short film! We were traveling with a group of travel bloggers/writers/etc. Our group consisted of Stephanie, Oksana & Max, Kris and Tom, Diana, and Anthony, in addition to the Galakiwi crew, owners Tim & Crystal, Red, Pablo, Pepo, Cristhian, and several other great team members that made the trip possible. So, what was it like to travel through the Galapagos Islands with Galakiwi? Settle in and get ready for a long one as we spill all the details of our trip—the good, the challenges and everything in between!

OVERVIEW OF TOUR
We went on the 11 Day Galapagos SUP & Adventure Special Edition Tour (a one run tour), which was very similar to their 10 Day Galapagos Adventure Tour that runs on a regular basis. Galakiwi also offers several other specialty tours that focus on activities such as yoga, SUP, biking, or photography. Our adventure tour sent us to all four of the inhabited islands in the Galapagos and we enjoyed one amazing activity after another. The breakdown below is based on the 10 day adventure tour because it was very similar to our tour and it runs every other week throughout the year.

COST:
All of the tours run at different prices, but the 10 Day Galapagos Adventure tour is currently priced at $4,599.00. It isn’t exactly a budget trip, but you do certainly get a lot of bang for your buck with the quality of the guides and all the incredible experiences, accommodations, and food that is included.

WHAT’S INCLUDED:
The adventure tour includes 9 nights in standard accommodations, all fees and gear for the activities, all meals except for two, and drinking water (so be sure to bring a water bottle!). Transportation from Quito to the islands, as well as transportation between and on the islands, is also included. Tips for the local support crew are included in the price of the tour, too.

WHAT’S NOT INCLUDED:
You are on your own for snacks, drinks other than water, and two meals. While it’s nice to have most everything included in the tour price, we did enjoy being able to branch out on our own to explore more of the local island foods, as well. In addition to the above, you need to cover the $20 ingala fee and the $100 park entry fee (required by all visitors to the Galapagos). Both of these are payable at the airport in cash only so be prepared for that. Tips for the tour leader are at your own discretion, but we highly recommend showing your appreciation to your guide. They are phenomenal and work hard to make your experience through the islands extra special.

GROUP SIZE:
The average group size is 10 and the maximum is 16. We loved the small group size and really appreciated having many of the sites we visited to ourselves.

ITINERARY
We will be sharing more details about the islands and activities in future posts, but we just wanted to give a brief overview of our itinerary here. Our tour led us to the four islands in the Galapagos with a human population. The adventure tour is an active tour, and while we had downtime here and there, we were on the go most of the trip.
On our last night in Quito, we met up with our fellow tour group participants and Mauro from Galakiwi, and we were filled in on what our land based adventure tour was going to look like. The next morning we flew to the islands, where our first stop was San Cristobal. We went biking through the highlands, had several SUP sessions, went snorkeling and explored the streets of San Cristobal.