Galapagos 

 

The Galapagos Islands are astounding, and not only because they represent the birthplace of our modern understanding of evolution. Nearly 1,000 miles off the western coast of Ecuador, the archipelago is synonymous with adventure, adrenaline and a rich diversity of wildlife and landscapes.  Sea turtles, marine iguanas, seals, blue footed boobies, giant tortoises, albatrosses, and turtles are just a few of the species you'll encounter while snorkeling and hiking your way across the islands.

Some islands boast beaches of black, white and even green sand which stretch empty as far as the eye can see while other islands spiked with sharp volcanic rock are less hospitable. Throughout the trip, Program Leaders will help students understand the Galapagos within the larger context of international conservation efforts and facilitate opportunities for students to engage in meaningful ways to contribute to the good health of this miraculous natural wonder.

 

Learn more about our collaboration with the Smithsonian Institution, allowing us to offer a new collection of unrivaled and dynamic programs designed uniquely for high school students.

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Angela’s 2019 Galapagos Program

Walking Tree Travel specializes in customized group travel. The itinerary below is from a recent program and is provided here as an example of just one of many experiences that are possible in this destination.

Travel from USA to Quito, Ecuador. Upon arrival, we will head to our hotel in Quito this evening and have a brief orientation meeting before our morning departure to the islands.

 

Today we fly 600 miles over the Pacific Ocean to reach the Galapagos Islands. After landing in Baltra, we will take a ferry across the Itabaca Channel and experience a variety of ecosystems as we drive to the highlands of Santar Cruz Island where giant tortoises roam in the mist. In the afternoon, we will go sea kayaking in nearby grottoes in search of sea lions, blue footed boobies, marine iguanas, and more! At night, we'll retreat to our tents and fall asleep under the stars.

 

Today, we drive down to Puerto Ayora and visit to the famous Darwin Research Station. Upon arrival, we'll dive into our volunteer work with local authorities. We'll receive an expert lecture, then get into the field to lend a hand on a research project or conservation effort. Projects can range from tracking wild giant tortoises, to biodiversity surveys, to working on a restorative ecology project for endemic plant species. More details on your project will be laid out in the weeks prior to your departure.

 

We'll take a "speedboat" over to Isabela Island. Today is our most challenging adventure yet. We'll hike up to the rim of Sierra Negra, the second largest caldera in the world and an active volcano. We'll see firsthand the geological processes that shaped these islands, and spot wildlife on the way. We'll retreat to a locally-run camp in the highlands where we'll meet a man who raises and cares for giant tortoises.

 

After an early breakfast we go on a 45 minute boat ride to a world famous site where we will snorkel through lava tunnels and amongst a stunning array of marine life. Our local guide will explain the significance of the Galapagos as an oasis for marine species, and we'll see the evidence firsthand. It's not uncommon to see blue-footed boobies, green sea turtles, and sharks as we glide over beds of anemones and corals.

 

Today we'll make our return from the islands to Quito. Upon arrival in the capital, we will have dinner in the historic center and celebrate our great adventure.

 

Today we fly back to the USA!

 

Teacher Spotlight

Angela
Spanish Teacher, Florida

"Galápagos is definitely an experience of a lifetime that must be done with guides from Walking Tree who know the must do and must see of the islands!"

All-Inclusive Program Tuition

$3,990 + Plane and world iconInternational Flight

Program Types in this Destination

Service AdventuresConservation ExpeditionsCultural Journeys

Don’t see your area of interest highlighted in the itinerary above?
Plan your own customized trip today!

Program Tuition Includes

All accommodations

Three meals per day

Ground transportation

Drinking water

Full time leadership team

Group activity and entry fees

Taxes and tips

Estimated airfare*

Not included: Baggage fees, Airline minor fees, Passport/visa fees, Laundry, Souvenirs, Activities not listed on the itinerary.

*Estimated airfare: In order to give our travelers the best possible price, we break out airfare from the Program Tuition. We will still handle all booking and ticketing via our flight partner who has access to special fares not available to the general public. Families will be invoiced for the flight once we are able to secure the best airfare for the group.

Global Leadership Activities

Walking Tree Travel has developed tools that will help our travelers mature as global leaders before, during, and after their travel program. These simple, engaging activities are meant to spark discussion, frame the group’s experience, and prepare participants to travel ethically and effectively on our programs now and on their own into the future. Our activities also encourage students to take initiative as leaders in their local communities to make a difference at an immediate level, helping them to understand the impact they can have when they combine cultural understanding with personal and social responsibility.

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