Galapagos Island Hopping

Intrepid Travel Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
4.6 . Excellent
Travel Style: Array Full on
Physical Level: All or most of day hiking or biking, hills included. Moderate
Lodging Level: Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value (3*)
8 days
From: $ 2,338 $ 292 / day
Checking price


Highlights (Bullets)

  • Learn about the unique habits of the marine iguana with your expert naturalist guide. This dinosaur-like little creature has an iridescent sheen and is only found on the Galapagos Islands.
  • Snorkel the incredible waters of Leon Dormido (Kicker Rock), an eroded volcanic cone where sea turtles, rays and colourful fish make their home.
  • Many come to Isla Santa Cruz just for the giant tortoises. Get up close and personal with these enormous animals as they shuffle along.
  • Watch the aerobatic routines of blue-footed boobies and the death-defying stunts of the frigate birds as they whizz through the air.
  • As it begins and ends in the Galapagos (as opposed to mainland Ecuador) it’s easy to stay on if you fall in love with the archipelago.

Short Description

Amazing wildlife, both on land and underwater, is the drawcard of the remote Galapagos Islands. Tour this otherworldly archipelago by foot and boat with an expert naturalist guide to lead the way. Swim with sea turtles, see giant tortoises up close, watch sea lions lounge around town and discover volcanic environments. This tour has you cruising and exploring by day and relaxing on land by night, not at the mercy of the weather for a good night’s sleep.

Style Small group tour
See all the highlights and popular spots on a classic tour.
Itinerary Focus Classic Highlights
Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels.
Lodging Level Value (3*)
Flight & Transport Inclusions All internal ground transport
Start City Isla San Cristobal
End City Isla Santa Cruz


Day 1 Isla San Cristobal, Galapagos

Welcome to San Cristobal in the Galapagos Islands! As you start this trip on the Galapagos Islands you have two options for joining the group, as outlined in Special Information below. After joining up with your fellow travellers and your local naturalist guide, head to La Loberia where you'll put on snorkelling gear for the first time and go for a swim among sea lions, perhaps spotting sea turtles too. Return to town for a free evening. Perhaps head out with the group and enjoy some of the fresh seafood available.

Day 2 Isla San Cristobal

Today begins with a 45-minute boat ride to Leon Dormido (Kicker Rock). On the way we might be able to spot nesting frigates and blue-footed boobies. There is also potential to swim among playful young sea lions. At Leon Dormido you can snorkel and look for sea turtles, manta rays and maybe the odd harmless Galapagos shark. Currents can be quite strong so it's important you are a confident swimmer to participate in this activity. If you have any concerns, please ensure you speak with your leader. Eat lunch on the boat then head to the Interpretation Center. Learn about the history of the 'Enchanted Islands' and the conservation projects which seek to preserve them. Continue to Frigatebird Hill (Cerro Tijeretas), which is located two kilometres from the Interpretation Center. It's quite a climb to the top, but well worth the amazing views of the bay. Return to town in the late afternoon or early evening.

Day 3 Isla Floreana/ Isla Isabela

Take an early morning boat ride towards Isla Floreana, which should take about 2.5 hours. Along the way keep your eyes peeled for wildlife such as dolphins and whales. On arrival to the island, snorkel in the clear blue waters and then break for lunch. Afterwards venture to a black-sand beach which belongs to the Witmers, decedents of some of the first settlers on the Galapagos. The town here, Puerto Velasco Ibarra, has about 150 residents and an intriguing history involving deaths, disappearances and murders. Later in the afternoon, wave goodbye to Floreana and continue to Isla Isabela (approximately 2 hours). From Isabela Port it's a short transfer to the hotel where we will spend the night (approximately 15 minutes).

Day 4 Isla Isabela

Start your second day on Isla Isabela with a short bus ride (approximately 15 minutes) to the Arnaldo Tupiza Tortoise Breeding Center where you'll observe giant tortoises in all stages of development. The centre has almost a thousand giant tortoises preparing for life on their own. Afterwards, head to a brackish lagoon to observe flamingos. In the afternoon, board a small Zodiac (panga) and cruise to Las Tintoreras (Shark Alley), where your naturalist guide will help you look out for blue-footed boobies and the famous Galapagos penguin. On arrival, take a short walk on this isolated islet and popular iguana nesting site. Snorkel in a calm inlet with colourful fish and winding underground lava tubes. This area is frequented by green sea turtles that like to rest on the calm, sandy bottom. In the late afternoon return to town in search of your own sandy resting spot and enjoy your first Isabela sunset, arguably the most beautiful of all the islands.

Day 5 Isla Isabela

Start your last day on Isla Isabela by heading towards the Sierra Negra Volcano (approximately 45 minutes by bus), one of the most active volcanoes in the Galapagos and the second-largest crater in the world. Weather permitting, take a challenging hike of around 17 kilometres up the rocky mountain, which takes 5—6 hours. After the hike, make your way back to town for some free time to curl up with a book or venture down to the water for a relaxing swim before dinner.

Day 6 Isla Isabela / Isla Santa Cruz

Start the day with a kayak around Isabela before transferring by private speedboat to Isla Santa Cruz. Once you arrive on Santa Cruz head to a restaurant that offers a typical Eduadorian lunch package, simply referred to as ‘Menu’. This usually this consists of a fresh juice, a basic entree (usually a soup) and a main meal. These lunch deals are very popular throughout Ecuador so it’s a great way to eat like a local. In the afternoon visit a locally owned sugar cane farm. Here the farmers will show us the ways sugar cane is processed and turned into alcohol. Along the way, keep an eye out for eagle rays, sea turtles and blue-footed boobies. Later, head back to Puerto Ayora.

Day 7 Isla Santa Cruz

In the morning enjoy the Tortuga Bay walk. Visit the highland of Isla Santa Cruz to observe the giant tortoise roaming the wild – your naturalist guide will fill you in on the lives and habits of these fascinating creatures. In the afternoon enjoy free time to further explore the town or go on an optional excursion to the Charles Darwin Research Centre.

Day 8 Isla Santa Cruz, Galapagos

Your Galapagos tour comes to an end after breakfast today.


Checking price
Price From $ 2,338
Price Per Day: $ 292 per day
Checking price
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Oct-01-2023Oct-08-2023$ 2,418Sold Out Reserve
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4,331 Intrepid Travel Travel Reviews & Ratings

4.6 out of 5 (100+ reviews)
Excellent 3,259
Great 675
Average 140
Disappointing 77
Terrible 180

Galapagos Island Hopping

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Intrepid has given us well organised, ethical

Intrepid has given us well organised, ethical trips in beautiful surroundings and accomodation, with excellent and informed guides and contactb with local populations.
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Love adventures but the size of the cabins on our trip to the Cyclades Islands are extremely cramped . We have three mature adults in one cabin with no space to move and no space to hang or store anything ( including wet towels ).
If any of us had been physically inflexible or overweight we could not have coped with the sleeping arrangements . It is impossible to sit on the top bunk and even turning over in bed requires considerable planning .
An adventure does not mean cutting back on basic essentials …
In our view there were too many people in too small a space .
Two complete strangers were also asked to sleep together in an extremely small double bed , which meant that one of them decided to sleep on deck or in the living space .
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I would recommend this trip if the numbers were reduced .
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I feel totally cheated

I feel totally cheated. Just finished the Spain and Portugal 14 day trip. The itinerary does not match the actual experience and is I feel deliberately miss leading. When I says a “local bus” and an approx 3 hour journey the reality is a 6 hour trip door to door in the middle of the day. You miss valuable time at the actual destination in favour of being jammed in a bus with dozens of people traveling on a freeway with nothing worth seeing at all. The bush are not even express so you stop in the industrial outskirts of a number of towns and even the airport. By the time you finally reach the destination you are tired and frustrated. I want my money back. It’s a cheap experience that you pay a lot of money for.
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Have not even started and not impressed

Booked a premium tour to Israel and paid in full. Once I paid Intrepid changed the tour, not because of operational or safety reasons but on the basis of previous customers feedback. We asked them to keep the tour as it was advertised originally and they suggested we ask our group to see if we can persuade them to go to the original destination once we had arrived in Israel which is simply ridiculous and then I complained so they offered my money back. Not exactly the best resolution now that I already paid for my flights and booked time off separately. Hopefully the tour will be better than my experience so far.
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No help when things go wrong (seriously ill on trip)

Unfortunately, Intrepid is a company I would recommend being wary of. They are fine as long as everything is going ok, but if anything goes wrong? Don't expect any help or decent customer service. I made the mistake of booking two trips, and both times I ran into problems:

Trip 1- I was taken very ill while in Vietnam and had to drop out of the tour. I had no help from the guide- no help with getting to a doctor (I don't speak Vietnamese and was too ill to get out of bed anyway), he didn't even assist with arranging a hotel room.

Trip 2- I've had to cancel an upcoming (2024) trip, but haven't received the refund despite phoning the customer service line several times. The people I talk to are nice, but don't seem to be able to actually get anything done. They just suggest waiting a bit longer- not sure how long they think is acceptable to hang on to someone's money really.
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Check for other companies offtering the same trip

I would think carefully before doing business with Intrepid Travel again. In May I went on 2 one-week guided cycle tours in France with Intrepid. They were both great cycles and I enjoyed the cycling very much. However, I had several complaints about the company and some of the guides (not all of them).
Once I had paid for my trips, it was very difficult to get in touch with Intrepid to ask a question.
During the trips, several times I was told something one day only to have the info change without any good reason. The guides need proper training about dealing with the heat. Some of use suffered from dehydration and heat stroke and the guides were quite flippant about it. I was told that the guides would not leave anyone behind, but it happened several times.
There was one guide (a trainee) who really took some of the pleasure out of my cycle tour. She spoke to me with a tone used for a child. This tone and her attitude to me almost bordered on harassment.
I went on a third cycling tour with a different company after my 2 with Intrepid and it was much better than my experience with Intrepid.
As the demand for ebikes rises, tour companies such as Intrepid need to increase their fleet of ebikes. They also don’t need to charge the huge amount to rent these ebikes. We only want to rent them, not buy them. As the cost of ebikes comes down, if should reflect in the rental price.
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Flight & Transport Inclusions

All internal ground transport Boat,Public bus,Speed Boat,Private Vehicle

Group Size

Small Group - 24 max

Maximum Number of People in Group: 16


Hotel (7 nights)


All group trips are accompanied by one of our group leaders. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. Intrepid endeavours to provide the services of an experienced leader however, due to the seasonality of travel, rare situations may arise where your leader is new to a particular region or training other group leaders. Your leader will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense, you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the places visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious, and social aspects. At Intrepid we aim to support local guides who have specialised knowledge of the regions we visit. If you are interested in delving deeper into the local culture at a specific site or location then your leader can recommend a local guide service in most of the main destinations of your trip. On this trip you'll be met by a local representative in Quito on Day 1 and on return to Quito on the second last day, and a Naturalist guide will accompany you on the Galapagos Islands.

Age Notes :

Min. Age: 15

Max Age: 99

Additional Information

Finish point

  • Lobo de Mar Hotel
  • 12 de febrero y Avenida Charles Darwin
  • Isla Santa Cruz
  • Phone: 593 526569

Trip ID#:


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