Adventure Photography Photo Tours

We'd love to have you join us!
Tropicbird

GALAPAGOS ISLANDS PHOTO TOUR


Ecuador Rain Forest Included!

March 13-25, 2017

$6,295

Deposit: $750

Run in conjunction with Strabo Tours.
Sign up here:
Strabo Tours Galapagos Islands

**See itinerary below.




Trip Highlights:
  • 12-day land and cruise program to the Galápagos Islands, including Tandayapa Lodge & Guayaquil, Ecuador.
  • SIGN UP EARLY: 4 cabins with double bed on Main Deck, 2 cabins on Lower Deck with double bed, and 2 cabins on Lower Deck with bunk beds.
  • Price includes Quito/Galapagos Islands/Guayaquil Airfare and Galapagos National Park Fee.
  • 7-night cruise aboard the 16-passenger catamaran yacht The Lonesome George. The small boat experience provides the most in-depth and personal way to experience the islands.
  • Features of the yacht include: safety, comfort, eight air-conditioned cabins, private bathrooms, hot water, library, dining inside and out, bar, and sundeck
  • Two evenings at Tandayapa Lodge nestled with in the cloudforest, renowned for bird and butterfly photography.
  • Departure limited to 14 participants to optimize your photographic experience.
March 13: Home - Quito
Today we fly to Quito*, Ecuador. At 9,000 feet in elevation, Quito is one of the world’s highest capitals. The majority of flights land late evening, all participants will be transferred to hotel in city center. Overnight Anahi Boutique Hotel. *Your international flight will need to be multi-city: Home-UIO/GYE-Home
Jacobin
March 14-15: Tandayapa Andean Cloud Forest

Start out after breakfast to explore the western slope of the Andes and get our first taste of hummingbird, and tropical bird photography. There will be a birding and photography tour at Yanacocha Reserve and lunch at a lovely country house on the way to our lodge. Tandayapa Lodge was designed by birders, for birders, with the goal of saving and preserving the forest and diverse ecosystem. There will be two days filled with photographing hummingbirds such as the Purple-bibbed Whitetip, Booted racket-tail, and White-necked Jacobin. We will also photograph hummingbirds at the many feeders around the grounds. At Tandayapa lodge many birds come to feed on the insects that are attracted to the lights on the walls during the night: Streak-capped Treehunter, Tricolored and White-winged Brush-Finches, Gray-breasted Wood-Wren, Slat-throated Whitestart, White-winged Becard, Dusky-capped Flycatcher, and Three-striped Warbler are among the regular visitors. Mixed flocks of tanagers often pass through, stopping to feed on fruiting bushes at the right time of year, and Blue-winged Mountain-Tanagers, White-winged Brush-Finches, and Red-headed Barbets come to eat the fruit put out for them outside the lounge windows, sometimes bringing Crimson-rumped Toucanets with them.

The next day will be a very early departure to Angel Paz birding reserve, we’ll take a box lunch to maximize our time there. The reserve is known for the Andean Cock-of-the-rock and Giant Antpitta. You will have time to explore the varied trails, allowing time to photograph as a group, or wander on your own. You can also photograph forest dwelling birds such as Rufous-breasted Antthrush, Moustached, Scaled, and Ochre-breasted Antpittas, Dark-backed Wood-Quail, and White-throated Quail-Dove. Tandayapa Lodge (B, L, D each day)
Tanager
March 16: Milpe Reserve - Quito

Today you return to Quito in the evening. As you drive back there will be another box lunch day so the group can maximize your time at Milpe Reserve for birding and photography. This reserve is protected by the Mindo Cloud Forest Foundation.Overnight Anahi Hotel (B, L)
Marine iguanas
March 17: Quito - Baltra

Rise, early this morning as you will be returned to the Quito airport for your group flight to the Galápagos and begin your exciting week of discovery on board the private yacht Lonesome George. The flight lands at Baltra, where we will be met and escorted to the boat. We will take some time to get situated on board, while the crew takes care of formalities ashore. Next, we are on our way to visit nearby, Punta Carrion, on the northern shore of Santa Cruz Island. We will have our first introduction to the Galápagos marine iguana.

Each day we will spend the mornings exploring an island, and then return to the boat for lunch. Early afternoons are for relaxing, as we sail on to the next destination for an afternoon shore excursion, and the possibility of snorkeling. Every evening after dinner the guides will brief us on the next day’s activities, the animals and habitats we will see, and the conditions we will encounter. (b, l, d)
Seal lions
March 18: North Seymour

North Seymour Island is a natural haven for some of the most sought after residents in the Galapagos Islands, the Blue-Footed Booby. A nature trail meanders leisurely through large colonies of nesting Frigate birds and Blue-Footed Boobies. Just off shore you can often witness the original Galapagos surf club members, Sea Lions riding the crashing waves all the way into shore. (b, l, d)
Galapagos penguin
March 19: Bartolome Island & Santiago Island

Your first stop today visit Bartolome, which lies off the east coast of Santiago Island, and is most likely the first island in the Galapagos to have risen from the sea. It is highly volcanic and is dotted with recent craters, appearing most barren, colorful, and primeval. The swimming beach is white sand, backed by a bit of shade. Those who choose to snorkel should find the waters here most interesting; Galapagos penguins have become regulars here, and if present, may take the opportunity to swim with you as you snorkel. From time to time, green sea turtles nest at night on these beaches as well.

This afternoon, will be at Sullivan Bay, Santiago Island, historically a favorite stop for pirates and whalers. Exciting wildlife-viewing opportunities here include a fur seal grotto, a lagoon that is home to pink flamingos, and the chance to see Galapagos Hawks and Vermillion Flycatchers. Puerto Egas, with its black sand beaches, was the site of a small salt mining industry in the 1960’s; a hike inland to the salt crater is an excellent opportunity to spot land birds such as finches, doves, and hawks.  (b, l, d)
Frigate bird displaying
March 20: Genovesa or Rabida

Named after an 18th century British admiral, John Jervis, the Earl of St. Vincent, Isla Rabida is also commonly known by its English name of Jervis Island. Known for its unique reddish-maroon terrain, Isla Rabida is also home to large populations of sea lions, pelicans and flamingoes. An alternative (with National Park approval) for today may be the island of Genovesa. The northeastern most island in the Galapagos Archipelago, Isla Genovesa or Tower Island is a small island with no real tourist visitor sites, this place is actually one of the best islands to go bird watching for various seabirds. You can see not only large colonies of red-footed boobies, but nests of frigatebirds, swallow-tailed gulls, red-billed tropicbirds, storm petrels and masked boobies as well. Some other birds that have been spotted here as well include the endemic Galapagos Dove and short-eared owls. (b, l, d)
Flamingo
March 21: Santa Cruz - Santa Fe

This morning we’ll visit Tortuga Bay on Santa Cruz Island. Tortuga Bay is a favorite place for sea turtles, sea lions, marine iguanas, pelicans, flamingos and lava gulls which are endemic to the Islands and are commonly found along the shore of most beaches. It takes around an hour walk to get to the beach. You'll be able to see beautiful birds including the famous Galapagos finches as you walk. There are two beaches separated by Red Mangrove.

Santa Fé Island is one of the most picturesque anchorages within the archipelago. Its beauty is best appreciated from the trail, which climbs the fault cliff that overlooks the southern half of the bay. This plateau is also the best place to find the large land iguanas that are endemic to this island. Often they can be seen beneath the imposing Opuntia cacti that are also particular to Santa Fé. There is another shorter trail along the shoreline where these giant cactus trees can be appreciated; near dusk this is a good area to glimpse the small endemic rice rats scurrying among the rocks and fallen pads. The two beaches are sleeping grounds for sea lions, and snorkeling near the small island by the entrance of the bay can be very rewarding. (b, l, d)
Land iguana
March 22: South Plaza Island

The Plaza Islands (North and South) were created by the uplifting of tectonic action. The vegetation belongs to the arid zone and is represented by annual plants such as Sesuvium and by Opuntia cactus. South Plaza is a good place for observing yellow-brown land iguanas, and a large colony of sea lions which inhabits the island. We will observe swallowtail gulls, tropicbirds, frigates, and blue-footed and masked boobies. From the steep cliff we may see turtles, rays, or sharks in the waters below. A tour here puts you face to face with Sea Lion pups, Land Iguanas, Sally Lightfoot Crabs, and various nesting sea birds. In fact, South Plaza has one of the largest Sea Lion colonies in the entire Galapagos Archipelago. On land, you can see Red and Yellow Land Iguanas, Swallow-tailed Gulls, Red-billed Tropicbirds, Audubon’s Shearwaters, Nazca and Blue-footed Boobies, Frigates and more. (b, l, d)
Blue footed booby
March 23: Isla Lobos - Cerro Brujo, San Cristobal

On Ilsa Lobos there is a small population of blue-footed boobies and common frigate birds nesting on this site. You can observe the two species of sea lions present in the archipelago. During the tour you go through a dry vegetation zone, substrate of volcanic rocks and a sandy area. During the panga tour brown pelicans and several species of shorebirds can be observed; as well as juvenile sea lions, manta rays and sea turtles.

In the afternoon visit San Cristobal Island. Cerro Brujo is a huge white beach found on the west side of the island. The sand here feels like powdered sugar. A colony of sea lions and blue-footed boobies call Cerro Brujo home, and behind the beach is a lagoon where you’ll find great egrets and great blue herons. (b, l, d)
Sea lion pup underwater
March 24: Santa Cruz - Guayaquil

We will make our way back to Santa Cruz Island today, your last visit will be to twin craters or Los Gemelos. These two large pit craters along the road from Puerto Ayora to Baltra were caused by the collapse of empty magma chambers. Visitors can stop along the side of the road and visit both craters, walking around their rims. A circular trail to the larger crater passes through the beautiful Scalesia forest, which is an excellent place to observe terrestrial birds, including Vermilion Flycatchers, Short-eared Owls, the Galapagos Dove, and several finch species.

You will be taken to the airport for your flight to Guayaquil, where you will then be transferred to your hotel. The afternoon is free to either rest & re-pack for your flight home tomorrow, or you will find the hotel is conveniently located with in walking distance or a quick taxi ride to the malecon, Rio Guayas. It is vibrant day or night with several restaurants, shops, and photography along the river. There is also the picturesque barrio of Las Penas,  which you can walk up the Santa Ana hill, with it’s cobblestone, wandering streets to photograph the tiny church atop the hill. Overnight Guayaquil (b)
March 25: Guayaquil - Home
You will be returned to the Guayaquil airport this morning for flights home. (b)