Galapagos Islands Cruise: Aboard the National Geographic Islander: Nov 29—Dec 08, 2008

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Price: $5,995
Lowest cabin price
Departs: Quito
Tour Limit: 43
Operations Manager: Shirley Anderson
Download Itinerary: PDF (176.1 KB)

Route Map


Tour Leaders


Victor Emanuel

Victor Emanuel started birding in Texas 69 years ago at the age of eight. His travels have t...


Barry Lyon

Barry Lyon's passion for the outdoors and birding has its roots in his childhood in southern...


Michael O'Brien

Michael O'Brien is a freelance artist, author, and environmental consultant living in Cape M...


Louise Zemaitis

Louise Zemaitis is an artist and naturalist living in Cape May, New Jersey where she is a po...

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Register for this tour by phone (800/328-VENT or 512/328-5221), or by downloading a tour registration form. Signed and completed forms can be faxed, mailed, or scanned and emailed to the VENT office.

Blue-footed Boobies

Blue-footed Boobies— Photo: Greg Greer

Follow the path of Darwin on an exploration of the famed Galapagos Islands, aboard the M/V Evolution.

By any measure, the Galapagos Islands are one of the world’s premier travel destinations. The sheer abundance of wildlife, the amazing volcanic setting, and the historical significance of the islands make them irresistible to travelers from all over the globe. VENT and International Expeditions are teaming up to bring you the opportunity to participate in a voyage through these enchanted islands aboard the 32-guest M/V Evolution.

This remarkable journey brings face-to-face encounters with the extraordinary natural wonders of one of the world’s most beloved destinations. With an experienced staff of naturalists we will observe, at close range, wildlife that does not fear people and is so abundant that we may have to watch our footing to avoid disturbing the nap of a resting sea lion or a passing iguana.

giant tortoise

Giant Tortoise— Photo: Michael O’Brien

Animal life varies from island to island, but we will seek the majority of the birds and animals that have made the Galapagos justly famous. Giant Tortoises, Marine Iguanas, Sally Lightfoot Crabs, Flightless Cormorants, Waved Albatrosses, and Galapagos Penguins are all to be expected, while the Galapagos finches of Darwin fame will be sought as well. This itinerary visits eight islands.

We will make efforts to find most of the endemic bird species, but a person shouldn’t come to the Galapagos for anything less than a complete natural history experience. On board the Evolution, a team of Ecuadorian naturalists work with your VENT leaders to provide a premium travel experience, ensuring that you will depart with enough knowledge and memories to last a lifetime.

M/V Evolution

M/V Evolution— Photo: International Expeditions

Newly renovated in 2017, the Evolution is well-suited for plying waters where larger ships cannot go, and its fleet of Zodiacs guarantees that we will gain even closer access to the wildlife and reach wide open beaches of varying color. Glorious sunsets and walks on lonely beaches complement exciting snorkeling trips amid tropical fish, curious sea lions, and penguins.

An optional Tandayapa Pre-trip provides an opportunity to sample the species-rich cloud forests of the spectacular northwestern Andean slopes, where highlights include the world’s greatest hummingbird show, and colorful toucans, tanagers, and barbets.

Those interested in extending their trip are encouraged to join one of two optional extensions. Our Machu Picchu Extension visits the incomparable ancient capital of the Inca in addition to seeking many of the special birds of the Peruvian Andes in the regions of Cuzco and the Urubamba River Valley. Our Best of Amazonia Extension spends several days at the exquisite Napo Wildlife Center in the heart of the Amazonian lowlands of eastern Ecuador, where we’ll seek a huge array of birds and animals characteristic of the Amazon ecosystem.

A well-appointed small cruise ship providing all meals and accommodations; walking conditions easy to moderate, some rocky terrain; mild weather with cool mornings and warm sunny days; fog and light rain possible in the highlands.