Holiday in Ecuador, tailormade

“Experience Ecuador's ancient sites, rainforest trails and wildlife-filled rivers before flying to the Galapagos Islands for a 5 day sailing cruise.”

Highlights

Guided tour of historic Quito | Spend a night in an eco-lodge within Napo Wildlife Centre | Guided nature walks in the Ecuadorian Amazon | Dug out canoe rides on Napo River | 5 day sailing cruise around the Galapagos Islands accompanied by a naturalist guide |

Description of Holiday in Ecuador, tailormade

This trip gives you a taste of the variety which Ecuador has to offer. Explore the Amazon rainforest at Napo Wildlife Centre - take hikes, birdwatch, and explore the rainforest canopy. Discover colonial Quito and spend your last week on a wonderful wildlife cruise in the Galapagos Islands.

Your journey begins with an exploration of colonial Quito then continues with a visit to a wonderful rainforest lodge in the Ecuadorian Amazon.

Napo Wildlife Centre is in a picturesque setting on the edge of a lake in the heart of primary forest, along the Napo River. It is an excellent eco-lodge, paying particular attention to environmental sustainability and working with a local quichua community.

The accommodation is in 10 double cabanas (each with their own shower and toilet) built to local native design and in keeping with the surroundings. Each cabana has a private terrace and overlooks Añangu Lake. There are many activities you can enjoy here.

Guided walks are lead by a local guide as well as an English speaking naturalist which gives an interesting perspective on the forest and its traditional usage. You can go on river excursions in a dugout canoe, and maybe take a night excursion (walking trip or by canoe) with your guide to view nocturnal wildlife. For activities, guests are split into groups of 8 or so. There is also a 35m high viewing tower, which gives you an unparalleled view across the primary rainforest canopy. It is a top spot for keen birdwatchers with 565 species having been recorded in the area, and there are two parrot and parakeet clay licks to delight both birders and natural history enthusiasts. There are several monkey species in the area, including some that can only be found on the south bank of the Napo River, and Giant Otters inhabit the lake.

The final week of your trip is a wonderful cruise around the Galapagos Islands. A visit to the Galapagos is one of the world's greatest wildlife experiences. It is a unique environment, an archipelago right on the equator, 600 miles west of the Ecuadorian coast, where a remarkable range of life exists with absolutely no fear of man. Some of the famed inhabitants of the islands include the blue-footed boobies, frigate birds, flightless cormorants, the Galapagos waved albatross, sea lions and fur seals, land iguanas and marine iguanas (the only sea-going lizard in the world), and of course the giant Galapagos tortoise.

Your home is a comfortable prestige class yacht. The crew includes a first class naturalist guide who will accompany you each day on the various islands and explain all about the flora and fauna you will come across. As well as the land trails, you will also have an opportunity to go swimming and snorkelling, perhaps even being joined by sea lions. Many of the longer distances are covered at night, ensuring that your time on the islands is put to the best use.

Travel Team

If you'd like to chat about this holiday or need help finding one we're very happy to help. The Travel Team.

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Departure information

This trip can be arranged at any time to suit you, and adapted to your requirements as necessary
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Holiday type

Tailor made holidays

This trip can be tailor made to create a unique holiday for your individual requirements by travel experts with intimate knowledge of the destination. It is a more luxurious trip that will suit those who enjoy immersing themselves in new cultures and environments before relaxing in comfort. As this trip can be tailor made it would be helpful if you could you provide the following information: rough budget per person (stating with or without flights), your address and postcode, contact phone number, preferred date of travel, length of trip, number of passengers, preferred countries and areas within those countries, specific interests & type of accommodation.

Responsible tourism

Holiday in Ecuador, tailormade

Carbon reduction

Your holiday will help support local people and conservation. We must also reduce CO2. Learn about the CO2 emissions of this holiday and how to reduce them.

At the company location in the UK there are fifteen staff members. Of these, four work from home (no commuting), one who cycles twenty miles a day to & from work, and another cycles ten miles a day (in summer). The new office that was recently built is very energy efficient. It is well-insulated, the roof is shaded by trees which helps with the building not overheating during the summer months and therefore air-conditioning is not a daily requirement, and it has lots of natural light to reduce electric light usage whenever possible.

The company is located on a former farm and the directors grow fruit and vegetables which are shared with the team (apples, pears, blackcurrants, broad beans, lettuce, mint, courgettes, squashes etc!), so we keep our own footprint low. In addition, there are other members of staff that have home grown products that are available to their team members. As a company, we look to buy energy-efficient computers, and believe in recycling, so the latest computers bought have been both energy efficient and re-conditioned.

As part of our commitment to the environment we have a programme to plant trees in Tanzania, Malawi, Peru etc. through the company’s foundation. This was set up to help alleviate poverty, conserve endangered wildlife, and protect earth’s environmental diversity for the benefit of us all. All the projects have a link with tourism in some way, and many benefit the wider world as well as local people, through conserving areas of natural beauty. We don’t just look overseas when considering the environment, even at the office the team planted tress in the fields surrounding the buildings to celebrate the company’s 21st birthday in 2019.

As a company we think about our partners overseas carefully. Whereas it is not always possible for them, due to their locations in remote areas, the company ethos is to use properties around the globe that have a similar ethical stance to ourselves. If they can use local suppliers for their provisions, be it food or furnishings then they do, and all offer a variety of menus including vegetarian and vegan/plant-based options. Our partners support the use of solar/renewable energies, and many are looking at ways of switching their current supplies to more eco-friendly options in order to be more efficient. The use of solar, water and air are options in use or being explored, as well as grey water run offs. Energy efficient appliances and practices, card operated in room lighting, low energy bulbs, and a change in laundry practices, are all in operation, and show just a few of the initiatives used. Our partners also use local staff within their properties. Many live on-site in seasonal properties for example reducing the travel emissions of the company, many come from the local villages and communities surrounding the properties. This includes everyone from house keeping to management and the guides that are from the locale.

Due to the nature of the holidays provided by the company, it is impossible to eliminate all flights but where possible we use the minimum flight hours an itinerary can operate with. The packages we have on offer include rail portions in some areas, which keep emissions low, many walking options and shared transportation.

Environment

Napo Wildlife Centre works direct with the Quichua community of Añangu. It is the only first class, community-based lodge within Yasuni National Park and is 100% owned by the community.

They started the lodge construction by themselves in about 1998 as ecotourism was identified by them as their way to preserve their land, culture and traditions and give a better future to their children.

For every person that travels with the company, it plants trees through The Travel Forest initiative. Depending on where they plant and the requirement of the specific area, they plant either indigenous trees or a mix of indigenous and non-native species. Planting non-native seedlings may seem counter-intuitive but doing this can often help any remaining indigenous forest from being cut down (e.g. for fuel) as some non-native trees grow much more quickly than indigenous types. They particularly aim to save ancient or older indigenous forest, through offering an alternative option for fuel requirements of local communities. In addition to this benefit, their Travel Forest initiative helps with such things as planting for water-course retention, soil erosion, shade and even food – all depending on what is planted and where. They have planted almost 100,000 trees to date in various degraded locations including the Andean mountains in Peru, northern Tanzania and Malawi. This has always been done in conjunction with the local communities who plant and then tend the seedlings. Trees are far more important to the health of this planet (and us) than many people imagine. This global Travel Forest initiative can and does make a big difference.

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