Ecuador railway holiday with Galapagos cruise

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Departure information

This trip can be tailor made throughout the year to suit your requirements
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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Ecuador railway holiday with Galapagos cruise

Environment

We understand that travel and tourism can both benefit and harm the environment, the economy, the social structure, culture and communities in any country. As a company we love Latin America and strive to protect the rural and urban landscapes which we take you to visit. As members of AITO, we are committed to AITO’s Sustainable Tourism Guidelines, which means that we ensure that environmental and cultural demands are kept as low as possible.

We also support the LATA Foundation, who run social and environmental projects throughout the continent. Currently, they support a youth-led campaign aiming to reduce the damaging effects of plastics in the Galápagos Islands. During 2018, the Galapagos Conservations Trust and the local environmental community group Grupo Eco Cultural Organizado aim to reduce plastic bag use on San Cristobal island by 50% through raising awareness across the local community. They organise educational and training programmes in cooperation with local businesses and schools.

We also work with local operators which have a proven record in training guides to set a good example in their respect for their surroundings and pass on advice and encouragement to visitors on how to preserve the fragile environment in simple ways, such as by refilling a water bottle, disposing of rubbish responsibly, not disturbing local communities or wildlife and not purchasing items made from endangered animals or plants.

Furthermore, on this journey you will travel by train on day 3 – 6 and cruise the Galápagos Islands on day 7 -12. In addition, you will join a guided walking tour of colonial Quito and El Panecillo, and will have the chance to explore the Galápagos Islands on foot. These modes of transport will reduce the carbon output significantly, as well as provide you with unique views on Ecuador and the Galápagos Islands.

Finally, as a company we support the Galapagos Conservation Trust, the only UK registered charity to focus exclusively on the conservation and sustainability of the Galapagos archipelago. They have supported a vast array of projects since its launch in 1995, including pioneering projects across science, education and culture and raising awareness of Galapagos in the UK. The Trust strives to ensure the Galapagos archipelago is protected into the future for the benefit of its unique wildlife and for humankind.

Community

We pride ourselves on delivering our clients truly authentic and unforgettable experiences in Latin America which connect travellers with the people whose country they visit. On this journey you will be driven by steam-powered locomotive across the plains and through the northern valleys to Ibarra, pulling up to visit the woodcarving workshops of San Antonio, experience the traditional food in Andrade Marin and watch a presentation by musicians and weavers at San Roque railway station for example. Also along the Avenue of Volcanoes, the train will pull up at halts and stations in places of interest, including Hacienda La Alegria, where you will witness a horse-back show performed by chagras, traditional Andean cowboys. During these visits you have the opportunity to interact with the local community, and purchase local arts and crafts. This way you can support the local economy and promote the local culture.

Moreover, we strive to use accommodation that reflect the environment they are set in. Hacienda La Danesa in the Guayaquil region for example invites their guests to get under the skin of traditional rural life in Ecuador and offers fascinating countryside experiences, such as milking the cows, chocolate making and horseback riding.

Our expert guides are always on hand to provide advice on the best way to communicate with the local community, what and what not to buy, as well as explaining the importance of giving gifts responsibly, and acting in a respectful way while taking photographs.

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