Galápagos + Peru's Land of the Inca - Endeavour II
Machu Picchu and a visit to the Galapagos Islands are a perfect combination. This award-winning operator is offering what we consider to be the "gold standard" for this itinerary.
Gala & Peru: Drink It In
Welcome Aboard the
National Geographic Endeavour II
Embark on a sweeping adventure that encapsulates all the wildness of Galápagos balanced with the cultural and historic experiences of Machu Picchu & Peru's Land of the Inca. You’ll explore the Galápagos in depth aboard the 96-guest National Geographic Endeavour II, a fully-equipped expedition ship with tools for exploration. Encounter abundant wildlife—snorkel with sea lions and hike the highlands among giant tortoises. Then journey to contemporary Lima and historic Cusco, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Overnight at Machu Picchu and enjoy the luxury of a second day with options like an early hike out to the iconic Sun Gate, the final checkpoint on the Inca Trail.
- • Have up-close encounters with Galápagos wildlife and explore the undersea, too via fantastic snorkeling and this ship's underwater viewing device.
• Enjoy two days at Machu Picchu so you can see the sunset and the sunrise if you like.
• Benefit from this operator's 50+ years of experience and relationships in the Galápagos Islands.
Travel Curator’s Insights:
Trip Sustainability Awards
Fantastic advances in minimizing carbon footprints at locations.
On the East African Energy Renewal Board
Runs local educational facilities for children.
Day 1: U.S./Guayaquil, Ecuador
Upon arrival in Guayaquil, transfer to the Hotel Oro Verde Guayaquil. Ask your Travel Curator about extra nights.
Accommodation: Hotel Oro Verde
Day 2: Guayaquil / Galápagos / Embark Ship
This morning, fly to the Galápagos Islands and board National Geographic Endeavour II. After lunch, we begin our exploration of the islands and their remarkable wildlife.
Days 3-8: Exploring the Galápagos Islands
Listed below is a sample of islands we may visit during our expedition. All ship itineraries are subject to Galápagos National Park regulations.
North Seymour: Follow coastal trails past playful Galápagos sea lions on this wildlife-rich central island. Continue inland through a silvery forest of endemic palo santo trees, where frigatebirds nest, blue-footed boobies dance, and where we may also encounter prehistoric-looking land iguanas feeding on cactus.
Fernandina: One of the most active oceanic volcanoes in the world, Fernandina is the youngest and most pristine island in Galápagos— and home to the strange flightless cormorant, Galápagos penguins and the largest marine iguanas. Hikes ashore lead across impressive recent lava flows.
Española: See swallow-tailed gulls, Española mockingbirds, Nazca boobies and, seasonally, the world’s only population of waved albatross at this birdy paradise, also home to vividly colored marine iguanas. Watch sea lions on the wide sand beach, and snorkel offshore, at Gardner Bay.
Floreana: Follow a trail past a rose pink-tinted lagoon frequented by flamingos. Snorkel among sea lions and abundant fish, or cruise along Champion Islet by Zodiac. Visit the famous barrel at Post Office Bay.
Santa Cruz: Visit Puerto Ayora, the largest town and headquarters of both the Galápagos National Park and Charles Darwin Research Station. See the monument to Lonesome George, and tour the giant tortoise breeding corrals. See the giant tortoises roaming in the wild in the lush, green highlands.
Bartolomé: Climb the steps to the summit of this 300-foot volcanic wonderland for stunning views. Explore, swim and snorkel from the beach. You might even see Galápagos penguins, one of the world’s rarest.
Santiago: Explore tide pools and look for fur seals sheltered in quiet grottos of black basalt. Swim, snorkel, kayak and paddleboard along Santiago’s spectacular coast, and explore an enchanting coastal forest where Charles Darwin once walked.
Genovesa: Sail across the Equator to the remote northern realm of the Galápagos, surrounded by warmer tropical waters.
San Cristobal: Search for red-footed boobies and the endemic mockingbird and lava lizard—found only on this easternmost island, and dig your toes into the powdery white sand at a gorgeous beach fronted by iconic Kicker Rock. Explore Baquerizo Moreno, where sea lions thrive in the middle of town.
Day 9: Galápagos/Guayaquil/Lima, Peru
Depart Galápagos this morning and fly to Lima, Peru. Overnight at the conveniently located Wyndham Costa del Sol Lima Airport Hotel.
Accommodation: Wyndham Costa del Sol
Day 10: Lima/Cusco/Sacred Valley of the Inca
This morning we board our flight over the Andes to Cusco. Upon arrival, drive through the fabled and fertile Urubamba Valley to Moray—a visually stunning Inca site known for its agricultural terraces. After lunch and an opportunity to experience a local market, check-in at Sol y Luna for two nights. This serene Relais & Chateaux hotel entices with individual adobe casitas set in a verdant garden.
Accommodation: Sol y Luna
Day 11: Sacred Valley of the Inca
Spend the day exploring the archaeological sites and culture of the Sacred Valley in the company of National Geographic expert Peter Frost, who has lived and worked in Peru for decades. He (or occasionally a colleague, if he is in the field) joins us for a talk at the hotel and continues with us to Ollantaytambo, where massive stone walls stand sentry over a thriving Inca community. Lunch is nearby at a working, family-owned hacienda. Here we are also treated to a show of Peruvian Paso horses, and National Geographic grantee Nilda Callañaupa, founder of El Centro de Textiles Tradicionales de Cusco, joins us to demonstrate Inca weaving traditions. Dinner tonight is at the hotel.
Accommodation: Sol y Luna
Day 12: Sacred Valley/Machu Picchu
This morning marvel at the tropical Andean scenery and life along the river from the panoramic windows on the train to Machu Picchu —the Inca royal retreat famously introduced to the world by Hiram Bingham in the April 1913 issue of National Geographic magazine. Set at less than 8,000 feet, the sanctuary is set in tropical mountain forest with diverse birds and orchids. Check-in at the historic 31-room Belmond Sanctuary Lodge, adjacent to the World Heritage site, with the leisure to explore over the two days in the company of our hand-picked tour director and local guides. We linger after day-visitors are long gone. Lunch and dinner is at the Hotel's private Tampu Restaurant.
Accommodation: Belmond Sanctuary Lodge
Day 13: Machu Picchu/Cusco
Awaken this morning at Machu Picchu, where our options include an early hike to the Sun Gate, the ancient final checkpoint en route to Machu Picchu on the Inca Trail. After lunch, return through the valley to Cusco, center of the Inca universe and a burgeoning Andean cultural capital. Check-in at the Belmond Hotel Monasterio for two nights in the ancient heart of Cusco. Like many colonial-era buildings, our hotel—founded as a monastery in 1592—stands atop a fountain in the Inca-carved stone.
Accommodation: Belmond Hotel Monasterio
Day 14: Cusco
Explore the magnificently ornate 17th-century cathedral and Plaza de Armas, the sacred Inca Temple of the Sun and other treasures of Cusco this morning. Visit nearby Sacsayhuaman, where impressive terrace walls, some of the finest stonework we've seen yet, command views over the city. Relax, shop, or visit Cusco's many churches and museums this afternoon. Dinner is on your own tonight.
Accommodation: Belmond Hotel Monasterio
Day 15: Cusco/Lima
Return to vibrant, coastal Lima this morning, where on a tour we stroll the Plaza Mayor and delight in a private farewell lunch with a special musical presentation at Casa Aliaga—in the same family for 17 generations. After a visit to the extraordinary Larco Museum, dedicated to preColumbian art, check-in at Belmond Miraflores Park, set along a fashionable seaside promenade. Dinner is on your own.
Accommodation: Belmond Miraflores Park
Day 16: Lima/U.S.
After breakfast, transfer to the airport for flights home—or onto Iquitos and the Amazon.
Sample Airfares: (Airfares are subject to change)
Economy: from $700
Business: from $1,600
Charter(Internal Air ($520-Adult/$350-Child) - Guayaquil/Galapagos)
Air Note: International and internal Ecuador tickets must be issued separately for all Galapagos voyages.
Children: We believe sharing an expedition with your kids or grandkids is a life-enhancing experience. So take $500 off for each child under the age of 18.
Special Air Offer: Free Round Trip Air on Select Dates. Book by July 31, 2021, for FREE ROUND-TRIP economy group airfare from Miami to Galápagos/Lima to Cusco on select 2021 and 2022 departures. Upgrade to Business Class to Guayaquil starting at $750, subject to availability.
All offers are valid for new bookings only, must be ticketed by this operator and are subject to availability at time of booking. In the case that offered Miami flights are no longer available, the operator reserves the right to issue a credit
National Geographic Endeavour II
Born in the cold waters of Patagonia, National Geographic Endeavour II was built for heavy seas. Now, permanently stationed in Galápagos, she comfortably sails the Equator. A floor-to-ceiling rebuild when she repositioned to the tropics meant she could be crafted to perfectly accommodate the Galapagos style of travel. Where she previously carried 136 passengers, she now accommodates just 96 guests in 52 thoughtfully appointed cabins. She is exceptionally nimble and maneuverable, with a shallow draft to get up close, great viewing from all public spaces, an expansive open-air observation deck, large windows in cabins and suites, and state-of-the-art tools for exploration including a glass-bottom boat, underwater cameras, video microscope, plus kayaks and stand-up paddleboards.
Guests have described being aboard Endeavour II as feeling like a cross between a grand floating hotel and scientific research vessel. She is beyond comfortable, and welcoming to solos, groups, and kids of all ages, and equipped for the up-close and personal explorations that makes Galapagos the trip of a lifetime.
Capacity: 96 Guests
Cabins: 52 Cabins
Specialists: National Geographic Experts, National Geographic Photo Coach, Full-Time Doctor, Video Chronicler, and Wellness Coach
2019 Condé Nast Traveler - Best Small Ship Cruise Line in the World
2019 Travel + Leisure - Best Small Ship Ocean Cruise Line
2018 Cruise Critic - Best for Adventure
"The National Geographic Endeavour II is both attractive and perfectly outfitted for scientific exploration. Her cabins are beautifully appointed. Her public areas are spacious and inviting, plus her enthusiastic staff includes highly credentialed, National Geographic-level experts ready to offer you an outstanding Galapagos experience. We consider this ship to be offering the gold standard of Galapagos trips."
Life On Board
Click to enlarge
Combining Machu Picchu with the Galapagos makes sense, not just because you're in the region, yet also because the combination of amazingness-es creates an ideal 2 week vacation.
Joy Martinello, Founder
What’s Included & Cancellation Policy: