Overview & Highlights
This is a great value, short but variety-packed holiday suitable for families and individuals alike. Discover the Avenue of the Volcanoes in Andean Ecuador and explore Santa Cruz Island and further afield in the Galápagos from the well regarded, guesthouse-style Hotel Mainao.
- Ful day excursion to the famous Otavalo market
- Walking tour of historic colonial Quito
- Visit the Cotopaxi National Park and Quilotoa
- 4 days land based exploration in the Galápagos Islands
- Explore Santa Cruz and visit neighbouring islands
You might have thought that a holiday to the remote Pacific Galápagos islands would be prohibitively expensive. While cruising on a yacht can still be pricey, you now have the option of a land-based visit, where you can get to know one or two islands on shared guided day trips by boat. This holiday bases you at the popular Mainao hotel on the principal island, Santa Cruz, with a couple of motor yacht cruises included and a day at leisure to explore the sparking beaches, Puerto Ayora town, visit the Charles Darwin Research Centre or even venture inland to spot giant tortoises. You don't have to decide in advance: book up and pay locally.
Spend a few days on the mainland too, well worth exploring in its own right. Based at historic Quito, visit the famous Andean mountain town Otavalo with its indigenous market and travel down the aptly named Avenue of the Volcanoes, dominated by the towering snow-draped mountain Cotopaxi.
Arrive Quito high in the Andes. Transfer to hotel.
Full day guided tour of the Andean highlands and market towns.
Guided city tour of Quito
Full day excursion to the Avenue of the Volcanoes,Cotopaxi and Quilotoa.
Fly to the Galápagos Islands, transfer to hotel on Santa Cruz Island.
A motor yacht day trip to neighbouring islands.
Full day tour with a local resident
At leisure in the Galápagos, optional excursions.
Fly to Guayaquil; connect with international flight.
Things to do
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What our clients say
97% of our clients rated their experience with us as Excellent or Good.
For me, the Uros Reed Islands. I loved it. The Islands, the boat trip, the people. Incredible. Loved seeing the condors. Loved Cusco and Areequipa. Loved the cable cars. Loved Lake Titicaca. Loved the Sacred Valley. Loved Ollantaytambo.CS, Winscombe
This is my third trip with JLA after a gap of 7 years - and they continue to deliver! A great trip and I cannot wait to go back. Excellent local knowledge, sensitive to local customs and cultures; my only complaint is that it went too quickly!SV, Dundee
Quite simply, this was the best holiday we ever had. The tour leaders role in achieving this cannot be overstated.SW, Great Missenden
Most memorable experience? "There were too many things but Bolivia in general and the Salt Plains in particular were amazing plus the flamingos. I also loved the night on Sun island. I never expected it to be so beautiful."JS, Leeds
An excellent well organised tour. We saw all the major Inca sites & Machu Picchu was amazing, exceeding all expectations. The Galápagos Islands at the end of the tour just blew us away.AH, Stafford
There were so many highlights and wows that it is difficult to say. Macchu Picchu lived up to our expectations and Bolivia was a truly unexpected surprise. Loved Rio and the Iguazu Falls.EG, Pinner
Enjoyed the trip to the equator while in Quito. Loved Alausi, very interesting place, people. Cuenca was lovely, very easy to get around, felt safe, staff at hotel very helpful, happy hour cocktails 2 for 1 delicious! Las Cajas national park very interesting. The Galapagos week was fantastic! Staff really professional, islands and wildlife more than I imagined, learnt to snorkel, scenery fantastic. The group were also really nice, and as a single traveller this made my holiday really special. And on the whole the weather was very sunny and warm. Enjoyed the picnics we had during our trips in the Andes, which the tour leader arranged, especially the exotic fruits which she advised us to try.JC, Bury
"This is my fourth JLA trip and it was as fulfilling and enjoyable as the earlier ones. You run an excellent organisation-and I commend and thank you. I will be back!!"AM, London
I will continue to recommend JLA as one of the best company I have used. The detailed planning of their tour was outstanding, their choice of local guides was excellent.MR, Greenford
Surpassed expectation. The excellent itinerary was enhanced by the tour leaders excellent knowledge and company.PM, Corsham
"The drive across the Salt Flats/Desert in Bolivia - generally the Andean scenery was breathtaking and the drives were something we had never experienced before."RS, Swanage
A really interesting, varied and contrasting tour encapsulating the spirit and culture of the region. Excellent value and made even more enjoyable by a fantastic tour guide.RG, Bishopton
Every day was a highlight - loved the train from Puno to Cusco, and then there is Machu Picchu.RK, Dorchester
The boat trip to the base of the Iguacu falls Argentinian side was exhilarating and awesome. The visit to Machu Pichu was even more impressive than we expected - our optional walk to the Inca bridge in the late afternoon was unforgettable.HJ, Potters Bar
This tour is an excellent introduction to Brazil and will appeal to anyone with an interest in wildlife and landscapes. In the Pantanal, there are excellent chances to get quite close to many birds, mammals and reptiles. But having an armadillo sit on my foot at dinner was quite a surprise.KM, Basingstoke
I saw truly unique scenery and interesting historical buildings & monuments but for me it was wonderful to see all that I did and stay in clean comfortable hotels on this 'Discovery' tour. Thank you JLA.MS, Lymington
The Iguazu Falls were awesome. We enjoyed all the places we visited. I was recommended JLA from someone who had used them before. We were not disappointed. We have had a really good time, seen so much and had the best tour leader. I am certainly going to use them again, and really hope we have Max again. Thank you JLA.CG, Stevenage
Another very interesting and well organised Journey Latin America trip.HM, Nuneaton
Overall the Nandu tour was a wonderful experience. We have seen some stunning scenery, done some reasonably tough hiking and had some fabulous meals. The JLA staff and their representatives have been first class and the food was excellent. The accommodation was mostly very good too. It is a full-on tour so people going on the tour may want to chill-out somewhere at the end of the tour to relax as we did!VJ, London
The Iguacu Falls were spectacular and most likely the most impressive Falls I will ever see. We were absolutely spellbound by the magnitude, scale and layout. Obviously, Machu Picchu takes your breath away. Nature and man-made wonders at their best!PK, Ashton-Under-Lyne
The trip surpassed our expectations and I have already recommended Journey Latin America to friends and even to people I talked to on a bus in Machu Picchu, one of whom was from the U.S.A.
This was such a good trip, with varying sights and weather, from the tropics to perishing Patagonia!AW, Orpington
Iguazu Falls were out of this world. Machu Picchu was very special and the desert was amazing.IM, Solihull
Seeing the people on the Uros islands demonstrate how they cook, the amazing Iguassu Falls, seeing a toucan close up (at Iguassu), all the different Inca sites, seeing the traditional dress and witches market in La Paz, the herbal drinks being explained in Asuncion, sunset on sugarloaf mountain and chilling out on Ilha grande.PW, Leatherhead
Excellent professional service both before and during the holiday. Would certainly recommend Journey Latin America as a company to discover South America with.EW, Weston-Super-Mare
Boat ride through the canyon (just what we needed to blow the cobwebs away after an early start and a long journey). Palenque took my breath away - literally, I climbed to the top of the pyramid! The trip to the two indigenous villages was extremely fascinating.
Lived up to my expectations of seeing 3 countries in one holiday.PM, Arundel
There were many highlights as each area of Colombia visited was very individual and varied giving a good overview of the country - from the well maintained archaeological parks around San Agustin to the friendliness of the local people and hotel staff at the coffee farm we stayed at. Also enjoyed the colonial atmosphere of Cartagena & the boat trip at Mompos. Overall found the country to be very friendly and safe to travel around.SN, Belper
The bright colours of the towns and cities, buildings, fruit and vegetables, flowers and trees!CS, Guildford
We have toured the USA, Europe and China before but the experience we had with JLA was the by far and away the best we've ever had!PD, Stockport
"This was our second trip with you and we have again been very pleased with the whole experience: if we are going to spend such a lot of money on a holiday, we want to know that the company are real experts, and that everything will be done efficiently and professionally. Thank you."LK, Gerrards Cross
Tailor made holiday
Our specialists have been expertly crafting award-winning tailor-made holidays to Latin America for 40 years. We would be delighted to create a truly personalised trip which perfectly matches your wishes and requirements.
Lina Fuller - Travel Expert
Lina's passion for the continent where she was born really took off when she moved to Córdoba (Argentina) to study, spending the holidays travelling between Argentina and her native Colombia.
Inspired by this trip
Our exciting range of articles on Latin America explore everything from iconic destinations and lesser-known cultural gems to delicious traditional recipes. You’ll also find exclusive travel tips, first-hand client reviews and the chance to get your personal questions answered by our travel experts.
Your edit for Latin American inspiration
Our exciting range of articles on Latin America explore everything from iconic destinations and lesser-known cultural gems to delicious traditional recipes. You’ll also find exclusive travel tips, first-hand client reviews and the chance to get your personal questions answered by our travel experts.View Extraordinary Inspiration
Real Latin America Experts
Paul Winrow-Giffin - Travel Expert
After graduating in Computer Science, Paul spent seven months travelling from Colombia to Argentina and came home hooked on Latin America.
Hannah Waterhouse - Travel Expert
Hannah had an early introduction to Latin America when her family moved to Ecuador and she returned to study in Buenos Aires for a year before backpacking across the continent.
Hannah Donaldson - Travel Expert
Having spent part of her childhood in Colombia and worked in Brazil and Costa Rica, Hannah's ties to Latin America run deep. Hannah is a much valued Travel Expert in our Tailor-made Holidays and Group Tours sales team.
Chris Rendell-Dunn - Travel Expert
Anglo-Peruvian Chris grew up in Lima and spent much of his adult life in between London and Cusco as a tour leader, before settling permanently in our London-based Tailor-made and Group Tours sales team.
Mary Anne Nelson - Travel Expert
Born in the Atacama Desert in northern Chile, Mary’s insider knowledge and dry sense of humour make her a highly valued member of the Tailor-made Holidays and Group Tour sales team.
Ben Line - Travel Expert
Ben fell in love with Latin America on a six month backpacking trip from Colombia to Mexico in 1995. Since then he has explored most of South America, including living in Peru for a year. He is now Head of Sales.