Galapagos & Andes Family Multisport
- Hike in the Andes with spectacular views of snowcapped mountains
- Bike through small highland villages, where Otavaleño Indians continue centuries-old traditions
- A scavenger hunt for kids in a bustling local market
- Incredible up-close wildlife viewing in the Galápagos with a naturalist guide
- Snorkel and kayak with tropical fish, sea lions and white-tipped reef sharks
Ancient Culture & Wondrous Wildlife in Ecuador's Islands & Highlands
Got your camera? Your sense of adventure? Get set to treat your family to nonstop thrills. Bike and hike amid volcano-studded highlands to traditional villages. Here local crafts, folkloric music and ancient ruins are yours to discover. Journey to the marine sanctuary of the Galápagos. We sail from island to island, explore pristine beaches, and snorkel and kayak in the famous waters. Ever see a frigate bird strut his stuff? Or a seaweed-eating iguana? Alongside an expert naturalist, we observe, inquire and react as fascinating wildlife behaviors occur right before our eyes in Darwin's natural laboratory.
Day 1 Bike through highland villages, where Otavaleño Indians continue age-old traditions Pedal to Otavalo, then the younger set takes part in a scavenger hunt in the colorful outdoor market Spin to Peguche and enjoy the spirited serenading of musicians playing handcrafted instruments Visit the studio of Señor Miguel Andrango, one of Ecuador's foremost master weavers.
Days 2-3 Hike in the Andes with spectacular views of snowcapped mountains Walk through eucalpytus forest and the fertile valleys between Cayambe and Imbabura Volcanoes Learn about daily life here from locals in the community of Angla Fernando Polanco, grandson of an Ecuadorian president, welcomes us into Hacienda Zuleta, a 4,000-acre working farm set amid volcano vistas and pre-Inca ruins Hop in the saddle of your mountain bike - or horse! - and follow winding roads through the lush pastureland of the Zuleta Valley Ever milked a cow? Now's your chance!
Days 4-8 Incredible up-close wildlife viewing in the Galápagos Islands, an isolated sanctuary for a stunning array of unique plants and animals Accompanied by an expert naturalist, marvel at blue-footed boobies, giant tortoises, white-tipped reef sharks, fluorescent fish, sea lions, lava lizards and possibly penguins Boat from island to island, stopping along the way to snorkel, kayak, hike and swim Explore Isabela Island's Sierra Negra volcano, the second largest caldera in the world Spot marine iguanas basking in the sun, unfazed by the Sally Lightfoot crabs that scurry across them Come late afternoon, kick back at our comfortable island lodges or venture out to hike, play at the beach or discover unique port towns.
Guests Reviews About This Trip
I knew this would be a great trip but I didn't expect it to be so wonderful and fabulous! Ecuador was an unexpected gem. What a beautiful country with wonderful people! We just loved the hiking and mountain biking.- Bellaire, TX
I loved the part of the trip in the Highlands of Ecuador...Our leaders were enthusiastic, helpful, flexible and kind, and the food was excellent. The scenery and contact with the local people was superb, and I loved the hiking and biking!- Cherry Hill, NJ
Backroads planned an amazing and rich trip, and executed it with polish and good humor. We were extremely impressed and will travel with Backroads on all our future organized travel. Guides were wonderful with guests, kids, dietary and medical restrictions, and at keeping everything moving smoothly. By the end of the trip, we felt our family had grown to include the leaders and other guests.- Berkeley, CA
San Pablo del Lago (1 night) Located in the Ecuadorian sierra, this restored Andean estate traces its history to 1602, when the land was purchased from the King of Spain.
Zuleta (2 nights) Once home to a former president of Ecuador, "This beautiful late-17th-century hacienda is much more than a place to stay; it's a full cultural-immersion experience," according to Condé Nast Traveler.
Santa Cruz Island, Galápagos (2 nights) A beautiful waterfront lodge nestled into the mangrove forest.
Isabela Island, Galápagos (2 nights) Take in stunning sea views from the large deck or rooftop terrace of this lodge, separated from the ocean by a white-sand beach and palm trees.
Costa Rica Multisport
Adventures in Paradise from Arenal Volcano to the Pacific Coast
Costa Rica Multisport
Wildlife Encounters on the Pacific Coast & Nicoya Peninsula
Cultural Discoveries & Epic Landscapes from Cusco to Machu Picchu
This Trip Is Rated Level 1-3
Routes For All Abilities
Every Backroads trip is designed to appeal to a wide variety of interests and fitness levels. We know your pace may vary from one day to the next-and your traveling companion's may differ somewhat from yours. So we present a range of mileage options, and each day you decide exactly what and how much you want to do.
|Daily Route Options|
|Level 1||Level 2||Level 3||Level 4||Level 5|
|miles||feet gain||miles||feet gain||miles||feet gain||miles||feet gain||miles||feet gain|
|Kids||Scavenger hunt at Otavalo market (1 hour)|
|Other||Optional hiking, horseback riding or visit to Hacienda Zuleta`s embroidery shop|
|Kids||Cow milking (1 hour)|
|4||Kayaking||And snorkeling in Academy Bay (3 hours)|
|Other||Snorkeling and wildlife viewing (2 hours)|
|Other||Snorkeling and wildlife viewing (3 hours)|
|8||Other||Conclusion of the trip|
On this trip, we'll be using titanium mountain bikes that are just right for the non-technical dirt road riding as well as the paved riding. (approximately 55% dirt and 45% paved).
On this Family Trip, our routes follow rolling terrain. Liberal van shuttling is incorporated into the itinerary to facilitate our activities and mileage is kept moderate to enable you to spend more time exploring on your own.
* Includes a shuttle