Ecuador Trip – Group Travel | Atlas Obscura Trips
Photo Credit: Dustin Haney
Photo Credit: Jason Goldman
Photo Credit: Jason Goldman

Expedition Galápagos with Volcano Trek

from $5,930 USD per person for 8 days, 7 nights
See Dates
  • 14 People Maximum
  • Challenging Activity Level
  • Outdoor Expedition
See Dates
Trip Overview

In the autumn of 1835, HMS Beagle reached the Galápagos archipelago, with a certain scientist on board. While it would be decades before Charles Darwin articulated the theory of evolution by natural selection, it was there, over two months in the Galápagos, that many of his scientific insights took root in his mind.

On this immersive and action-packed seven-day adventure on “Las Encantadas,” or “The Enchanted Islands,” you’ll see, as Darwin once did, that each island has its own unique community of wildlife. Get a once-in-a-lifetime glimpse into Darwin’s world by exploring four of the most impressive islands in the group: Santa Cruz, Floreana, Isabela, and Bartolomé. But this isn’t your typical Galápagos tour. With the help of local guides and expert wildlife biologists, you’ll enjoy an island experience beyond compare. You’ll get up close with marine critters by snorkel and kayak, have a chance to observe some of the world’s rarest species, and get a living lesson on ecology and conservation in one of the planet’s most historically important habitats. 

  • Island and cave explorations
  • Scientific insight and expertise
  • Up-close wildlife sightings
  • Snorkeling and kayaking
  • Unique eco-lodges


Itineraries and daily schedules are subject to change. We expect to do everything listed in the itinerary, though the order may be rearranged based on weather or other local conditions.

Trip Leaders

Jason Goldman
Dr. Jason G. Goldman is an award-winning science journalist and expedition leader based in Los Angeles. He’s collared foxes on California’s Channel Islands, been sneezed on by iguanas in the Galápagos, tracked lions in South Africa, rode a yak across Tajikistan's Pamir Mountains, and searched for rare lizards in the cloud forests of Ecuador. He's written for Scientific American, The New York Times, National Geographic, The Washington Post, Los Angeles Magazine, Teen Vogue, and elsewhere, and is co-author of Wild L.A.: Explore the Amazing Nature In and Around Los Angeles. He’s been leading wildlife trips with Atlas Obscura since 2017.
Jess Phoenix
Jess is a volcanologist, an extreme explorer, and former candidate for United States Congress. She is Executive Director and co-founder of the environmental scientific research organization Blueprint Earth. Her expertise is in lava flows and natural hazards, with an emphasis on volcanic hazards, and her work has taken her to six continents. She has been chased by narco-traffickers in Mexico, dodged armed thieves in remote Peru, raced horses across Mongolia, worked on the world’s largest volcano in Hawaii, piloted the Jason2 submersible on an undersea volcano, and explored deep in the Australian Outback. Jess believes science should be accessible to everyone, and that creative possibility is limitless. Jess is a Fellow in The Explorers Club and the Royal Geographical Society, a featured scientist on the Discovery and Science Channels, an invited TEDx speaker, and she has appeared in The New York Times, the Washington Post and on National Public Radio, on CNN, NBC, among others.

Additional Info


While we can offer a single accommodation for the night in Quito, travelers should be prepared to share a room. Accommodations in the Magic Galapagos Lodge are all double occupancy, and include luxury safari-style tents with en-suite bathrooms as well as four elevated tree houses, with en-suite toilets and shared shower facilities. Showers have hot water, and there is (limited) wi-fi in the main lodge area. Accommodations at Floreana Lava Lodge are all double occupancy, and each room includes en-suite bathrooms with hot water. Keep in mind that there is very limited wi-fi at both of our lodges. Our hotel on Isabela is an all-inclusive, sustainable resort right on the beach.

Activity Level

You should be comfortable participating in the itinerary’s various water activities, which include swimming, snorkeling, and kayaking, and the optional 10-mile volcano hike, as these are highlights of the trip and some of the best ways to observe the local wildlife and geology. Please contact us directly if you have further questions about health and fitness level for this trip.

Arrival & Departure

You should plan to arrive in Quito by 4 p.m. on June 4, and depart from Quito anytime after 7 p.m. on June 11. Should you like to spend any extra days in Quito before or after our week together, we’re happy to arrange extra hotel nights for you. 

  • All meals and transport during your stay.
  • Seven nights of shared accommodations throughout the trip; please note that single rooms are only available Quito.
  • Internal flights between Quito and Baltra Island.
  • The company of two expert guides in the fields of biology, conservation, science journalism, and sustainable tourism, and one local guide.
  • Admission and equipment for all proposed areas and activities, including kayaking and snorkeling.
  • Transportation and flights to and from Quito, Ecuador.
  • Airport transfers.
  • Travel insurance (recommended).
  • Tips for boat captains, hotel staff, and your guides.
  • Additional meals and drinks, including all alcoholic beverages.
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Trip FAQ

Space at these remote lodges is limited, which means you will be sharing a room with one or two fellow travelers. For this trip, we cannot offer a single accommodation option aside from your night at the hotel in Quito.

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It was amazing. The Galapagos is like nowhere else on earth. Nearly every animal you see is endemic to the archipelago and you don't have to go far to find them. We were even able to swim with green sea turtles right off the coast near our lodge!
—Jennifer C. (June 2018)

Upcoming Departures

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