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Which cruise line do you recommend ....

Toronto, Canada
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Which cruise line do you recommend ....

we are two middle aged travelers who do not need every luxury but do appreciate good food and a good tour guide. We would like to do 8 days over Christmas.

So questions are:

1) Is end of December a good time to go? Will it rain?

2) Which boat to take?

3) Where can we check out reviews - I cannot seem to find what I want on TA?

4) What other excursions / extras are must-dos when we are there.

I do not think we will travel back to the area a second time.

With much thanks .....

Tucson, Arizona
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for Quito, Ecuador
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1. Re: Which cruise line do you recommend ....

It's unfortunate TA doesn't have a place to review cruises (except on Cruise Critic which tends to be about mega-ships). A good place to start for a Galápagos trip is 1. Tina (Zsitpapu)'s blog, which she will no doubt give you a link to; 2. type the words "trip report" without the quote marks in the Search box above and you will have all the reading you can stand. You can sort the results by date to get the most recent.

Which boat to take is a matter of preference. The Ecoventura boats get high marks, as do the Samba and the Tip Top boats. They are all smaller boats that I think give you a better feel for the islands. Everything, however, depends on the itinerary, and that's where it gets hard. If you can research the islands/sites you're most interested in (wildlife only? wildlife plus human history? And which wildlife in particular?) you can find an itinerary that comes closest to your expectations.

I worked with CNH Tours, who are Galápagos specialists, to book our boat; my sister had some extras she wanted to do and wanted a travel agent to organize it all. Otherwise, you can book your own boat via the boat's agent.

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2. Re: Which cruise line do you recommend ....

As Azbuceadora mentioned, you might find some good information to get you started on my trip report. I've pulled together wisdom from other travelers (many of whom have posted on this forum) as well as thoughts from our own trip. Two pages that might be most helpful to you are "Choosing a cruise" and "Decisions, decisions, decisions..." You can find the links to these and other popular pages under the header photo of the Giant Tortoise.


trip report at http://galapagos2009.wordpress.com/

Quito, Ecuador
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3. Re: Which cruise line do you recommend ....

Hi bmmrbabe,

Well first of all you should consider that the end of December is one of the busiest seasons in Galapagos and Ecuador overall. So for cruises in Galapagos you may end up paying extra as a Christmas surcharge or end of year surcharge. Another thing that will happen is that it is not going to be easy for your to find a cruise available since many companies pre charter boats and spaces in most boats in Galapagos and getting to find these companies can be a challenge. Then if you are not looking for luxury try to keep yourselves in the first class category, you will find good accommodation, good guides, great food and good itinerary, in that way you will have a great Galapagos vacation.

I hope this helps you organize your vacation in a better way.



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4. Re: Which cruise line do you recommend ....

We loved our March 2012 trip on Ecoventura's Eric. Great staff, comfortable boat that is well equipped and a good layout. Fantastic naturalists and yummy plentiful food. I have not yet posted a full long review (but will soon) however I mention a bit more about our trip in my trip report postig today. I researched cruises 7 years ago and Ecoventura was one of my top 3 along with a large cat (forget the name) and one other. I was torn mostly between the catamaran and Ecoventura. Fast forward to now and we have a child so there were only a few bots with triples. Ecoventura was one of those lines and I knew I needed to look no further. It was an easy decision for me. Having been on the Eric I am glad of our choice and if I cruised the Galapagos again I would probably just call Ecoventura and book their other itinerary. I hghly recommend them!! Cannot help you with how Dec is thou. Sorry. No need for other excursion really unless yu just want to spend a couple of days in San Cristobal or Santa Cruz for some of their day trips but I would recommend spending any extra time on the mainland to see different things. See my trip report for what we did.

Guayaquil, Guayas...
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5. Re: Which cruise line do you recommend ....

I think those dates are very nice for a cruise, the problem I see is that most of the tours end up on december 24 and start a new tour on december 25 (the onces I researched) I guess those are hard dates to book in last minute, so you should start researching too =)

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6. Re: Which cruise line do you recommend ....

We just came back from the ELF fleet through Ecoventura and it exceeded our expectations. Guides were great, food great, activities amazing! Great staff, sights, and overall experience. They are also very concerned with their "green footprint." Enjoy.

Bangalore, India
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7. Re: Which cruise line do you recommend ....

Hello JV

I have booked my clients on Treasure of Galapagos for the 4-night 11 May sailing. I have read some reviews of this catamaran, the most recent of which was from Feb this year. I was wondering you have been on the Treasure recently and would be interested in your comments, especially on the food (my clients are all strict vegetarians), the cleanliness and general upkeep of the vessel (some recent reviews mentioned that cleanliness / upkeep was an issue) and the quality of the guided shore excursions.

I would also welcome feedback from any one else who has been on the Treasure of Galapagos recently.

8. Re: Which cruise line do you recommend ....

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