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Galapagos Family Tours

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Galapagos Family Tours

At Think Galapagos we have been lucky enough to travel to Galapagos with our own kids since they were tiny (now teens!) and understand a family trip to the Galapagos Islands can truly make for an amazing, once-in-a lifetime holiday for adults, kids and teenagers alike.

With its mix of wildlife, undersea adventures, fresh daily insights and activities to suit all fitness levels and ages, a Galapagos family tour really does offer the perfect chance to disconnect from screens, headphones and tech-noise to truly reconnect with each other and the wonders of the natural world.

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Cloud forest and Galapagos

12 days

Experience the joy of pristine tropical forests literally buzzing with hummingbirds, then onto Galapagos to get up close and personal some of the most remarkable wildlife on earth…

Andes to Amazon and Galapagos

15 days

A family wildlife adventure like no other. From the Andes to the Amazon Rainforest and onto Galapagos for 8 days on board a small yacht enjoying some of the best wildlife in the world…

Incas and Islands

18 days

A family holiday with a difference! Experience two of South America’s highlights in one trip. Machu Picchu and the amazing Inca civilization followed by the unique wildlife of the Galapagos…

Our favourite Galapagos family holidays

All our Galapagos family trips are tailor made but above are three itineraries to give you a taste of what Galapagos, Ecuador and Peru has to offer. You can choose one of these itineraries or add in some extra activities, like learning to scuba dive in Galapagos, whizzing down a zipwire in the cloud forest or trekking to Machu Picchu.

Read what families that travelled to Galapagos with us have to say…

Creating your ultimate Galapagos family holiday

Each Galapagos family tour we create is as unique as the family booking it. We listen carefully to what you want and then work with you to create a trip that will ensure each member of the family gets the very most out of their experience.

Whether your family consists of a twosome, a nuclear family or a large multi-generational clan, our expert team will help create your ultimate Galapagos family holiday. Creating exceptional family holidays to the Galapagos and knowing just how transformational a trip like this can be for kids really is one of our favourite parts of the job!

If you’d like to chat through the possibilities, why not give us a call today?

Tips on designing the perfect Galapagos Family trip

We thought it might be helpful to provide some travel tips and answers to frequently asked questions for families planning a holiday to Galapagos. If you need more information or would like to start planning your special Galapagos family trip give us a call or email us and we would love to help!

Family Tours

  • Are the Galapagos Islands a good family holiday destination?

    Most definitely. Kids delight in the close-up encounters with wildlife in Galapagos, from watching 100 year old giant tortoises amble by, to swimming with playful sea lions. Galapagos really is a laboratory of evolution, and kids can really get the basics of evolution and nature without a text book in sight! Galapagos also works really well as a multigenerational experience as there are activities that suit all fitness levels, and it really does allow the old and young to come together to experience new things together.

  • Is Galapagos a good holiday for teenagers?

    A very loud and resounding YES!!!! As a mum of teens, I can say first hand that the amazing awakening when teens disconnect from tech and have direct contact with wildlife and natural wonders really is quite something. There is also plenty to keep them busy during each day (my next question provides a bit more detail on this). You might enjoy reading our Galapagos family blog post which is about this very thing.

  • Are there enough activities on a Galapagos family trip to keep kids busy?

    Definitely! In general days are fairly structured to ensure that you get the most out of your time and the best times on land for wildlife viewing. In general it is quite an early start, with breakfast followed by your first land visit – no trails are longer than around 2.5kms with the chance to walk gently to see the wildlife.   Often this is followed by a water based activity. This can be swimming, snorkelling, kayaking, depending on the specific visitor site. You then return to the yacht for lunch and usually have some free time to relax after lunch. Then often you have a chance for a second water based activity followed by your afternoon land visit. Each day is always slightly different, depending on the islands and visitor sites you are visiting, but generally they follow this kind of pattern.

  • When is the best time for a Galapagos family holiday?

    Most families travelling with children will be limited to school holiday times. One of our favourite times for families is to coincide with the Easter holidays or Spring Break. March and April are great months in the Galapagos. The summer is also a good time, but we would recommend trying to schedule the trip as early as you can in the summer holidays in July if possible (vs later in August when the seas can get choppier in Galapagos). For families travelling in July we would usually try to recommend a cruise with a western itinerary, as an added bonus is that this is the best time of year to see whales and dolphins when navigating and the west is best for this, you also get to see all the other wonderful Galapagos wildlife too. Christmas/New year is another great time in Galapagos that coincides with school holidays, however for this you need to plan a LONG time in advance as these months get booked up often several years in advance and are the most popular 2 weeks in Galapagos. For more information on when to travel see our month by month guide to Galapagos which has more details on what each month has to offer: https://thinkgalapagos.com/galapagos-holidays/#best-time-to-visit

  • Will there be other families on board the yacht?

    If you travel during school holiday times, there is good chance there are other families on board the yacht too. However, this isn’t ever guaranteed. If you want to ensure you definitely have other kids on board, the best option is to go on one of the dedicated family departures that some of the yachts we work with offer to coincide with the school holiday season.

  • Is a Galapagos holiday suitable for very young children?

    We recommend that Galapagos holidays are best for children from around 7 years upwards. You can travel with younger children, and we have guests that do, and we have done it ourselves as a family. Sometimes for logistical reasons as part of a wilder trip, families do need to travel with very young children and they can be a real joy, but for what is usually a family holiday of a lifetime, our advice would be if you can, to wait until kids are a bit older to ensure they really get the most out of their experience. As well as the children having a better level of understanding of what they are seeing they are also physically bigger, stronger and usually more resilient which means they also can get more out of their experiences like snorkelling and walking the trails on the islands which can often be in quite strong sun.

  • Is island hopping a good way to visit Galapagos as a family?

    No. Our answer to this, as for anyone planning a Galapagos holiday asking for advice about island hopping vs cruises would be that a Galapagos cruise is a much better option. Although some people talk about the benefits of island hopping vs a cruise as having more relaxed starts, time on a beach etc, we feel passionately in order to see and experience Galapagos wildlife at its best nothing comes close to a Galapagos cruise. A Galapagos cruise takes you to the most remote parts of the archipelago. Cruises take you away from the areas of human inhabitation and give you a chance to truly experience the pristine wilderness of Galapagos, 97% of which remains completely untouched by humans and largely as it was when Charles Darwin visited. The Galapagos cruises we work with are perfect for family groups, for up to a maximum of guests, providing the perfect balance of intimacy and independence. You simply don’t get that on island hopping trips which are based out of small towns in the inhabited islands. On island hopping trips to visit uninhabited islands much of your day is spent actually travelling to get there, almost always on small boats which move quite a lot  in the water and you don’t get anything like as much time actually enjoying the places you are visiting. Compare this to a cruise when you navigate at night and wake up each morning in a different place so your daytime hours are spent enjoying the wildlife and the remarkable places you are visiting.    

  • What are is the best ‘add ons’ to a Galapagos family trip?

    Mainland Ecuador itself has a huge number of things that you can tag on at the start or the end of your Galapagos family vacation. Quito itself, Ecuador’s capital city nestled high in the Andes is definitely worth at least one day and an overnight stay. Quito is a beautiful city and gives a great insight into Andean life and culture. All our Quito guides are parents too and so understand what is needed to make a visit fun and informative. The Andes themselves provide lots of great activities, from horse-back riding, to mountain biking and hiking in beautiful scenery and with some interesting culture too. The cloud forest, which is just 2 hours drive from Quito makes another great add on for families. Not too much travel (which for some kids is important), and offers a fantastic chance to experience pristine tropical forest. The cloud forest also offers fun activities such as zip wiring and river tubing both of which are great for teenagers. The Amazon is another great add on with some spectacular wildlife viewing and the chance to do some kayaking. We would usually suggest the Amazon is better for older children as it does involve quite a bit of travel to get there, and conditions with humidity can be challenging for small children.

  • Do you get a discount for kids on a Galapagos family trip?

    Happy to say yes! Children under 12 years at the time of travel are given a discount on all the yachts we work with. The discount can range from 10% to 50% depending on the yacht and what we can negotiate for your group. Children 12 years and above don’t qualify for any discount unfortunately and the yacht hold pretty firm on this usually. Children under 12 years also get a 50% discount on the flight out to Galapagos from mainland Ecuador.

Where to visit in Ecuador as part of your family holiday

Other places in mainland Ecuador also make for outstanding family experiences and work very well as an add-on to a Galapagos cruise.  One of our favourite places is the cloud forest which is just 2 hours drive from Quito and provides lots of fun activities as well as wonderful wildlife.  One of our other favourites is the Amazon Rainforest which although it requires more travel offers exceptional wildlife experiences and of course the Andes, with the chance to hike and explore or even spend time as the guests of an indigenous family learning about their customs and way of life.

All the family holidays we put together are tailor made for you. If you’d like to chat through the possibilities, why not give us a call today?

Responsible Tourism

Responsible tourism is at the heart of our operation. We passionately believe that sensitive wildlife tourism has a vitally important part to play in the conservation of the unique wildlife of Ecuador and Galapagos. For families, we believe this kind of tourism is immensely effective in educating children to appreciate wild animals in their natural environments, and showing them the importance of preserving those habitats for future generations.