11 NIGHT GALAPAGOS / ECUADOR XPEDITION
You will visit the following 10 places:
Ecuador is a country in Northwestern South America, with a Pacific Ocean coastline, lying on the Equator between Colombia, to the northeast, and Peru. Spanish is the official language and is spoken by a majority of the population, though thirteen Amerindian languages are also recognized, including Quichua and Shuar. The capital city is Quito, while the largest city is Guayaquil. In reflection of the country's rich cultural heritage, the historical center of Quito was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1978. Ecuador has a developing economy that is highly dependent on commodities, namely petroleum and agricultural products. The country is classified as a medium-income country. Ecuador's economy is the eighth largest in Latin America and experienced an average growth of 4.6% between 2000 and 2006. The country was able to maintain relatively superior growth during the crisis. The country also has potential for the industry in a variety of sectors, including domestic production of raw materials and manufactured textiles, mining, chemical, petrochemical, and oil refinement. Power generation is also a potential sector that is starting to be developed due to Ecuador's high water potential in various sectors of the country; the development of products based on the melting or glass materials, production and agro-processed foods, and pharmaceutical production, among others. The most relevant project currently under development is the Pacific refinery, located in Manta, which will be one of the largest in the region.
Galápagos is a province of Ecuador in the country's Insular region, located approximately 1,000 km (620 mi) off the western coast of the mainland. The capital is Puerto Baquerizo Moreno. The province administers the Galápagos Islands, a group of tiny volcanic islands that sit on the equator. The Galápagos Islands have for centuries captured the interest of people from all over the globe because of its unique biodiversity that was made famous by Charles Darwin and his theory of evolution.
Gibraltar is a British Overseas Territory on the south coast of Spain known for the Rock of Gibraltar (a major landmark of the region), a 426m limestone ridge at its centre. It is a very unique place for the curious traveller. You can take the time to explore the caves and tunnels. The inside of the rock is an absolute labyrinth with secret internal roads and tunnels four times longer than those on the surface. Military presence and security in this otherwise deserted area is strong but almost invisible. Also, at the Apes' Den (Queen's Gate) and in the area of the Great Siege Tunnels there is the rare opportunity to see semi-wild primates at close quarters. If you let them, the monkeys will be their captivating selves and behave in their everyday natural manner.