Check out our incredible adventures exploring the highlights and hidden gems of South America!
Activity Level 1
What's The Rush?
I'm active and in decent shape and not looking to experience a place just through a bus window. I'm happy to slow down on the trail, soak it in and breathe in the fresh air.
Walking: 2-3 hours per day on gentle-gradient trails.
Other activities: On these trips, you'll be taking part in a range of other activities that focus less on building up a sweat and more on enjoying the finer things in life.
Activity Level 2
On the Move
Sure, I own some hiking boots, they're even worn in, but they don't go on long trips. I like my creature comforts and I like to give a range of activities a go.
Walking: 2-4 hours per day on gentle to moderate gradient trails. No multi-day hikes.
Biking: 1-3 hours, cruisy rides achievable by anyone, even first-timers. Kayaking: 1-3 hours, entry-level sea kayaking with specialist guides and stable boats.
Other activities (i.e. snorkeling): Always optional and very little exertion required. A highlight for many!
Activity Level 3
Earn Your Lunch
I stay active on vacation and love the feeling of relaxing after a busy day on the go. I season my trips with a little fresh exercise.
Hiking: Typically, 3-6 hours per day on well-formed backcountry trails. Expect some significant gradient inclines and declines.
Altitude: Your trip may include some moderate altitude areas, though these don't form the focus of the trip and are generally manageable.
Biking: 1-3 hours on well-formed paths or roads where you can expect some hills with moderate climbs and descents.
Kayaking: 1-3 hours, entry-level sea kayaking with specialist guides and stable boats.
Other activities (i.e. caving): Always optional and very little exertion required. A highlight for many!
Activity Level 4
I'll let my trusty guides sweat the small things, so I can focus on my goal. Getting to the top, reaching the end, achieving my dreams! Sure, it'll be tough, but the views will be worth it.
Hiking / Trekking: Typically, 4–6-hour hikes with options for more, sometimes with limited or no vehicle support and nearly always with ascents and descents.
Altitude: Some trips at this level will reach a significant altitude. We are here to help you manage that and make your experience one to cherish for a lifetime.
Biking & Kayaking: If one, or both, of these activities are 'your thing,' there are trip options in this range, allowing you to be on two wheels or with a paddle in your hand for most of the day.
Activity Level 5
The Upper Limit
I'm ready to put in the hard work to reap the rewards. I'm a seasoned adventurer, not afraid to get my boots wet.
Trekking & Altitude: This is classic trekking, at altitude. Some might even call it 'expedition-style.' We've had folks from all walks of life achieve their dreams on our grade 5 trips, so if you're in for a challenge get in touch to find out if this is for you.
- May 2022
"I had a great time on the Jaguar trip - our guides were friendly, knowledgeable,… read more
"I had a great time on the Jaguar trip - our guides were friendly, knowledgeable, organized, and always helpful. Our porters and camp staff also were friendly and highly competent. The sites chosen by the guides for us to visit were always interesting, and the guides were able to provide great information about them. The information provided to us by Active Adventures was helpful and comprehensive - my only comments regarding the pre-trip information would be to update the materials to clarify that guests need a small day pack for biking and day hikes AND a 30L plus hiking bag for the Inca trail, and the pre-trip information could have included information about tipping for the porters and guides. While it is sensible that the company would not want to pressure guests into tipping a certain amount, everyone in my group had a wonderful time and genuinely wanted to show appreciation to our porters and guides. It would have been helpful to know how much cash we should have with us when departing on the trail to be able to tip each individual adequately, as well as information about when in the trip we would have an opportunity to tip both porters and guides. read less
Amy, United States
- May 2022
"After having had my retirement bucket list trip snatched from under me in 2020, I… read more
"After having had my retirement bucket list trip snatched from under me in 2020, I was delighted to finally take it this April. Active Adventures deserves huge kudos for honouring its commitment to the trip. I travelled with two friends, and we were in a group of 15 on the trip - from the US and Canada. What a fantastic group of people! Best of all though, were our two tour guides from the Galapagos, Pepo and Paulo. They were the best ambassadors for the islands and Ecuador - very knowledgeable, professional, kind hearted - and just plain fun. They made us feel safe and relaxed throughout the trip. The islands are gorgeous - and the wildlife does not disappoint. I found deep ocean snorkelling a bit out of my comfort zone, and wished I had practiced a bit in a pool before I left. However, it is an essential part of the trip, and cannot be skipped. Learning about tectonic plates, volcanoes and the conservation efforts for the giant tortoises was food for thought. As for helpful tips, bring lots of sun screen, sun protective clothing, and bug spray. These items are not readily available on the islands, but they are absolutely essential. Also bring a reusable water bottle as recommended by AA, because although bottled water is available for purchase everywhere, it makes more sense to fill up from the large reusable containers provided and not create plastic waste. I would definitely recommend this beautiful active adventure - my first with this company, but not my last. read less
- May 2022
"We loved our trip to Galapagos! Our guides, Pepo and Paulo were so knowledgeable… read more
"We loved our trip to Galapagos! Our guides, Pepo and Paulo were so knowledgeable about the islands and loved sharing it all with us. The warm weather was so welcome after a winter in New England. All of the logistics were handled smoothly so that all we had to do was enjoy the varied land and marine wildlife. An amazing trip that I highly recommend! read less
Claudia, United States
- May 2022
"To be honest, I was a little leery traveling with a new company, with new… read more
"To be honest, I was a little leery traveling with a new company, with new people and well, Covid. But this was abso-fricking-lutely the BEST ADVENTURE TRIP! From our guide, Pepo (who completely hit it out of the park), to the places we saw, to the organization behind the scenes and those wonderful meals, this was amazing! If you want the best way to SEE the Galapagos Islands, this is it. I can't say enough great things about Galakiwi (Active's partner) and our guides. They made this trip unforgettable. Pepo and Paolo answered our flora/fauna questions (we had lots!) and happily shared us what makes this place so special. And man, Pepo can dance - and surf! We're already talking about our next Active Adventure - we can't wait! :) read less
Lori, United States
- April 2022
"First “big” trip in 2 years due to the pandemic. Honestly, more anxiety than excitement… read more
"First “big” trip in 2 years due to the pandemic. Honestly, more anxiety than excitement prior to the trip but once I arrived in the Galapagos, the excitement hit and so glad my friend and I decided to go on the adventure together. AA tour made the trip really easy. I really like the balance of being “active” and some downtime of my own. The tour guides were friendly and very knowledgeable. The meals were all very good except for the first night dinner on San Cristobal Island…to me, it wasn’t good. I thought the fish weren’t well prepared and tasted too fishy. Another person ordered the same meal and I noticed she hardly touched hers. Later I found out hers was too salty. Another low light for me was the accommodations on Floreana Island. Apparently, very limited hotel selections on the island. Hotel Wittmer was ran down and we all had cold showers that night. I also found a smashed dead mosquito with blood on the wall! Isabela Island was fun and where we stayed was wonderful. I wish we had more time on Santa Cruz Island. All in all, I had a fantastic trip and would recommend this trip to my friends who enjoy the outdoor and animals! read less
Hui-Chien, United States
- April 2022
"The Tortuga trip was full of once in a lifetime experiences. Pablo, our guide was… read more
"The Tortuga trip was full of once in a lifetime experiences. Pablo, our guide was so passionate about the islands and knowledgeable about the wildlife and all aspects of our trip. We swam with sea turtles, rays, sea lions, and sharks!. The land tortoises were great to see in their natural habitat and in the breeding centers. I learned so much about the history of the islands, the environment, Darwin's studies and plans for the furture on the island. The snorkeling in Los Tunels was the highlight as well as the hike to the volcano lava fields. The Galapagos is truely a unique and fascinating place. read less
Barb, United States
- April 2022
"I could write pages about our Tortuga trip in April . Instead I will just… read more
"I could write pages about our Tortuga trip in April . Instead I will just say that we were so surprised how much we enjoyed traveling with Active Adventures. We are typically not "group travel" people but in the Galapagos it seems necessary...so many things to line up and local people and facilities to communicate with. AAdventures did this with amazing competency. Things flowed seamlessly. Our guide Pepo and his assistant Paolo were amazing. They seemed to do all this and yet still ENJOY being with us, answering questions and getting everyone excited for the next adventure. I will advise that this is an active trip, not intense but lots of exercise, sweating and moving every day. It is important to know that and be prepared or know that you might skip some of the longer things. I also want to add that the guides' English was beautiful and Pepo's knowledge about the area, the geography and the animals was impressive. To anyone who is worried about the "group" aspect but needs the logistics AAdventures can provide, be assured. They still respect your privacy, your right to skip something if its not for you and the small size makes it not feel chaotic. Food was also very good, fresh and simple but abundant and well prepared. I had dreamed of this trip since I was a little girl and read about the tortoises in National Geographic. I never thought the experience would live up to the dream, but it truly did and I think Active Adventures had a big part in that. read less
Lynn, United States
- April 2022
"Another great guide. Beautiful diving, biking and hiking adventures. Great local food and accommodations. We… read more
"Another great guide. Beautiful diving, biking and hiking adventures. Great local food and accommodations. We have loved every single Active Adventure. As always though, the Active guides are what make the trip special. This time Pepo and Paulo were absolutely awesome with their knowledge and communication. The people in the group always seem to come together as great friends and we have the guides to thank for that! Can't wait for the next one! read less
Paul, United States
- April 2022
"Fantastic adventures from snorkeling with sharks, kayaking with blue footed boobies and penguins, hiking volcanic… read more
"Fantastic adventures from snorkeling with sharks, kayaking with blue footed boobies and penguins, hiking volcanic craters to exploring island murder ? mysteries. Had a once in a lifetime experience. read less
Sandy, United States
- April 2022
"Really enjoyed the trip: incredible nature, a wealth of wildlife and superior guiding. read more
"Really enjoyed the trip: incredible nature, a wealth of wildlife and superior guiding. read less
Flavia, United Kingdom
- April 2022
"The trip was so well-planned and executed. Pepo was FABULOUS! So knowledgeable, capable, supportive… read more
"The trip was so well-planned and executed. Pepo was FABULOUS! So knowledgeable, capable, supportive and professional. Paulo was equally helpful and assured that all was taken care of for us. The trip was well organized and the visit to Pepo's family place was very special. I felt we saw and experienced the maximum with regard to wildlife, sealife, local sites and important points of interest. With Pepo and Pualo's guidance, that was THE BEST snorkeling experience I ever had. The equipment was excellent and Paulo kept it clean and prepared always. The masks were such good quality and with proper preparation from P &P I could snorkel for up to an hour with no fogging, not getting cold, etc. Our Super Plans were executed exceptionally! read less
Debbie, United States
- March 2022
"I had booked and rebooked this trip so many times due to the pandemic, I'm… read more
"I had booked and rebooked this trip so many times due to the pandemic, I'm so happy it finally happened! Our guide, Pablo, was incredibly knowledgeable and passionate about the islands. All activities were well coordinated and went off without a hitch. The islands were gorgeous and the trip was everything I had been hoping it would be since 2020! read less
Betsy, United States
- February 2022
"The Active Adventures Tortuga trip provided great mix and range of activities. We… read more
"The Active Adventures Tortuga trip provided great mix and range of activities. We got to experience the Galapagos in a variety of ways, from land and sea. We saw more wildlife than we could have imagined, including thousands of marine iguanas and sea lions. The vistas ranged from austere lava fields to lush highland forests. The food and accommodations were great. If you like fresh fruit and seafood, the Galapagos have your number. The logistical arrangements went without a hitch, which is surely a testament to a lot of work behind the scenes at Active Adventures. In the front of the scenes, Pablo and Paolo were world-class guides. Highly recommended. read less
Stephan, United States
- February 2022
"Most awesome trip. The airlines tried their best to ruin our experience both coming and… read more
"Most awesome trip. The airlines tried their best to ruin our experience both coming and going. However, once we got to Pepo all clouds disappeared and the sun shined brightly. Fabulous guide. Can’t say enough - knowledgeable, caring, respectful, great leader, passionate about the islands. Best I’ve had…ever. I’d keep him on the payroll!
Wonderful food & accommodations. Loved all the local fish entrees and the fresh fruit was
to die for. Popcorn in the soup!?
Crazy but fun.
Wildlife the best. Unexpected landscapes like (the “tunnels”) were truly amazing. One of the best trips ever.
Tom & Carol read less
Tom, United States
- February 2022
"A wonderful trip to an amazing place. Pablo (our guide) was extremely knowledgeable and… read more
"A wonderful trip to an amazing place. Pablo (our guide) was extremely knowledgeable and his enthusiasm for the islands was infectious. I highly recommend you check out this trip. read less
Lynne, United States
- February 2022
"Our Jaguar Trip to Peru was outstanding in every respect. Our guides combined competence… read more
"Our Jaguar Trip to Peru was outstanding in every respect. Our guides combined competence with good cheer and flexibility. They shared interesting information about the sites while simultaneously adjusting activity levels as needed for each individual in our group. The entire experience was fabulous, from learning about other cultures and micro-climates to the accommodations to the quality and quantity of food. Active Adventures puts on a first class trip and I can't wait to go on another with them. Highly recommend! read less
Marjorie, United States
If your plans change or you decide to travel to another destination, you can change your trip to any of our departures in any destination or request a refund (less deposit) up to 90 days out from your original trip start date.
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As an Active Adventures traveller, It’s essential you take out travel insurance to cover the likes of personal injury, medical expenses, trip cancellation for your travel with us. Please head to our Travel Insurance page for more in-depth information and insurance provider options. It’s also important to check your insurance covers all the activities you’ll be partaking in, in case you’re travelling to altitude or looking at extreme sports.
On your South America trip you'll stay in a variety of places depending on the destination and activities. In Peru you'll stay in nice hotels, tents while you're hiking (complete with porters to put them up for you, cook your meals and generally make sure it's the best camping experience ever!), jungle lodges and local homes on Amantani Island (a truly once in a lifetime experience). In Ecuador mainland you'll stay in hotels and jungle lodges, and on the Galapagos Islands you'll stay on dry land, meaning you're free to walk around each evening and get to know the residents of these famous isles. Down in Patagonia you'll lay your head each night in hotels, lodges and the famous 'refugios' in the National Parks. While these may sound basic they have incredible facilities (including electricity), the views are out of this world, they have restaurants and you'll meet an incredible array of people that have travelled from far and wide to visit the bottom of the world.
Your transport will be a mixture of bus, plane, boat, bike and your very own two feet on our trips in South America. You'll spend most time on a boat in the Galapagos Islands as you make your way from island to island during the day, and down in Peru you'll travel by boat in the Amazon to get to your lodge. We have domestic flights included in our Galapagos Islands and Peru trips to shorten our travel times and to ensure you have the best experience possible. All your transport is included from the start of your trip and we'll drop you at the airport at the end. The details are all listed in the trip specific itineraries.
All your meals are included as described in the itinerary except on your free days. We have found that people enjoy checking out what is on offer by themselves sometimes, so you can go and see what's out there! On every other day and especially after any long hikes, we've chosen places to eat that can cater for our hearty appetites, work well with our small groups (they know we are coming) and provide us with an authentic destination specific culinary experience. There are always options for you, so you can either be brave or choose something more familiar. On the hiking portion of our trips (such as on the Inca Trail) we work with an outstanding team of cooks who will amaze you with what they can produce on a campsite miles from the nearest town. You can be assured that on all our trips we will make sure you are very well fed.
Our trips are all led by an experienced Trip Leader. Our Trip Leaders are very proud to work with Active Adventures and often lead our trips for many years, for which we are very lucky and very grateful as it means we're able to consistently offer a fantastic level of service. They work closely with our local specialist guides to provide you with a seamless, fun, exciting and memorable trip. They will happily share with you as much or as little as you want to know about the history, culture, social aspects and lifestyle of the country you are visiting. In the Galapagos Islands you will be accompanied by a specialist Nature Guide, qualified to provide you with plenty of information about the species that make their home on the islands.
We get a real variety of people on our trips and they all seem to have one thing in common – a love of the outdoors! Our group sizes range from a minimum of four people to a maximum of fourteen people, generally with a mix of singles, couples and friends.
Most other travel companies charge all solo travellers a single supplement fee. We don't! When it comes to accommodation, our trip fares are based on a twin-share rate, which means we'll match you up with another person of the same gender to share a room with. If there's no one suitable to share with, there's no forced single supplement! Having said that, if you specifically request your own room, we can look into availability and there will be an additional single supplement fee.
Please contact our New Zealand office using the details below. If the office is unattended (outside of New Zealand business hours), please leave a message so we can pick it up and respond as soon as we can.
Free phone 1 800 661 9073 (USA, Canada & Australia)
Free phone 0808 234 7780 (UK)
Free phone 0800 234 726 (New Zealand)
Worldwide +64 3 450 0414, ext 1
You’ll be inspired and exhilarated, enjoying mind-blowing scenery on foot, in a sea kayak, or by bike - all at your own pace. Get ready for the trip of a lifetime.
We're proud of our Kiwi roots and you’ll love our professional, warm and relaxed style of hosting. Plus, we’re always here to help with planning, travel, bookings... even hiking boot recommendations!
As soon as your trip starts, we've got everything covered – top notch meals, comfortable transport, superb accommodation, amazing guides and INCREDIBLE service.
With our small groups of typically no more than 14 (up to 18 max), you'll get to know our team, your fellow travellers, and have the flexibility and freedom to do as much (or as little!) as you like. It’s all about going at your own pace.
All our carefully selected guides are highly experienced and have deep personal connections to nature and culture. You’ll enjoy a special experience, authentic local knowledge and an adventure like no other.
We could hang around all day telling you how wonderful our trips are... but the best people to hear it from are our guests themselves.