Jump to content

V. Expeditions: Everything Galapagos+Machu Picchu


Recommended Posts

Several people on our Galapagos trip used rubber tri-tipped walking sticks. They looked like they could be useful on uneven and rocky terrain.

 

Depending on the selection of island destinations, the on shore part will have different requirements. Some islands have real docks, so your Zodiac ties up conventionally. Others have the Zodiac pulled up on the beach and you go over the side, onto the rocky gravel or sand. I mentioned the desirability of "aqua shoes" or something similar, with your real walking shoes in a waterproof bag.

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

GM All,

   The aqua shoes are a good reminder. Pretty sure I still have a pair in the closet. With regards to the walking sticks. I remembered buying a pair on Amazon for our Norway in 'Search of the Northern Lights'.  Didn't use or need them.  I was able to return them since I bought and returned them within their 30 day return policy. 

Later On Board,

Mark

Link to post
Share on other sites

The choice of  islands in a Galapagos tour will often dictate appropriate gear.  On our National Geographic / Linblad tour, there were a number of small islands with no landing facilities other than a beach.  And, one with a  small cove landing area, followed by a steep climb  to a rocky mesa. For the latter, we changed foot gear on the beach to better traction walking shoes. That was the island where I cut my hand while grabbing a hand hold on what turned out to be a very sharp rock.

 

 

My understanding was the arrangements for which islands are selected is partly a function of the ship size. We had 60-65 passengers, and several small islands were not usually on tour itineraries. Which made them especially desirable for bird photographers. The government rotates the available outer island selection to distribute the tourist impact more equitably.

Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Cienfuegos said:

That was the island where I cut my hand while grabbing a hand hold on what turned out to be a very sharp rock.

 

Hmmm, should we be thinking about leather climbing gloves?

 

I checked our itinerary (East Galapagos). There are two wet landing's mentioned and a number of tenderings.

 

So back to my earlier question about waterproof bags: any recommendations and any bags to avoid? I want to keep my cameras dry on these landings.

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 9/22/2020 at 2:05 PM, melmark4 said:

Well now that I am back on I do have a question, especially to the ones who have 'been there, done that'. Walking sticks? 

Mark

We went to the Galapagos in March 2020 and a friend had walking sticks ( she brought her own even though Celebrity provided some ) . She was very happy that she did so as she had had hip replacement surgery 2 months prior . I think that even without that issue, walking sticks would certainly give a good sense of stability in certain areas . We didn't use any but that is not to say that they wouldn't  have been welcomed. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 9/26/2020 at 7:02 PM, Peregrina651 said:

 

Hmmm, should we be thinking about leather climbing gloves?

 

(SNIP)

 

I dunno.  We only had that single steep climb out among a range of islands.  If I had good gloves, I'd pack them, but I doubt I'd go out of my way to acquire a new pair. The guides are required to keep the guests to a very precisely defined pathway on some islands.

 

The gloves might be useful on a Macchu Picchu leg of the trip, perhaps others will chime in.

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 9/22/2020 at 3:05 PM, melmark4 said:

Well now that I am back on I do have a question, especially to the ones who have 'been there, done that'. Walking sticks? 

Mark

We were in Machu Picchu in June of 2016 and I didn't think to bring walking sticks.   We did the 'before sunrise' walk up the Inca trail from the Sanctuary Lodge to the Sun Gate.  Walking sticks weren't needed on the way up, although some of the steps are really tall.  (I'm vertically challenged - 5'1" - and at times, my thighs were basically perpendicular to the ground.)  But on the way down, thankfully this wasn't the guide's first rodeo, and he had walking sticks for everyone.  Anyone who hadn't brought them grabbed at least one to use on the way down.  I think if I wouldn't have had the walking stick for the descent, I'd still be up there!

Link to post
Share on other sites

I doubt that you would need gloves for Machu Picchu.  We hiked the Inca trail to Machu Picchu a few years ago, and even that didn't involve any rock climbing.  We did use hiking poles with rubber tips, which were required in order not to damage the numerous stone steps along the way.  The ruins of Machu Picchu are very popular (and for a good reason!), and the nearby trails were all well maintained.  The scenery is magnificent!

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

Today's -- October 8 -- message from the Chairman included the following paragraph:

 

We are contacting you today because you are currently booked on a voyage to the Galápagos Islands. After assessing the current travel climate, and weighing how uncertainty in the world could impact your experience in Peru and Ecuador, we have determined that we will not be able to deliver the Viking voyage you expect and deserve. Therefore, we have made the difficult decision to cancel our planned Galápagos departures for the foreseeable future, including your cruisetour.

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Peregrina651 said:

Today's -- October 8 -- message from the Chairman included the following paragraph:

 

We are contacting you today because you are currently booked on a voyage to the Galápagos Islands. After assessing the current travel climate, and weighing how uncertainty in the world could impact your experience in Peru and Ecuador, we have determined that we will not be able to deliver the Viking voyage you expect and deserve. Therefore, we have made the difficult decision to cancel our planned Galápagos departures for the foreseeable future, including your cruisetour.

Ah!  You beat me to it!  I was just getting ready to post the news about our cancellation.  Btw -- do you receive notifications about messages from the Chairman or just check Tor's page daily? 😉

Link to post
Share on other sites

We too just received this email for the Nov 2023 Galapagos Machu Pichu cruise. Do they refund the travel insurance purchase if we opt for a deposit refund or are we out of $2000+ ? 

Link to post
Share on other sites
5 minutes ago, BigBee51 said:

We too just received this email for the Nov 2023 Galapagos Machu Pichu cruise. Do they refund the travel insurance purchase if we opt for a deposit refund or are we out of $2000+ ? 

I don't know .. but I would think they do given that when we got our 125% future cruise voucher for our May 2020 cruise that was cancelled -- it covered everything we had paid Viking including the travel insurance. Thus, I would assume that if the voucher is based on all monies paid to Viking ... the refund should be too.  To do otherwise would effectively penalize folks who ask for a refund rather than a voucher .. and would not be good for long term customer relations.

Edited by CharTrav
Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Peregrina651 said:

Today's -- October 8 -- message from the Chairman included the following paragraph:

 

We are contacting you today because you are currently booked on a voyage to the Galápagos Islands. After assessing the current travel climate, and weighing how uncertainty in the world could impact your experience in Peru and Ecuador, we have determined that we will not be able to deliver the Viking voyage you expect and deserve. Therefore, we have made the difficult decision to cancel our planned Galápagos departures for the foreseeable future, including your cruisetour.

Also .. .. I was getting ready to post an "FYI" based on my recent check of the Viking Expeditions page that all the Galapagos trips were gone .. and re-read your post.  Missed the words "cancel ... for the foreseeable future ".  So,.. the option of rebooking for 2023 .. don't think so.  Now -- the decision -- take a refund or a future cruise voucher??  Am thinking a refund would afford more flexibility. Hmmmm....

Link to post
Share on other sites
13 minutes ago, BigBee51 said:

We too just received this email for the Nov 2023 Galapagos Machu Pichu cruise. Do they refund the travel insurance purchase if we opt for a deposit refund or are we out of $2000+ ? 

 

The emails we each received are personalized. Vouchers are by guest, not by cabin and they are all ready calculated and included in the e-mail. The email will show your new voucher amount.

 

The refund/voucher amount can be confusing, if you used vouchers for any part of the payment.

 

IF you used any vouchers as part of the payment for this voyage, those will be subtracted out first and the vouchers will be returned to your account for future use. The face value of the vouchers will not change. If the voucher was worth $1000 when you used it, it will still be worth $1000 when it goes back on account. Vouchers are subtracted out BEFORE the 125% is calculated. What is left is now your cash balance and it is the basis for the 125% voucher that is included in the email.

 

If you want to know what your cash refund will be if you want a cash refund, multiply the amount of the voucher by 0.8.

 

For example, we are sailing in 2021 and have only our $500pp deposit to be refunded. We have a choice. We can accept a $625 future cruise voucher or we can contact them by the date stated in the e-mail and request a $500 cash refund.

 

BIgBee51, if your voucher is for more than $625, then the answer is yes, they refund the insurance as well. I can never remember if they do or they don't.

 

REMEMBER THAT THERE IS A DEADLINE IF YOU WANT A CASH REFUND. See the e-mail.

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

We have to the October 19th to choose the refund. At the moment, MyViking for this cruise is locked down for updates.  I will be contacting my overwhelmed but incredibly nice and helpful TA tomorrow. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, CharTrav said:

Am thinking a refund would afford more flexibility. Hmmmm....

 

Depending on just how much you have tied up in vouchers. Remember, once a voucher, always a voucher -- and not refundable in cash until it has expired (2yrs after issue). Who knows what the future bodes for the travel industry.

 

I took the voucher on this one and applied it to our April, 2021 trip but if the April trip gets cancelled, I plan on asking for the cash back. I have a lot sitting in vouchers, more than I feel comfortable kissing good-bye should things not go well -- and this does not include vouchers for 3rd party insurance and flights for cruises cancelled this summer.

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, BigBee51 said:

We have to the October 19th to choose the refund. At the moment, MyViking for this cruise is locked down for updates.  I will be contacting my overwhelmed but incredibly nice and helpful TA tomorrow. 

 

SORRY -- IGNORE THE GRAPHIC IN THE MIDDLE OF THE POST. CC WILL NOT LET ME REMOVED IT.  If I am lucky, I have been able to highlight what I intended to say and all else can be ignored. So sorry to put you through this but CC hates my browser.

 

 

Yes, the update is that it is being deleted from our accounts. All traces of the booking should be gone by Monday or Tuesday.

 

MVJ is for access to future cruises only. Once we have sailed or a cruise has been cancelled, they are removed from MVJ as quickly as possible. They are so quick to delete them that once we board a cruise, that cruise is no longer available on MVJ. If there is any information or graphics that you want to save on MVJ, it must be done before you sail.

 

image.png

Edited by Peregrina651
Link to post
Share on other sites

Does Viking own the ship that they have for the Galapagos or do they lease it from another company.  If they do own it I am wondering where it will be sent.

 

Sorry for all of you who had this great adventure canceled.

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
51 minutes ago, deec said:

Does Viking own the ship that they have for the Galapagos or do they lease it from another company.  If they do own it I am wondering where it will be sent.

 

Sorry for all of you who had this great adventure canceled.

 

They were chartering the Santa Cruz II for their exclusive use.  This is similar to the ships they use in Russia, for example, where they are not allowed to operate ships in Russian waters that are not owned by a Russian company. In cases like that, they have a long term charter arrangement and allowed to customize the interior to Viking standards. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, CharTrav said:

They were chartering the Santa Cruz II for their exclusive use.  This is similar to the ships they use in Russia, for example, where they are not allowed to operate ships in Russian waters that are not owned by a Russian company. In cases like that, they have a long term charter arrangement and allowed to customize the interior to Viking standards. 

@deec let me expand on my answer based on a little more research. Viking operates its ships under three arrangements: (a) Viking owns it, (b) a company in the country where the ship operates owns it, and (c) Viking charters a ship owned by a company in the country where the ship will operate. Refer to the list of Viking ships in this Wikipedia article under each category of Viking ships - river, ocean, expedition:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Viking_Cruises?wprov=sfti1

Btw - the Viking Mississippi is owned and registered in the US. 

Edited by CharTrav
Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Forum Assistance
      • Q&A with Chris Prelog, President of Windstar Cruises!
      • Register Now for Cruise Critic Live Special Event: Royal Caribbean
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...