Visit the mystifying ruins at Machu Picchu then travel to the fascinating Galápagos Islands to observe abundant wildlife, including giant tortoises, Blue-footed Boobies, and sea lions.

Starting at: $8,593 * Includes airfare, taxes & all fees Make a Reservation Ask Us A Question or Call 855-330-1542
 Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu  A pair of Blue-footed Boobies  Quechua woman out for an afternoon stroll Credit: Lola Akinmade  Llama overlooking Machu Picchu   Exploring the renowned stone work of Machu Picchu   The site of Ollantaytambo in the Sacred Valley  Terraced landscape of Písac in the Sacred Valley  Town square in Lima  The historic city center of Cuzco  A tortoise and a traveler   Seals and Sally Lightfoot crabs  Mother and baby seal  Seals basking on the beach  A colorful Sally Lightfoot crab  A frigate bird

Machu Picchu and the Galápagos

16 days from $8,593 | includes airfare, taxes and all fees

Visit the mystifying ruins at Machu Picchu then travel to the fascinating Galápagos Islands to observe abundant wildlife, including giant tortoises, Blue-footed Boobies, and sea lions.

or Call 855-330-1542

Tour Details

TOUR BROCHURE

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WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

This is a once in a lifetime trip -- an outstanding travel and learning adventure. 

- Mary H.

I would recommend Smithsonian Tours to anyone, from the novice to the most experienced traveler. Single travelers will certainly feel at home as well. I feel sure I will travel with Smithsonian again.

- Rosalee C.

JOURNEYS DISPATCHES

See All Journeys Dispatches ››

Accommodations

* Click on hotel name to visit hotel web-site.

Westin Lima Hotel

Lima, Peru

Located in San Isidro, Lima’s vibrant financial, cultural, and shopping district, the 301-room Westin Lima Hotel stands in close proximity to a wide variety of restaurants, boutiques, and art galleries. Hotel facilities include two restaurants, bar, and lounge; fitness center; indoor pool; spa with massage treatments, sauna, and Jacuzzi; Wi-Fi Internet access (charges apply); boutiques; and laundry and dry cleaning services. Air-conditioned guest rooms have private bath with hair dryer, in-room safe, mini-bar, TV, and phone.

Number of nights: 2

Aranwa Sacred Valley Hotel

Sacred Valley, Peru

The Aranwa Sacred Valley Hotel is located on a 17th-century colonial hacienda in the heart of the Sacred Valley, a short drive from Ollantaytambo train station en route to Machu Picchu. A colonial-style lodging, the 115-room hotel’s amenities include two restaurants, bar, and sushi bar; fitness center; spa with hyperbaric chamber and massage treatments; complimentary Wi-Fi Internet access; beauty salon; boutiques; museum; art gallery; movie theater; library; and laundry service. Air-conditioned guest rooms have private bath with Jacuzzi tub and hair dryer, in-room safe, ironing facilities, mini-bar, TV, and phone. 

Number of nights: 2

Belmond Sanctuary Lodge

Machu Picchu, Peru

Belmond Sanctuary Lodge is the only hotel located adjacent to this ancient Inca citadel, offering its guests exceptionally easy access. Sit out on a terrace and savour Peruvian cuisine based on produce grown on the Lodge's own plot. This delightful hideaway is the perfect place to relax and unwind in the shadow of the Lost City. The Lodge's interior garden, apart from the beautiful panoramic view, has a variety of local flowers and orchids. Rooms are equipped with a telephone, satellite TV, radio/alarm clock with docking station, minibar, safety-deposit box, hair dryer and private bathroom with shower only. The hotel also offers a laundry service and guests can choose to dine in the privacy of their room.

Number of nights: 1

Belmond Hotel Monasterio (formerly Hotel Monasterio by Orient-Express)

Cuzco, Peru

Originally constructed over 300 years ago as the San Antonio Seminary, the Belmond Hotel Monasterio (formerly Hotel Monasterio by Orient-Express) is a museum hotel providing all the comforts and quality of a modern property. The guestrooms reflect their origins as the home for the Jesuit seminarians, decorated in a combination of modern and traditional Spanish colonial styles. Set in the center of town, the hotel is surrounded by convenient shops where you can find local handicrafts, textiles, and jewelry. Belmond Hotel Monasterio also offers a business center and two excellent restaurants. Enjoy breakfast in El Tupay, the original refectory of the monastery, or a refreshing beverage in the Lobby Bar. There is also 24-hour room service. All rooms are equipped with telephone, mini bar, in-room safe, cable TV, and hairdryer. Laundry service is available 24 hours a day. A limited number of oxygen enriched rooms (to help minimize the effects of altitude) are available at an additional cost.

Number of nights: 2



Swissotel Quito

Quito, Ecuador

The 275-room Swissotel Quito is located near Quito's old town, close to shopping, restaurants, and cultural attractions. Hotel facilities include five restaurants; indoor and outdoor swimming pool; fitness center; squash, racquet, and tennis courts; spa with Jacuzzi, sauna, and massage treatments; and laundry and dry cleaning services. Air-conditioned guest rooms have private bath with hair dryer, complimentary Wi-Fi Internet access, mini-bar, tea- and coffee-making facilities, ironing facilities, in-room safe, TV, and phone.

Number of nights: 3

Royal Palm Hotel Galápagos

Santa Cruz, Galápagos Islands

The Royal Palm Hotel is a secluded hideaway nestled in the lush Miconia highland forests of Santa Cruz in the heart of the Galápagos. This property is a spacious and exclusive 480-acre private estate, only a 20 minute drive from the bustling port town of Puerto Ayora.  With just eight casitas (little house) and 13 exclusive villas, guests can enjoy privacy, space, and quiet seclusion. This peaceful hotel is equipped with a restaurant, piano bar, small gym, and outdoor pool. Air-conditioned guest rooms have private bath with hair dryer, in-room safe, ironing facilities, mini-bar, TV, and phone.

Number of nights: 3

Tour Extension

Amazon Rainforest Pre-Program Option –  4 Days, 4 Nights

Discover the Amazon’s amazing flora, fauna, and even villages on this exceptional tour. Your tour extension price includes:

  • Round-trip air transportation Lima/Iquitos
  • 4 nights’ accommodations: 1 night in Lima at the Wyndham Costa del Sol Lima Hotel (First Class); 3 nights in the jungle at Ceiba Tops Lodge & Resort (Superior First Class)
  • 10 meals: 4 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 3 dinners
  • Extensive sightseeing, including guided canopy walkway tour and visit with ribereños (Amazon river people)
  • Fully escorted by an Amazon-born naturalist guide as your tour representative
  • Private vehicle transportation
  • Gratuities for tour representative, dining room servers, airport and hotel porters, and all drivers

Accommodations: 

Wyndham Costa Del Sol Lima Airport
Opened in 2007 and located at the Lima International Airport, the 192-room Wyndham Costa del Sol Lima Airport Hotel features woodwork and walls bearing the coats of arms of Lima and Pizarro Larcomar. The hotel has a restaurant serving both local and international cuisine, a bar, complimentary Wi-Fi Internet access, fitness center, spa, indoor pool, hair salon, gift shop, and laundry and dry cleaning services. Each air-conditioned guest room offers private bath with hair dryer, in-room safe, mini-bar, TV, and phone.

Ceiba Tops Lodge & Resort
This secluded 74-room jungle lodge is situated 25 miles down the Amazon River from Iquitos. Lodge facilities include swimming pool, complimentary Wi-Fi Internet access in public areas, bar and patio with hammocks, and an indoor/outdoor dining room offering both local and international cuisines in a buffet-style atmosphere. All guest rooms are air-conditioned with full private bath.

Activity Level

Activity Level 3:  Moderate / Active


Expectations: Most trips will feature long touring days, many full-day excursions, and a full and active itinerary with a faster pace and longer distances. Some tours may have activities with higher intensity and more active choices/options. Excursions require standing and walking for extended periods of time over more difficult terrain (cobblestones, city hills, stairs without handrails, limited or no access to elevators, muddy/slippery walking/hiking trails), and walking to city centers where coaches are prohibited. Specific itineraries may feature hiking, use of local transportation, extended overnight train travel, extensive use of Zodiac crafts or other smaller ship conveyances, or multiple internal plane rides. Some itineraries may require early morning departures and later evening returns. Travelers may be in remote and/or rugged regions, and may be touring at higher altitudes with steep ascents/descents. Leisure time may be limited (sometimes only in the later evenings). Certain tours feature more active excursions (such as moderate hiking, swimming, snorkeling, canoeing, bicycling, rafting, or kayaking), though another choice may be offered for an alternate skill level. Walking/hiking tours may feature up to six-mile walks/hikes.  

Appropriate for: Travelers who are physically fit, lead active lives, are comfortable participating in long days of activities, and expect some physical exertion. 

Testimonials

WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

This is a once in a lifetime trip -- an outstanding travel and learning adventure. 

- Mary H.

I would recommend Smithsonian Tours to anyone, from the novice to the most experienced traveler. Single travelers will certainly feel at home as well. I feel sure I will travel with Smithsonian again.

- Rosalee C.
Reading List
The Incas: People of the Sun
By: Carmen Bernand
A narrative history of the great Inca Empire of Peru describes the daily life, innovative agricultural techniques, architectural wonders, metalworking skills, and religious practices of the Incas, as well as the devastating impact of European colonization. Original.
Lost City of the Incas (Phoenix Press)
By: Hiram Bingham
A special illustrated edition of Hiram Bingham's classic work captures all the magnificence and mystery of the amazing archeological sites he uncovered. Early in the 20th century, Bingham ventured into the wild and then unknown country of the Eastern Peruvian Andes--and in 1911 came upon the fabulous Inca city that made him famous: Machu Picchu. In the space of one short season he went on to discover two more lost cities, including Vitcos, where the last Incan Emperor was assassinated.
Turn Right at Machu Picchu: Rediscovering the Lost City One Step at a Time
By: Mark Adams
THE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER!What happens when an unadventurous adventure writer tries to re-create the original expedition to Machu Picchu?In 1911, Hiram Bingham III climbed into the Andes Mountains of Peru and “discovered” Machu Picchu. While history has recast Bingham as a villain who stole both priceless artifacts and credit for finding the great archeological site, Mark Adams set out to retrace the explorer’s perilous path in search of the truth—except he’d written about adventure far more than he’d actually lived it. In fact, he’d never even slept in a tent.Turn Right at Machu Picchu is Adams’ fascinating and funny account of his journey through some of the world’s most majestic, historic, and remote landscapes guided only by a hard-as-nails Australian survivalist and one nagging question: Just what was Machu Picchu?
The Last Days of the Incas
By: Kim MacQuarrie
Book by MacQuarrie, Kim
Machu Picchu: Unveiling the Mystery of the Incas
By: Lucy C. Salazar (Editor) Richard L. Burger (Editor)
The Voyage of the Beagle
By: Charles Darwin
In 1831, Charles Darwin embarked on an expedition that, in his own words, determined my whole career. The Voyage of the Beagle chronicles his five-year journey around the world and especially the coastal waters of South America as a naturalist on the H.M.S. Beagle. While traveling through these unexplored countries collecting specimens, Darwin began to formulate the theories of evolution and natural selection realized in his master work, The Origin of Species. Travel memoir and scientific primer alike, The Voyage of the Beagle is a lively and accessible introduction to the mind of one of history's most influential thinkers.
Galapagos: A Natural History, Revised and Expanded
By: Michael H. Jackson
Twenty thousand copies of the first edition of Galápagos were sold. An attractive and comprehensive guidebook, this work has been completely revised and updated by the author. The reader will find an easy-to-use text which details the natural history of the plants and animals found in the Galápagos Islands. Management and conservation of the Galápagos National Park is discussed, and visitor information and notes about the various tourist sites are given. An index and checklist of plants and animals with page references and a glossary of technical terms are provided. New photographs have been added.
Galapagos Islands / Quito and Guayaquil 2015: ITM.1000
By: ITMB Publishing LTD
We first published this map back in 1989/90. One might imagine that the Galapagos doesn't change, but the reality is that increasing tourism has effected enormous changes over the years. There are now two major airports, miles of paved roads, towns, farms, and thousands of local people earning a livelihood on the islands. The wild creatures are magnificent, of course, and well-protected, Tourism is managed well. We spent a week on a motor launch with only ten passengers, so had an unparalleled opportunity to see iguanas, frigate birds, turtles, and other creatures first-hand. We are very pleased to be able to issue this newly-updated version of our favorite island area.
Inca Trail - Sacred Valley Map
By: Editorial Lima 2000
Inca Trail, Cusco & Machu Picchu (Trailblazer Inca Trail, Cusco & Machu Picchu) by Alexander Stewart (15-Jul-2013) Paperback
By: Alexander Stewart
Moon Galápagos Islands (Moon Handbooks)
By: Lisa Cho
Take the Trip of a Lifetime with Moon Travel Guides!The Galápagos archipelago is one of the most beautiful, wild, and untouched places on earth. Travel back in time with Moon Galápagos Islands.Strategic tour information with advice on visiting sustainably, which boats to take, how long to stay, and where to stop along the wayDetailed maps and directions for exploring on your ownActivities and ideas for every traveler: Spot blue-footed boobies, frigates, albatross and pelicans just as Darwin did when formulating the theory of evolution. Snorkel past playful sea lions and gentle sea turtles, or dive with hammerheads and whale sharks. Walk along sandy beaches where marine iguanas sun themselves on the rocks or hike through forests of cacti and along otherworldly lava trails with breathtaking ocean viewsExpert advice from bioengineer and Ecuador local Lisa ChoIn-depth coverage of Santa Cruz, San Cristóbal, Isabela, Floreana, and the remote uninhabited islands of Santiago, Fernandina, Española, and Genovesa, as well as the gateway cities of Quito and GuayaquilBackground information on the history, landscape, and diverse wildlife of the archipelago, including how and where to see each animal while protecting their habitatFull-color with vibrant, helpful photosEssential insight for travelers on eco-tourism, health and safety, transportation, and accommodations, packaged in a book light enough to fit in your daypackWith Moon Galápagos Islands' practical tips, myriad activities, and an expert's view on the best things to do and see, you can plan your trip your way.Expanding your trip? Check out Moon Ecuador & the Galápagos Islands, or Moon Colombia.
The Lima Reader: History, Culture, Politics (The Latin America Readers)
By: Ingramcontent
Covering more than 500 years of history, culture, and politics, The Lima Reader seeks to capture the many worlds and many peoples of Peru’s capital city, featuring a selection of primary sources that consider the social tensions and cultural heritages of the “City of Kings.”
The Andes (Landscapes of the Imagination)
By: Jason Wilson
The Andes form the backbone of South America. Irradiating from Cuzco--the symbolic "navel" of the indigenous world--the mountain range was home to an extraordinary theocratic empire and civilization, the Incas, who built stone temples, roads, palaces, and forts. The clash between Atahualpa, the last Inca, and the illiterate conquistador Pizarro, between indigenous identity and European mercantile values, has forged Andean culture and history for the last 500 years.Jason Wilson explores the 5,000-mile chain of volcanoes, deep valleys, and upland plains, revealing the Andes' mystery, inaccessibility, and power through the insights of chroniclers, scientists, and modern-day novelists. His account starts at sacred Cuzco and Machu Picchu, moves along imagined Inca routes south to Lake Titicaca, La Paz, Potosí, and then follows the Argentine and Chilean Andes to Patagonia. It then moves north through Chimborazo, Quito, and into Colombia, along the Cauca Valley up to Bogotá and east to Caracas. Looking at the literature inspired by the Andes as well as its turbulent history, this book brings to life the region's spectacular landscapes and the many ways in which they have been imagined.
Stone Offerings: Machu Picchu's Terraces of Enlightenment by Mike Torrey (2009-05-01)
By: Mike Torrey;
Will be shipped from US. Used books may not include companion materials, may have some shelf wear, may contain highlighting/notes, may not include CDs or access codes. 100% money back guarantee.
Galapagos: World's End New Edition by Beebe, William published by Dover Publications Inc. (2003)
By: Dover Publications Inc.
Brand New. Will be shipped from US.
Ecuador: A Travel Journal (Marlboro Travel)
By: Henri Michaux
Avant-garde poet Henri Michaux boarded a steamship bound for Ecuador in December 1927 as "a man who knows neither how to travel nor how to keep a journal." He set out to record a journey, but his vivid descriptions, his unexpected leaps of thought, provide a narrative unlike any other. The result is a work of pointed observation and sensual poetry and prose.Obsessed not with how a traveler interacts with the world but with how the world invades and changes the traveler, Michaux recognized that stepping out of everyday life opens one up to images and reflections otherwise hidden. In Ecuador, Michaux bravely lays out what may be found if one dares to take such a voyage.
The Heights of Macchu Picchu
By: Pablo Neruda
"The most important poet of the twentieth century--in any language."--Gabriel Garcia Marquez"'The Heights of Macchu Picchu' is a poem of ascension. . . . In its final passages, Neruda's poetry jumps from a personal hope to a global one; from a poetry dealing with the poet's heart to a poetry centered on humanity's struggles."--BBC"The Heights of Machu Picchu" has been called Pablo Neruda's greatest contribution to poetry--a search for the "indestructible, imperishable life" in all things. Inspired by his journey to the ancient ruins, Neruda calls the lost Incan civilization to "rise up and be born," and also empowers the people of his time. This new translation by poet Tomás Q. Morín includes an introduction by Morín and Neruda's Spanish original.I stare at the clothes and hands,the carvings of water in a sonorous hollow,the wall rubbed smooth by the touch of a facethat with my eyes gazed at the earthly lights,that with my hands oiled the vanishedplanks: because everything, clothes, skin, dishes,words, wine, breads,went away, fell to the earth.Pablo Neruda (1904-73), one of the world's most beloved poets, was also a diplomat and member of the Chilean Senate. In 1970 he was appointed as Chile's ambassador to France; in 1971 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature.Tomás Q. Morín is a poet and translator.
Galapagos: Islands Born of Fire
By: Tui De Roy
Ever since Charles Darwin visited there in 1835, the Galapagos have fascinated us like no other spot on Earth. This richly illustrated book captures the ethereal, haunting quality of the Galapagos and of the birds and animals that make these islands their home. Acclaimed wildlife photographer and writer Tui De Roy has spent her life exploring the Galapagos and recording their secrets. Here, in spectacular full-color images and in her own words, she shares her intimate knowledge of the islands and her deep love and respect for the natural wonders they conceal. De Roy takes readers from vibrant coastlines to sheltered interiors, photographing penguins, turtles, and marine iguanas. She visits active volcanic calderas, where life hangs in the balance each time the volcano remakes itself. De Roy follows the seasons of the giant tortoise, dives into the twilight world of sperm whales and hammerhead sharks, and treads on still-steaming volcanic crust. She also makes an impassioned plea for conservation. This updated tenth-anniversary edition of De Roy's celebrated book offers an unforgettable photographic tour of the Galapagos. Explore with her the incredible diversity of wildlife and habitats that rank these islands among the most fascinating and exotically beautiful places in the world.Features 245 stunning full-color photographs Includes De Roy's insightful commentary Showcases some of the award-winning photographer's finest work Brings the natural wonders of the Galapagos to life
Galapagos: Preserving Darwin's legacy
By: Tui de Roy
This sumptuous large-format book was first produced in 2009 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the foundation of the Charles Darwin Foundation on Galapagos. The book comprises a series of invited essays under the editorship of world-renowned photographer and long-term Galapagos resident, Tui de Roy, who has also provided most of the photographs. The authoritative essays cover the entire spectrum of Galapagos wildlife including the marine environment, unique vegetation such as sunflower trees as well as wildlife including giant tortoises, marine iguanas, sea lions, and the Galapagos finches that inspired Darwin's theory of evolution.This new edition has significant updates to a number of chapters including brand new photography and information about scientific developments elsewhere, and a new jacket.
Wildlife of the Galápagos: Second Edition (Princeton Pocket Guides)
By: Julian Fitter, Daniel Fitter, David Hosking
Since its first publication more than a decade ago, Wildlife of the Galápagos has become the definitive, classic field guide to the natural splendors of this amazing part of the world. Now fully updated, this essential and comprehensive guide has been expanded to include the more than 400 commonly seen birds, mammals, reptiles, invertebrates, and plants, and other coastal and marine life of this wondrous archipelago. Over 650 stunning color photographs, maps, and drawings are accompanied by accessible, descriptive text. This new edition includes information about all the common fish of the region and Spanish names are featured for the first time. There is also a revised section that discusses the islands' history, climate, geology, and conservation, with the most current details on visitor sites.This is the perfect portable companion for all nature enthusiasts interested in the astounding Galápagos.Covers 400+ commonly seen species, including birds, mammals, reptiles, invertebrates, and plants, and other coastal and marine lifeIllustrated with over 650 color photographs, maps, and drawingsIncludes maps of visitor sitesWritten by wildlife experts with extensive knowledge of the areaIncludes information on the history, climate, geology, and conservation of the islands
Evolution's Workshop
By: Edward J. Larson
More than any other place on Earth, the Galápagos Islands are the workshop of evolution. Isolated and desolate, they were largely overlooked by early explorers until Charles Darwin arrived there in the 1830's. It was Darwin who recognized that Galápagos' isolation and desolation were advantages: the paucity of species and lack of outside influences made the workings of natural selection crystal clear. Since then, every important advance and controversy in evolutionary thinking has had its reflection on the Galápagos. In every sense-intellectually, institutionally, and culturally-the history of science on these islands is a history of the way evolutionary science was done for the past 150 years.Evolution's Workshop tells the story of Darwin's explorations there; the fabulous Gilded Age expeditions, run from rich men's gigantic yachts, that featured rough-and-ready science during the day and black-tie dinners every night; the struggle for control of research on the Galápagos; the current efforts by "creation scientists" to use the Galápagos to undercut evolutionary teaching; and many other compelling stories.
Galapagos Wildlife: A Folding Pocket Guide to Familiar Animals (A Pocket Naturalist Guide)
By: James Kavanagh, Waterford Press
One of the most unique ecosystems in the world, the Galapagos Islands feature a bizarre diversity of wildlife, with many species endemic to the islands. This beautifully illustrated guide highlights over 140 familiar and unique species of mammals, birds, reptiles, fishes, seashore creatures and butterflies/insects. Also features a unique map that shows the location of the top 10 most sought-after species including the Galapagos tortoise and the flightless cormorant. Laminated for durability, this lightweight, pocket-sized folding guide is an excellent source of portable information and ideal for field use by eco-tourists visiting the islands. Made in the USA.
The Beak of the Finch: A Story of Evolution in Our Time
By: Jonathan Weiner
Winner of the Pulitzer PrizeWinner of the Los Angeles Times Book PrizeOn a desert island in the heart of the Galapagos archipelago, where Darwin received his first inklings of the theory of evolution, two scientists, Peter and Rosemary Grant, have spent twenty years proving that Darwin did not know the strength of his own theory. For among the finches of Daphne Major, natural selection is neither rare nor slow: it is taking place by the hour, and we can watch.In this dramatic story of groundbreaking scientific research, Jonathan Weiner follows these scientists as they watch Darwin's finches and come up with a new understanding of life itself. The Beak of the Finch is an elegantly written and compelling masterpiece of theory and explication in the tradition of Stephen Jay Gould.
Travel Insurance

For the convenience of our travelers, Smithsonian Journeys includes an on-tour Provided Insurance Plan through Travel Guard with the price of your tour. This travel insurance plan includes on-tour emergency evacuation insurance (up to $100,000), medical expense coverage (up to $25,000), dental expense coverage (up to $500), travel medical assistance and worldwide travel assistance. You will receive details on this included insurance with your Tour Confirmation and Tour Bulletins after you book a tour (U.S. Residents only).

In addition, you may want to consider purchasing travel insurance to protect your investment from unforeseen events, such as missed flight connections, lost luggage, and cancelled plans. There are many plans you can consider. For your convenience, you may visit www.TravelGuard.com/SmithsonianJourneys or call Travel Guard at 1.800.208.6142 to learn more.

Terms and conditions

Mission

Smithsonian Journeys engage travelers in the mission of the Smithsonian – “the increase and diffusion of knowledge.” Like the Institution, our tours enrich our guests’ lives and satisfy their curiosity about the world. Your participation benefits the work of Smithsonian’s 19 museums, National Zoo, and nine research centers, helping to preserve our national treasures and shape the future through science, research, and exhibitions.

What Is Included in the Tour Cost

  • Expertise of a Smithsonian Journeys expert, tour director and local guides throughout the tour
  • All gratuities for the expert, tour director, on-tour guides and drivers
  • On-tour medical evacuation insurance (up to $100,000), emergency medical expense coverage (up to $25,000), dental expense coverage (up to $500), travel medical assistance and worldwide travel assistance (U.S. residents only)
  • Pre-tour information, including a reading list
  • Transfers and luggage handling abroad (for air inclusive guests)
  • All on-tour transportation, unless otherwise noted
  • All accommodations for the duration of the tour
  • Meals, as noted in the itinerary (B-breakfast; L-lunch; D-dinner)
  • All sightseeing and visits as noted in each itinerary
  • Airfare to/from your departure city, airline taxes, surcharges, and fees, which are subject to change until final payment is made (for air inclusive guests only)

What Is Not Included in the Tour Cost

  • Passport and all visa fees and photos; immunization(s); and any other travel documentation fees as required
  • Optional travel insurance, including cancellation/delay/lost baggage insurance (learn more at TravelGuard.com/SmithsonianJourneys)
  • Personal items, unless otherwise stated, such as wine, liquors, a-la-carte orders
  • Expenses incurred by our tour operator in making any individual travel arrangements in conjunction with the tour
  • Airline baggage and other airline fees and associated taxes, unless noted in Tour description
  • Transfers and baggage handling abroad when purchasing “land only” package
  • Communication Charges (e.g.: phone, internet, etc.)
  • Other items noted as optional or not specifically mentioned as included
  • Airfare from your hometown to your departure city (for air inclusive guests only).

Registration

To submit a reservation request, please use our secure online system at SmithsonianJourneys.org or contact a Cultural Travel Specialist, at 1-855-330-1542 Mon-Fri 9 am - 7 pm; Sat 9 am – 4 pm (Eastern Time). Submitting an online request does not guarantee space on a tour.  You will be notified by a Reservation Specialist of your status once your request has been received and processed.  Please note: No new registrations can be accepted within 30 days of most tours. Some tours are more restrictive; please see individual tour pages for these exceptions.

To complete your reservation, the following information is required.
In accordance with the Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) Secure Flight program, for all international tours, passport information is required, including the following:   Full name as it appears on your passport, Date of birth, and Gender (for further information, please visit www.tsa.gov).

For tours that include round-trip international airfare: If you provide incorrect information to the ticketing agent, or if you use a different passport than originally cited, you will be responsible for charges associated with the ticket’s reissue.

Payments

A deposit of $500 per person for a land tour reservation, unless otherwise noted, is required to reserve a space on a tour.  All payments may be made by credit card or check to the tour operator.  Deposits are applied to final payment of the tour price.

Final payment is due 95 days prior to departure, unless otherwise noted.  Balance is due upon invoicing.  If full payment is not received by the final payment due date, your place cannot be guaranteed on the tour.

Late Registration

Any registration received within 95 days (180 for Alaska) of departure is considered “on-request” and is subject to specific confirmation. Some tours are more restrictive. Payment in full must be made immediately by credit card, or by check sent by overnight mail to the tour operator, before confirmation is possible.

Once confirmed, cancellation penalties apply as set forth below. If confirmation is not possible, all payments made will be refunded in full. Late registration confirmation procedures apply to any participant who is transferred from the wait list to the tour within the designated late registration period for that tour.

For additional information, please contact a Cultural Travel Specialist, at 1-855-330-1542 Mon-Fri 9 am - 7 pm; Sat 9 am – 4 pm (Eastern Time), or SJReservations@si.edu and SmithsonianJourneys.org.

A Note about Costs

All prices are based on two persons sharing a room/cabin. All prices are quoted in U.S. dollars. Tour costs are based upon current airfares, tariffs, currency values, and on the basis of a presumptive minimum number of participants. While we will do everything possible to maintain the listed prices, they are subject to change.   Due to fluctuations in oil prices, a fuel surcharge may be added to your tour fee (e.g. internal flights, cruises, etc.).  Details and costs will be advised prior to departure.

Wait List

If the tour of your choice is fully subscribed, you may choose to be placed on a wait list by contacting a Reservation Specialist at 1-855-330-1542 Monday - Friday 9 a.m. - 6 p.m. (Eastern Time), at SJReservations@si.edu or at www.SmithsonianJourneys.org/Contact. Individuals on the wait list will be contacted if space becomes available and can inquire about tour status by contacting a Reservation Specialist. If you choose to withdraw from a wait list, please notify us.  

Cancellation and Refund Policy

Following enrollment, a participant’s withdrawal from the tour for any reason, including, but not limited to, illness, injury, family engagements, work-related issues, or geopolitical concerns, etc., will be deemed a cancellation. Please understand that there will be no exceptions to our cancellation policy.

Per person cancellation fees are based on date of written notice to Smithsonian Journeys. Tour operator will refund on the following basis:

  • Cancellations within 7 days of booking:  Full Refund (unless it is within final payment date, 95 days before departure)
  • Cancellations after 7 days of booking:  Full Deposit Retained
  • Cancellations made within final payment date, 95 before departure:  No Refund
  • Cancellation by Smithsonian Journeys:  Full Refund or Credit

Please understand that there will be no exceptions to our cancellation policy.

Smithsonian Journeys recommends that all participants purchase travel insurance.

If your flights are delayed or if for any reason you are prevented from joining the tour on the scheduled departure date and time, or if you choose to leave the tour early, we cannot provide a full or partial refund or credit toward a future tour.

Smithsonian Journeys reserves the right to cancel any tour due to low enrollment and when a U.S. Department of State Travel Warning is issued for the destination.

Air Service

For tours that include round-trip international airfare, rates are based on economy class from designated departure cities as shown.  Airfares from other cities are available upon request.  Airline upgrades at additional cost may be available on request for the international portion of your flight.  If an air schedule requires an overnight stay in a gateway city, the cost of the overnight will be at your expense.  For tours that include round-trip international airfare, the tour operator  will be happy to help with arrangements. Please note that seat assignments for your international flights is usually done at airport check-in. The tour operator is unable to guarantee any seat assignments.

When planning our tours that include international round-trip airfare, the tour operator contracts with those airlines that they feel provide the level of service, routings, and value necessary for your entire trip. While another airline may offer a more direct connection, it may be at a price unavailable at the lower group rates that enable us to offer you the best possible travel value. Please note that frequent flyer mileage credits are issued at the discretion of the airline(s) and may not be available for the flights on your tour. If you prefer to make your own airline reservations, “land only” pricing is available on most of our tours.

Air Service/Tickets Purchased Independently of the Tour

International and domestic air schedules are subject to change at any time. Tours can also be canceled due to low enrollments. If you make your own airline reservations, we recommend that you do not purchase nonrefundable tickets or tickets with high penalties for changes. 

We urge you to check airline cancellation penalties before purchasing airline tickets since international departure times and flights can change. Neither the Smithsonian Institution nor the tour operator accepts liability for cancellation penalties related to domestic or international airline tickets purchased independently in conjunction with a tour.

Travel Insurance- Cancellation/Delay/Lost Baggage

Smithsonian Journeys recommends that all participants purchase travel insurance.  Learn more at TravelGuard.com/SmithsonianJourneys.

Travel Documents and Information

Participants are responsible for obtaining any documents required for their participation in the tour such as a valid passport, all visas, vaccination certificates, and any other documents. If your tour requires a visa or other entry documents, we will send you the appropriate information after you make a reservation.  Failure to obtain documents does not negate the terms and conditions, and any extra costs incurred for rerouting or delay due to travel without the necessary documents will be the participant’s responsibility. If you are not a U.S. citizen, please contact your embassy or consulate to ensure you obtain the proper documentation.

For all international departures, a passport valid for at least six months after the completion of your tour, and with at least six blank visa pages, is required for U.S. citizens on all tours. The U.S. Department of State will no longer add visa pages into U.S. passports beginning January 1, 2016. The decision to discontinue this service was made to enhance the security of the passport and to abide by international passport standards. Beginning January 1, 2016, applicants in need of additional pages in their valid passports must obtain a new passport. For more information on how or where to apply, please visit Travel.State.Gov/ApplyEarly or call the National Passport Information Center toll-free at 1-877-487-2778/1-888-874-7793 (TTY/TTD).

For more information about traveling to destinations abroad, we recommend the “Learn about your destination” section on the U.S. Department of State travel website www.travel.state.gov.  For medical information, we recommend contacting the Centers for Disease Control at (877) FYI-TRIP or www.cdc.gov/travel

Physical and Medical Considerations

To enjoy the travel experience, participants should be in good physical and mental health. All tours require an element of walking (up to two miles per day over uneven terrain) and of climbing stairs, often without handrails. Participants should have sufficient stamina to keep pace with an active group of participants on long days of touring. If you have any questions about your ability to participate in a tour, please call us at 855-330-1542. Any physical condition, diet, or special request for accommodation must be identified in writing on the Personal Information Form when the reservation is made. Some tours have additional information regarding physical and medical considerations, which may be discussed with the Reservation Specialist at 855-330-1542.

Please be aware that health care standards, facilities, and services abroad may be different or even inadequate for treating certain health conditions.  It is essential that you inform us in writing (on the provided Personal Information Form) of any existing condition for which you may require medical attention or accommodation during the tour. We will make reasonable efforts to accommodate the needs of our participants; however, services of a personal nature cannot be expected or guaranteed. By forwarding the deposit for pre-registration or registration in full, you affirm that you do not have any physical or other limitations that would create a hazard for yourself or other participants or would require adjustments to the tour for other participants.

Itinerary or Tour Modifications

Smithsonian Journeys strives to improve tour itineraries and their features. If improvements can be made, or unforeseen circumstances beyond our control make changes necessary, at our sole discretion, we reserve the right to vary itineraries and to substitute elements of the tour.  These elements include, but are not limited to:  hotels, staff, speakers, experts, and services for any stated in the itinerary.

Every effort will be made to carry out the tour as planned but alterations may still occur after the final itinerary has been sent to you. Please note that weather and other conditions may force changes to the advertised sailing schedule on cruise tours. The ship’s captain has the authority to change the ship’s schedule.

Hotel Accommodations

Smithsonian Journeys chooses hotels based on a combination of location, service, atmosphere, and price. On adventure tours and tours in out-of-the-way places, best-available hotels are used.  Tour prices are based on two persons sharing a room with a bath.

Singles and Roommates

Hotel rooms are always reserved for single participants, however, the number of single rooms available on a tour may be limited. Therefore we recommend that you register early. Please note that a single supplement will most likely apply for a single room.  If you are traveling alone and wish to share a room/cabin, we will do our best to find someone of the same gender and smoking preference to share with you. If you are matched with a non-smoking roommate, it is mutually agreed that you cannot smoke in your hotel room/cabin. When a roommate cannot be found, a single supplement will be charged. Please note that the single rooms in many foreign hotels may be smaller than those to which you are accustomed.

Children

All tours except family journeys, are designed for adults. Some may be suitable for children 16 and older. Regardless of age, children must pay full price unless otherwise noted, moreover, a parent or guardian must accompany those under 18.

Special Travel Arrangements

Participants may wish to extend their stay in the group hotel after the tour. Our tour operators will work with you on these arrangements, dependent upon space availability.  . For participants using air, only post tour extensions are offered. Tour operator may be able to assist land only participants with pre-tour arrangements.

Should you decide not to participate in certain parts of the tour or use certain goods included in the tour, no refunds will be made for those unused parts of the tour or goods.

Dispute Resolution

If a complaint arises, the participant should first inform a member of the on-tour staff, so that the staff can attempt to rectify the matter. If the issue remains unresolved, the individual should submit the complaint in writing to Smithsonian Journeys within 30 days of the completion of the tour.

The Smithsonian Journeys staff will make a good faith effort to resolve any dispute.  In the event that the parties are unable to resolve the dispute, the parties may agree to use a method of non-binding Alternative Dispute Resolution to resolve the dispute.  In the event that the parties are unable to agree on the method of Alternative Dispute Resolution to use, or in the event that either party is dissatisfied with the outcome of that alternative dispute resolution method, such efforts shall not constitute a waiver by either party of the right to file suit.

Photography and Video

Participants on tour may be photographed or recorded (audio and video) for the educational and promotional purposes of the Smithsonian Institution and Smithsonian authorized third parties.  This content may be used in marketing publications and posted on websites to promote Smithsonian Journeys without compensation to the participant. Participants who prefer that their name, voice and/or image not be used must notify us in writing prior to the beginning of the tour.

Smoking Policy

 For the comfort of all participants, we ask that there be no smoking during all group activities, including excursions and meals. On certain cruises, there is no smoking aboard the ship. Your pre-tour bulletins will provide further information.

READ CAREFULLY: RESPONSIBILITY STATEMENT AND LIABILITY DISCLAIMER

Smithsonian Journeys tours are organized and administered by professional tour operators hired as independent contractors. The use of designated tour operators allows the Smithsonian to offer participants a wide array of educational travel opportunities. The tour operator acts only as an agent for the respective suppliers by making arrangements for transportation, accommodations, and other services. Neither the Smithsonian Institution nor the tour operator shall be held liable for personal injury, death, property damage or accident, delay or irregularity arising out of any act or omission of these suppliers. The Smithsonian Institution and the tour operator reserve the right, without penalty, to make changes in the published itinerary whenever, in their judgment, conditions warrant, or if they deem it necessary for the comfort, convenience, or safety of tour participants.

The Smithsonian Institution and its designated tour operator also reserve the right, without penalty, to withdraw the tour announced, to decline to accept any person as a participant in a tour, or to require any participant to withdraw from the tour at any time (including, but not limited for inappropriate, or offensive behavior) when such action is determined by tour staff to be in the best interests of the health, safety or general welfare of the tour group or the individual participant.

Dates, schedules, tour details, and costs, although provided in good faith based on information available at the time of publication on the website, in the brochure or catalog, are subject to change and revision.

AS A CONDITION OF ACCEPTANCE OF ANY APPLICATION, EACH APPLICANT MUST AGREE TO THE STATEMENT SET FORTH BELOW:

The undersigned has read carefully the Responsibility Statement and Liability Disclaimer set forth above, the schedule of activities for this tour, as well as the terms and conditions of application and participation as set forth in the tour materials, and recognizes and accepts any risk associated with the tour and the conditions, including the refund policy, set forth in the tour materials. The undersigned further acknowledges that there are many risks and uncertainties inherent in any travel tour, including but not limited to the hazards of various modes of transportation, forces of nature, acts or omissions of foreign governments, terrorism, war or insurrection, theft, illness, and damage to person or property due to the negligent acts or omissions of tour staff or others. In consideration of, and as part payment for, the right to participate in the tour, the undersigned, on behalf of himself, his dependents, heirs, executors, administrators and assigns, agrees to release the Smithsonian Institution, its Regents, officers, employees, representatives or agents, the United States, and the tour operator and its officers, employees and agents, from liability for personal injury, death, property damage or loss suffered by any person in connection with this tour, even if caused by the negligence (but not the reckless, willful, or fraudulent conduct) of tour staff or other related persons or entities. In addition, by registering for this tour, the applicant certifies that he or she is mentally and physically capable of full participation in this tour. By registering for a Smithsonian Journey, the participant agrees to the Responsibility Statement and Liability Disclaimer and the Terms and Conditions herein.