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“Stayed Three Nights. Worst Part was leaving!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Galapagos Safari Camp

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Galapagos Safari Camp
Finca Palo Santo, Ecuador   |  
Hotel amenities
Certificate of Excellence
California
Top Contributor
70 reviews 70 reviews
37 hotel reviews
Reviews in 41 cities Reviews in 41 cities
113 helpful votes 113 helpful votes
“Stayed Three Nights. Worst Part was leaving!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 4, 2013

I think there are only 9 tents. These are luxury tents, meaning lovely beds, in tent coffee tea, air condition unit, and full bath shower. Yep, it just doesn't get any better than this. It's the perfect tenting experience for me!

The location is in the "highlands" and is very much remote and out of the main touristy areas. This is a plus because you are just surrounded by nature and have amazing views of the land and water. This is also a minus because it is far from town and you will require a taxi driver to get to anything. Despite this, it was perfect for us. We really liked not having to see a ton of people.

As others have mentioned, the food is fantastic. Definitely not typical ecuadorian cuisine but so delicious. They have excellent chefs / cooks there doing a great job!

There are some very cool things happening on this property:
Cool Thing 1: they are starting a cacao farm and will soon be growing high quality coco beans.
Cool Thing 2: they are environmentally focused and have built their resort around this value, they collect water and actually have enough to sell back to the local businesses. Very smart!
Cool Thing 3: Manager Katherine is outstanding in her hospitality. She and her team made our stay wonderful. They helped set up all of our activities.

I can't recommend this property enough. They only have 9 tents, so if you can get this place, go for it!

Room Tip: Make sure that you bring enough U.S. Dollars in advance. The ATM's only allow you to pull out...
See more room tips
  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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70 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    60
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (15)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 12, 2013 via mobile

We stayed here for 5 nights following a week on a dive boat. This really is 5 star camping with 9 amazing luxury rooms under canvas. The camp is situated in the Highlands with amazing views and wildlife including giant tortoise. The service is superb and really friendly and the food is excellent. We booked a safari package and thoroughly enjoyed two days with a private guide and two days on shared boat trips to North Seymour and Plaza Island. This is a really unique and relaxing place to stay and is very central to visit all areas of the island.

  • Stayed February 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sabi Sands
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 11, 2013 via mobile

This tented safari camp is spectacular. It makes you feel part of the environment...and as if you are on an African safari.

The owners were there during our visit and were exceptionally kind and helpful.
The manager and her colleagues are beyond warm, friendly and professional.

You feel as if you are at a close friend's home surrounded by people you want to be with.

The property is gorgeous.
The tortoises are on property.
The drive to the camp is beautiful.
And the food is amazing.
Fly there. Drive there. Swim there.

Just be sure to go there.

  • Stayed December 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bucharest
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 9, 2013

This is the perfect property to attest to the saying that people make the place! We had an extraordinary time there, with catered attention to all of our needs, wishes and dietary requirements. The staff really goes out of their way to make you feel welcomed and comfortable! The resort has only 9 tents (I think) so the sense of intimacy while being there is wonderful!

The only thing you need to take into consideration is the fact that the resort is in the middle of Santa Cruz island so, for every day trip out of any of the ports, you need to budget in about a 30-35 min car drive each way.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Austin, Texas
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
34 hotel reviews
Reviews in 31 cities Reviews in 31 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 28, 2012

We spent two days here as a part of our trip to the Galapagos. It was incredible- I do not know where to start. The lodge is very relaxing and the food was fantastic. We do not eat meat and we had the most delicious vegetarian and fish meals. The tents provided far more luxury than the two hotels we stayed at in other parts of the Galapagos. Hot water bottles were placed in the beds in the evenings. We had a Galapagos Owl sitting just outside of our tent.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Milan, Italy
Senior Contributor
45 reviews 45 reviews
29 hotel reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
43 helpful votes 43 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 23, 2012

This is a tented hotel that remembers the African safari experience ... in the Galapagos. Very confortable bed and accomodation, in the middle of an incredibly incontaminated nature. The sevice is of outstanding quality, excellent breakfast and we had a very good lunch. The chef is Italian.The staff is friendly helpful and very competent. The location and quality of infrastructure second to none. Really worth spending at least one night. Negatives: it is in an area where it rains a lot , the vegetation is great for this reason but could be annoying. The pool was not properly maintained. It is very expensive.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 12, 2012

It is hard to figure out how and where to start this review, but here's an attempt at a summary in no particular order:

- A fabulous scenic property in the northern part of Santa Cruz Island, a perfect location, below the mist and above the heat, sunrise and sunset are not to be squandered ... enjoy them when you have them, views of Santiago Island to the northwest, Baltra, Bartolome and Daphne major/minor to the north can be had when the Garua (mist) lifts

- The safari camp/tent theme works really well as a differentiator from the ordinary without compromising comfort, dining and appropriate luxury. The lodge is very comfortable and inviting, each evening you are greeted by a fire, an offer of a cocktail and sharing stories/photos of the day's adventures, do Not miss a trip or two to the "observation platform" ... this is a wonderful large raised viewing platform with a great shots to the north and northwest and superb place to have a glass or two of wine or your favorite spirit

- Our tent was very comfortable, clean and cozy, the platform beds were firm but comfortable, turn down service included a fleece covered hot water bottle to keep your feet warm if you run a little on the cool side, either way it is a nice touch and indicative of the attention to detail provided by GSC. The bathroom in the tent was fine as was the shower which had plenty of pressure and hot water which was welcome after a long hard day of photographing the creatures of the Galapagos. The north looking views were wonderful.

- Catherine (Property Manager), Felipe (Executive Chef), Liz and Waldo (pm shift managers) made all of the difference with their desire to acccomodate and make the trip special and comfortable ... yeah sounds cliche ... but they are special folks, spend some time with these folks as they will be more than happy to do the same and you will learn and laugh

- Food, especially dinner was excellent under the guidance and skill of Chef Felipe, we mixed it up with regular and vegetarian options and all were exceptional, Chef loves to talk food as you might expect ... Catherine, Felipe and a fellow guest, Joshua made my wife's birthday a very special evening, we laughed .... boy did we laugh

- Daily island excursions via the Narel I & II (the crew prepares an impressive home cooked lunch each day from scratch in the tiny galley of the boat) to Bartolome, Seymour and Plazas were all you would expect in your photographic dreams of the Galapagos Islands, just lag behind the group and you will have the opportunity to take fine shots without humans in the shot

- Do not take for granted the hand-picked Naturlist/Guides (Dries, Jaime, Alejandro) and drivers (Milton) as the trip would have a whole lot more overhead without them being pre-arranged, and their knowledge seems so matter of fact that you could take it for granted, we had VIP treatment from the moment we arrived in Galapagos until we departed, you are definitely not running with the herd

- Bottom line, if you want a unique experience that is very comfortable, relaxing and satisfying, you would be hard pressed to find a better land-based option in the Galapagos, We will savor it for months and years to come. Thank You Catherine, Felipe, Waldo, Liz, Lyndsey, Dries, Milton!

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Galapagos Safari Camp

Address: Finca Palo Santo, Ecuador
Location: Ecuador > Galapagos Islands > Santa Cruz
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 50 Specialty Lodging in Santa Cruz
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Number of rooms: 9
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
GSC provides an authentic inland experience by offering 9 luxury safari tents – all with oceanview balcony- in an exclusive natural environment, both as an alternative or in addition to a sea-based travel itinerary. Tents are spacious with private bathroom and hot water. Guests gather by the fireplace in the main room to view the sunsets, taste our chef´s creative dishes in the panoramic dining room or enjoy the tranquility of the infinity pool. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Galapagos Safari Camp Hotel Santa Cruz
Galapagos Safari Camp Galapagos Islands/Santa Cruz, Ecuador

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