Dear Travel Partner,
the FIFA World Cup is over and what an exciting, surprising tournament it was! Congratulations to France for winning the championship!
On another note, there is about 1 month left to vote on this year’s World Travel Awards. The nominees are just great and it is so tough to decide! Have you chosen your favorite culinary destination yet? How about the best destination for LGBT travel or leading design hotel? Get to voting now!
We can’t wait for the winners to be announced and will keep you posted!
Now it is time to settle down with a nice cup of coffee and browse through the articles that we have put together for you this month.
Also check out our Website, Facebook & Instagram for latest updates!
All the best,
Your SAT Team
P.S.: We hope you enjoy reading our monthly newsletter! Still we want to remind you that you can unsubscribe using the link at the bottom of this e-mail.*** The following SAT offices will be closed for the upcoming national holidays ***
August 07: Colombia
August 10: Ecuador
August 15: Chile
August 20: Argentina, Colombia
August 30: Peru
SAT TIP: CRUISES IN THE AMAZON REGION
The Amazon region is spanned throughout several countries in South America, including Brazil, Peru and Ecuador. Besides staying at a jungle lodge, joining an Amazon cruise is a great way to explore this beautiful and exotic ecosystem. The first obvious choice you have to make is which country to travel to. Afterwards, there is a great variety of cruise companies in each country and finding the right one is not always easy. In order to give you a better overview and help with the decision-making, we have prepared our brand-new, transnational SAT Amazon Cruise Manual! It gives detailed information about itineraries, departure dates and rates to find just the right cruise experience. Contact us to receive our Amazon Cruise Manual!
ECUADOR – HAPPY BIRTHDAY GALÁPAGOS NATIONAL PARK
59 years ago, on July 5th 1959, 97% of the Galápagos Archipelago was only declared the first National Park of Ecuador as well as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Since then, the park’s work has been dedicated to conserving the unique ecosystems of the islands and ocean with its rich flora and fauna – many of which is endemic to Galápagos. During a ceremony on the island Santa Cruz, officials paid tribute to some of the motivated people who are tireless in their efforts to support the park’s mission, including specialized guides, artisanal fishermen, craftspeople, surfers and, above all, numerous park rangers. The passion of everybody involved made the Galápagos Islands the best conserved volcanic archipelago in the world! The park covers an area of more than 8,750,00ha, the biggest part of which is marine reserve. The number of species that are endemic to the Galápagos Islands is staggering, for example roughly 80% of land birds and 97% of reptiles and land mammals can be found nowhere else in the world!
Visitors can explore the archipelago in various ways: island hopping, island stay or cruise. What they all have in common? An incredible and unforgettable view into the richness that Galapagos’ nature has to offer! Don’t hesitate to contact us for more information and program suggestions!
MEDICAL INSURANCE REQUIREMENT TO ENTER ECUADOR
Last year, the Ecuadorian Ministry of Tourism announced that a full coverage Medical & Emergency insurance valid for the duration of the stay in Ecuador would be mandatory for all international travelers in order to enter the country. The law has yet to be enacted; by Presidential decree, the deadline for its implementation was recently postponed to September 10th, 2018. From that day on, the insurance will be mandatory for all travelers entering Ecuador.
NEW TRANSFER FEE FROM/TO BALTRA AIRPORT, GALAPAGOS
As of July 30th, a new transportation service fee applies for all passengers arriving at or departing from the airport of Baltra, Galapagos. The fee is USD 5,00 per person (one-way) and covers the transportation service between Baltra airport and the pier of Baltra or the Itabaca Channel. Tickets are sold at the airport of Baltra as well as the Itabaca Channel and have to be paid in cash. The aim of this change is to improve the transportation service by using new, comfortable buses and luggage service.
JAGUAR SPOTTING SEASON – PANTANAL, BRAZIL
Did you know that the Pantanal, Brazil’s famous wetland area, gained a reputation for being one of the world’s best places to observe jaguars in the wild? Mid-July marks the beginning of the high season for Jaguar spotting in the Northern Pantanal. Until October, visitors will have the best chances to observe these majestic but rare animals. The Baiazinha Lodge, located about 275km from Cuiaba in the Taiama Ecological Reserve, offers river safaris to spot not only jaguars but also ocelots, pumas and other wildlife. Don´t miss out on exploring other areas in the Pantanal for a chance to observe birds, giant otters, caimans and water pigs during hikes, night walks, from a canoe or horseback. And since you’re already discovering Brazil´s beautiful nature, how about a detour to the rain forest? Canopy towers allow you to walk among the tree tops while excursions in boats or on foot give you a chance to immerse yourself in the beauty of the Amazon region. Nothing compares to the star-filled night skies, animal noises and smells that await you only a short flight away from the bustling cities. Curious? We have lots of nature travel ideas prepared for you so contact us here!
PERU – ONE OF THE TOP 10 INCENTIVE DESTINATIONS
When you hear Incentive Travel, does Peru come to mind immediately? Well it should! According to a list of the Top 10 group incentive destinationscreated by the US-based specialist Creative Group,Peru landed the third place right after Portugal and Croatia. Their choices were selected “because of their unique position to provide a wide variety of activities and landscapes within a single, or nearby locations.” The more a country has to offer, the easier it is to get people excited about the program and the higher participation will be. It’s diversity that makes Peru so special. The cities offer fine art and architectural experiencesgalore while the Andes, Amazon and coast provide the most impressive panoramas for hikes, bike tours, rafting or horseback riding. Peru is also world famous for its exquisite cuisine. Machu Picchu and countless other ruin sites satisfy one’s interest in ancient history while local communities allow an insight into their different cultures. There is no shortage of glitz and glamour for extraordinary events and even relaxing days at the beach can be provided. Contact us now to create your next group incentive in Peru!
REENTRY TO MACHU PICCHU NO LONGER PERMITTED
Since July 1st 2018, the entrance fee purchased for the visit of Machu Picchu does not allow re-entries to the ruin site on the same day. It is important to note that the only available bathrooms are outside the site, next to the entrance door, a fact that guests will be made aware of before entering. Exceptions will be made for medical reasons or similar emergencies only and it has to be checked with the staff before leaving if re-entry is possible or not. If you require further information about this new regulation, pleasecontact us!
NATIONAL ARCHAEOLOGICAL PARK OF TIERRADENTRO – COLOMBIA’S HIDDEN SECRET
When it comes to Colombia, most people think of coffee, nature and beaches. Compared to that, the country’s pre-Colombian history is still in the shadows and many travelers might not even be aware of much of it. Time to change that because Colombia’s rich history provides many a site that is full of mysteries. Like the National Archaeological Park of Tierradentro! It is located in the south-western part of the Colombian Andean range and consists of 4 areas. Carved into the ground is the largest concentration of monumental shaft and chamber tombs created by the Tierradentro culture. The biggest ones are up to 12m wide and 7m deep what makes them the largest of their kind. It is assumed that the tombs were carved between 600 and 900 ADto serve as secondary group burial sites. A lot of the walls are decorated with numerous paintings in red and black on white background, some even with elaborate carvings. The overall architectural structure is remindful of residential houses which suggests an interesting symmetry between the living above ground and the dead below. Since the whole site provides a valuable insight into the rituals and culture of the Tierradentro people, it was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995. If you want to know more about this unique park, pleasecontact us!
BUENOS AIRES – TANGO FESTIVAL & WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP
Tango is known worldwide as a mesmerizing dance that personifies passion and grace. It is also a dance that continues to attract fans of all ages and nationalities. This fascination even led to Tango being declared anIntangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO. Born in the Rio de la Plata Basin, nowadays people mainly associate it with Argentinean culture, especially Buenos Aires. No wonder that Argentina’s capital hosts one of the world’s biggest Tango events, the “Tango Buenos Aires Festival y Mundial”. It will take place between August 09th and 22nd, attracting hundreds of thousands of visitors that will enjoy or participate in concerts, shows, dancing classes, milongas, conferences and presentations. But the main event is the big Tango competition that is open to both professionals and amateurs from all over the world, including dancers from South Korea, the USA and Italy. Hundreds of couples will compete in two categories, Salon and Stage Tango. The big highlight of the festival is the final dance of the World Cup’s winning couple. If you find yourself in Buenos Aires during that time, pack your dancing shoes and join in! Please contact us to learn more about the festival and Tango programs in Argentina.
WHALE WATCHING SEASON, URUGUAY
Southern Right Whales are currently bustling along the southern coastlines of South America to mate and raise their calves before starting to migrate towards Antarctica, where their main feeding grounds are. Uruguay actually has some prime spots for whale watching! The season stretches from June to December, always depending on the weather conditions, but the best time to observe these graceful giants and their offspring is between August and October and the best starting points are Rocha and Punta del Este. Both destinations can be easily reached by car or bus from Montevideo in about 2,5-3 hours. Visitors can book boat tours that are approved by the Organization for the Conservation of Whales (OCC-Uruguay) to make sure that the whales are not disturbed. If you get lucky, you might even be able to observe them from the beach so a binocular is a must! Watch out for water sprays, churning water and flocks of sea gulls – these are sure indicators that whales are near. Chances are even better in the early morning or late afternoon. Want some more details about whale watching in Uruguay as well as program suggestions? Go ahead and contact us!
CHILE – STAR-GAZING AND ESO LA SILLA OBSERVATORY
Astronomy is gaining popularity with people being more and more interested in the wonders of the sky and the mysteries of the universe. There is one country in South America that is a top destinationfor professionals and amateurs alike – Chile. Many parts of the long-stretched country are only sparsely populated which reduces light pollution, the dry desert climate in the north creates some of the clearest nights in the world and its general location provides an ideal view of the southern sky. This is why, in the 1960’s, ESO (European Southern Observatory) built its Observatory La Silla in the outskirts of the famous Atacama Desert. In 2019, La Silla will celebrate 50 years of operation. Coincidentally, 2019 will also be the year of a rare phenomenon that can only be witnessed in Northern Chile on July 02nd 2019. The Moon will cover the Sun completely in the late afternoon and turn the day into night. To celebrate these exciting milestones, La Silla is organizing the “2019 Total Solar Eclipse Event”. Ticket sales started this month and only 300 tickets are available! Even if you are not an astronomy enthusiast, the breathtaking view of the star-filled sky is always worth a visit! Contact us for more information and star-gazing programs in Chile.
PATAGONIA CRUISE WITH PHOTO-WORKSHOP
In February 2019, the Chilean cruise company “Cruceros Australis” will give passengers the opportunity to combine the cruise experience to the Patagonian fjords and Cape Horn with a photographic workshop. On February 07 and 21, there will be one group each of 30 participants who will be coached by Nori Jemil, a freelance photographer for National Geographic. Workshops focussing on how to make great pictures under difficult circumstances will be held on board the vessel and the participants can put their new skills to the test during the excursions. Contact us for more information!
MEET THE TEAM: STEFANIE STÖHR, SAT ECUADOR
Stefanie is originally from Germany. She has been part of the SAT Ecuador team since 2016 as aProduct Development & Sales Executive. During her studies, she came to Ecuador and fell in love with this beautiful country. After her Master´s degree she decided to come back to make Ecuador her new home.
Stefanie has travelled to several countries in South America, including Peru, Bolivia, Chile, Argentina and a short visit to Montevideo, Uruguay. Her favorite places in Ecuador are the Andean Paramos, Cloud Forest, the Galapagos and the Ecuadorian cost. Stefanie is a passionate scuba diver and her most exciting experience so far, besides Gordon Rock´s in the Galapagos, was to dive with 6 Manta Rays in Puerto Lopez.
Stefanie loves to share her passion for this country where you can find everything! Ask her for scuba diving tips and she is happy to help to plan your unforgettable journey to Ecuador!