Do you have any advice for potential travellers?
Quito - Spend extra days in Quito if you can. The city and the area are worth exploring (Otovalo, Mindo, Cotopaxi...). Get a personal guide, people are very friendly, food is great, and the roads are in good conditions. With Exodus itinerary, you'll only have 1 day in Quito, which is not enough, as recovering from very long journey and altitude.
Clothes - Be prepared for any weather - It's hot, humid and often raining in the highlands (do rent wellies when offered). The sun feels really hot, even early in the morning and when it's cloudy (bring plenty of sun lotion and bugs spray). Bring your own wetsuit, the waters are sometimes cold and you want to spend as much time snorkelling as possible. You can have your laundry done mid week at reasonable price.
Cabins - Be prepared for a lot of noise, rough waters and early nights - Cabins 6 & 7 are at the back of the ship near the engine, so the noise is deafening along with the noise of the much needed air con. The other cabins could hear the engine too. Most of the sailing is done immediately after diner - even if you're not usually seasick - you will feel the motions - what worked for me was to lie down, meaning going to bed around 8.30pm (usually waking up around 6am)! You'll have some rest days when the sailing is not long or no sailing at all but lack of sleep is too be expected! Also I would not recommend for a single person to go, as the cabin feels quite intimate, go with someone you already know. Luckily, you won't spend much time in the cabin and plenty of deck space outside. Lounge/Meal area with panoramic windows was nice but a bit stuffy. Travel light, apart from Cabins 6 & 7 with a small wardrobe, there's hardly any storage space.
Drinks - Very expensive - Double the cost of what is mentioned on the trip notes. $32 for a bottle of red wine, with no other choice, seen at only $21 in a shop in San Cristobal.
Increased tourism - I choose the Cachalote to be in a small group, and thought there would be time slots when snorkelling or visiting the islands. But you can expect to have a least a few boats around you and visiting at the same time, most of the time they go the other side of the loop and it never felt too crowded but it didn't feel as wild as I expected, especially on the Eastern Islands.
Flights - Avoid going via Miami - absolute nightmare, endless queue at immigration even if only transiting, endless queue after collecting the luggage, and endless queue again to go through security again! Very stressful and planes were delayed too. Also on your last day, after leaving the ship around 8am, be prepared to spend your day at the airport, flying and going to your hotel, you will not have time to visit Quito centre, and very early start to catch plane home and again all day spend travelling back. Staying over for a couple of days in Miami is a good alternative to break the journey.