The Galapagos Islands make up the world’s second-largest marine reserve and offer unique experiences and encounters with marine and terrestrial life that cannot be found anywhere else on the planet.
The same destination where Charles Darwin philosophized over the ‘Origin of Species, the Galapagos Islands promise a once-in-a-lifetime experience of unparalleled beauty and diversity. Declared a Natural Heritage Site for Humanity in 1978, the Galapagos became a National Park Biosphere Reserve in 1984. Later, in 2001 UNESCO extended the World Heritage Site designation to include the Galapagos Marine Reserve.
Galapagos is considered one of the underwater wonders of the world.
Galapagos ‘ natural beauty is jaw-dropping; located around 1000 kilometres from Ecuador and comprises 127 volcanic islands, islets, and rocks. Part of the country of Ecuador in Central America, the Galapagos are a remote destination, that will require a domestic flight from either Mariscal Sucre International Airport (UIO), located in the capital city of Quito, or Jose Joaquin de Olmedo International Airport (GYE), in Guayaquil.
Scuba diving Galapagos can be intense due to currents, surges and cold waters, so, for your safety and enjoyment, you should have a decent amount of experience in these types of conditions. There are two general seasons that you should consider. December through May is the wet season, where the chances of seeing manta rays are higher. The dry season runs from June to November when encounters with whale sharks are more frequent.
The islands are known not only for the chance to encounter large megafauna such as the schools of Hammerhead sharks but also endemic life such as marine iguanas, red-lipped batfish, and penguins.
The Galapagos are remote, so sourcing vegan or plant-based options for your liveaboard trip is significantly more tricky. That said, it is possible, and several operators do this very well. Diving from land will provide a good range of vegan options for your plant-based diver diet. Get in touch, and we can chat about what is available to you.
Additional information about diving the Galapagos? Brett gives his thoughts about why you should choose the Galapagos for your next dive holiday here. And, the best way to go about diving the Galapagos here.
The Galapagos Islands are in the America’s
Belonging to Ecuador, the archipelago is a one-hour and twenty-minute plane flight from either Quito or Guayaquil on the mainland heading west into the Pacific Ocean.
Ecuador is accessible from many international centres. The main airport to look for is Mariscal Sucre International Airport, Quito (UIO).
To dive the Galapagos, you should be an experienced diver. The currents can be intimidating, the water cold, and the surge significant. The area is also very remote. For your safety, and to get the most out of your time there, you should have a decent number of dives under your belt in similar conditions, and feel comfortable in thicker wetsuits.
The best way to dive the Galapagos is undisputedly from a dive liveaboard, of which there are several we recommend.
If you want to make the best out of your trip and dive the most famous sites in the Galapagos, then you will need to take a dive cruise.
There are numerous boats here, but many specialise in purely naturist itineraries (not the nude kind, it’s way too cold). For more information on diving itineraries, do not hesitate to get in touch.
Diving in the Galapagos is at the more expensive end of the scale, especially with air flights factored in. That said, diving here is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, so it is well worth the bruises to the wallet. There are cheaper options for diving from land, but you will miss some of the most well-known dive sites.
The Galapagos are a magnet for large pelagics of which whale sharks and schooling hammerheads are the most well-known. You will also have the opportunity to experience many species of shark, including the Galapagos shark, as well as rays and marine life endemic to the area.
Diving in the Galapagos is widely considered some of the best, if not the best, in the world. The raw power of nature and the abundance of the pacific ocean, not encountered anywhere else on the planet, is here to experience.
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