Summary : Discover an underwater diver's paradise surrounded by sea lions, manta rays (Dec - May), turtles, and colorful reef fish with perhaps even whale sharks (May - Nov) and mola molas! Enjoy approximately 17-19 dives (includes check-out dive, plus a night dive!) accompanied by a dive master with essential knowledge of the dive locations such as legendary Wolf and Darwin Islands. On land, explore Bartolome Island, spot giant tortoises in the highlands of Santa Cruz Island and learn about the human history of the island at San Cristobal's Interpretation Center.
We strongly recommend two pre-cruise nights and one post-cruise night in Quito or Guayaquil. Please inquire about adding these or other services to your trip.
Activities : Birding, Diving, Hiking, Photography, Snorkeling
Save 5% off select voyages when combined with a Galapagos trip aboard Origin, Eric, or Letty. Please inquire for pricing and availability.
$5,895 to $6,395
Arrive at San Cristobal's airport where crew will personally greet you, help with luggage, and escort you to the expedition vessel. Cruise to Los Lobos for your check-out dive with playful Galapagos sea lions and fur seals. Later in the day, discover the myriad of diverse land formations while cruising the Galapagos Islands.
Bartolome is a lovely dive spot at Cousins Rocks boasting a variety of colorful fish and unique photo opportunities. Travel along a beautiful coral wall discovering frog fish, sea horses, and octopus. Enjoy sea lion companions on your safety stops.
Enjoy a hike to a favorite hilltop with breathtaking views. Conditions permitting, snorkel in crystal-blue water with the possibility of penguins as companions.
Spend the next three days diving (up to 4 dives per day plus a night dive) spectacular locations at Wolf and Darwin Islands including The Arch, considered by many as the best dive site in the world. Experience Darwin Island and observe hammerhead sharks, bottle-nose dolphins, octopus, flounders, rays, turtles and multitudes of tropical reef fish found nowhere else in the islands. Whale sharks are common from June through November. The presence of occasional tiger sharks, black and blue marlin, and killer whales adds to this amazing diving experience.
Discover Wolf Island's splendor and observe a plethora of shark species. This is the place for schooling hammerhead sharks, large aggregations of Galapagos sharks, and occasionally whale sharks. Seeing dolphins, large schools of tuna, spotted eagle rays, barracudas, sea lions and sea turtles is common. The bottom is covered with hundreds of moray eels, many of them free swimming. On a night dive, enjoy watching red-lipped bat fish walk along the bottom of the sea!
At Cape Douglas, on the western side of Isabela Island, you will do one dive Friday morning. Here you can expect to see penguins, marine iguanas, flightless cormorants, sea lions, seahorse, sea turtles, horn sharks, red lipped batfish, and occasional hammerhead sharks and white tip sharks. Also keep an eye out for chevron barracuda, snappers, yellow fin tuna, rainbow runners, and wahoo. There are also a lot of smaller fishes like creole fishes, parrot fishes, scrawled filefishes, pacific box fishes, and tiger snake eels.
Visit Punta Vincente Roca for up to 2 dives and a Panga ride. Diving here is chilly, particularly below the thermocline, but not to be missed! Discover a steep, deep vertical wall covered in soft coral, sponges, and endemic black coral. Observe mola mola, sea horses, horn sharks, red-lipped bat fish, various shrimp and many more marine invertebrates. After the dive, photograph penguins, flightless cormorants, marine iguanas, sea lions, blue-footed and masked boobies, magnificent frigates, and noddy terns during the panga ride back to the ship.
Pinzon Island provides opportunities for encounters with a variety of species of sharks, sea lions, mantas, eagle rays, and moray eels. Enjoy one dive here observing many fish species including yellow tailed surgeonfish, king angelfish, moorish idols, steel pompanos, snappers, grunts, creole fish, and barracuda.
After the dive, transit the Itabaca Channel and then transfer by bus to visit the highlands of Santa Cruz Island to observe Galapagos Tortoises. Explore the coastal town of Puerto Ayora before heading back to the yacht.
In the morning, visit the Interpretation Center to discover the natural and human history of the islands. After your visit, transfer to the airport for your return flight to the mainland.
This itinerary is subject to change. ExpeditionTrips.com is not responsible for itinerary changes. Read this itinerary as a guide only, as the exact route and the wildlife you encounter may vary.
Dive Certification Requirements:
Diving in Galapagos is considered ADVANCED diving as it occurs in the presence of strong currents, cold water and at times limited visibility. Diving from tenders/pangas (small inflatable boats) is also the rule and not an exception in this world-renowned destination. Recommended requirements include 50-100 open water dives, experience in currents, ability in removing gear in water and ability in getting into small boats in choppy seas. All divers should have Nitrox certification. Divers without Nitrox certification will not be able to complete 4-5 dives on the 3 days spent at Wolf and Darwin islands due to depths and time lengths of dives and recreational non-decompression limits.
Diving Accident Insurance:
It is a requirement of this trip to purchase coverage sucha as provided by Divers Alert Network. Please inquire with ExpeditionTrips for more details.
Rental Dive Equipment:
BCD; regulator and gauge; computer; underwater camera; 7mm wetsuit, hood, mask and snorkel, and fins/booties. Please contact ExpeditonTrips for details. Limited sizes and quantities available. Please make sure to reserve in advance. Please note that gloves, torches/underwater lights or dive knives are not available for rent.
Dive to Make a Difference: 5/13/2018, 2/24/2019
100% of the proceeds from these two departures will go to the Charles Darwin Foundation for conservation and research. Dr. Pelayo Salinas will be on board diving with the group, conducting special talks in the evenings and answering questions on the important work being done in Galapagos for sharks and ocean conservation! Divers will receive an exclusive back stage tour at the Charles Darwin Research Station as well as unique gifts from CDF. All divers those weeks become Shark Ambassadors through the CDF Ambassador program.
Cabin accommodations; meals aboard yacht and beverages including beer and wine with dinner; non-alcoholic beverages; service of naturalist guides/dive masters; transfers and baggage handling in the islands between airport and dock for flights arriving before 1pm; air or nitrox filled tanks, weights, weight belt. Subject to change without notice.
Airfare; hotel nights before/after cruise; transfers in Quito or Guayaquil; Galapagos National Park entrance fee; Galapagos Transit Card; gratuities to guides and crew; purchases in onboard boutique; travel and dive insurance*; hyperbaric chamber fee; dive gear and equipment rentals; travel health insurance (required to enter Ecuador); fuel surcharge may apply.
Airfare between Quito/Guayaquil and the Galapagos Islands:
The flights between mainland Ecuador (Quito or Guayaquil) and the Galapagos Islands are an additional cost. To secure your seats on often overbooked flights, ExpeditionTrips must reserve these flights for you at the time of cruise booking. Approximate cost (including service fee): $500-$700 per adult.
*Cruise Interruption and Cancellation Insurance:
We strongly recommend that all passengers traveling on Galapagos Sky invest in comprehensive medical, accident, trip cancellation and trip interruption insurance at the time of your reservation. This investment will protect you and your financial commitment in the event of unforeseen travel delays, airline cancellations, weather, personal or family illness or injury which may not allow for you to make your scheduled cruise.
Photos © Philip Hamilton