The Appeal of a Galapagos Cruise; A Small Boat Option for Scuba Divers
The Galapagos archipelago is located 1000km west of Ecuador: at a point where major ocean currents come together, mingling nutrient rich cool waters from the South, warm currents from the North, and a deep cold current from the West. This convergence of ocean
currents has combined flora and fauna from contrasting environments, giving rise to unique marine species. Nearly 20% of marine life in the Galapagos is endemic, found nowhere else on earth. This level of endemism is rare for marine species, which tend to migrate and intermingle to a much larger degree than terrestrial (land based) species. The Galapagos islands are home to the only marine iguana and the most northern living penguin. Coral beds share the same waters as fur seals.
The islands are also one of the only places where pelagic species (species that live neither close to the bottom of the ocean nor near the shore) can be seen close to shore. These include tuna, spotted eagle rays, golden rays and hammerhead sharks. No other site in the world showcases such diversity of marine life forms. Additionally, geological and biological processes in the Galapagos have helped create a high variety of habitats relative to other marine areas in the Eastern Pacific. Coastal areas include vertical cliffs, sandy beaches, rocky shores, mangroves, coral reefs, lagoons and salt flats. (Details excerpted from marketing materials of our cruise partner Galagents )
And Yes, there is evidence that pirates once patrolled these rich waters, now navigated by passenger boats.
While nearly 90 boats of varying sizes and types offer cruises with snorkeling, hiking, kayaking, beach and zodiac activities, we are pleased to represent one unique option offered by Galagents for scuba enthusiasts. Depending in the ship and date the cruise can last from 3-7 nights on board, or cruises can be combined to total up to 14 days.
Operating in the far north reaches of the archipelago, north of Fernandina and Isabela islands, the 12 passengers, 8 crew Galaxy Diver is a great way to discover Galapagos. Making stops in Santa Cruz to see the famous tortoises and visiting Fernandina and Isabela for shore excursions, much of the time aboard Galaxy Diver is focused on Wolf and Darwin Islands where the scuba experience is second to none. (In June 2024 an upgraded liveaboard Diver II will be in the sea, replacing the current Diver 1 with an more elegant and spacious luxurious yacht .)
While water temperatures fluctuate throughout the year, Galapagos is a year-round destination sure to please. Furthermore, the temperatures in Wolf and Darwin tend to be warmer than the rest of the archipelago. In December through May expect water temps of 65-80 degrees F, and 60-77 F June-November. In those months there can also be a light mist creating overcast skies and winds which mean choppier seas. December through May tends to offer calmer waters and sunny days on board.
For non-divers, the company offers a variety of other options and prices, operating 5 small exclusive vessels from luxury category to tourism superior class).
The Galapagos Islands are an epic destination for guests in search of big animals like whale sharks, manta rays, hammerhead sharks, turtles and endemic species like giant tortoises, penguins, marine iguanas, flightless cormorants and more .
Is 2024 the year to become an underwater pirate?