Located around 926km off the west coast of Ecuador in the South American continent, the Galapagos Islands are formed from a combination of tectonic forces and volcanic eruptions. It consists of 13 main islands, 3 smaller islands and more than 100 smaller islets beautifully laid out near the Pacific Ocean.
Because of its unparalleled position, Galapagos Islands are known to have a very rich and diverse marine life. Many species are endemic to the islands. Visitors and scuba divers will have the chance to spot giant tortoises, sea lions, penguins, iguana on the surface and observe dolphins, rays and sharks underwater. Scuba Diving in Galapagos is actually considered by many to be some of the best diving in the world.
I usually use this website to book in advance my Liveaboards in Galapagos as they usually have the lowest rates I find. I like it because they have an easy booking system.
Galapagos got its name from these Giant Tortoises inhabiting the islands.
Photo credit: http://unchartedoutposts.com/
Galapagos was also made famous by the English Naturalist, Charles Darwin, because of its unique and fearless wildlife. It was in the 1830s when Darwin was inspired with the beautiful marine species and ocean currents found in Galapagos, which led him to formulate his Theory of Evolution by Natural Selection.
Many agree that the Galapagos Islands have it all: the best non-diving wildlife adventure cruises and the best liveaboard diving experience in the world. The Galapagos archipelago is an extraordinary UNESCO World Heritage waiting for you to explore!
There are only 6 liveaboard dive boats currently sailing the Galapagos Islands, we’ve got all the information in one place for you.
The Galapagos Sky is an amazing boat offering luxury liveaboard diving cruises. Welcoming a maximum of 16 guests, this 33 meters long vessel features plenty of space! Plus, the Galapagos Sky is proudly boasting environmental friendly necessities. Indeed, with biodegradable toiletries, it reduces it’s environmental footprint… and yours!
Diving with the Galapagos Sky is greatly facilitated by the professional crew and the fully equipped dive deck. Indeed, there’s everything you need right at the aft; camera table, rinse tanks, storage, showers as well as a full dive shop for rental gear & cameras.
Watch the video below to peek at how it’s like to spend a week on-board the Sky!
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Galapagos Aggressor III
From the world-renowned Aggressor Fleet, aka Dancer Fleet, comes the luxurious Galapagos Aggressor III. With 8 beautifully furnished cabins on-board, the Galapagos Aggressor III welcomes up to 16 divers on each trip. The interiors of the vessel were elegantly designed, with comfort and freedom in mind.
Diving wise, the dive deck is loaded with every you might need and yet never feels cramped. Plus, most of the diving is done from the diving tenders as it gets you closer to the action!
The Galapagos Islands have so much to offer, watch the video and see how the Aggressor 3 can enhance your journey!
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The Humboldt Explorer is significantly cheaper than it’s “luxurious” rivals but doesn’t have much to envy. Indeed, the 33 meters long vessel is built sturdy and spacious with only 8 cabins on-board, for maximum of 16 guests. The accommodations, as well as the social areas are roomy and comfortable. Plus, the Humboldt Explorer features a hot-tub (jacuzzi) on the sundeck.
In term of diving the Humboldt is fully equipped as well! All the latest navigation and safety technologies are installed. The dive deck boasts camera work stations, ample kitting up space, lots of personal storage space and much more. Also, the mother ship is assisted by 2 diving tenders to make everything run smooth and to allow an effortless ride to the action packed waters!
To peek into the Humboldt Explorer and have an idea of what you’ll discover… Watch the video!
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The Galapagos Master (formerly Deep Blue) was taken over by the Master Fleet and fully refitted. The refit was conducted by Worldwide Dive & Sail, which also brought us the Siren Fleet. The 9 cabins are roomy and comfortable, welcoming a maximum of 16 guests. There’s plenty of space inside with, for example, a sizable lounge with full media library. Outside, you’ll find lots of seating spots as well as a roomy sundeck with loungers.
The dive deck is complimenting everything else. Indeed, it was built consciously with scuba diving in mind and it’s a success. You’ll find ore than enough space for your gear & toys. Diving Tenders are also assisting the Galapagos Master, allowing convenient drop-offs and pick-ups.
Watch the video to have an idea of how it is to explore Darwin’s Islands with the Galapagos Master!
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The Nortada is a 26 meters yacht, welcoming only 8 guest on-board. Decidedly, it’s eight lucky divers that get to stay in 4 comfortable cabins. Every cabin follows the industry standards, and beyond, with en-suite facilities and AC. Guests will love the personal experience they will live on-board the Nortada. Also there’s more than enough space for everyone to get a sense of privacy with lots of social areas.
Divinig with the Nortada is indeed everything but cramped. There are 2 diving tenders assisting the mother ship, meaning very small groups in each. Heading to and coming back from the action will be a breeze.
Tip Top Diving, the fleet which brings you the Nortada, is telling you more about what SCUBA Diving in the Galapagos is all about.. watch!
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The Astrea is in the “cheap” category but she doesn’t have much to envy to her more expensive counterparts. The stunning Astrea is 25 meters long and welcomes a maximum of 16 divers. The dive boat has been refitted in 2015 and boasts comfortable cabins all with en-suite bathroom, closet space and individually controlled AC.
The dive deck configuration is clever and leaves ample kitting up space. Camera table, rinse ranks, showers and much more are waiting for divers. Also, following the industry standards, diving is conducted from diving tenders.
The itinerary is all the same and includes the stunning Wolf and Darwin Islands, of course!
Watch this video from 2015 to imagine yourself getting there and next thing you know, you’ll be ready to dive!
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Best time to go on Galapagos Liveaboard
Galapagos Islands are dominated by 2 seasons: the wet (warm) and dry (cold) seasons.
- Wet season runs from approximately January to June. Since this period has warmer water temperatures generally fluctuating between 20 – 28°C, most divers who are fortunate to set foot in Galapagos recommend this period to be the most pleasant time to explore the area.
- Dry season starts from July to December. This brings a cooler temperature. Water temperature is lower, usually between 16 – 23°C. This is whale shark season and tends to be the most popular period to visit, despite the “cold” water.
Scuba Diving during the wet (warm) season is best for manta ray encounters, which will give added excitement to the diver’s underwater journey.
Photo credit: http://www.underseahunter.com/
Galapagos is part of every diver’s diving destination wishlist. The stunning marine life can be best experienced through liveaboard boat diving to truly discover all the best spots on offer.
The good thing about liveaboard diving is that you can access remote areas which are far beyond the reach of ordinary land-based operations. It may be rocky and unwelcoming above the water but underneath awaits a mesmerizing scene. You will have the chance to witness Hammerhead sharks schooling around the Islands. You can also see the local Galapagos sharks, white tips and whale sharks munching on plankton along with eagle, mobula and manta rays. Prepare yourself for the occasional Tiger Shark too!
Darwin and Wolf islands in the north-west part of Galapagos are without a doubt, the main attraction of the archipelago. They form the back-bone of the liveaboard’s itinerary. They will be mainstays of your cruise and are the tickets to give you lots of unforgettable mind-blowing underwater action.
Most of the Liveaboard itineraries give divers opportunity to spend more time in the 2 main islands in the North: Darwin and Wolf.
Map credit: http://www.scubadivingfanclub.com/
Wolf and Darwin Islands offer extraordinary sightings of whale sharks, hammerheads and Galapagos sharks, eagle rays and dolphins. They also have the warmest waters in the archipelago which gives rise to reef fish and corals.
Scuba Divers will also experience the beauty found in Gordon Rocks, Cousins Rock and Bartolome Island. They can snorkel with penguins at Bartolome and have a fantastic night dive at Cousins Rock. Marine Iguanas are also residents of Punta Espinosa. Divers can also experience an awesome dive at Caleta Tagus Cove and Punta Vicente Roca during the night. They rave about the Sea lions, yellow sea horses, hammerheads, red lipped batfish, and even Mola-Mola.
SCUBA Diving Condition in Galapagos island
With medium surges to choppy and strong currents, diving around Galapagos islands is a little tricky and can be challenging. Experienced divers who have been to various destinations and dived in various conditions are encouraged more to set foot on this archipelago than the beginners.
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