GALAPAGOS INFORMATION

The Galapagos Archipelago located about 620 mi. off the coast of Ecuador, suits a unique environment that beckons travelers to the adventure of a lifetime. The islands are the tips of gigantic underwater volcanoes that were never in contact with continental South America; all the amazing variety of flora and fauna later arrived to the islands; either flying, swimming or wind-blown at some point in time.

The Archipelago retains nearly 95% of its original biodiversity. In 1990 the islands were declared a Whale Sanctuary; in 1959, 97% of the land area was declared a National Park; in 1979, UNESCO declared the Galapagos a World Heritage Site and in 2000 The Galapagos Marine Reserve was also declared a World Heritage Site.

CLIMATE

There are two seasons in the Galapagos. The first season, from January to June is characterized by clear sky and occasional heavy rain which promotes vegetation growth. The other season, from June to December is cooler and drier with misty skies referred to as "garúa".

  January to
June
June to December
     
Average Air Temperature 26 - 30 °C 20 - 24 °C
     
     
Average Water Temperature 20 - 26 °C 18 - 23 °C
     

GETTING THERE

To arrive to the Islands it is necessary to take a plane which leaves from either Quito or Guayaquil airport in mainland Ecuador. There are regular flights with daily departures between 7:00 to 8:30am. Early morning departures imply you should spend at least one night in any of the mainland hotels; we can arrange both flight reservations and hotels bookings. Please check our selection of mainland Hotels.

ENTRY, FEES & TAXES

On arrival to the Galapagos airport, it is necessary to pay the Galapagos National Park fee of US$ 100, payable in cash only. Children under 12 and students under 26 with a bona fide student ID card only pay half. In Addition there is a US$10 Transit Control Card (Ingala). The departure tax upon leaving Ecuador is US$25 in Guayaquil and US$42 in Quito.

DIVING RELATED ISSUES

Membership of the Divers Alert Network (DAN) is highly recommended for your peace of mind. A modern SSS PROTESUB, S.A. recompression chamber is located on Santa Cruz Island; this is a DAN referral center and is part of Undersea Hyperbaric Medical Society.

WHAT TO BRING

Packing recommendation: Bring any necessities, including travel documents, money, medications and other vital supplies, preferably in your carry-on bag.

Essential Gear includes a lightweight waterproof rain jacket, warm fleece, sport sandals (i.e. Tevas, Chacos etc.), a small water resistant daypack, sunscreen & lip balm, sunhat. Additional gear includes camera equipment, binoculars, insect repellent, motion sickness medication, headlamp or small flashlight, sunglasses (with UV filter and secure trap).

IMPORTANT NOTE

Due to the fact that there will be no refunds due to delayed, lost or cancelled flights, we highly recommend to all travelers to get an interruption/cancellation insurance, this insurance should include health care.