About the Galápagos Islands
Snorkeling the incredible Galápagos Islands
The iconic Galápagos Islands ( the name Galápagos comes from an old Spanish word meaning tortoise) have long been a destination that we have been eager to explore and now we are proud to announce Coral Triangle Adventures will be snorkeling there in 2021! Best known as one of Charles Darwin’s most influential stops in 1835 during his long voyage onboard the Beagle, the rugged, volcanic islands that make up the Galápagos Islands lie in relatively isolation approximately 605 miles off the western coast of Ecuador. Being so isolated, the varied islands within this scenic archipelago shelter a wide variety of distinctive flora and fauna, much of which we will have the opportunity to interact with up close and personal.
While Darwin directed his attention primarily on the terrestrial organisms of the Galápagos, our adventure will focus on the islands’ impressive marine life and will allow as much snorkeling time as possible within this historic archipelago.
Located at a strategic latitude and longitude, where ocean currents blend cold, upwelling, nutrient-rich waters with warmer currents, a truly unique set of marine life is found here, nearly 20% of which is endemic. Geological and biological processes have helped create a high variety of habitats relative to other marine areas in the eastern Pacific. Submarine mountains, plateaus, ridges, and valleys provide habitat to an array of marine communities, while the open ocean waters are a magnet for stocks of large, pelagic fish. In the water we will be viewing the planet’s only marine iguanas, Galápagos green turtles, Galápagos penguins – the northernmost living penguins on Earth, and Galápagos sea lions. Majestic spotted eagle rays are common here and even snorkeling above schools of prehistoric-looking scalloped hammerhead sharks is likely.
But if tours in the Galápagos are guided and regulated, why go with us?
A fair question for sure. What makes our tour special is that we have partnered with an operator that has over 30 years of experience in the Galápagos Islands and who will work closely with National Park authorities to design us a program that focuses on snorkeling. The highlights of our special snorkeling itinerary are visiting areas and islands with more attractive reefs and potential for marine life, extra time in the water, and a more ‘off-the-beaten-path’ type of tour in the Galápagos islands!
If you have ever wanted to visit the Galápagos, or have the desire to return and snorkel this one-of-a-kind place, please contact us. We are incredibly excited to run this departure to one of the most significant places on Earth in regards to viewing living examples of natural selection both above and below the waterline. Come join Coral Triangle Adventures in the Galápagos Islands!
This special 14-day/13-night snorkeling adventure to every naturalists dream destination should not be missed!
March 3 – 16, 2021
Click on the tour date below to read about trip details including accommodations, pricing, and how you can join us!
Our snorkeling adventure in the Galápagos Islands begins and ends in Quito, Ecuador. We have one internal flight (Quito-Galápagos Islands-Quito). Our journey on the boat generally follows a circular route, stopping to visit several islands and island groups along our way around the archipelago. The following is a general itinerary based on our activity of snorkeling. The itinerary was prepared by the experience of the captain and crew and will be submitted for approval and/or changes from the rangers at the National Park. Please note that weather, tides, and other unforeseen or unavoidable circumstances may affect the schedule at any time.
Day 1: Quito, Ecuador
Meals provided: D
Arrive in Quito, Ecuador check in at the group hotel La Casona de la Ronda. Welcome dinner and trip orientation at the hotel. Overnight La Casona de la Ronda.
Day 2: Galápagos Islands / Archipel I
Meals provided: B,L,D
Our morning flight takes us to the San Cristobal in the Galápagos Islands, where we will board our expedition boat, the Archipel I. After our boat orientation and lunch we depart for our first snorkeling destination, German beach and/or Las Grietas. Overnight Archipel I.
Day 3 – 12: Galápagos Islands
Meals provided: B,L,D
Due to our special requests for adding extra times and areas for snorkeling and extended times at some of the more popular snorkeling sites, our operator asked that we not publish the proposal for our program until they have been reviewed by the National Park authorities. They won’t submit the proposal until next year. Please know that our focus is to snorkel the best of what the islands have to offer and to do so for as long as we can! As we get closer to our departure, we will update everyone with more details about our itinerary. Overnight Archipel I.
Day 13: Galápagos Islands / Quito
Meals provided: B,L,D
Disembark our boat for our flight back to Quito. Arrive and check into our group hotel. Farewell dinner in the evening. Overnight La Casona de la Ronda.
Day 14: International flights or extensions
Meals provided: B
What to Expect
Water temperatures vary between 16º – 28º C (61º – 82º F). The large range in water temperature reflects the influence of oceanic upwellings and currents that affect the different coasts and islands along the archipelago. While most of our snorkel sessions will take place in warmer water, there are several sites where we will experience cooler water. As such, our strong recommendation for this departure is to have, at a minimum, a 3 mm full wetsuit and hood. Please note that this suggestion is the minimum and if you plan to spend the maximum amount of time in the water, you should consider extra laying like a 2-3mm vest or perhaps even a thicker wetsuit. Skins are great to protect you from the sun or even the random little no-see-ums that can sting, but may not be much of a help with regards to thermal protection. Many of the areas we will snorkel upon are subjected to currents associated with the large tide cycles that prevail in the area. While we often schedule our session during a time when the currents are minimal, there will be planned drift snorkels. These types of snorkels take advantage of the water movement and allow us to float over the reef without having to actively swim. This activity usually becomes an instant favorite among our guests as it is very exciting and yet very passive at the same time! In some cases, however, the unpredictability of the tides may expose us to strong water movement. This may require a bit of effort though we will always have our dinghies standing by to help if needed.
Our planned walks – nearly one per day – to visit the many attractions on the islands will take place as directed by the boat schedule.
Please click on our page About our Tours to read about what a typical day of snorkeling looks like on most of our tour programs.
Click on the tour date to read about trip details including accommodations, pricing, and how you can join us!
March 3 – 16, 2021
From $TBD USD per person, double occupancy
Accommodation: Archipel I
Please email us with any questions you may have about this trip.