Located on the equator, the Galapagos Islands have a surprisingly cool, sub-tropical climate. The larger islands with volcanic peaks have a variety of climatic zones. The coastal areas are arid and covered with plants adapted to desert conditions. The highland areas receive moisture almost all year round, which support lush vegetation. Temperatures are determined almost entirely by ocean currents, which are influenced by the trade winds.
There are two seasons, both of which have some precipitation. The Galapagos get an average of ten inches of rain per year, so it is never considered "rainy". Unlike most equatorial regions, the Galapagos are not hot and humid; they lie instead in one of the Pacific's "dry zones" where temperatures remain abnormally low, cooled by upwelling in the sea. The Galapagos cycle through two distinct seasons: the warm/wet season (January to June) and the cool/dry season (July to December).
From June to November, the cold Humboldt Current sweeps northward from the Antarctica . When it reaches the northern tip of Peru , the southeast tradewinds push it toward the Galapagos. This mass of cold water cools the air and creates an inversion layer over the islands. The inversion upsets the usual weather pattern associated with the tropics. While the lowlands are experiencing drought, the highlands receive misty precipitation locally known as "garua" (pronounced gah-ru-ah) season, which means mist in Spanish.
During the months from December to May, the cooling current subside, temperatures rise and the southeast trade winds and the Humboldt Current vanish. Warm waters flow south from Panama. Periods of rain are strong but are of short duration. Temperatures are warm and sunny days outnumber cloudy days. Some years, the flow of warm water is greater than normal and a phenomenon known as "El Niño" results. Surface water temperatures climb higher than usual and rainfall greatly increases. Life on land flourishes, but seabirds and marine life frequently experience extreme breeding failures.
|min air temp.||70||74||74||72||72||68||66||64||62||64||66||68|
|avg. sea temp||74||76||76||76||74||74||72||66||68||70||72||74|
|avg. rainfall (inches)||1||1||2||1.5||.75||.25||.50||.25||.50||.25||.50||.50|
• May to November at Wolf & Darwin: 74-78 degrees F
• May to November in Central Islands : 65-72 degrees F
• December to April at Wolf & Darwin: 76-80 degrees F
• December to April in Central Islands : 75-78 degrees F
Dress is casual and comfortable, and informality is basic to all activities. We recommend you pack in a collapsible, soft-sided suitcase. Checked bags should be securely locked for your security.
Although provided, you may want to bring your own snorkeling equipment or wet suits (from July to November). Beach towels and hair dryers are provided and therefore it is not necessary that you bring these items.
The Islands are part of the Ecuador National Park system and the entrance fee is $100.00 per person. Children age 11 and younger pay a reduced rate of $50.00. The fee is divided up among various entities including the GNPS, Marine Reserve, agriculture, municipalities, INEFAN and INGALA. The park tax is not included in the cruise rate. However, it will be added to your cruise invoice and prepaid by Ecoventura for your convenience. For any passenger who elects not to prepay the park tax to Ecoventura, their fee will be collected at the airport upon arrival in Galapagos by National Park authorities. The park only accepts cash in U.S dollars as a form of payment and is subject to change without prior written notification.
Aboard our vessels, gratuities are not included. We prefer that our guests reward our crew based on their performance. Tipping is a personal matter and passengers are encouraged to tip an amount they find appropriate. For those passengers who inquire, we suggest they follow international guidelines of US $175.00 per person on a 7-night cruise, $125.00 per person on a 5-night cruise. Gratuities are divided among all crew members including naturalist guides.
Flights to Galapagos for our passengers are serviced by AEROGAL Airlines from Quito and Guayaquil to Galapagos to San Cristobal. Seat reservations for confirmed passengers will be made by us. Arrival and departure airports are subject to change according to our itineraries.
Flights to Ecuador are currently serviced by American Airlines (from Miami to Quito and Guayaquil ), Continental Airlines (from Newark and Houston ), LAN Airlines (from Miami and JFK), LACSA via San Jose , COPA via Panama City , IBERIA Airlines via Madrid and KLM via Amsterdam.
On International flights from Quito or Guayaquil, there is an airport departure tax of $25.00 per person payable in US dollars.
Every passenger has an open tab at the bar and boutique, which are paid the last day of the cruise. We accept cash (US Dollars), Travelers checks, Master Card, VISA, American Express and Diners.
A well-stocked bar with beer (local and imported), wine, premium liquors and liqueurs are available at the bar area. A rate sheet is posted with drink prices.
A variety of items for personal care, souvenirs, film, post cards, etc. are available in the vessel's boutique.
Books, magazines and DVDs are available for passengers to use during their trip. If you want to take a book to your cabin, please advise the administrator or guide.
Board games of scrabble, chess, checkers, Monopoly are located in the lounge area and are available for passengers to use in their free time.
Passengers on our 7-night itinerary will be offered laundry service provided by a local company in Puerto Ayora, Santa Cruz . On Friday morning, passengers can arrange to have dirty clothes sent to be laundered. The laundry will be delivered in the afternoon when passengers return from the visits. All laundry bills must be paid directly to the company in cash (US dollars).
Any passenger who would like to reserve a wet suit in their size prior to the cruise may do so at a charge of $25 for 7 nights and $20 for 5 nights per wet suit. The fee will be charged to the account on board and paid at the end of the cruise. Reserved wet suits will be removed from the inventory and set aside for exclusive use during the cruise. Passengers are still entitled to use the remaining wet suits on board at no additional charge. However, they are available on a first come first serve basis and there is no guarantee there will be one available in their size unless they reserve in advance. Wet suits are most popular from June to November when water temperatures are between 65 and 72 degrees F.
Masks, fins and snorkels in average sizes are available on board free of charge for use during the cruise. There is no guarantee there will be all equipment available in your size and therefore passengers may bring their own equipment.
There are two kayaks per yacht and are available at designated sites during the cruise on a first come first serve basis at no additional charge. The clear bottom tandem model is half canoe and half sit-on-top kayak with a modular transparent hull. The crystal clear hull of the Caribe provides a window to the underwater world.
Passengers who are certified scuba divers can choose to purchase a scuba package for $350.00 additional per person. The package includes two days of diving (on Tuesday and Friday) with four dives/ tanks total provided by a local dive shop. The dive fee includes filled tanks, weight belt, weights, BCD, regulator, wet suit, boots, hood and gloves. Although not required, we recommend all divers have sufficient experience with at least 20 logged dives or advanced dive certification due to strong currents, cold water, thermo-clines and large marine life. Please inquire for full details.
You may order wine ($20) or birthday cake ($10) to be served at dinnertime or a fruit basket ($5) for your cabin. It is prohibited to bring flowers to Galapagos. Please advise us at least 30 days prior to arrival or include details in your passenger information form.
Ecoventura welcomes families with children ages seven and up on all expedition vessels throughout the year. Our designated family departures are geared towards families who prefer to travel with other families. Designated departures are offered over school breaks in the US and feature age-appropriate activities depending on the ages and number of children on board- from supervised water games and instruction in snorkeling and sea kayaking to briefings geared toward the younger set and kid-friendly meals. Kids can visit the bridge and learn about astronomy, navigational charts and tie nautical knots with our Captain. Special parties including movies and popcorn, games with prizes, drawing contests, make your own ice cream sundae and our special King Neptune costume party and talent show. Family departures are designated during the summer and spring break periods, please inquire.
Children age 11 years and younger at the time of sailing are entitled to a 30% discount off the cruise. Children 11 years and younger are entitled to a 50% discount off airfare and park entrance fee with photocopy of the child's passport showing date of birth. Children ages 12-14 years are entitled to a 20% discount off the cruise rate only. Children under 7 years of age are not accepted unless the parents or legal guardians sign a hold harmless release download here. Children age 5 and 6 are permitted only on a designated family departure. Children under the age of 5 are permitted only on full charter basis.
We allow only one child discount to be given per every adult fare paid. And, we may limit the number of child discounts permitted on any one departure. Children under 18 years must be accompanied by an adult. Child discounts are applied to cabins on the iguana deck unless not otherwise available. When children are accommodated in a triple cabin, the discount is calculated from the double iguana deck rate. Child discounts are taken from the high season fares even during low season departures. There are no discounts on the 5 night rate. No child discounts are permitted on cruises that fall over the Christmas and New Year's holidays. Special family departures are designated during school breaks so please inquire.
We do not charge higher rates for peak weeks, however, no discounts of any kind are available including child discounts. We cannot accept any share requests on cruises that fall over holidays. The 6 day/ 5 night itineraries are not available for Christmas, New Year's or other peak holiday travel weeks. The terms for deposits and cancellation during peak weeks are more strict than those published here. Please inquire for terms over peak holiday weeks at the time of booking.
Cancel your cruise for whatever reason up until the day of departure. Instead of losing 100% of your cruise fare, you will receive a 'Cruise Credit Voucher' valid for a future cruise for up to one year from the date of the cancelled voyage, regardless of your reason for cancelling. The fee is 5% of the cruise rate and must be purchased at the time of booking.
For booking inquiries and further information please contact Sacred Earth
We reserve the right at our sole option and discretion and that of the Captain of the vessel, without liability for damages or refund of any kind, to deviate from the vessel's advertised or ordinary itinerary providing substitutions. We will not be held responsible for any refunds whatsoever for changes to the published or scheduled itinerary.
On an 8 day/7 night itinerary passengers are scheduled to visit 12 visitors sites. On a 6day/5nights itinerary passengers are scheduled to visit eight visitors sites. The first and last day of the cruise are transportation days and ther is no guarantee of a land visit or shore excursion. Visits scheduled for the first and last day may often change die to airline schedule changes or delay.
We have full confidence in the professionalism of the tour operators with whom we partner, and we will do our utmost to ensure 100% professional service and a smooth travel experience for our clients. Sacred Earth acts soley as an agent for these tours and thus cannot accept responsibility for any services offered by them. Clients are responsible for making their own airtravel arrangements and for taking out travel insurance and trip cancellation insurance to cover any possible losses incurred by the mishaps of chance.