The Galapagos is one of those rare destinations where you become accustomed to being surprised. Nothing quite compares to the joy of observing animals in the wild or the sense of wonder and privilege felt while spending time with creatures that don’t run or fly away when humans approach. Galapagos is home to many endemic animals, most of which are fearless because of their lack of natural predators.
From the world’s only seagoing lizards to flightless cormorants and penguins, flamingos, inflatable frigate birds, waved albatrosses, clownish boobies, patriarchal giant tortoises, and 13 species of Darwin finches, you can enjoy thrilling encounters with animals-up close and in large numbers-who are completely at ease among human visitors.
There are extraordinary opportunities to swim with marine mammals such as sea lions, fur seals, dolphins, and manta, eagle, and golden rays, as well as thousands of the 300 species of colorful fish. The more adventurous may relish the chance to snorkel with the friendly Galapagos sharks or even hammerheads and white-tipped reef sharks. Marine turtles and whales are commonplace and simply add to the magic.
New park regulations make it illegal to visit an area more than once in a fifteen day cycle. Subsequently all of the boat operators for the most part have 2 alternating routes. In our case, we have a northern sailing and naturalist trip where guests navigate their way up and around Isabela Island and wrap the trip with a rare visit to Genovesa Tower. This itinerary gives the widest range of animals and mammals and offers daily snorkel and walking excursions.
Our Southern Route visits a number of hot spots and is best-suited for the most active and adventurous itinerary available in the islands. Guests will sail, hike and snorkel like on the northern route but also experience more kayaking, hiking, stand up paddle boarding and surfing on our adventure sailing itinerary. This itinerary has a North American adventure guide in addition to your Level III naturalist.