Diving in the Galapagos: What you should know

The Galapagos Islands are a veritable underwater paradise, which is why they are regarded as one of the world’s top diving destinations. The archipelago is home to a diverse range of marine species – more than 400 species of fish – some of which can’t be found anywhere else on the planet.

Let’s answer some of the questions you might have on the eve of embarking on your diving adventure in the Galapagos Islands! 

Where should I dive?

Many islands provide diving opportunities, however a few stand out as exceptionally great dive destinations. Some of the most popular are Gordon Rocks in Santa Cruz, Kicker Rock (from San Cristóbal Island), or Darwin’s Arch. Nowhere else is the density of fish so important. As soon as you put your head underwater, you’ll notice that the ocean is full of life! Hammerhead sharks, turtles, manta rays, sea lions, and schools of fish all coexist in a beautiful underwater ballet. 

Kicker Rock – San Cristobal

What is the best way to go diving?

In the Galapagos Islands, there are a variety of cruises dedicated to diving. They will get you to the most breath-taking spots, provide you with equipment, and guide you underwater. 

Depending on your wants, you can take cruises lasting a few days, with a set number of scheduled dives a day, or just take a one-day dive departing from one of the islands you’re staying on. 

Hammerhead shark

Is there a best time to dive?

There is no good or bad season to go diving in the Galapagos, whatever the season, you’ll see a large variety of species and the visibility remains adequate. The biggest difference is water temperature, which varies from 21°C to 30°C in the humid season (December to May) and 16°C to 24°C in the dry season (June to November).

Diving or snorkeling?

Some diving spots are limited to advanced divers due to strong currents. You might need to check before booking the minimum number of previous dives required to take a tour.  But, if you’re not so experienced or still a beginner, no worries, everyone can enjoy the Galapagos’ marine wildlife, no matter the level of experience in diving. Indeed, if the scuba tank or the depth scare you, you can just get a pair of fins, a tuba and go snorkeling and you’ll get to see a lot of species on the surface as well. 

And for people who want to give the whole diving experience a first try, it is possible to take diving lessons as well. The Galapagos Islands is probably the perfect place to get a first true diving experience! 

Written by Lucille Thorel–Delille

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