Diving on the Galapagos Sky
The Galapagos has the best dive sites in the world and this is your chance to experience them to the full.
Diving Cruise on Galapagos Sky
Prices from: £4,495 pp for 9 nights
The Galapagos Islands are regarded by many as having the finest dive sites in the world. The sheer variety of seascapes and marine species is stunning, and, as with the land animals, sea creatures show little fear of man. You can find yourself swimming alongside rays, sharks, dolphins and turtles. Sea lions and reef fish often join in the fun and your diving days will never be short of excitement! The core of the diving is in the warmer waters off Wolf and Darwin Islands, acknowledged as the crème de la crème of Galapagos diving. Here you’ll encounter large numbers of hammerhead, Galapagos sharks and whale sharks (seasonal) and up to five types of rays. Your base for the week is Galapagos Sky, a specially designed dive boat carrying a full complement of dive equipment, and dives are accompanied by an instructor and dive master. The boat has air conditioned interiors, en-suite cabins and a pleasant sundeck. This will be a diving holiday second to none, in a unique environment, making it a real holiday of a lifetime. Galapagos diving is considered advanced as there are often strong currents, cold waters and varied visibility, so this is a holiday for experienced divers, who’ve done at least 50 open water dives and are used to strong currents.
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- Quito 2 nights
- Galapagos Sky 7 nights
DAY 1: FRIDAY
Having landed at Quito airport you’ll be met by a local representative and driven to your city hotel. The rest of the day has been left free so you can take it easy after your journey. You hotel has a pretty garden and cosy lounge and is within walking distance of a number of restaurants so you’ll have a choice of options for dinner.
DAY 2: SATURDAY
You’ll be collected from the hotel after breakfast for your guided tour of the city, the oldest capital in South America. You’ll visit a selection of the historic churches plus the impressive cathedral in the main square, Plaza de la Independencia. You’ll then drive out to El Panecillo, a hill on the city outskirts, site of the ‘Virgen de Quito’ statue unusual for portraying the Madonna with wings, and a great vantage point for views of the city. Having returned to the hotel you’ll have a free afternoon to spend as you wish. Breakfast
DAY 3: SUNDAY
You’ll be transferred to the airport for your flight to San Cristobal airport in the Galapagos Islands, where a representative from Galapagos Sky will be waiting to greet you. You’ll be transferred to the yacht. You’ll have an introductory briefing, while Galapagos Sky gets underway to Los Lobos. Here you’ll have your check-out dive, and your first encounter with Galapagos wildlife such as sea lions and fur seals. Later you’ll enjoy dinner, with time to get to know your fellow divers and the crew. Dinner
DAY 4: MONDAY
This morning you’ll have a shore excursion to Bartolome. Your guide will lead you to the top of the hill, a good chance to stretch your legs, and from there the scenery is magnificent as you look down to the bay, with the splinter of Pinnacle Rock to the right and the dark mass of Santiago Island in the background. Time and conditions permitting you’ll be able to go snorkelling. In the afternoon you’ll dive at Cousins Rock, scanning the wall for corals, octopus, sea horses and fish. You might also spot hammerhead sharks and barracuda. Full board
DAY 5: TUESDAY
You’ll now be at the remote, northern islands of Wolf and Darwin, renowned as the best dive sites in the archipelago, possibly the world. Today you’ll have no fewer than 4 dives at Wolf plus a night dive. There are multiple sites to explore and excellent chances of seeing hammerhead sharks, whale sharks (seasonal), eagle rays, tuna, dolphin, turtles, moray eels and sea lions. On the night dive keep an eye out for red-lipped batfish as they walk along the ocean floor. Full board
DAY 6: WEDNESDAY
Another busy day with 4 dives at Darwin. The water here is several degrees warmer than at the central islands, and is favoured by Galapagos and hammerhead sharks, pods of dolphins, skipjack and yellowfin tuna , mobula rays and colourful fish, and the sight of a killer whale may add an extra thrill. Between June and November you could come across whale sharks. Full board
DAY 7: THURSDAY
On your last day in the area you’ll have 2 dives at Darwin and an afternoon dive at Wolf. Each will be full of wonderful sights and you’ll marvel at the variety of marine species, not just the scene-stealing sharks and rays, but also the smaller creatures such as flounders, octopus and fish. After completion of the afternoon dive Galapagos Sky will begin the cruise back to the central islands. Full board
DAY 8: FRIDAY
Today you’ll be diving off the coast of Isabela at Cape Douglas. Galapagos penguins, flightless cormorants, marine iguanas, turtles, white-tipped reef sharks and sea lions are often encountered here, along with smaller fish. Later you’ll have a dive at Punta Vicente Roca, where the steep vertical wall is covered with coral and sponges. This is followed by a panga ride to observe scenery above the water line. If there’s time you’ll have a second dive, too. Full board
DAY 9: SATURDAY
Today you’ll be off the coast of Pinzon, a relatively new dive site, where you should catch sight of sharks, rays, tropical fish and sea lions. This afternoon you’ll have a land excursion to the highlands of Santa Cruz, to see giant tortoises in the undergrowth. Back on board you’ll enjoy your final dinner of the cruise. Full board
DAY 10: SUNDAY
This morning you’ll visit the Interpretation Centre at San Cristobal, where you can learn about the history of humans in the Galapagos Islands, and venture into the town for some souvenir shopping. You’ll then be taken to the airport for the flight back to the mainland. Breakfast
Price from (pp sharing): £4,495 (ex. international flights)
Includes: 2 nights accommodation in Quito based on twin share, 7 nights accommodation on Galapagos Sky on twin share basis, meals as shown, private transfers as specified, half day Quito city tour, return flights from the Ecuadorian mainland to the Galapagos Islands, Ingala card (Galapagos immigration), scuba diving as offered by Galapagos Sky, shore excursions offered by Galapagos Sky with a naturalist guide.
The dive itinerary shown is a sample, and dive sites may vary according to weather conditions and seasons. The precise itinerary will be determined by the dive master and captain.
Excludes: International flights, departure taxes, visas (not currently required by British passport holders), travel insurance, Galapagos National Park Fee currently US$100 payable locally in US$, meals not shown as included, items of a personal nature, tips. Galapagos Sky offers dive gear rental packages, subject to availability, which must be booked in advance. For the 7 night cruise, full gear rental costs $200, and partial gear options are also offered. You can rent an underwater camera for $20 per day.
Getting there: This holiday starts and ends in Quito. International return flights from the UK will cost from around £675 per person, subject to season and availability. We normally book these for you.
Departure dates: This 9 night holiday using the Galapagos Sky begins in Quito on a Friday.
NOTE: We offer other liveaboard dive boats with itineraries beginning on different days of the week. Most of these cruises include diving at Wolf and Darwin Islands. Please click here for the full collection of Liveaboard dive boats.
Casa Aliso is a charming 10-room hotel with a homely atmosphere, roaring open fires, antique furniture and pastel painted walls. It’s in La Floresta, a refined residential neighbourhood in the new town. Each of the bedrooms is individual in design and decor, and great care has gone into selecting colour schemes and items of furniture. All have TV, phone, safe and en-suite bathroom with both a bath and shower. Breakfast is served in the dining room or, on warm mornings, out in the garden. Though not open for lunch and dinner, the hotel offers a snack menu until 10pm, and there are several restaurants within walking distance. Staff are helpful and friendly, and make the hotel feel like a home from home.
Galapagos Sky, launched in 2001, is a specialist dive boat with accommodation for 16 passengers in luxury cabins. Designed by an experienced diver and constructed to the highest standards, she carries a comprehensive range of diving equipment including 2 inflatable tenders. With up to four dives a day, you’ll have ample underwater time to discover the magic of Galapagos diving.
Each cabin has space to store clothes, a private shower room with biodegradable, marine safe toiletries, and bathrobes. Communal areas include a spacious lounge with a TV and DVD player, bar and a dining area where you’ll be served Ecuadorian and international cuisine. All interiors are air conditioned. There’s a sundeck with covered seating and a bar where you rest between dives and island excursions.
As well as then dive instructor and dive master, there’s an experienced crew to look after while you’re on board.
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We know and love the Galapagos Islands, and would delighted to help you plan your perfect Galapagos holiday. Call 01473 599082 and speak to one of our Galapagos travel specialists today.