Let's dive around Galápagos!

GALAPAGOS GROUP TRIP

2 spots left. Apply today by sending an email to hello@destinationchaser.com answering

  • why you would like to join this adventure and why you would be a good addition to the group.
  • Your scuba diving certification level and number of dives
  • Passport nationality
  • Are you available on the 17th-24th of August?

 

My "why" for this trip:

Ever since watching documentaries about the incredible wildlife as a kid, I've dreamt of visiting this difficult-to-get-to destination in the Ecuadorian Pacific. As we are all craving for more human connection (especially after this past year!), and as things are stabilising, it felt like the perfect time to turn this dream into a reality, share it with people of this amazing online community (turning screen to real-life connections is one of the biggest perks of this social media era!) and spend 8 days on a boat as a group of 14 people, disconnected from the internet and be able to appreciate the ocean together.

Combine that with a passion for diving, exploring the underwater world and seeing rare wildlife, what better place to go to than the Mecca of diving - the Galápagos!

One of the things we are most excited about is that it’s peak season for whale sharks, but of course we will get to see plenty of other animals such as hammerheads, marine iguanas, rays, penguins, Galapagos seals, turtles... you name it. 

 

Environmental initiatives:

As it is no secret that cruises are not the most environmentally friendly, our trip (including the flights Quito - Galapagos) will be offset to keep our impact as minimal as possible to help preserve this unique ecosystem.

 

Dates: 17-24 of August

Itinerary:

(16 August: ideally, you would be in Quito - the capital of Ecuador - with your bags ready for the next day!)

 

Day 1 - 17 August: Arrival in Galápagos

In the morning we will take a flight from Quito to Baltra, where we will be picked up and transferred to the ship and get to know all of our travel - and dive buddies for the upcoming week

In the afternoon the exploring already starts, and we will be getting our gills wet for the first time at Carrion Point, a beautiful bay of Santa Cruz Island and get a first glimpse of the wildlife that's awaiting us for the week on the Galápagos, with a good chance to see plenty of bird life, sting rays, and the unique marine iguanas!

Then, we will have our first night on the boat. Exchanging travel stories and getting to know each other.

 

Day 2 - 18 August: A walk on Bartholomew and a dive at Cousin rock

As I wanted an itinerary that gives us a chance to explore both water AND land, we will start the day with walking on Bartholomew to see the most iconic land-view of the Galápagos island:

In the afternoon we will keep exploring the underwater world, with a dive at Cousin Rock - a site famous for its marine biodiversity (like, honestly almost every dive site in the Galapagos 😉). Here we can see green turtles, Galapagos sharks, hammerheads, and sea lions which our tour operator told me always like to come to play! 

Day 3 - 19 August: Wolf island

We’ll rock the boat by doing two dives around Wolf Island - Shark Bay in the morning, and The Landslide Dive Site in the afternoon, both some of the absolute best diving highlights. We will, almost with certainty, be able to see Hammerheads, Galapagos sharks, and good chances of seeing Whale sharks (as we’re in peak season!), as well as big fish, rays, turtles, and marine mammals.

 

Day 4 - 20 August: Darwin Island

From one highlight to the next: this day we will fit in two dives around Main Darwin island, named after the famous naturalist. It is the most northerly island in the Galapagos and considered one of the best underwater habitats that exist on earth. Galapagos sting rays, many hammerheads, whale sharks, and green turtles roam here.

Day 5 - 21 August: Darwin Island

And because two dives at Darwin simply aren’t enough - make it four, as this diving expedition maximises the time we have to truly explore this site.

 

Day 6 - 22 August: Banana Island

Back to Wolf, but this time a different part: North Islet, nicknamed Banana Island by the locals, is a small outcrop just off the north coast of Wolf. Because of the wall’s shape the dive site  is known to locals as “the banana” - we’ll get to see why!

It’s a sheer wall with caverns, tunnels, and other rock formations. Visibility here is usually excellent. A great site for Galapagos sharks, hammerheads, rays, green turtles, and much more. We will get in two dives here as well!

 

Day 7 - 23 August: Cape Marshall

Around the island of Isabella, we will be able to go into the waters of Cape Marshall and do an amazing wall dive to finish off our time in gear underwater.

In the afternoon, we will get to feel what it’s like to go back on land after almost 5 days entirely spent at sea and explore Egas Port on Santiago Island to be able to see more species special to the Galapagos up close, such as the Sea Lions, Galapagos Marine Iguana, blue-footed Booby, Greater flamingo, Galapagos lava lizard, and many more.

 

Day 8 - 24 August: North Seymour and saying goodbye

To finish off our time as a group, we will go on a walk around North Seymour, and later that morning we will say goodbye to the boat life, and get picked up for our transfer back to the airport to fly out after an once-in-a-lifetime 8 days in the Galápagos!

 

Expenses:

Finding a vessel that is good value on the Galápagos isn’t easy, but we are lucky to receive a big discount and get the most economical tour available at 2960 EUR. This includes the liveaboard expenses, such as the cabins (solo travellers can share a cabin), 3 meals per day, and all the dives listed above.

Keep in mind - high prices are one of the ways Galapagos National Park avoids overtourism and preserves this beautiful habitat to animals. Carbon offsetting is included in the price.

What’s not included:

- flights to Quito and Galapagos. I recommend booking the flights from Quito to Galapagos (205 EUR each way) through our agency to avoid inconveniences with flight delays etc.

- full gear rental (BCD, fins, booties, mask, wetsuit) for entire week (230 EUR),

- National Park fees for the week (82 EUR / 10,25 EUR per day), TCT visitor card (17 EUR)

- recompression chamber fee (mandatory 30 EUR)

- computer rental (82 EUR)

- personal insurance and dive insurance

- tips, gratuities personal expenses

 

COVID-19 related entry requirements to Ecuador:

  • PCR or antigen test within 3 days (72h) of arrival in Ecuador, or vaccination certificate, or proof of recovery letter.
  • Filled out health declaration form
  • Avoid traveling from or transiting through Brazil

That’s it.

 

COVID-19 policies: the agency I chose offers a full refund to you if they have to cancel for covid-19 reasons (such as Ecuador closing its borders), which few do, and is a huge plus. 

 

When / how can I apply? 

Best is to apply right now, as final confirmation has to be given this weekend, when a 20% deposit (600 EUR) is due to confirm your spot. Most boats are already sold out - so I want to make sure everyone gets their spot confirmed as quick as possible :) 

 

Apply by sending an email to hello@destinationchaser.com answering...

  • why you would like to join this adventure and why you would be a good addition to the group
  • Your scuba diving certification level and number of dives
  • Passport nationality
  • Are you available on the 17th-24th of August?

And if you have any other questions - you are welcome to email me as well! 😊 Happy to chat and I hope we get to experience this once-in-a-lifetime experience together to make unforgettable memories! 

Andi