The Galapagos world can only be appreciated both above water and under water. Now, while the on land highlights are well recognized, the world below the surface deserves a much better understanding. Here are the many ways you can get to know this aquatic realm.
Secret Revealed: Here’s How to Enjoy the Water While Visiting the Galapagos
The Galapagos is well seen on tv, documentaries, magazines, and media in general. However, most of what motivates us to select this holiday destination is found on land: boobies, giant tortoises, marine iguanas, Darwin’s finches, and more. It is rather bizarre to think that in order to understand what happens on land, we need to carefully immerse ourselves in the water realm of the islands. Yes, that huge ocean is an amazing source of food for many, and it is protected too. Few explorers realize these waters support, directly or indirectly, almost all evolutionary processes that occur here. The on-going volcanic activity, continues to shape the islands forming natural habitats where this diverse and unique ecosystem unfolds its intricate complexities. The idea here is that you get to enjoy this magical environment, and thus we call it “best of both worlds”. Here are just some ideas that will tickle your aquatic desires.
Snorkeling and Scuba Diving
In many ways, the marine realm of the Galapagos Islands resembles a little bit of everything in the tropics and subtropics. Perhaps this is why some call it one of the best marine destinations of the planet. No wonder the waters are also a protected area, and they have accolades like few other: Marine Sanctuary, World Heritage Property, Marine Reserve, and as of 2016 a Shark Sanctuary. Snorkeling and scuba diving will be true high points of your time in the Galapagos, and there are numerous reasons for this.
The water here in many ways will resemble Baja California, but then certain places will remind you of the Virgin Islands, and at times remote places like the coast of Ecuador, Plata Island, Cocos Island, Malpelo Island, and even the far out Indo Pacific.
Beachcombing in the Galapagos Islands
If you’ve explored Trunk Bay in the US Virgin Islands, you know the beauty of swimming at a pristine white-coralline beach amongst some of the clearest waters of our planet. Many places in the Galapagos Islands will give you that same experience with the addition of far fewer visitors and teeming with wildlife both above water and under water. Swimming at the beaches is one of the top activities to do while at the Galapagos as well. Many who spend time at the beaches do so to bask in the tropical sun and to play in the crystal clear water, but there is also a great opportunity to view wildlife while at the beaches. Each beach has unique wildlife at it, so be sure to choose your beach time carefully so that you increase the chance of seeing some of the species that you are most interested in. For example, Gardner Bay on Española Island is home to sea lions, mockingbirds, and right in from of a great snorkeling location. Tortuga Bay on Santa Cruz Island is perhaps the most accessible long white beach from any populated area. Rabida Island, the red beach, is home to marine iguanas, sea lions, and what many scholars consider one of the Top 3 snorkeling locations in the islands. These are only a few of the many beaches in the local area that you can explore, and each will provide you with a different overall experience.
For those who want to break away from the beach and enjoy viewing wildlife if their natural habitat, a seakayaking adventure is a great idea. Through a sea kayaking adventure, you will be able to view land animals on the shoreline as well as marine animals as they swim through the water. Some of the many creatures that you may have the opportunity to see in their native habitat include penguins, rays, sea turtles, marine iguanas and the always playful sea lions. Kayaking is also a fun activity for bonding with family members and certainly getting a good work out. Many also enjoy the solitude of hearing the waves break, the wind whistling along the rocks, and the upclose viewing of wildlife.
There are 19 islands in the Galapagos that you can explore, and each one provides you with a different overall experience. While you may not have time to stop off at all the islands while you are visiting the area, you could see many of them with a cruising adventure. When you cruise around the Galapagos, you can kick back and relax on deck while the crew navigates the boat. There are different types of guided adventures for you to enjoy, such as chartered boat tours and large excursions with other parties. Most cruising happens at night and waking up at a new island always keeps the on board enthusiasm at a very high level. Now, while sailing sounds romantic and appealing, trade winds of the Galapagos will prevent the continuous use of sails. Most sailing trips include a great deal of motoring between each visitor site. This is why cruising has become the most popular way of exploring the vastness of the Galapagos Archipelago.
Each of these excursion ideas provides you with a great way to enjoy a fun day at sea, and you will be able to combine your time on the water with snorkeling, scuba diving, swimming, kayaking, sunbathing and other fun activities. Visiting the Galapagos can be a dream vacation experience, and you can make the most of it when you make plans to explore the natural beauty and wildlife on land and in the sea while you are visiting this magical place. Each of these fun ideas can provide you with ways of making your trip a dream come true. The Galapagos easily satisfy all sorts of expectations and returning on a future trip is much easier in today’s world. If not all activities can be accomplished now, make a return trip and change all the wrong perceptions about the islands. Many still call this trip “a trip of a lifetime”, but now, every time you return you could make a new trip of a lifetime…over and over, again.