Galapagos Islands Stories and Tips

Tips for your Galapagos Cruise

Useful information for a cruise holiday around the Galapagos

I thought this might be handy for anyone planning a cruise around the Galapagos islands. The ships vary a lot from pretty big engine powered cruise ships through to the smaller craft including ones like our lovely sailing ship, the SS Mary Anne.

Personally I would recommend a smaller ship as firstly you can get closer to the different islands and secondly when you visit the different islands you only have a group the size of your ship passenger list. On all our island hikes and snorkel trips we had only sixteen as that was the total number of passengers on our ship. Some had about one hundred passengers and so when walking around the island if you were near the end the animals would have moved on by the time you got there in many cases.

Essential things to bring for any trip:

Good walking shoes or trainers with grips and solid soles. 

At least one swim suit and if you really want a wet suit for snorkeling and have one, then it might be handy, but you can hire them. 

If you struggle walking around in bare feet them bring some shoes for the ship otherwise you have to walk around in bare feet and some find walking up and down steep steps quite difficult in bare feet.. 

Plenty of sunscreen and make sure it is high factor water resistant stuff. 

Insect repellent and bit relief stuff as many islands have sandflies and we did come across mosquitoes too and we were bitten despite having the repellent. 

Binoculars as many of the birds are some distance away. Cameras and if you have decent telephoto lenses then the photos are much better we found.

You might enjoy using an underwater camera and we bought a small neat one that was quite fun for when snorkeling. Interestingly quite a few had the same Lumix waterproof camera as we did for that purpose. 

T shirts with caped or short sleeves to keep your shoulders from getting burned and shorts for the hikes or those trousers that you can roll up or down. 

Good sunglasses are needed because it is very bright and I would suggest a hat with a brim or a back flap to stop your neck getting burned rather than a cap as sometimes you are out for three or four hours in the sun.

If you want a T shirt for snorkeling might be handy but we didn't bother just used lots of sun screen then wrapped a towel around us on the boat once we were out of the sea. 

I would suggest that a soft bag is better than a suit case as it is easier to store in the small cabin as it squashes flat when empty.

We found that you didn't need to dress up in posh clothes in the evening although we did change into nicer clothes and out of our day clothes.

It can be a bit cooler in the evening so a long sleeved top and trousers might be handy but you could wear the same one for a few days as you don't stay up late in the evenings as there were lots of early rises.

If you are going on a cruise then check with your ship as to what they offer and what you might need. Remember although the Galapagos Islands are on the Equator it can get a bit chilly at times and the sea water is not always really warm . Take some long sleeved clothes at least for the evening and you may need a wet suit if you feel the cold when swimming.

This is a once in a lifetime experience so plan your trip thoroughly and you will really have a fabulous time

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