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Galapagos Wildlife Calendar

JANUARY - wet and warm

  • Land birds start nesting, generally after the first rain
  • On Española Island adult marine iguanas become brightly coloured (green & red & black)
  • The green sea turtles arrive to beaches in the Galapagos for egg laying period
  • Land iguanas begin reproductive cycles on Isabela Island
  • Both, water and air temperatures rise and stay warm until June
  • Ideal time for snorkelling

FEBRUARY - wet and warm

  • On Floreana Island, greater flamingos start nesting
  • Bahama pintail ducks (Black-tailed pintail) start their breeding season
  • Nazca (masked) boobies on Espanola Island are at the end of their nesting season
  • Marine iguanas nest on Santa Cruz Island
  • Nesting season of the Galapagos dove reaches its peak

MARCH - wet and warm

  • Marine iguanas nest on Fernandina Island
  • March 21st, the beginning of the summer equinox signals the arrival of the waved albatross to Española.
  • Even the western islands have warm waters where snorkelling is excellent
  • Penguins still active in the water
  • Marine life in general is very active.

APRIL - wet and warm

  • Massive arrival of waved albatrosses to Española, heralding the amazing courtship procedures
  • End of hatching season of the giant tortoises
  • Eggs of green sea turtles begin to hatch
  • Eggs of land iguanas hatch on Isabela Island
  • Good visibility in the water for snorkelers

MAY - wet and warm

  • North Seymour's blue-footed boobies begin their courtship
  • Sea turtles are still hatching on Gardner Bay, Punta Cormorant, and Puerto Egas
  • Most of marine iguanas' eggs hatch from nests on Santa Cruz
  • Palo santo trees begin to shed their foliage
  • Waved albatross on Española start laying their eggs
  • Ban-rumped storm petrels begin their first nesting period

JUNE - dry and cooler

  • Beginning of the garúa (mist) season, when most of the area's wildlife tend to mate
  • Giant tortoises on Santa Cruz Island migrate from the highlands to the lowlands in search of suitable nesting places for the season
  • Spot the multitude of red pouches belonging to male Frigate birds on North Seymour
  • Southern migrant birds are now starting their journey back north, using Galapagos as a rest stop. Some species of cetaceans also follow this pattern of migration
  • Some groups of Humpback whales that migrate up to equatorial latitudes along the coast of Ecuador, can also reach the Galapagos too

JULY - dry and cooler

  • Sea bird communities are very active (breeding), particularly the Blue footed boobies on Española Island
  • Flightless cormorants perform beautiful courtship rituals and nesting activities on Fernandina Island
  • Along the shores of Puerto Egas on Santiago Island, you could find American oyster-catchers nesting
  • Lava lizards initiate mating rituals until November
  • Whales & dolphins are more likely to be observed, especially off the western coast of Isabela Island
  • Great month to see the four stages of nesting in Blue footed boobies: eggs, chicks, juveniles & sub-adults

AUGUST - dry and cooler

  • Galapagos hawks court on Española and Santiago Islands
  • Nazca (masked) boobies and Swallow-tailed gulls nest on Genovesa Island
  • Migrant shore birds start to arrive, and stay on the islands until March
  • Giant tortoises return to the highlands of Santa Cruz Island
  • Pupping season (births) of sea lions has started. Western and central islands are common places for such sightings

SEPTEMBER - dry and cooler

  • On Bartolome Island, Galapagos penguins are particularly active and have been since May
  • Sea lions are also very active. Females are highly receptive, opening the way for harem-gathering males, who are constantly barking and fighting. Western and Central islands are the most active ones in terms of sea lions' activities
  • Most species of sea birds remain quite active at their nesting sites

OCTOBER - dry and cooler

  • Lava herons start nesting until March
  • The Galapagos Fur Seals (subspecies of Sea lions) begin their mating period
  • Blue footed boobies raise chicks all over Española and Punta Vicente Roca on Isabela Island
  • Giant tortoises are still laying eggs
  • Sunrises in the west can be quite beautiful after the garúa (mist) covers only certain locations of the western volcanoes

NOVEMBER - dry and cooler

  • Pupping of sea lions continue
  • Sea lions are sexually active on the eastern part of the archipelago
  • Breeding season for the brown noddies
  • Some species of jellyfish can be seen around the islands
  • Band-rumped storm petrels begin their second nesting period
  • Sea lion pups (especially at Champion Islet) play aqua-aerobics next to snorkelers. Most pups here are curious enough to nibble at fins of snorkelers
  • The average age of most pups is 3-4 months

DECEMBER - dry and cooler

  • Hatching of giant tortoise's eggs begins and lasts until April
  • Green sea turtles display their mating behaviour
  • The first young waved albatrosses fledge

Climate

Month by Month Average Temperatures & rainfall
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
air temperature °C 25.6 26.1 26.1 26.1 25.6 24.4 22.8 23.9 23.3 23.9 24.5 25
air temperature °F 78 79 79 79 78 76 73 75 74 75 76 77
water temperature °C 24.5 25 25 25 24.5 22.8 21.7 21.1 21.7 22.2 22.8 23.3
water temperature °F 76 77 77 77 76 73 71 70 71 72 73 74
rainfall mm 282 279 315 319 225 81 46 50 98 144 148 211

Sailings 2019 / 2020

key to status in panels below:
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departs price from status
24 May £10665 details
7 June £8665 details
21 June £8585 details
5 July £8205 details
19 July £8275 details
2 August £8205 details
16 August £8045 details
30 August £8045 details
13 September £8045 details
27 September £7965 details
11 October £7965 details
25 October £7965 details
8 November £7965 details
22 November £8045 details
6 December £7965 details
20 December £11205 details
departs price from status
3 January £8672 details
17 January £8832 details
31 January £8212 details
14 February £8832 details
28 February £8832 details
13 March £8832 details
27 March £8832 details
10 April £9062 details
24 April £8832 details
8 May £8832 details
22 May £9062 details
5 June £8832 details
19 June £8832 details
3 July £8832 details
17 July £8672 details
31 July £8292 details
14 August £8292 details
28 August £8672 details
11 September £8292 details
25 September £8292 details
9 October £8292 details
23 October enquire details
6 November £8292 details
20 November £8292 details
4 December £8292 details
18 December £11582 details
18 December £11129 details
departs price from status
31 May £9045 details
14 June £8665 details
28 June £8275 details
12 July £8205 details
26 July £8275 details
9 August £8045 details
23 August £8045 details
6 September £7965 details
20 September £8125 details
4 October £7965 details
18 October £8045 details
1 November £8045 details
15 November £8045 details
29 November £7815 details
13 December £7965 details
27 December £10285 details
departs price from status
10 January £8672 details
24 January £8832 details
7 February £8832 details
21 February £8832 details
6 March £8832 details
20 March £8832 details
3 April £8832 details
17 April £8902 details
1 May £8832 details
15 May £8832 details
29 May £8832 details
12 June £8832 details
26 June £9062 details
10 July £8832 details
24 July £8672 details
7 August £8292 details
21 August £8292 details
4 September £8292 details
18 September £8292 details
2 October £8292 details
16 October £8292 details
30 October £8292 details
13 November £8292 details
27 November £8292 details
11 December £8292 details
25 December £11122 details