when-best-galapagos-diving

 

Any time is a good time to go diving in the Galapagos. The large schools of rays and sharks, plus sea turtles, sea lions, iguanas and penguins are found all year round. There are two main seasons, Warm & Cool, but the exception is during an El Nino or La Nina phenomenons, which changes things.


Cool Season: From April to November

  • The chance to see whale sharks is almost 100% at Wolf & Darwin Islands only
    • The water temperatures at Wolf & Darwin, where we spend most of the time is warmer than in the rest of the archipelago (74-78°F).
    • Low light conditions due to cloudy skies, affecting underwater photography
    • Water in the central islands happens to be the coolest (5 – 7mm wetsuits recommended)


Warm season: From December – March

Water temperature all over the archipelago goes from 75°F / 24C (at the central Islands) up to 80° / 26C (at Wolf & Darwin)

  • The chance to see whale sharks at Wolf & Darwin is 50-50%,
  • More "ray" activity (Manta, mobula, spotted eagles, and golden eagle rays get together in sometimes large schools to mate)
  • December to March is the warmer wet season with water temperatures ranging from the mid 70's F to the low 80's F (23 - 27C).
  • The general rule is that the warm season is not as windy as the cooler season.

Around December the skis clear of the mist, the seas calm and the temperature starts to climb, making diving conditions excellent to near perfect.


 

EL NIÑO AND LA NIÑA PHENOMENONS


El Niño Phenomenon:

  • The normally cool Galapagos waters warm up considerably.
  • heavy trade winds followed by a complete loss of trade winds around December.
  • the cooler Peru currents shift southwestward and the warm Panamanian waters rush south to fill in the vacancy.
  • There is less upwelling in the west thus less plankton production.
  • The result for divers is warmer water but less abundant schools of fish, etc.
  • Higher average raingall throught the archipelago


La Niña Phenomenon

  • El Niño conditions are exaggerated, bringing cooler waters from December to June
  • Normal to higher visibility
  • Greater concentration of fish