Galapagos – so what else!

This is the 2nd in a 3 part mini series of Simon’s adventures on Galapagos.

After yesterday’s experience of a lifetime swimming with young sea lions and general wildlife fest every where I looked what could possibly top this? Nothing you say, think again as we were not finished. How about snorkeling with giant turtles who are happy to let you close by and film them without any fear or concern – yes it happened this afternoon on Floreana Island. After a quiet but interesting visit to Cormorant Point on Floreana observing flamingo, sandpiper, white checked pintail ducks, heron, and other migratory birds in the lagoon located slightly inland we came back to the vessel to prepare for snorkeling but using the Zodiacs to reach an off shore diving cliff. 

It was as clear as a bell and we saw a spectacle of fish of all colours and sizes and sea lions – sounding a little repetitive, not at all it was so amazing once again to be close to all this marine life and again quite overwhelming.

So getting back to snorkeling with giant turtles this afternoon from the beach at at Baroness Lookout on Floreana Island, it equaled the sea lion experience and all I can say is that you have to come out here and try yourself. There were fellow passengers who today decided they would snorkel on the last day as they were either frightened of the deep water or frightened of the marine life.

We were very proud to say those trying for the first time today experienced what I experienced at the beginning of the trip and regretted not taking the plunge on day one. Whatever you do push yourself with this type of activity as soon as the trip starts otherwise face bitter disappointment. 

Top tips for snorkeling in the Galapagos

1. Discuss any fear of water or marine mammals with your nature guide early on

2. Ask about any risks

3. It may be a good idea to initially snorkel from the beach in shallow water

4. Wear a life vest or use an inflatable if you feel unsure and low in confidence initially

5. In the cold water season use a wet suit (which you can hire from the vessel) even though the water is still warm compared to UK in summer, it allows you to stay out longer

 6.Establish from your nature guide what you should expect to see at any dive point as it can be different

7. Ask your nature guide to find you a “dive buddy” who is more experienced than you initially until you gain increased confidence

8. Ensure your nature guide gives you all instruction to choosing and wearing a mask, snorkel and fins

9. Buy or borrow an underwater camera. I bought a GoPro for around £190. It’s a must to record all these fabulous experiences underwater or otherwise

10. Enjoy it and take every advantage as snorkeling in places like the Galapagos is addictive.

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