There truly is no “best time” to visit the Galapagos Islands. Any time you visit, you’ll be able to experience the beautiful nature that Darwin studied himself. Although there are different seasons on the Galapagos Islands, each season brings its own unique and magnificent beauty.
Galápagos seasons are split into the dry (June to November) and wet (December to May) seasons. The best time to visit the Galápagos Islands really depends on what you want to see. There is no specified best season to visit the Galápagos Islands.
The Galapagos Wet Season: December – May
The Galápagos Islands are beautiful year-round. During the wet season, December to May, temperatures range from the low-70s to mid-80s, providing pleasant conditions for hiking and wildlife-spotting. This season experiences frequent but short showers called “garua.” It is mostly accompanied by bright shining sun on most days.
Birds regularly mate from March to May. During this time, you may even spot baby sea lions or sea turtles crowding the shores. The wet season also provides ample opportunity to see springtime blooms, which cover the islands with radiant colors.
During this season, flowers begin to blossom on the Islands, making for colorful landscapes. Sea turtles and land iguanas hatch, and playful young sea lions are easy to spot on the beaches.
Visiting Galapagos in the Wet Season
During these months, it is possible to experience some of the most interesting moments during the lives of Galapagos animals, such as:
- Whale migration
- Migratory southern birds migrate north
- Frigatebirds expand their nests for mating
- Sea lions establish their territories
- Blue-footed boobies begin their traditional mating party
- The waters get warm and are perfect for snorkeling
- Albatrosses fly to Española Island
- Marine iguanas begin building their nests
The Galapagos Dry Season: June – November
Between June and November, the Humboldt Current, a current that runs north-west along South America’s western coast, ushers in cooler temperatures and nutrient-rich waters that attract fish and birds.
The Humboldt Current’s cool water temperatures average in the high-60s to low-80s. This current carries a myriad of underwater species attracted to rich oceanic nutrients, making this season the best time to go snorkeling and scuba diving. These months are also when wildlife-enthusiasts crowd sandy shores to watch blue-footed boobies perform their mating rituals.
Nevertheless, seabird activity does not end during this time. The bright red pouches of frigatebirds can be seen on North Seymour Island. Flightless cormorants perform mating and nesting rituals on Fernandina Island.
Visiting Galapagos in the Dry Season
There’s plenty of sites to see on the Galapagos in the dry season. On your Galapagos visit in these months you’ll see:
- Browner island vegetation
- Giant tortoise migration
- Giant sea turtle mating in November
- Galapagos sea lions breeding season
- Blue-footed booby chicks on Isabela and Española
- Whale sightings
Gulliver Expeditions provides a variety of tours and cruises that will show you every piece of nature the Galapagos have to offer. Our Galapagos Island tours range from 15-day cruises to 5-day island-hopping tours. Gulliver Expeditions’ team of experienced Galapagos Island tour guides are your source for in-depth tours of these vast and bountiful islands.
If you’re planning a trip to the Galapagos, check out our Galapagos tours or
speak to our travel experts about creating a perfect itinerary just for you.