Galapagos Wildlife Cruises are on the list of every nature enthusiast who has heard of these Islands and their incredibly unique flora and fauna. The iconic Galapagos Islands wildlife includes the blue and red footed boobies, giant tortoises, marine iguanas, land iguanas, finches, sea lions, and some incredible wildlife often not thought to live near the Galapagos like manta rays, hammerhead sharks, Galapagos hawks, penguins, lava lizards, and others.
Our recommendation for Galapagos cruises are catamarans as they offer more stability for wildlife viewing and tours that include land visits to explore the different islands. The islands are each home to different species and some fascinating natural features. You can also visit the Charles Darwin Research Center where researchers are studying the flora and fauna and helping to conserve the Galapagos species.
We have selected two different catamaran tours for Galapagos wildlife cruises to maximise your experience of this incredible area. Enjoy itineraries from 4 days to 15 day mega cruises to see all the main points of the islands with the shorter tours focusing on certain areas. There are 18 main islands on the Galapagos with some smaller islets and rocky formations. The itineraries have been specially designed to give you best and most diverse wildlife experience while including the best natural features. There are certain areas where you have great chances of seeing young hammerhead sharks, other areas to enjoy fantastic views, and others with unique natural features.
In addition to cruising the islands, walking the walking tracks, and visiting the research center, the catamaran cruises offer snorkeling equipment and kayaks to also enjoy the marine wildlife. Explore fantastic species rich areas to see colorful fish and exciting sightings like sharks and hammerheads.
The Galapagos wildlife cruises we recommend include the Ocean Spray Galapagos Cruise and the Cormorant Galapagos Cruise, which are both luxury-class catamarans and offer incredible wildlife opportunities. The islands you will visit depend on your choice of itinerary and how long you have to spend on cruise.
We have broken down the Galapagos Islands and its main wildlife attractions. If you have some specific things in mind you’d like to see, remember to send a message to the cruise to make sure it’s offered on the itinerary. But to help you get started finding an itinerary, some of the main islands include:
Summary of Galapagos Islands
- San Cristabal: Great for sea lions, marine iguanas, lava lizards, and red footed boobies
- Floreana: Good site to see flamingos and enjoy some of best snorkeling in the Galapagos
- Santa Cruz: Home to great places to see young hammerhead sharks, rays, sea turtles, seabirds and the Charles Darwin Research Station with captive giant tortoises
- Genovesa: Here you can enjoy a high population of seabirds
- Santiago: A good place to see sally lightfoot crabs
- North Seymour Island: This is a great place to see blue footed boobies and frigatebirds
- Fernandina: A good island to find marine iguanas
- Isabela: This is a good island to enjoy sights of sally lightfoot crabs, penguins, marine iguanas, turtles, rays, and sea lions
- South Plaza Island: Home to the largest population of land iguanas
- Española: One of the best places for seeing diverse birdlife
We have selected these two luxury-class catamarans based on their excellent itineraries, very high ratings, and very knowledgeable guides to show off the Galapagos Islands. On itineraries from 4 to 15 days, you can visit some or all of the above islands to enjoy incredible wildlife spectacles. For me personally the marine iguanas symbolise the Galapagos Islands and without seeing these fascinating and unique animals, it would take something away from the experience. If there are particular places or animals you want to have the best chance of seeing, make sure you choose an itinerary that visits these islands and use the tour bubbles below to ask any questions which go directly to each cruise.
The luxury-class Ocean Spray and Cormorant catamarans provide a very comfortable living environment while cruising between the islands with great meals and additional equipment to help you exploration, such as snorkel gear and kayaks. As an example of what to expect, you can see the example video from an 8 day itinerary aboard the Cormorant Galapagos Cruise below:
These mega-catamarans offer the best comfort and performance of cruise vessels in the Galapagos and are built with a large sundeck, jacuzzi, and spacious cabins with your own private balcony. Combined with some of the top guides on the Galapagos, very comfortable interiors, more stability on the waves than other vessels and great itineraries, both the Ocean Spray and Cormorant Cruise offer a great choice for exploring the islands. To make sure both cruises are always offering an optimum experience, all tours are overseen by a quality control manager.
In addition to the Galapagos, if you’re on a limited schedule but want to experience both these fantastic islands and the Amazon Rainforest, the world’s largers container of wildlife, you can combine these catamaran cruises with the award-winning La Selva Lodge, an exceptional lodge in Ecuador’s Yasuni National Park. If you have the time available, use the tour bubble below to send the tour a message for additional options and info.