When is the Best Time to Visit the Galapagos Islands in Ecuador?

Galapagos Islands Small Ship Cruise

There is never a bad time to visit the Galapagos Islands!

Best Time to Visit the Galapagos Islands

Galapagos Islands Travel     Galapagos Islands Tortoise

Due to the location of the Galapagos Islands on the equator, there is not much fluctuation in temperature. The lows are generally in the high 60s to low 70s and the highs in the mid 80s to low 90s. In addition to pleasantly warm temperatures year-round, the location of the Galapagos Islands also means that most animals you find there will be there year-round as well.

Most species in the Galapagos originally floated to these spectacular islands on logs or plant beds. Now, there really isn’t anywhere for them to go, unless they migrate, which many animals there do not. Both marine and land iguanas, sea lions, penguins and many species of birds and fish are there all year long. This is great news for travelers, as it makes any time of the year a wonderful time to visit the Galapagos Islands! Let’s take a look at some of the weather, breeding and water changes that do occur throughout the year.


During our winter and spring (December through May), it is slightly warmer than average on the Galapagos Islands, and it often sprinkles a bit during the day. Despite the rain, it is actually the sunniest time of year, as the rain clouds really do just come and go quickly. Thanks to the slightly warmer temperatures and the Panama Current the water is warmer as well. This makes snorkeling very comfortable and you won’t need a wetsuit to enjoy swimming alongside the abundance of marine life.

As our summer and then fall rolls in (June through November), the temperatures begin to cool slightly on the Galapagos Islands, but remain comfortable and warm. This is partly due to the Humboldt Current, a current that comes up off the coast of Chile and Peru and brings with it cooler and more nutrient rich water. This season has little to no rain, but cloudier skies. Alongside the nutrient rich water comes a more active marine life and even dolphin and whale sightings from July through December. Despite the cooler water temperatures, this is actually a phenomenal time for snorkeling in the Galapagos as there are more fish in the water, and during September and October, you could even get a chance to swim alongside sea lion pups.

The main factors when deciding on the best time to visit the Galapagos Islands are water temperature and/or water visibility and breeding seasons. Take a look at the chart below to see how these miraculously unique islands change from month to month and when some of the wildlife is in its mating season.

Best Time to Visit the Galapagos Islands

Once you know when you would like to travel to the Galapagos, it is time to get planning! Our favorite way to see the Galapagos Islands is by cruise, this allows you to see many different islands, and is also more environmentally sustainable than land based tourism. The Galapagos National Park is able to regulate and monitor tourism on the cruise boats, where as it has less influence on land based Galapagos travel. There are many different types of ships to choose from, from luxury cruises to engine powered sail-style boats. Follow the link for more information on which Galapagos cruise is right for you, and how to get the best deal on Galapagos cruises. When you are ready to plan your trip, call one of our Galapagos cruise experts at 1-877-616-8747.


¡Saludos! Renee

South America Travel - Renee DaviesRenee is a Trip Specialist at Knowmad Adventures, a company dedicated to creating unique, private and custom trips in South America. She lived in Mexico for over 3 years and is excited to help Knowmad travelers discover the wonderful impact not just travel, but really experiencing a different country and culture can have on your life. Read Renee’s biography and more about the Knowmad team.