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Dive Review of Humboldt Explorer in
Galapagos Islands

Humboldt Explorer, Aug, 2010,

by Mr Jeffrey Zankel, CA, US (Reviewer Reviewer 4 reports with 4 Helpful votes). Report 5806.

No photos available at this time

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 5 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 3 stars
Dive Operation 4 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 4 stars
Beginners 1 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments My scheduled Galapagos Operator cancelled my trip. I picked this boat up at the last minute from Beckersphere who knew of one available spot. I knew nothing about this boat before the trip and there were no reviews to be found for the Humboldt Explorer. When I got on board I found out the reason. The Boat was brand spanking new as of August 2010. I was on the third trip out.
The boat was built for Galapagos diving and has a large split level dive deck. Everyone gets two tank slots with good storage under the seats. Wet suits are hung on two big racks right on the dive deck with room for all. Although you wear your tank on to the Pangas it is an easy walk on and the crew will carry tanks for those who can't. There are two pongas and one divemaster on each. I was concerned about the guides but they turned out to be Macarron and Jaime two very experienced and well known local divemaster/naturalists. We motored up to Darwin's Arch and split into two groups. We stayed with the divemasters and they found us 6 whale sharks and a couple of dozen sightings of schools of hammerheads. At wolf island we had a dozen manta sightings and even an Orca on its way to attack the hammers. Galapagos sharks were also on the prowl. Turtles were in good supply as were large schools of Jacks, shoals of creole fish and a host of small fry such as surgeon fish and butterflyfish. A pod of Orcas and Dozens of Dolphins played on the surface at Wolf. This was an August trip and the Cold Humboldt current brings the nutrients up from the Antartic so the water temps are 63 in San Cristobal and 71 up north in Darwin. The air temp is about the same! But that's why the Whale Sharks come in.
The chef made every meal a gourmet delight which everyone looked forward to with great relish and the only downside was the diet we would all require to get our figures back. There was an open Bar. The boat being brand new, the cabins were in great shape , each with a full bathroom. The entire upper deck is a 80' long wooden sun deck with a hot tub.
The crew was very attentive and we even got a Naturalist land tour,including the famous turtles. The only issue I had with this trip was that it was so good I will now have to go back and dive on Humboldt Explorer again.
Post script. The boat leaves from San Cristobal and I arrived a day early to dive Kicker Rock. Well worth it to see the Galapagos sharks and a host of others. Beware, the dive operators often put you on a snorkel/sightseeing boat,which mine was, which means families with babies etc. Make sure your on a 'divers only' boat if you can.
Websites Humboldt Explorer   

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving Truk, Soccoro, Cocos, Hawaii, Bonaire, key Largo, Baja, Ibiza, Bahamas, Channel Islands, Monterey, Chile, Panama
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather cloudy Seas surge
Water Temp 63-71°F / 17-22°C Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility 25-40 Ft/ 8-12 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile no
Enforced diving restrictions stay with group/divemasters
Liveaboard? yes Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas Squadrons
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles None Whales None
Corals 3 stars Tropical Fish 4 stars
Small Critters 2 stars Large Fish 3 stars
Large Pelagics 5 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter 4 stars Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments Camera rinse barrels and large camera table with shelves available on dive deck.Crew was very good about handling Cameras to and from the Pongas and in & out of the water.
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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