The Galapagos Islands


Considering that these islands are placed directly under the equator, the climate is far from being excessively hot; this seems chiefly caused by the singularly low temperature of the surrounding water, brought here by the great southern Polar current. Excepting during one short season, very little rain falls, and even then it is irregular; but the clouds generally hang low.
--Charles Darwin

Nothing has really changed since Darwin's visit in 1835. There are two primary seasons during the year. Each offers a good time for visiting the islands, but the character of each season is somewhat different.

December through June is the warmer time of year, with highs in the upper 80s. Although the islands receive relatively more rainfall during this time, most of the lower elevations of the islands are quite arid and there is plenty of sunshine and blue skies. The sea is at its warmest, and is usually calmer at this time of year.

The drier garua season lasts from June or July through November. The garua is a mist that forms in the highlands of the islands. Ironically, the garua season provides more moisture at the upper levels of the islands than the so-called wet season. There is plenty of sunshine during the day, but it is less intense, with cloudier skies. Air temperature is lower, with highs in the upper 70s or mid-80s.The climate at this time is affected by a strong Antarctic current, the Humboldt Current, coming from the south. The water temperature, therefore, is at its coolest during this time, about 68 degrees Fahrenheit.

In mainland Quito, which is 9,000 feet above sea level, the elevation greatly moderates the climate. The temperature ranges from 45 to 70 degrees, with lower temperatures from April to October. Daytime temperatures are warm and pleasant, evenings cool and comfortable.

Special thanks to IGTOA for providing this information

Published: 29 Apr 2002 | Last Updated: 15 Sep 2010
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication


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