Waved Albatross

Galapagos Islands: What Happens in May

Indeed, it is the merry month of May in the Galapagos Islands. The beginning of the garúa season spells an end to the sweltering temperatures of the previous months, yet the skies are clear. It is also the low tourism season.


On Land

  • Most of the land iguana eggs are hatched on Santa Cruz Island.
  • Also on Santa Cruz, it is hatching season for marine iguanas.
  • In the wild, giant tortoises are laying eggs.

At Sea

  • The green sea turtle nesting season is coming to an end. Baby turtles are still emerging from the egg and heading to sea at Puerto Egas (Santiago Island), Punta Cormorant (Floreana), and Gardner Bay (Española Island).

In the Air

  • Waved albatross are laying their eggs on Española Island.
  • Up on North Seymour, blue-footed boobies begin their courtship dances.
  • Band-rumped storm petrels begin the first of their two nesting seasons.
  • During May, great flocks of Galapagos shearwaters can be sighted during daytime navigation.
  • Great frigatebirds are mating and nesting on Genovesa Island.


  • Outside of the three-day holiday weekends of 1 May (International Workers Day) and 24 May (Battle of Pichincha), the Galapagos Islands see few tourists, whether national or international. Keep an eye out for special deals on cruises and tours.

May is one of the most pleasant months to visit the Galapagos Islands. Cooler, dryer weather begins now, and will last until December.

  • Land temperatures are cooler than in previous months, with highs reaching 28°C (82°F) during the day, and dipping to a pleasant 22°C (72°F) at night.
  • The fine, drizzling garúa mist, is common in the morning and evening.
  • The sea is still comfortably warm (23-25ºC / 74-76ºF).

Have you visited the Galapagos Islands in May? Tell us about it in the comments below.


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Photo Credit: Waved Albatross Pair by Steven Bedard

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