One of the most important aspects of any given cruise in the Galapagos Islands is the on board NATURALIST GUIDE for the specific yacht. He/she can be the deciding factor on the successful experience on a Galapagos Islands cruise. Not all naturalist guides are the same, in terms of quality. The LEVEL OF KNOWLEDGE and the LEVEL OF ENGLISH (for those that do not understand Spanish) is a very important aspect to consider in your selection.
Another important issue to consider is the TYPE OF BOAT. For those sensitive to motion or sea-sickness, you want to try and avoid sailing or motor sailer boats. These tend to rock in open waters (even when the water is calm). The most stable are the large (Deluxe) cruise ships, followed by the catamarans and wider motor boats.
A third consideration is the LENGTH OF CRUISE. The fist and last day of any given cruise are short days (as they are based on the flight arrival and departure schedules into/out of Galapagos). Cruises really start between 09h30 and 11h30 the morning of the first day of the cruise in Galapagos, and end between 08h30 and 10h30 in the morning of the last day of the cruise. What some classify as a 5-DAY/4-NIGHT or 8-DAY/7-NIGHT cruises translates into 4 full nights and 3 full days or 7 full nights and 6 full days, respectively, in the Galapagos Islands, with two partial days at the begining and end of the cruise.
Finally, the respective CRUISE PRICES DO NOT NECESSARILY REFLECT THE QUALITY OF THE CRUISE. Some reasonably-priced cruises are just as good as many more expensive options (but this greatly depends on the yachts in question). During high demand periods such as mid-December through to mid-January (Christmas/New Year’s), April (Easter) and July through to August (summer holidays/vacation), cruise rates can often increase in price (especially for last minute reservations) – this especially applies to Economic, Tourist and Tourist Superior options.