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Galapagos - Puerto Ayora, Santa Cruz - Report

By doina — last modified Sep 24, 2007 10:43 AM

Published: 2007-09-24 10:43:29
Countries: Galapagos

A few weeks back there was an article regarding sailing in Ecuador waters and the new regulations. I managed to get the English version of the regulations regarding SITRAME from the Ecuador government website and note that the regulations only apply to vessels over 500 GT and not recreational sailing vessels.

However, I departed Panama not knowing what would happen on our arrival in Puerto Ayora, Santa Cruz Island - we had no permit or visas and were not reporting anything to any government agency. On arrival I went ashore and visited the harbour master and was welcomed warmly. I had to submit my crew list, a photocopy of our passports and my boat papers. Next I was presented with a detailed statement of the costs - $122.45. I informed the port captain that I would only be staying four days and would be departing directly for French Polynesia. National Park fees of $100.00 per person were wavered as we were not going to cruise the islands.

The port captain informed me that if I wanted to cruise to other islands it would be necessary for me to use an agent to undertake further permit applications and to complete the formalities required to do so. I met up with an agent later who informed me that there was actually no need to use an agent if I was fully conversant in Spanish. He did, however, inform me that I should have been charged the $100.00 per person national park fee.

For the record, the agent was John Gallagher of Galapagos Marine Services - and telephone +593 (0)850 44-825.

John Titterton, S/V Moorings

On delivery - Cape Town, South Africa to Raiatea, French Polynesia