Stunning extinct volcanic crater to find Hammerhead sharks

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Gordon Rocks are located north east coast of Santa Cruz Island. It is an extinct volcanic crater with a sandy bottom at 32 meters, and a wall drop off around the outside of around 65 meters. It has 3 exposed rocks that surround the crater and 3 pinnacles ranging from 5 to 6 meters under the surface along the northern edge of the crater with one larger pinnacle approximately 21 meters below the surface in the center. Sometimes called “The Washing Machine” it is a popular site where intermediate and advanced divers go due to challenging currents and upwellings. It is these very currents that bring the plankton to the surface attracting large pelagic from across the sea in numbers. In this place is found the famous schools of Hammerhead sharks, Galápagos sharks, black tip sharks and white tip, morays, eagle rays, and sea lions.


Departure:at 7:00 am bus pick up from Puerto Ayora

Returning time: approximately at 3:30 pm

Travel Time:speed boat ride takes around 1 hour (August – October the seas can be quite rough). Divers with back or neck injuries are not advised to take this diving journey.

Diver level: certified minimum 25 logged dives or evaluation by our guides at another site

Degree of difficulty: : intermediate to advance

Depth range: 22 m - 27 m

Visibility: 10 m - 30 m

Highlight activity: diving next Hammerhead sharks

Transportation: shared bus and speed boat


The departure is going to be at 7:00 am from Puerto Ayora Pier where our guests will be ride by shared bus until Itabaca Channel where divers embark on an amazing diving expedition on Gordon Rocks. The strong currents that frequent the site make it the most accessible home to schools of the peculiar Hammerhead sharks. During the whole diving journey divers always have to bet next to his partner to avoid group separation. It is readily to observe schools of up to 50 sharks surrounding the rocks through the current giving repeated views of amazing wild specimens. Divers also are going to be amazed by white and black tip reef sharks which frequent the area as wells as green sea turtles, sea lions, sting rays, eagle rays, large schools of barracuda and snapper and the occasional majestic manta ray or Mola Mola. Hot and luscious lunch will be served in the boat cabin. Around 3:00pm departure to Puerto Ayora Pier. It is recommended to be knowledgeable that from July to December sea temperature are cooler here, from 65ºF - 75ºF (18ºC – 23ºC) with occasional thermoclines from 60ºF - 64ºF (16ºC - 18ºC). We provide with 5mm or 7mm wetsuits as well as hoods and also have some spare layers. And, January to June water temperature is up 24ºC.


-2 dives on one day

-Full equipment (5-7 mm wetsuit, regulator, BCD, mask, fins, boots, hoods, gloves-no neoprene-, weight belt, 12 ltr tanks

-Naturalist Tour Guide accredited by Galápagos National Park, English and Spanish speaker

-Snacks, fruit and hot tea, lunch, juice, and drinking water, towels

-Check dive (This is a short weights and gear check in shallow water as Galápagos seas require more weights and neoprene than you may be used to. Also a quick skills refresh if it’s been a while since your last dive).


Important Note

Always take with you sun screen, repellent, non-slippery shoes, water proof jacket, hat, and camera.

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