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The Benefits of Galapagos Catamaran Boats

  |   Galapagos

There are a whole variety of exciting ways to cruise the Galapagos archipelago, ranging from large cruise ships and motor boats, to sailing vessels and catamarans. Many of our Galapagos cruises use catamaran boats. The term catamaran (which has origins in the Tamil language) literally translates to “two-logs tied together” and is used to refer to all multi-hulled boats. A typical catamaran features two parallel hulls, spacious decking and cabin sizes and usually carries around 16 passengers.


Galapagos Cruise

Catamaran cruises have become one of the most popular means of exploring the Galapagos islands, and for very good reason. Their stability, speed, spaciousness and ability to access shallow waters are all factors that make them perfectly suited to this unique environment. 


Here are a few of the major advantages that come with choosing a catamaran over other types of vessels for Galapagos cruising.


Anahi Galapagos Cruise

1. Stability and Sea Sickness

For those prone to motion sickness it’s well worth avoiding the motor or sail boats, and opting for a catamaran instead. The wider footprint of catamarans means there’s very little beam-to-beam motion, so unlike monohull vessels, they don’t heel under way or roll from swell to swell at anchor. As well as being great for preventing seasickness, this also allows you to move around on board with greater ease and grace, a particular advantage for young children and the elderly. Overall, the phenomenal stability of catamarans, even in rough waters, ensures you’ll be in for a smooth ride. 


2. Spaciousness

Catamaran boats provide more space and an all-round greater sense of roominess than your typical monohull vessel. They provide considerably more room both on deck and in the cabins down below. In particular, the spacious salons are usually on the same level as the cock-pit which means they are filled with light and provide great views. Meanwhile, the large wide deck area creates a real sense of remaining connected to the surrounding environment, as well as providing plenty of space for socializing, dining and sunbathing.   


3. Cruise in Shallow Water

Catamarans have a shallow draft, typically drawing only 4 feet of water or less. This offers a clear advantage in somewhere like the Galapagos, where you’ll be able to benefit from shallower anchorages and get nearer to the islands before disembarking. In particular, you’ll be able to access particular locations and shallow waterways which many other vessels are simply unable to navigate.


4. Intimacy and Privacy

On the one hand, catamarans provide a much more intimate experience than many larger boats. They typically carry around 16 passengers, making it easier to get to know other travelers, as well as providing a more personalized experience from your guide. On the other hand, the catamaran’s design ensures you’ll find plenty of space and privacy on board as well. As an example, the catamaran’s two hulls means that cabins are typically well-spaced out ensuring plenty of peace and quiet. 


5. Ecological Impact

Finally, catamarans generally have a smaller impact on the fragile Galapagos ecosystem than many other boats, especially when compared to a cruise ship. Their sleek design and relative speed means they have less hull resistance in the water resulting in greater fuel efficiency. Naturally, they also encourage small group travel which arguably places less strain on the surrounding environment.


Our Catamaran Cruises

Here is a brief overview of some of our most popular Galapagos catamaran cruises. If you’re interested in learning more or making a reservation, click on the links below or contact us directly. 


anahi Galapagos Catamaran


The beautiful and environmentally-friendly Anahi catamaran offers all the benefits of this type of vessel, and much more besides. It features great stability, plenty of outdoor space and several attractive social areas, including an open-air bar, relaxing Jacuzzi and entertainment room. With only 16 passengers and a highly attentive crew you’ll be met with first class service and a superior level of comfort. 



ocean spray galapagos cruise

Ocean Spray

This attractive vessel is one of the newest boats touring the Galapagos and provides the ultimate cruising experience for those seeking stylish surrounds along with an intimate atmosphere. Highlights of this catamaran include the spacious sun deck, the first-rate naturalist guides and acclaimed Ecuadorian chef, as well as the modern cabins each with a private balcony. 



nemo II Galapagos Cruise

Nemo II 

For those hankering after a romantic sailing experience, but who don’t want to compromise on the stability and comfort of a catamaran, the multi-hulled Nemo II sailing catamaran offers the perfect solution. Advantages of this cruising option include a large open sun deck and the small passenger intake which, at just 14, ensures a friendly atmosphere and a highly personalised experience with the guides. 



Cormorant Galapagos Cruise


This chic catamaran is a great option for those in search of plenty of comfort and a touch of extravagance on their Galapagos cruise. As one of the newest vessels, it features a sleek modern design, handsomely-appointed cabins (including 2 interconnecting sets ideal for groups), along with a spacious sun deck and relaxing Jacuzzi.

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About Rainforest Cruises

Rainforest Cruises is a boutique travel company specializing in Amazon river cruises and tours, providing you with the finest collection of cruises in Peru, Brazil, Ecuador, the Galapagos Islands and Panama. As South American travel experts we have all the advice you need to help you find and book your dream cruise and an unforgettable adventure of a lifetime.


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