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Champion Islet Visitor Site

A small island off the coast of Floreana, Champion is one of the top snorkeling spots in the islands (the island itself is off-limits to visitors). Occasionally, dolphins are sighted as the boats approach the shore.


The snorkeling is truly phenomenal. Lucky visitors will get to see white-tipped reef sharks, Galapagos Penguins, sea turtles, eels, and more in addition to the usual selection of dazzling reef fish.


Champion Island is special because it is one of two places where the nearly-extinct Charles (Floreana) Mockingbird is still found. The other is Gardner Island, also off the coast of Flroeana. When Charles Darwin visited the islands in 1835 Floreana Mockingbirds were common, but hunting and introduced species on Floreana caused them to become extinct on the main island, and the only survivors are now on Champion and Gardner. Conservationists want to re-introduce them to Floreana, but conditions there are not yet right for the birds, which would not survive for the same reasons they died off there in the first place.


Walking on Champion is not allowed, but most operators will take visitors on panga rides around it, and lucky visitors may get to spot a Charles Mockingbird or other bird species such as Swallow-tailed Gulls, Nazca Boobies or Brown Noddies.


Champion Islet is also a popular SCUBA diving site, easily reached by Puerto Ayora Dive shops.


Highly Probable to see:

  • sea lions
  • reef fish
  • Nazca Boobies

Probable to see:

  • Charles Mockingbirds
  • Swallow-tailed Gull
  • Brown Noddy

Possible to see

  • White-tipped Reef Shark
  • Sea Turtles

Here are some related tips to help plan your trip to Galápagos Island Visitor Sites: Floreana Visitor Site: La Loberia/Sea Lions Area, Buccaneer Cove, Puerto Egas Visitor Site, Gardner Bay/Tortuga Rock Visitor Site, More Isabela Visitor Sites, Punta Suarez, Punta Cormorant - Floreana Visitor Site and Post Office Bay Visitor Site.

By Christopher Minster
I am a writer and editor at V!VA Travel guides here in Quito, where I specialize in adding quality content to the site and also in spooky things like...
02 Dec 2009

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