Galapagos Cruise Seasickness: What You Need To Know

Galapagos cruise seasickness

We often get asked about Galapagos cruise seasickness. Is it rough waters? Is there medication? Does it affect everyone?

So, to answer these questions, we have written this detailed guide. First of all, the Galapagos Islands are generally quite calm and suffering from seasickness during a cruise is not particularly common here.

The seas only become rough during passing storms. At this point you will feel a fair amount of motion aboard your ship. However, the amount of motion you feel will vary considerably depending on the size of boat and your location within the boat. 

For people used to sailing aboard mega cruises, the motion of the sea may surprise you. Due to their enormous size, mega cruise ships feel very little motion. They're also equipped with stabilisation which helps enormously.

Because large cruise liners are banned in the Galapagos, cruise ships here are limited to a maximum of 100 passengers. This means smaller boats and more motion. Don't panic though - the seas here are generally very calm and most people who suffer from motion sickness still get through the trip with a big smile on their face. 

To discover more information, please read on. 

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Galapagos Cruise Seasickness: Tips

Although the waters are generally very calm around the islands, motion can certainly be felt, especially when making the crossing from one island to another. 

Because the boats are small and a little motion can often be felt, it's always a good idea to be prepared with ways to combat Galapagos cruise seasickness. 

This applies to people who think they don't suffer from seasickness also. If you have never been on a small boat/ship for a week straight, then knowing these tips is paramount. 

Please remember though, you will find your sea legs eventually and no trip should be abandoned for fear of motion sickness. 

When to go

Although the Galapagos is blessed with year-round good weather, the seas do change slightly from season to season. The seas tend to be calmer between January and June, whilst September and October are probably the worst months. This is not to say you won't experience calm and rocky days in both periods however. 

Sleep lower down

The lower you are in your cruise ship, the less you'll feel the motion of the vessel. So if you know you suffer from seasickness, please book a cabin as low down in the boat as you can. If you're dealing with a good agent, they should be able to advise on the best cabins to suit you. 

Look to the horizon

When you feel seasick, a great thing to do is go out on deck and concentrate on the horizon. Find a fixed point in the distance and stare at it until you feel better. This may take a while, but it will definitely help. Some sunshine and fresh air won't hurt you either! 

Avoid certain things

If you're prone to seasickness, there are certain things that will increase your chances of triggering it. Just as you might feel ill when you read in a car, you're likely to feel ill if you read on your ship. So put down the book.

Drinking alcohol never helps either. If you're feeling a little hungover in the morning, the seasickness will only exacerbate the issue. You should also avoid other people suffering from seasickness. Whilst it's not contagious obviously, looking at another person vomiting is nit going to help you!

If you're really struggling, you should also avoid the edges of the boat and keep to the middle. The centre of the boat will not feel the motion as much and will be slightly easier on your tummy. 

Galapagos cruise seasickness 2

Medication Options

Please be aware that we are not doctors and the medications recommended must be prescribed by your medical doctor. 

For most people who suffer from mild seasickness, a standard over-the-counter option will be sufficient. For example, medications such as SturgeonBenadryl and Bonine are all excellent options. Most brands also offer child-friendly versions that are less potent.

Dramamine and Phenergan are also good options. Take one 25mg tablet 1 hour prior to departure and you should be okay for the next 24 hours. The only issue with the drugs mentioned above is that the most common side effect is drowsiness. Alcohol will only exacerbate the drowsiness.

For something stronger, we suggest using a transderm scopolamine patch. You wear the patch behind your ear which gradually releases a drug that combats the effects of motion sickness (Mal de mar) for 3 days. Like the other drugs mentioned, this is not a treatment, but a preventative drug. It also comes with side effects such as blurry vision, dry mouth, drowsiness, and dizziness. The transderm scopolamine patch must be prescribed by a doctor and cannot be bought over-the-counter. 

Another option is the ReliefBand Voyager. This electronic wristband is an FDA approved variation of the acupressure band and works by releasing electrical signals that help to prevent nausea. Worn on your wrist, this band should give immediate relief. 

Natural remedies

Most people who suffer from mild seasickness swear by ginger! Literally anything with ginger will help. Ginger tea, ginger biscuits, ginger supplement etc. should help ease the symptoms.

Sea-Band wristbands are now becoming quite common. The wristbands have a bead on them that presses into your Nei-Kuan pressure point, easing the symptoms of seasickness.

Galapagos cruise seasickness 1


In conclusion, Galapagos cruise seasickness issues are definitely something you need to consider prior to booking. However, it should never dissuade you from taking this amazing trip!

Even people who suffer badly from seasickness will be fine most of the time. You'll also spend a good deal of time in the water snorkelling and diving, and on land with your guides

Make sure you consult with your doctor if you're concerned. He or she will guide you through your best options before you leave. 

Don't let the seasickness win. The waters are generally very calm in the Galapagos and you'll have the cruise of a lifetime here! 

Get a Cruise Quote!

Expedition Cruise do not sell tours, we simply provide impartial advice. If you would like an exact quote with our recommended specialist click Get a Quote.


If you have any queries or questions regarding Galapagos cruise seasickness, please feel free to contact us or leave a comment below.

Thank you and happy travels!

Expedition Cruise Team

About the Author Expedition Cruise is the web’s most authoritative information portal on adventure and expedition cruising. Our mission is to provide up to date and comprehensive information on traveling to the Arctic, Antarctica and further afield, so that your experience is as fulfilling and safe as possible.

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