Packing Essentials for Your Scuba Liveaboard

Embarking on a dive liveaboard trip in the Galapagos Islands this July/August? With its unique climate and marine conditions, packing the right gear is essential for a smooth and enjoyable experience. Here’s your ultimate guide to ensure you’re well-prepared for this unforgettable adventure.

An open suitcase on a wooden floor neatly packed with travel essentials, including a hat, camera, sunglasses, shoes, clothes, and a small black bag.

Diving Gear:

  • Dive Suit: A 5mm to 7mm wetsuit is recommended due to cooler waters during this season. 
  • Dive Booties: Essential for taking on and off your fins and for protecting your feet during dives.
  • Wet Socks: To wear under dive booties.
  • Dive Gloves: Important for holding on to sharp rocks.
  • Dive Hoods: Especially reccomended if you tend to get cold.
  • Mask: Bring your own high-quality mask that fits comfortably.
  • Snorkel: Required to have while diving.
  • Fins: Well-fitting fins.
  • BCD (Buoyancy Control Device): Ensure it's in good condition and properly serviced.
  • Regulator: Don't forget to check the servicing date on your regulator.
  • Dive Computer: A dive computer is essential for tracking dive profiles.
  • Dive Light: If you plan on doing any night dives.

*If you would like to rent the dive equipment in the Galapagos we can organize this for you

**We strongly recommend that you bring your own mask, gloves, booties, fins, hood or hooded vest and dive computer. A personal wetsuit is also a good idea if you have space. Diving in Galapagos can be challenging and it is important that you are comfortable.

A set of scuba diving gear displayed on a dark, underwater-themed background, including a buoyancy control device (BCD), a diving computer, regulators, and a flashlight.

Dive Clothing:

  • Rash Guard or Dive Skins: These provide added warmth and sun protection and can be worn under your wetsuit. 
  • Attire beneath your wetsuit: Pack ample dive apparel—swimwear, dive shirts, shorts/leggings, or sunsuits—for daily dives (3-4 sets suggested). Rinse after each dive and hang to dry on the top deck.
  • Neoprene Socks or Ankle Socks: To prevent blisters under booties.

Non Dive Clothing:

  • Casual Wear: Light, fast-drying clothing for non-diving times.
  • Hoodie/Sweater: For cool evenings and mornings.
  • Waterproof Jacket: For weather changes.
  • Sleepwear and Undergarments: Comfort is key.
  • Buff (Optional): Wind protection post-dive can be soothing for sensitive ears.


  • Comfortable Walking Shoe/ Sneaker: Suitable for exploring the islands during land excursions.
  • Comfortable Sandles: A pair of adventure sandles (example: Teva's) that can get wet since some land excursions may have a wet landing. (*specifically important on our 15-day trip)

Sun Protection:

  • Reef-safe sunscreen, SPF Lip Balm, Sunglasses, and Hat: Essential for the equatorial sun.

Toiletries and Personal Items:

  • Toothbrush, Toothpaste, and Other Toiletries: Travel-sized items to save space.
  • Contacts or glasses 
  • Leave in conditioner: Expecially if you have long hair

*Shampoo, soap, towels, and bed linens are provided for you

**Please ensure the personal care products you use on the liveaboard are biodegradable, ocean-safe, and reef-safe, as the shower and sink water will end up in the ocean.


The top two issues that our divers encounter are stomach issues and ear issues. The below medications are not required but can potentially help you to be more prepared in case medical situations arise. 

  • Personal Medications: Medications that you will need for your trip. (bring extra in case of unexpected travel delays)
  • Pain Relief Medication: Paracetamol (fever reducer), Ibprofin, or other pain reliever. (can purchase at a pharmacy in the Galapagos)
  • Stomach Medicine: Ciprofloxacin *Specifically if you are spending time in the Galapagos prior to your trip, the water in the Galapagos can cause stomach issues.
  • Eardrops to clean ears after diving: Alcohol eardrops or hydrogen peroxide eardrops.
  • Motion Sickness Medication: We've had travelers recommend the Scopolamine Transdermal Patch or Dramamine.
  • Decongestant Medication: Sudafed or other nasal/sinus decongestant.
  • Cough & Sore Throat Medication: Pills, syrups, and/or cough drops.
  • Sleep aids if Sick: Vicks NyQuil or other nighttime cold or flu medicine.
  • Waterproof Bandages: The Galapagos has very nutrient rich water so it's important to cover all open wounds when diving to prevent infection.
  • Anti-inflammatory Medication: Cream or tablets for if you get injured onboard.
  • Personal First Aid Kit: Include basics like small medical tape/gauze, antiseptic wipes, and antibiotic ointment.

Photography and Electronics:

  • Underwater Camera Gear: If you're into underwater photography, make sure your camera, housing, and accessories are packed securely.
  • Chargers and Adapters: Ensure you have the right adapters and chargers for your devices, as power outlets may vary on the liveaboard. *The Aqua has 110V / 220V outlets
  • Books or e-reader
  • Headphones
  • Journal 
A black metal water bottle with a carabiner attached to the lid, placed on a tiled floor in front of a wooden background. The bottle features the text "DIVE with a PURPOSE" and a shark logo with a website URL below it.
A green enamel camping mug with the text "PATAGONIA BUILT TO ENDURE" and a mountain logo, placed on a wooden surface outdoors with a scenic view of the water and rocks in the background.


  • Logbook: If you use a physical book. 
  • Travel Documents: Passport
  • Cash: You will need US Dollars to pay the Galapagos Entry Fees (Learm more)
  • Reusable Water Bottle & Mug for Hot Liquids: Stay hydrated during your trip.
  • Dry Bag: Useful for keeping your gear dry during boat trips.
  • Backpack or Duffel Bag: Easier to manage on the liveaboard than a rigid suitcase.
  • Soap: Small container of castille soap to use to wash clothing in a sink.
  • Ear plugs and an eye mask: Can be nice to have if you are sharing a cabin with another person. 
  • Clips: Can be used hang your clothes that need to dry.
  • Binoculars: For bird and wildlife watching during land excursions.


Remember to check with the specific liveaboard operator for any additional requirements or recommendations they might have. With this comprehensive packing list, you'll be well-prepared to make the most of your diving adventure in the Galapagos Islands in July/August. Enjoy your trip!

If you have questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to us at

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