Santiago arrived on the island of Santa Cruz as a boy of 7. His first memory is the view of Academy Bay as he descended the dirt road from the lush highlands of Santa Rosa. He had never seen a color like it, such a vivid, beautiful turquoise. The moment made such an impression on young Santiago that he credits it with his decision to devote his life to "this magical place and the wild waters surrounding it." Growing up on a tropical island is a dream for most children, and Santiago took full advantage of his exposure to the wonders of nature every day. He learned to swim in the lagoon of Tortuga Bay, paddling alongside sea turtles and mischievous seal lion pups. He fished in the tidepools alongside blue-footed boobies and sunbathing marine iguanas. It did not take long for the draw of the great Pacific Ocean to became more than just a passion for Santiago, who made it his profession. He earned his open-water dive instructor certification at 18 and began to lead diving trips throughout the archipelago. With experience the best teacher, he learned as much as he possibly could from his wild classroom. Still craving more knowledge, he opted to earn his naturalist guide certification from Galapagos National Park. Since then, Santiago has guided thousands of dive trips and led hundreds of land expeditions throughout the archipelago over the past two decades. He says, "Nothing gives me greater pleasure or pride than to share my beloved islands with our guests. It is my honor to do so."
Upcoming Adventures with Santiago:
Classic Galapagos: The Natural Habitat Experience
Galapagos Hiking & Kayaking Adventure