Latin America, Galapagos Trip Leader

Rafael Pesantes

Languages Spoken: English & Spanish

Rafael Pesantes is a native Galápagueno, with more than three decades of experience as both a certified Galápagos guide and world naturalist. His achievements are inspiring, including the Prince Henri Award for Excellence by the Charles Darwin Research Station and HRH Crown Prince Henri of Luxembourg Award for excellence in guiding. Along with local qualifications, he led a joint research project with California's Point Reyes Bird Observatory in the Farallon Islands on local bird life. He is an excellent guide who loves sharing his passion for the Galápagos. "The Galápagos is not just my home, it's where my heart is," he says. "I love helping people discover the magic and beauty of this archipielago, so they return home with lasting memories."

Our Team

Upcoming Trips with Rafael

Galapagos Private Journey

Jun 29 - Jul 6, 2024

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Client Testimonials

There are not enough adjectives to describe what a memorable guide Rafa was. We learned so much, experienced so many things, and had fun the entire time. It was hard to leave.

Barbara C.

Plymouth, MN

I gave Rafa an excellent rating. He was amazing.

Graceann W.

Ann Arbor, MI
Galapagos Adventure aboard the Passion

Rafa blends a deep personal knowledge of the Galápagos and scientific training, which he is eager to share via lucid explanations and entertaining anecdotes. He has an uncanny way of predicting wildlife behavior to set up the best interactions for visitors. It was evident that he worked hard behind the scenes to accommodate varying interests and special requests and to make last minute adjustments to the itinerary based on landing closures and presence of other tour boats.

Jeanie B.

Mt. Vernon, WA

Probably the best tour guide we have ever had on any trip....incredible knowledge about the Galapagos.

Jeff R.

Breckenridge, CO
Galapagos Adventure aboard the Passion

Rafa, our naturalist and guide, was the highlight of our entire trip! He is extremely knowledgeable, friendly, compassionate, and overall just a great presence to be around! Words truly cannot describe the level of expertise and enthusiasm that he brought to the trip!

Keilan K.

Denver, CO
Galapagos Adventure aboard the Passion

Rafa is an exceptional guide. He is thoroughly familiar with the flora and fauna of the Galapagos as well as the geology, history, traditions, and culture. He was masterful in coordinating our trip and offering us exceptional experiences. He made the Galapagos come to life in every way and created lasting memories for us.

Lee B.

Afton, MN

Rafa was absolutely incredible. He is a wealth of knowledge about the wildlife and all things Galapagos. He was so patient, kind, and fun to be around. He was constantly working to make our experience special and one of a kind, changing the schedule and working to put us in the right place at the right time. He is well respected by his peers and the crew, and it was easy to see why. He went above and beyond for all the guests to accommodate their individual needs and keep everyone happy.

Melissa L.

Astoria, OR

Rafael Pesantes was almost too amazing for words! PhD-level knowledge, a passion to teach about the Galapagos, and a fun attitude interacting with our group of 14. He was smart scheduling activities to avoid crowded sites by clever sequencing, and VERY, VERY personable! Loved him!

Paul C.

Plymouth, MN

Rafael was the BEST Guide I have ever had - by far! His quiet confidence and gentle nature inspires trust. These traits coupled with his flexibility ensured that our experience was unique, exciting, and FUN! This is not to take anything away from his technical knowledge of the plants, animals, and fish of the Galapagos. His insights on the habitat were very interesting as well.

Tom H.

Kalispell, MT

Book Your Trip Today

Our Area Specialists know every detail about our adventures around the world. They will be happy to answer any questions and help you choose the journey that’s right for you. Contact us to learn more or book your trip today!

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