Tours and Tickets
Catamaran Day Cruise to Desertas Islands from Funchal
3.5

Catamaran Day Cruise to Desertas Islands from Funchal

By VMT Madeira
About
from
$85.13
per adult
Lowest price guaranteeReserve now & pay laterFree cancellation

Ages 1-99, max of 70 per group
Duration: 9h
Start time: Check availability
Mobile ticket
Portuguese, English


  • Live commentary on board
  • Use of Snorkelling equipment
  • Stand Up Paddle
What's not included
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off


Departure details
  • Praça do Povo, Av. Do Mar 4, 9000-900 Funchal, Portugal Kiosk VMT Madeira Catamaran Trips. Check-In: 30 minutes before departure
Return details
  • Returns to original departure point

  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Stroller accessible
  • Near public transportation
If you have questions about accessibility, we’d be happy to help. Just call the number below and reference the product code: 7775P2

  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • No heart problems or other serious medical conditions
  • Children must be accompanied by an adult
  • Please advise any specific dietary requirements at time of booking
  • Not recommended for travelers with back problems
  • Not recommended for pregnant travelers
  • Travelers should have a moderate physical fitness level
  • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund
  • This experience requires a minimum number of travelers. If it’s canceled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 70 travelers

  • For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.

How much is Catamaran Day Cruise to Desertas Islands from Funchal?
Catamaran Day Cruise to Desertas Islands from Funchal price starts from $87.07. Discover and book Catamaran Day Cruise to Desertas Islands from Funchal on Tripadvisor
What is the Catamaran Day Cruise to Desertas Islands from Funchal cancellation policy?
Catamaran Day Cruise to Desertas Islands from Funchal cancellation policy: For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience. Discover and book Catamaran Day Cruise to Desertas Islands from Funchal on Tripadvisor
Which company provides Catamaran Day Cruise to Desertas Islands from Funchal?
Catamaran Day Cruise to Desertas Islands from Funchal is hosted by VMT Madeira. Read reviews, discover additonal experiences or contact VMT Madeira on Tripadvisor. Discover and book Catamaran Day Cruise to Desertas Islands from Funchal on Tripadvisor

If you have questions about this tour or need help making your booking, we’d be happy to help. Just call the number below and reference the product code: 7775P2

Reserve your spot

Similar experiences

Itinerary
  • You'll start at
    Praça do Povo
    Av. Do Mar 4, 9000-900 Funchal, Portugal
    Kiosk VMT Madeira Catamaran Trips. Check-In: 30 minutes before departure
    See address & details
  • Pass by
    VMT Madeira
  • You'll return to the starting point
+
About the operator
VMT Madeira
1,752
Funchal, Portugal
Joined in March 2010

#16 of 59 Boat Tours & Water Sports in Funchal
  • Lisa C
    Lisa C
    0
    0
    Rocky ride!
    Well, not sure I've been on a catamaran before... Not for the faint hearted or those prone to sea sickness! Pleasant staff... 10 mins swim stop... Not much else to see or do unless you find Whales or Dolphins.. Our trip couldn't find any till the return journey... Only Dolphins not Whales, but they were amazing to see! Bring binoculars if you can...
  • Bambulinio
    Bambulinio
    0
    0
    Dolphins, swimming
    Nice trip, no problem with 1.5years baby, you can take buggy with you. You can buy drinks, swim in the ocean and most important see dolphins
  • greendante
    greendante
    0
    0
    Beautiful and not too crowded
    Plenty of space on this boat, with drinks and snacks available. Got to see the sunset multiple times because of how they moved the boat. Chilly but fun opportunity to swim in the ocean. Didn't see any sea creatures, which means we could have gone again if we wanted.
  • Tourist815226
    Tourist815226
    0
    0
    Poor crew service
    We took this trip today the first 45 minutes of the trip were good saw a pod of pilot whales and we're given a knowledgeable description. However the weather then turned foul heavy rain and a rough sea. Which resulted in all the passengers getting soaked to the skin. The boat did have plastic roll down windows. But apart from trying to dry the seats down the crew did little to improve the passenger experience. If the roll down windows had been closed there would have afforded at least a measure of protection from the applying weather .most of the passengers were feeling seasick by this point as the cruise continued finally arriving back in harbour to the relief of many
  • 704veronikad
    704veronikad
    0
    0
    expected more... 2min of watching, delay in departure (and on time return) with no excuse...
    There were 2 katamarans going on that day due to many tourists, however the second one arived with delay, so even if we were well on time for check-in and on-boarding 30min before departure, the catamaran we were assigned to departed with 15min delay (but returned back as planned). The catamaran is slow, so arrived on the "watching" place quite late, when the first one was already departing for promised swimming. We stayed at place for only 2min saw few dolphins in the far and then returned back to Funchal directly (no swimming). Expected more... Next time would pay more for the quick boat, catamaran chosen because of the kids...
  • V9548DYpeterf
    V9548DYpeterf
    0
    0
    Recommended
    Missed our check-in due to an unplanned trip to the ER, they called me and graciously rebooked us for a later trip. Awesome customer support!
  • Helen B
    Helen B
    0
    0
    A Beautiful Experience!
    A truly amazing experience and we were very fortunate to see large numbers of Atlantic Spotted Dolphins early on in the boat trip. Due to rules and regulations regarding the protection of these species, one is allowed to stay for 10 minutes but actually this is ample time to enjoy watching the dolphins and get plenty of photos. Although this was a large group, there was ample space to sit and get excellent views. There is a well stocked bar on board with drinks and snacks; these are also very reasonably priced, €6 for 2 bottles of water and a Coke Zero. The crew were extremely friendly and knowledgable. We stopped off for those who wanted a dip in the sea and there was plenty of information on Madeira and it’s coastline as we continued the trip. Would highly recommend this company and will definitely be a highlight of our holiday here. Pack plenty of sunscreen!
  • garycL7940VW
    garycL7940VW
    0
    0
    Nice trip but remember it’s a tourist attraction!
    Nice trip and saw lots of dolphins but what they don’t tell you is they are only allowed to follow the dolphins for ten minutes by law so they have to move away from them after that time then they didn’t seem interested in looking for any more .There was a staff member on top deck with binoculars and walkie-talkie searching until we found the first dolphins but after that we never saw him for the rest of the trip! Then you get taken to a cliff face where the boat is moored up for ten mins to allow you to swim then they take you back to the port.Bu the time you get ready to swim it’s time to get back on the boat so I would advise being ready to swim before they stop the boat! The catamaran was nice and clean with friendly staff and knowledgeable commentator about the dolphin species we saw etc. with a decent stocked bar and was a nice boat ride out. Good trip for kids I’d say.
  • A1818MCshellyb
    A1818MCshellyb
    0
    0
    Beautiful coast and sunset
    Well worth the price for a three hour sail! Seeing dolphins and whales is unpredictable and we didn’t happen to see any, but go for the beauty! The sunset and the view of Madeira! Highly recommend. Staff was friendly. Onboard drinks yummy.
  • Veroniquerutten
    Veroniquerutten
    0
    0
    If you want to see whales, book somewhere else
    It was very dissapointing. We expected a search for whales and dolphins. We saw dolphins in the first 20 minutes and left after 10 minutes. Thats it. If you like making a boattour, drink beer/ coacktails, see dolphins for 10 minutes and swim for ten minutes… Then this is for you. If you want a whale/dolphin tour, book something else.
  • 648lukasn
    648lukasn
    0
    0
    10 minute Dolphin tour
    After a 10 minute dolphin stop. Crew relaxed and the boat continued to let the people swim for 10 minutes. The promised wildlife was found. But the sign should say 3-hour bout tour with a 99% chance to spot some wildlife for 10 minutes
  • 880georgiep
    880georgiep
    0
    0
    Amazing memories
    Lovely trip! Snacks on board - definitely recommend taking something to throw over yourself when it gets windy. The sunset tour does look out for marine mammals - we saw three fin whales at sunset! Absolutely gorgeous. Because of the cloudiness of the weather the sunset did get covered at the very end but this didn’t spoil the magical trip. Very lucky to have seen what we did. There was a monk seal so we could not swim but that was okay I didn’t want to anyway with it being a bit chilly. This was rare though to see one so far from its shore. The crew was knowledgeable and respected the sea animals. Place was easy to find and I gave my name from online and it was found effortlessly. Very good trip and good company to go with. We’d already booked the dolphin / whale watching tour but tbf if you’re lucky this is 2 for the price of one!
  • Andrew B
    Andrew B
    0
    0
    Above and beyond experience
    Very fun and interesting experience, we went yesterday and saw bottleneck dolphins without 15 minutes of departing. Also got to swim in the sea further up the shore The young lady guiding us had some information about different breeds of whales and dolphins living in the area - and the boat even stopped on the way back to collect some floating plastic! Very impressed
  • BobW947
    BobW947
    0
    0
    Bring a coat or jumper
    It was a nice trip, do bring a coat of something warm as advised by the booking guys as it got quite chilly once the sun went. We sat on the rope netting at the front the entire time, but people got up and left as they were cold. The kids enjoyed jumping in the sea off the boat and we did manage to see some dolphins. The trip was a bit boring before the swimming but improved after that. I would recommend it though. The scenery of Madeira from the sea is stunning.
  • FoxyRhino
    FoxyRhino
    0
    0
    Good value trip
    Nice 3 hour round trip. Plenty of room on deck (there are plenty of seats and some netting at the front if you want to sunbathe). Saw a few dolphins briefly and had a 15 minute stop below the Cabo Girao cliffs near the shore so you can swim in the sea if you wish. Reasonably priced drinks at the bar.
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
Popular mentions

3.5
20 reviews
Excellent
10
Very good
3
Average
1
Poor
3
Terrible
3

Bobcat320330
Monmouth, UK33 contributions
Oct 2021
I took this trip yesterday and it was a lovely, lovely day - enhanced by a wonderful crew and pleasant fellow passengers. It did not go as planned, but that was fine. Read on!

There was too little wind to sail to the schedule but this catamaran is a joy whatever. The distances are huge for a day trip so it's unlikely that sails are going to do it.

There had been a landslip close to the landing beach, triggered by the recent volcanic activity on La Palma. This would have restricted access to a small patch surrounding the huts, hardly fulfilling.

Luckily we never got there. The first beach party had to return because the waves on the beach were too much of a risk, most passengers wearing clothes and not swimware.

Hence we enjoyed the swimming, paddleboards and kayaks (informal instruction and encouragement provided) and lunch was brought forward - a really excellent meal that included fabulous espada and unlimited drinks.

To make up for the lack of a shore visit, we left our mooring early and followed the cliffs for miles northwards of the landing spot. The colours and shapes of the cliffs are extraordinary and I was mesmerised. Eventually, right up abeam the northern-most island of Chãu, we headed back towards Funchal.

It wasn't long before we encountered our first pod of pilot whales. Three times we diverted, slowed and spent lots of time quietly and safely shadowing these whales and we all got some great pics.

So how so I account for a full nine hours aboard? It was sunny and warm even in October (usually in a shirt but I did need a fleece and jacket at rare times). I watched the world go by, snoozed, read, ate, chatted. Bored? Cold? Never.

It really was a lovely day. Thank you so much, Antonio and crew.

Robert(o!)
Written October 17, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Davinia C
1 contribution
Aug 2021 • Couples
It was the worst trip in catamaran of my life.
Three hours to get to the islands. When we got there they said that it was not possible to do the proper visit as there was risk of land spades, then they basically had us three hours stuck in the boat , and another three hours to go back.
The worst was that they said they just received a call alerting them about the risk when we got to the island, but one of them said that this was happening for weeks so they knew and they took us there besides the risk and knowing since the beginning that they can’t give us what we paid for.
So disappointed and a day wasted.
Written August 19, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Colleend755
Hello, thank you for taking the time to write a review. I'm sorry that you were desappointed with the trip. Desertas Islands are a natural reserve and they are not really close to Funchal, so the trip takes 3 hours there and back. All of the 3 islands, including Deserta Grande, (the island that we are allowed to visit), have a steep relief and not much vegetation, and sometimes landlslides occur. It's not something new, but on the given day, wasn't expected. We had gone there 3 days before and there weren't any landlsides. When the Forest Rangers, the authorities on the local, informs us that is not possible to go on land for safety reasons, we have to comply, despite the the disappointment it may cause us and our guests. Despite that, people could still go for a swim, snorkeling and do paddle board. After that, the lunch was served. I'm sorry that you feel that your day was wasted. I hope that nonetheless you enjoyed your time in Madeira. Best regards, VMT Madeira Team
Written February 1, 2023
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Denis
Vancouver Island, Canada1 contribution
Jul 2022
The islands themselves are unique experience but there are just about 200 m to walk, so basically it is one-time experience. And it was totally ruined by VMT. I live on Madeira for about 4 months now and my windows are overlooking Desertas Islands - so I see that most of the time its beautiful weather there. And trip in such weather should be amazing.
However we were stupid enough to prepay the trip and on the day the weather was terrible. The cruise should have been cancelled but VMT would lose money. So when the crew put on heavy wind breakers I realized we are in trouble. (they tell you to bring warm clothes but I would never had SO warm clothes on Madeira). On catamaran there are no place to hide from the rain, wind and splashes of waves and crew was lazy to put down covers. I was literally hiding in a tiny cabin near washrooms otherwise I would be completely wet. And with the wind it was cold enough to get sick if you are wet.
But the crew was bold enough to put a can with a huge black letters TIPS and directly requested tips after the trip. We paid 80 EURO each so I would expect the crew is paid well enough.
Again – Islands are worth visiting, but do not do prepayment – just walk in on the day (they have enough spots). Also – choose Bonita (another ship) – there you would have closed cabin to hide from bad weather.
Written September 8, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Monique
3 contributions
Perfekt day at sea with a pro and nice crew. Small but very informative guided tour on Ilhas Desertas. Delicious lunch buffet. We got the chance to see some dolphins, sea-lions and even wales 🥰.
And catched ugly plastic trash from the sea…..
Written July 5, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Morgane C
5 contributions
Jul 2022 • Couples
We spent a really good time on board and on the island, with good weather conditions. The crew is great ! Excellent day !
Written July 22, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

nicholas M
Birmingham, UK50 contributions
Jul 2022
I have been twice on this day trip in June and July 2022. First of all, this trip is not for you if you do not appreciate wilderness and nature, in my opinion at least. If you like cheap and cheerful, take one of the dolphin cruises to see them and then along the coast to swim.

This is a 3-hour trip each way, and the catamaran handles the rougher seas near Desertas perfectly. Admittedly, there is not that much to do at Desertas, and there are restrictions as to where you can wander, which isn't far. You can swim, surf-board, or snorkel in the bay, looking out for fish or even a Monk Seal. The staff are excellent and cannot do enough for you, and a drink (fresh beer on tap) and a meal is provided (meat, fish, veg, salad). There are w.c's on board, always a bonus.

Again some may find the 3-hour trip boring, if so this trip is not for you. But I enjoy nature watching and saw several rare Desertas Petrels, lots of Bulwer's Petrels and Cory's Shearwaters, as well as a Loggerhead turtle, Flying Fish, Portuguese Man of War, and on the first trip Atlantic Spotted Dolphins, though if you just like to see Dolphins just take one of the 3 hour round trips around the Bay of Funchal.

Either way, it was thoroughly enjoyable just to be out on the sea. For me it was excellent value for money despite there not being much at the destination, in the hands of an excellent hard-working and dedicated crew. But be aware what you are booking and what your expectations of the trip are.
Written July 12, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Catamaran Day Cruise to Desertas Islands from Funchal provided by VMT Madeira

Product Overview: Catamaran Day Cruise to Desertas Islands from Funchal

Prices From

$93

Number of Reviews

20

Number of Photos

23

Duration

540 minutes