Funchal
Nature & Adventure

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Our most recommended Funchal Nature & Adventure

  • Funchal: Dolphin and Whale Watching by Luxury Catamaran

    1. Funchal: Dolphin and Whale Watching by Luxury Catamaran

    Make your way to Funchal Marina at least 20 minutes before your scheduled departure time to board a luxury catamaran. Once the group has gathered and all questions have been addressed, take a short walk to your boat for a safety briefing from the crew before boarding.

    Choose from the luxurious interior with comfortable seating and sun and wind protection, or the outdoor sun beds and trampoline nets.

    Then, sit back and relax as you sail out to sea and look back at the marina. Although sightings of the marine life cannot be guaranteed, dolphins and whales are often seen in the waters around Funchal.

    Keep a look out as you cruise across the water while the crew is on hand to answer any questions about the variety of species you may encounter. Then, head to the towering cliffs of Cabo Girão, looming 1,9...

    It was a great experience and the guide tell us a lot about wildlife and about Madeira.

  • Funchal: Catamaran Dolphin and Whale Watching

    2. Funchal: Catamaran Dolphin and Whale Watching

    Take a scenic sail in a catamaran along the Madeira coast.  See dolphins, whales, and turtles playing in their natural habitat. Throughout the year Madeira has different aquatic mammals journeying through its blue waters. Whether you come in summer or winter, the chances are high you’ll see one these amazing creatures. Stop for a swim during the summer season, and make use of the complimentary snorkeling equipment. Bar service is also available.

    A good afternoon and a very competent and amicable crew. We saw pilot whales and dolphins, who raced through the water peacefully. Onward to the cliff where, at the base, there was terracing - the triumph of hope over experience. A tiny cable car goes up and down. Great trip, and a welcome beer and rare whiskey were held the price of the (pretty grim) prices in Funchal. After feeling like pieces of sh1t for the embarrassment that is Brexit, it felt good not to be treated as such. Brexit - the uk’s ruin.

  • Madeira: Full-Day Skywalk & Porto Moniz Volcanic Pools

    3. Madeira: Full-Day Skywalk & Porto Moniz Volcanic Pools

    Depart from Funchal and head towards San Vicente along the north coast. Visit one of the most famous viewpoints, where you can look out to Porto Santo Island in clear weather. You will also be able to see the waterfall resembling a bride's veil, named Veu da Noiva. Next, stop at the natural volcanic pools in Seicxal, where you can swim in crystal waters. Also visit Porto Moniz's lava pools and Paul da Serra, the biggest plateau on the island at nearly 1500 meters high. This beautiful place provides stunning views and is an ideal spot for lunch. Visit Fanal, one of the 7 Natural Wonders of Portugal filled with centenary trees. As the last stop, go to Cabo Girão, the highest sea cliff in Europe and the second highest in the world. Try out the suspended glass floor viewpoint. Finally, return to your accommodation. 

    The trip was amazing, better than expected. Our guide Duarte was very knowledgeable and helpful. Recommend.

  • Madeira Island: Swimming with Dolphins

    4. Madeira Island: Swimming with Dolphins

    In the crystal clear waters of Madeira Island, swim with dolphins in their natural habitat. With assistance from an expert team of guides and divers, learn about the specific approach techniques needed to interact with these amazingly intelligent creatures. Madeira's regulations for swimming with wild dolphins are quite strict in order to preserve the subtle natural balance that these magnificent animals deserve. It may be possible to swim with 2 species of dolphins: Common Dolphins and Spotted Dolphins. As you enter the water, you remain safely connected to the boat at all times. Glide along the waters and swim with the dolphins in front, below and next to you as you admire these beautiful mammals in their natural habitat and make unforgettable memories. 

    Marta and Marcos are amazing! Very friendly, down to earth and know how to make things fun. Marta has a lot of knowledge and willing to tell you many things. Feel free to ask. Marcos was a good captain very helpful and even made the ride on the way back fun. You swim 10mins with the dolphins however trust me it’s enough. The experience is just amazing and breathtaking. We saw sleeping pilot whales and Marcos gently got very close to them so we can take pictures and film them. We then saw baby spotted dolphins and they were sooo adorable. Thank you for this amazing experience!

  • Funchal: Yacht Tour with Dolphin and Whale Watching

    5. Funchal: Yacht Tour with Dolphin and Whale Watching

    You tour will start from the marina in Funchal, where you will board the sailing yacht with a group of up to 20 people. On this relaxing sailing trip you will be seaching for dolphins, whales and sea turtles up to 3 miles form the coast. With some luck, you will see lots of native wildlife in its natural environment.  You will stop to go swimming and snorkeling at Cabo Girao, the highest sea cliff in Europe at 1,903 feet (580 meters) above the sea. If you don't want to swim, you can admire the beautiful coastal landscapes from the boat. You will be offered some drinks on board before heading back to the marina. 

    Passeio incrível da parte da manhã pela costa do Funchal até ao Cabo Girão. O mar estava tranquilo. O mergulho em alto mar é imperdível. A água estava super quente! Nao éramos muitas pessoas no iate o que em tempos de covid é muito seguro. O Francisco e o Renato são super simpáticos e atenciosos. Podía haver uma pouco mais de intereacção acerca das pequenas curiosidades daquela zona da ilha ao longo do percurso que fizemos. A única vida selvagem que conseguimos ver foi uma tartaruga o que, aparentemente, é mais raro do que avistar golfinhos e baleias. Gostamos muito!

  • Hike Madeira: Pico Arieiro to Pico Ruivo

    6. Hike Madeira: Pico Arieiro to Pico Ruivo

    The sun rises over your hotel as you set out on your walking tour adventure. Leaving from the comforts of your room in Funchal on the Madeira Islands, we'll drive you up to the third highest peak in Madeira - the magnificent Pico Arieiro. You'll sip coffee or a drink on your way up to the base of the peak, looking out at all the stunning beauty this place has to offer. As we head from sea level up to the base at 5,964ft (1818m), you'll pass beautiful flora and fauna. Finally, we'll begin our mighty walk up the mighty Pico Arieiro up to the highest point on the island, the Pico Ruivo peak at 6107 ft (1862m). Finally, we'll walk down to Teixeira where you'll be comfortably transferred back to your hotel. And of course, no day of hiking is complete without a drink at a traditional bar, so we'll make sure to stop at one with a spectacular view to enjoy the closing of your day!

    It was so much fun! We had a beautiful weather and could see all peaks and mountains. It was truly magical

  • From Funchal: Enchanted Terraces and Porto do Moniz Tour

    7. From Funchal: Enchanted Terraces and Porto do Moniz Tour

    Depart Funchal and travel by 4WD vehicle towards Madeira's northwest coast, passing a stunning green landscape to locations such as Serra de Água. Journey along forgotten and enchanted old roads and get a glimpse into the island's everyday life. Go to Encumeada, where one of the island's famous walking trails leads to Madeira's highest peak. Pass through the laurel forests of Chão dos Louros and marvel at the mountains and valleys from Ginjas and Paul da Serra, where the view from the plateau is breathtaking. Continue to Fanal in the middle of the Laurissilva Forest and then proceed to Porto do Moniz, famous for its natural swimming pools. If weather permits, enjoy the warmth of the sea, or continue to Seixal known for its black sand beach. Stop for lunch (own expense) in Seixal, before continuing to the coastal town of São Vicente. Make your way back to Funchal for the end of the tour...

    The tour was amazing! Sadly the weather wasn’t the best, so the views weren’t as impressive as they could have been. The tour has changed a little since the description was written, because some roads got too dangerous. The off-road was so much fun and our Tour-Guide Igor was such a charismatic individual! Great pleasure to have gotten to know him. Bathing in Seixal was absolutely beautiful! (It’s worth waiting for Seixal to go swimming, Porto Moniz looks beautiful too but Seixal is even better!) Can only recommend.

  • From Funchal: Best of Madeira's West Tour

    8. From Funchal: Best of Madeira's West Tour

    Escape the hustle and bustle of Funchal on a full-day scenic tour of the west of Madeira. Following pickup from selected hotels in Funchal, pass through the traditional fishing village of Câmara de Lobos. Continue to Cabo Girão Skywalk, Europe's highest cliff skywalk at 589m. Next, head towards the Ribeira Brava and go north through the deep and narrow valleys of Serra D'Água. Upon arrival at Encumeada at the top of the valley, enjoy an incredible view of the south and north coast of the island. Cross a mountain pass, where both sides of the island are visible, and travel down to the rugged beauty of the north coast, where Atlantic rollers deposit white surf on the cliffs. Traverse Madeira's highest plateau, and enjoy more spectacular panoramas. Next, go to São Vicente on Madeira’s north coast. Visit the beautiful village of Porto Moniz. Here you will have approximately 1 hour for ...

    Great, knowledgeable and funny driver/guide. Good quality minibus, with safety features explained and adhered too. Great location on route, with plenty of time to enjoy them. Would definitely recommend the trip.

  • Madeira: Garajau Nature Reserve Kayak and Snorkel Tour

    9. Madeira: Garajau Nature Reserve Kayak and Snorkel Tour

    After getting picked up from your hotel, start the day at Funchal Harbour where you will learn everything you need to know about kayaking before heading to the nature reserve. Upon arrival at Garajau, enjoy a 40-minute paddle towards Lazareto. Stop for a break on the beautiful pebble beach and take in the views of the surrounding rock features from times gone by. Afterwards, discover Madeira's native marine life as you snorkel through crystal-clear waters. In the event of poor weather conditions, you will have the opportunity to explore the sea from the safety of your kayak instead. Finish the day with a spot of cliff diving before heading back to your hotel for the evening.

    Absolutely fantastic experience! The guide was very helpful and friendly. I was scared to go to snorkelling in the water but he encouraged me and helped me in and stayed with me until I was comfortable. Without him I would have not seen the beauty of Garjau reserve and all widelife it homes

  • Madeira: Dolphin and Whale Watching Tour from Funchal

    10. Madeira: Dolphin and Whale Watching Tour from Funchal

    Climb aboard a comfortable catamaran for a relaxing trip along Madeira's south coast from the Marina do Funchal. Look for dolphins and whales (and even turtles) playing in the cold waters of the sea. During the summer months, stop to swim below the cliffs of Cabo Girão, one of the highest sea cliffs in the world. A qualified crew will provide detailed information in various languages about the species of cetaceans (dolphins and whales) you see. In the event you don’t spot any whales or dolphins you will be offered a 2nd trip. Get historical and technical information from your crew for a truly unique experience.

    The trip was very nice and well organized.First day we could not see any dolphins or whales unfortunately but had a chance to swim around Cabo Girão.I think it was very thoughtful that the agency gave another chance to rebook the trip and when we joined next day we could see some marine life.

Other Sightseeing Options in Funchal

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What people are saying about Funchal

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 4,532 reviews

Spencer, the Driver/Guide was knowledgeable and personable. We enjoyed the whole experience because he imparted his knowledge of the flora was impeccable and he made the drive interesting because he explained where we were on the island and what to look out for.

The boat was beautiful and well looked after, hand sanitizer on board. We saw both dolpins and whales, it was very relaxing and stopped off for a swim in a calm part of the sea. Down side was the snorkel kit was not professional but more brought for kids.

The trip was amazing, better than expected. Our guide Duarte was very knowledgeable and helpful. Recommend.

It was so much fun! We had a beautiful weather and could see all peaks and mountains. It was truly magical

Beautiful scenarios and tour! Amazon food and a lot of fun! Highly recommended!