Funchal
Safaris & Wildlife Activities

Enter your dates to find available activities

Our most recommended Funchal Safaris & Wildlife Activities

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 1,902 feet (580 meters) above the sea. Drop anchor at Cabo Girão and take a dip in the waters to explore the sea life below the surface with your complimentary goggles and snorkel mask. Then, cruise at a leisurely pace back to Funchal Marina, sailing along the coastline for fantastic views of Madeira’s landscapes. Arrive back at Funchal Marina for the speedy disembarking process so that you can continue with your day unimpeded.

...
All Inclusive Whale and Dolphin Watching Luxury Tour

2. All Inclusive Whale and Dolphin Watching Luxury Tour

Your 3-hour luxury catamaran tour begins at the docks of the new marina of Funchal. Board the catamaran and enjoy a glass of sparkling wine before setting off. Sail into the ocean to find dolphins, whales, and turtles. Spot these creatures in their natural habitat. After sailing around spotting dolphins, whales and turtles enjoy a 30 minute stop next to Cabo Girão, the 1920 foot (586m) seaside cliff. Here you have a change o go swimming in the crystal clear waters. After a quick swim, you will get back on the boat where you can relax and enjoy the views of the coast of Funchal as you head back to the marina.

...
Madeira Island: Swimming with Dolphins

3. 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. 

...
Madeira: Jeep Safari Tour

4. Madeira: Jeep Safari Tour

Get to know the true spirit of the island of Madeira in this unique 4X4 tour in a jeep. Relax in the comfort of an all-terrain vehicle whilst you explore the magnificent scenery of these unknown areas. This tour is an opportunity to 'step back in time'. Travel to the most outstanding and untouched areas of this wonderful island. Start your day with a convenient pick-up service from your accommodation in Funchal. Here, after a short meet and greet with your driver, you will leave Funchal, enjoying a scenic drive towards Poiso. Proceed off-road to Ribeiro Frio and take in some of the natural surroundings as you make your way toward Pico do Areeiro (1818m), where outstanding scenery and views await you. Continue on your journey to Faial, heading uphill towards Santana. Afterward, take a trip to see the typical houses of Santana, whilst here, get the chance to do some souvenir shopping and peruse through the outstanding selection of goodies on offer. Continue on your journey, and enjoy a stop at 'Guindaste', to appreciate the panoramic views of the east coast. You will return to Funchal via a scenic route through Portela, Ribeira de Machico, Machico (first capital of Madeira) Santa Cruz and off road through Lamaceiros or Funduras and Ponta S. Lourenço, where you will have outstanding views of the Red Cliffs. You will return to your accommodation for an evening of rest after a day of off-road adventure.

...
Madeira Pirate Ship: 3-Hour Boat Trip

5. Madeira Pirate Ship: 3-Hour Boat Trip

A magnificent replica of Christopher Columbus’s flagship, the Santa Maria, was built on the island of Madeira, between July 1997 and July 1998, in the fishing village of Camara de Lobos. Since it was built thousands of people have sailed aboard the ship, experiencing more than just a normal boat ride, as you’ll soon find out on this 3-hour tour. Santa Maria de Colombo is also the most photographed boat in Madeira. A number of local and international TV documentaries have been made on board this famous ship, including The Discovery Channel’s The Quest for Columbus. The idea of this boat trip is for you to experience history, while at the same time enjoying the breathtaking views of Madeira´s south coast. In addition to the views, you’re very likely to see dolphins and whales as well. The ship will anchor in front of the majestic cliff of Cabo Girao, the highest sea cliff in Europe. If you like you can enjoy a swim in the warm and crystal-clear water. A sail on the Santa Maria is your chance to re-live Christopher Columbus´s voyage of discovery and imagine how he and his crew felt as they headed into the unknown.

...
From Funchal: Full-Day Jeep Safari Tour

6. From Funchal: Full-Day Jeep Safari Tour

Your full-day tour will begin with your collection from Funchal by your driver and guide. You will then have a brief meeting where you will have everything about your safari explained to you. After departing from Funchal with your guide, you will venture toward Ponta do Sol, where you will head off road to Rochão for a coffee and bathroom break. Crossing Paul da Serra, the next stop will be at Santa (a view point) to see the magnificent scenery of Porto Moniz in this unique place which is not normally accessible by cars or buses. You will then drive 10 minutes more to reach Porto Moniz. Once having arrived in Porto Moniz, time will be given for a swim in the natural swimming pools. You will then drive to Seixal, Veu da Noiva and S. Vicente to see the nearby natural waterfalls. Following this, you will move onward to experience Cabo Girão, a breathtaking 580-meter-tall sea cliff. At the conclusion of your tour, you will return to Funchal by approximatey 5:00PM.

...
Madeira: Full-Day South Coast Jeep Tour

7. Madeira: Full-Day South Coast Jeep Tour

Explore the best of the south of Madeira Island with this Jeep safari tour. You will discover valleys, mountains, plateaus, and the seashore, all of which make this expedition to the sometimes-forgotten southwest side of the island a trip to remember. The diversity of this part of the island is simply amazing. You will visit Ponta do Pargo, the most western point of Madeira, before sitting down to enjoy lunch. Following lunch, you will stroll along the seaside esplanade to discover the hidden fishing villages. You will visit Funchal, Paul da Serra, Ponta do Pargo, Paul do Mar, Jardim do Mar, Calheta, and Ponta do Sol on this scenic experience. At the conclusion of your tour, you will be returned to your point of origin.

...
Madeira: Dolphin and Whale Watching Tour from Funchal

8. 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.

...
Madeira: Half-Day Nun's Valley and Sea Cliff Tour

9. Madeira: Half-Day Nun's Valley and Sea Cliff Tour

Explore some of the most remote places of Madeira Island. Not far from Funchal, and hidden in between high mountains and deep valleys, lie remote villages and hamlets such as Jardim da Serra with its splendid view over the Nuns Valley. You can explore another world by joining this Jeep safari tour, complete with panoramic views and interesting places. You will also enjoy sensational encounters with Madeira's fascinating natural heritage. Your route will pass though Funchal, Fajã das Galinhas, Boca da Corrida, Jardim da Serra, Quinta Grande, Cabo Girão, and Câmara de Lobos. At the conclusion of your enjoyable day out, you will return to your point of origin.

...
Funchal: Dolphin and Whale Watching Cruise

10. Funchal: Dolphin and Whale Watching Cruise

Look for whales and dolphins in their natural environment on a small group cruise with a dedicated crew. Powered by 2x 250hp engines, you can expect to cover larger distances than any other boat in Funchal in comfort. This means you will have the best chance to spot the wildlife. Wildlife spotters work hard on land to find the animals before you set out on your trip. Update progress Depending on the species and sea conditions, you can get very close to the whales and dolphins, but remember, it is wildlife, and the primary goal is to be respectful of their habitat. Listen to informative commentary about the sea life of Madeira, as your crew and marine biologist guide make sure you have a great time whilst learning about the local cetaceans, fauna, and flora. Encounter different groups of dolphins, whales and turtles in the water, and get up-close sightings as you speed across large distances in little time. Marvel as the animals breach and splash about in the water, and learn more about these amazing creatures and life in the ocean from the certified guides. 

...

Other Sightseeing Options in Funchal

Want to discover all there is to do in Funchal? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Funchal

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 58 reviews

With a choppy sea ahead the ride out to sea was like a rollercoaster ride. We were on the third row and felt all the bumps but it was great fun. Sitting at the back is better for those with a bad back though. The boat does provide a poncho if you are getting wet. Its a fantastic way to see the island and we got to watch planes landing from sea. After a while we came across a pod of pilot whales and they were beautiful. The marine biologist on board gave a huge amount of information and it was great to learn a lot about these dolphins.

We had a wonderful experience with our biologist Anna and skipper Miguel. We were very lucky - we saw three kinds of whale (small fin pilot , bryde’s and fin). One was about 5m away! We didn’t see any dolphins but we have no complaints because whales are rarer to spot and we totally got our money’s worth. Highly recommended.

Very nice team. We went to great lengths to ensure that we had a sense of achievement. So it was, which no one expected anymore, whales and dolphins, great to see

A truly memorable experience. We were lucky to see dolphins, pilot whales, and the icing on the cake was a group of fin whales within 50 yards of our craft.

Brilliant fun in the jeep and our driver Victor was one of the best we hsve come across. Highly recomend yhese guys