About Boat Trips in Mallorca
With more than 250 beaches and coves, impressive cliff edges and turquoise waters, there is no better way to explore the island’s beautiful 554 kilometres of coastline than from a boat.
The two main ways of doing this are to charter your own boat or to take a trip with one of the many boat trip companies located all around the island. The latter is a popular option for being the most cost effective and easy to organise, as they usually offer scheduled departures so you just have to turn up.
Note that most of the boat trips around Mallorca are seasonal, starting from April and finishing in October.
Boat trip options
The majority of boat trips are day journeys and often anchor for a while so people can soak up the stunning scenery Mallorca has to offer. There is also usually the opportunity to indulge in some swimming, snorkelling or kayaking on these excursions. Sunset cruises can be booked in the evenings, giving you the opportunity to enjoy the views with a glass of bubbly and sometimes even dinner. For thrill seekers, perhaps a speedboat ride will get the adrenaline flowing.
Mallorca has a wide range of vessels available, including catamarans, motor boats and sailing yachts of different shapes, sizes and prices. Snorkelling, diving, fishing and specialist watersports boat trips are available all around the island, some even have glass bottoms so guests can discover the fish and sea vegetation below. You won’t have to travel far to find a suitable trip for your individual desires because you will find boat trips starting in many of the island's marinas, while a few beaches also have departure points.
It’s worth noting that some companies will pick you up from your accommodation and take you to the departure points. Food and drink are sometimes included in the price of the trip; otherwise, boats tend to have bars on board where you are able to purchase drinks.
Boat trips from Palma
Palma has a wide range of boat trips on offer, from tours around the city's coastline to routes venturing further away to nearby resorts. It’s possible to take a short boat trip to explore the local bay area and the city’s enormous port which is a great way to have a sneak peek at its magnificent yachts. The famous south-west resorts and marinas of Puerto Portals, Palma Nova and Magaluf are also a short boat trip away with various options available from sailing trips to diving adventures.
Illetes is a popular destination to anchor for boat trips and yacht charters departing from Palma as it is just a short boat ride away and encompasses three small beautiful beaches with crystalline turquoise waters for swimming. Tours from Illetes exhibit a very diverse scenery along the way, as people can kick back and relax whilst observing the city landscape, beautiful coves, outstanding hotels and charming beaches.
There are also longer trips departing from Palma. Travelling west, they head to the purpose-built holiday resort of Palma Nova and even further, all the way to Camp de Mar, a small bay with a well-known restaurant out in the water. On such a trip there is much to see along the more developed southwestern coastline with hot spots like Puerto Portals, Magaluf, Port Adriano and Santa Ponça all located here.
Alternatively, there’s the opportunity to explore the coastline east of Palma on boat trips to and from Can Pastilla and Cala Blava. From Playa de Palma (S'Arenal) there are boat trips that take you to the unspoilt beaches and coastline of the south-east, including the Caribbean-like beach of Es Trenc.
Boat trips from Palma Nova & Santa Ponça
Located on the southwestern tip of the island, there are a number of different types of boat trips available in these resorts ranging from party boats to others offering swimming, snorkelling and kayaking. From Palma Nova, there’s the opportunity to hop aboard and venture west passing notorious resorts like Magaluf or visit secluded coves potholed with caves and unusual formations in bays like Portals Vells and Sol de Mallorca.
Boat trip companies around Santa Ponça tend to explore the far south-west and its allures. The rugged coastline means there are less touristy beaches and more pretty coves on offer. With many glass-bottomed and dolphin watching boats, it’s more about discovering wildlife to be found in Mallorca’s waters here. It's also possible to visit the protected island and natural park of Sa Dragonera from Santa Ponça.
Boat trips from Sant Elm, Port d'Andratx & Peguera
There are regular boat services from Sant Elm and Port d'Andratx to visit the legendary island and natural reserve of Sa Dragonera located just off the southwestern tip of Mallorca. There are also water taxis available in this particular area too for those keen for a quick trip over to the protected island. From Peguera, there are plenty of boat trips on offer from dolphin watching trips and glass-bottom boats to snorkelling opportunities to explore the island’s underwater world.
Boat trips from Port de Sóller
On the west coast, the main starting point for boat trips is in Port de Sóller. The most popular journey from here takes visitors to Sa Calobra, a beautiful cove which has Mallorca’s Serra de Tramuntana mountains as its backdrop and is one of the islands finest natural attractions. Around the corner from Sa Calobra is the Torrent de Pareis gorge, a stunning canyon that runs through the mountains. There are a couple of shingle beaches here that you can enjoy as part of your day trip. Climbing, deep water soloing, snorkelling and diving trips are also available here.
Boat trips from Port de Pollença & Port d'Alcúdia
Up towards the north-west of Mallorca, most of the boat companies are based in Port de Pollença and Port d'Alcúdia. Trips from here include sailing around Cap de Formentor, one of the most famous beauty spots on the island thanks to its rugged cliff edges and pristine bays. There’s also an option of a gentle cruise over to the charming resort of Cala San Vicente on the west coast. Fishing, dolphin watching, sunset cruises, watersports, snorkelling trips and more are available in this area.
Boat trips from Cala Ratjada, Cala Millor & Porto Cristo
Mallorca's north-east resorts have their fair share of boat trips around the numerous coves, beaches and tranquil bays on this side of the island.
There are various different styles of boat trips operating from Cala Ratjada, some of the most popular include sunrise dolphin-watching trips and swimming and snorkelling excursions in hidden bays and coves along the rugged coastline. On a clear day, it is possible to see the island of Menorca across the water from here too.
The family favourite resort of Cala Millor boasts many glass-bottomed boat trips which are the perfect way to keep the whole family entertained, together with companies offering watersports, scuba diving and snorkelling. This area has stunning coves and bays all waiting to be explored.
Porto Cristo offers highly regarded trips to the Cuevas del Drach, one of the highlights this side of the island. Visits consist of a tour through Mallorca's largest caves where you can appreciate the stalactites and stalagmites before arriving at Lake Martel where a classical music concert takes place at the end of the visit. Glass bottom boats are also very popular in Porto Cristo, Sa Coma and Cala Romantica, ideal for young children and those curious about what lies below and not really keen to try snorkelling.
Boat trips from Cala d'Or & Porto Colom
Cala d’Or, being the main port on the south-eastern coast of Mallorca, has a wide range of boat trips available for those keen to get out on the islands idyllic waters. There is something to suit everybody’s individual desires, as options include sunset boat trips, watersports boat trips, sailing trips with swimming opportunities and dinner cruises. From here it’s worth noting that there is also an opportunity to visit the well-known Mondragó Natural Park. The smaller marina of Porto Colom offers relaxing sailing experiences, with day boat trips featuring swimming and snorkelling in some of the islands most illustrious turquoise waters and bays.
Boat trips from Colonia de Sant Jordi, Sa Rapita & S'Estanyol
Just around the south-east corner of Mallorca is the former fishing village of Colonia de Sant Jordi. From here it’s also possible to catch the boat to visit the wild and unspoilt islands of Cabrera, a Maritime-Terrestrial National Park. Alternatively, take a leisurely boat from Sa Rapita or S’Estanyol to visit the splendid archipelago and explore the most unspoilt parts of Mallorca’s coastline, with the chance to indulge in some swimming and snorkelling.
There are a number of companies all around Mallorca offering guided fishing trips and yacht charters for coastal or deep sea fishing. Port d’Alcúdia, Palma, Port de Pollença and Sóller are the main ports from where they depart. Prices often include boat, skipper, fuel and all the fishing equipment.
The waters around Mallorca are home to different varieties of fish, mainly scorpionfish, gilthead seabream, painted comber, rainbow wrasse, red mullet and grouper. Whilst approximately 20 nautical miles off the northern coast of Mallorca is one of the best areas to fish for bluefin tuna in the Mediterranean, it is fast becoming an endangered species, so it might be better to fish for something else around the island.
A fishing license is needed for anyone 14 years or over, although normally these organised fishing trips are covered by a 'collective' or 'boat' license which means you won’t need to purchase a license yourself.
Balearia and Trasmediterranea offer ferry services to visit the Balearic islands of Menorca and Ibiza or mainland Spain, with destinations including Barcelona, Valencia or Denia from Mallorca. These ferries depart from Port d'Alcúdia (Port Commercial) and Palma. The crossing to Menorca takes only around two hours from Port d'Alcúdia, while getting to Ibiza is roughly a three and a half hour trip from the capital. Reaching the mainland can be anything from 7 hours or more.
All boats in Mallorca carry all the modern safety equipment covered under European law and have fully updated First Aid kits, with crews First Aid trained. Boat trips and yacht charters should have passenger insurance covering everyone on board but it is always best to have your own travel insurance including watersports and other activities. Each boat should run through their safety guidelines once all guests have boarded the boat for the trip. If you have any questions, please ask them at the beginning of the trip and don’t hesitate to enquire at any time.
When heading out onto the water around Mallorca, no matter how close to the coastline, be sure to keep a good eye on the weather and ask your boat rental company for advice if in doubt. Always bring a waterproof jacket in case the weather turns or a wind comes up, it can get cool on the water at night. Due to lack of space on boats, it's better to pack light and only bring soft luggage, never hard cases.
The water can get very busy along the coast of Mallorca in the summer so be alert and watch out for other boats and people swimming at all times. If you notice any danger, notify the skipper of the boat as soon as you can. If you think you might get seasick, it’s always best to ask for non-drowsy seasickness tablets ('pastillas para el mareo') at a pharmacy beforehand.
Sailing with Children
Make sure children wear a life jacket at all times. Never let them run around the boat or be unattended on deck and make sure they don’t swim alone.