I enjoyed this sailing trip! The staff on board were informative but didn't overly explain things. We were lucky enough to see dolphins and whales playing and jumping out of the ocean. The food was surprisingly really good. The drinks were great too. I was skeptical about the quality about the included bar selection but was very satisfied. I did not snorkel at our stop but others did and most said it was just OK that the water wasn't very clear and was cold so I didn't take that chance but I did paddle board and it was fun.
There were good, bad and ugly. The good is that the vessel's captain and crew were great, very helpful, cheerful and upbeat. Also good were the refreshments, as much of the limited assortment of drinks you wanted, and lots of quacamole and chips early, then a nice lunch, bento-style, of shrimp, maki rolls, pasta salad, ham chunks stuffed in rolls, jicama, cucumber, melon and berries. More moderately good was the swim stop, not really in a sheltered bay and windy so the only possibilities were to swim tethered to the boat or to use the four swim motors supplied. The sand beach was an impossible swim away so no one went there. Those who did jump in and used the appliances seemed happy to have done so. Also good, the sail back to the marina across the bay was nice, sailing with the wind and waves under jib alone. Some reviewers mentioned the difference in marinas for embark/debark. I think Vallarta Adventures heard this and provided transport to those who were closer to the embark marina back to that marina.
The bad began with delays in embarkation we were to told to arrive at Vallarta Adventures by 9 am, but we did not actually leave the marina until 10, with a 30 minute wait at their office, which was nice and had a great large aquarium set up where four dolphins played and we could photograph. More bad we were expecting a 40-45 foot monohull with a small group, but instead were given a 40 foot catamaran with around 20 people aboard, what I would call a party boat experience, and not what was pictured in the Viator advertising. The ugly after the late embarkation, we motored, did not sail, across the bay for most of the way to the swim/lunch area. There were others aboard who also complained of the switch from small group monohull to party catamaran at the outset, and were told we could go to the office and ask for a refund and not take the trip. Since we were all aboard and had planned this day this way,
we just took it and went on the trip.Luxurious swimming/snorkeling was impossible as we were not anchored in a protected bay, but in open water, at least 150 meters from the beach and windblown at around 15 knots. The only swimming possible was in the lee of the boat. As for wildlife, some said there was a pod of dolphins nearby, but we did not see them, nor did we see any whales, rays or other wildlife except for the omnipresent seabirds, which one among us took great joy in feeding.
So, unless some changes are made in the way this trip is represented, I would not recommend this trip to any sailor or any other person wanting a semi-private sailing experience on Banderas Bay. For others, though, who are not indisposed to taking a party cruise in sun and wind and water, you might like this a lot. And, it is a lot of trip for the money I will say.
terrific day. good food, saw whales and lots of wildlife, and we were lucky to have beautifl weather. however, the boat was fairly crowded, and we departed from one port marina vallarta and came into a different one nuevo vallarta, a 20 minute drive away. while vallarta adventures did then drive those of us who boarded in marina back to nuevo, people on the other sailing that day were sailed all the way back to marina....we weren't iven a choice of boats, AND we weren't told this was going to happen until over 5 hours into the sail and i only knew becaus ei was sitting chatting with our captain, who was fabulous, and asked him why we were not going towards the port we had come from!
Crew were fantastic. Food was good, drinks flowed. Unfortunately the didn't cooperate for snorkeling but saw whales and dolphins. Unfortunately fellow passengers much heavier than pictured. :
Enjoyed the day sailing. Our guide was very knowledgeable, courteous and attended to our every need. Saw lots of beautiful fish when we went snorkeling. Very relaxing day.
Fun all around! Fantastic food, drinks, and sights. Sailing was so relaxing and beautiful. The staff was very attentive and took care of all our wants and needs.
It was great.
The service was good and the staff on and off the boat were great. Our crew was Johnny, Julio, and Carlos and they took very good care of us. I think they should encourage travelers to bring motion-sickness medicine with them. After 4 hours of rocking, most of the people were longing for dry land. Still, the tour provided great up-close visits with whales, great swimming at Los Arcos, and (as advertised) sailing only on wind power. I would definitely recommend this tour (Vallarta Adventures)
What a great experience. We had a wonderful crew both by the name of Carlos. They were quick, attentive, nice and showed our group a great time. We ended up needing two boats to accommodate our group and their crew was equally as great. We saw dolphins right away, and had a great day of sailing.
The food was beautifully presented (while I am weary of seafood - they served shrimp and some sushi rolls). The chips and guac were great and the rest of lunch was nice.
There are no complaints - the entire process was seamless - the check in desk was friendly and quick.
OVERALL HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!! worth the money.
I had an absolute blast! Great food and drinks, great weather, awesome crew! Actually got to see dolphins and sea turtles!