Our Rating
8.8
Overall

Cruising by Catamaran

Madagascar, Nosy Be Archipelago

from 480 per person sharing

Our Rating
8.8
Overall

Cruising by Catamaran

Madagascar, Nosy Be Archipelago

from 480 per person sharing

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Our Verdict

Quite simply THE best way to experience the magic of the greater Nosy Be Archipelago – whether you're snorkelling, fishing, swimming or just cruising!

Our Ratings

8.8
Overall
5.5
Luxury & Style
9.5
Setting
9.0
Activities
9.5
Chill-Out Factor

Our Ratings

8.8
Overall
5.5
Luxury & Style
9.5
Setting
9.0
Activities
9.5
Chill-Out Factor

What's Hot

  • Quite simply one of the best holidays that money can buy! You'll go home armed with memories that will last you a lifetime
  • Discover a new destination every day - each seemingly more beautiful than the last!
  • Fantastic snorkelling on pristine coral reefs (hopefully you'll be as lucky as we were and also swim alongside turtles!)
  • The fantastic crew make sure you can just get on with enjoying yourselves - they're wonderfully friendly hosts who know the area backwards
  • Superb dining - the chef came up with delicious meals time after time, all imaginatively presented and using the freshest ingredients (we ended up renaming Gerard "The King of Sauces!")
  • Great value when you consider that you effectively get a free excursion and deep sea fishing thrown in every day

What's Not

  • Obviously your cabins aren't as spacious or luxurious as a hotel room - then again you really just sleep there (plus have you ever heard of a hotel room that takes you to a new beauty spot every day!)
  • Not cheap - then again when you consider everything that's included, it actually represents excellent value for money
  • Having to leave the boat at the end of your cruise - our party was literally in tears (and with regaining your "land legs" typically taking a few days, you'll wish you were back on your catamaran every time you feel the earth rolling under you!)
Cruising by Catamaran

Cruising by Catamaranexperience magnificent unspoilt scenery, superb white coral sand beaches, pristine coral reefs teeming with underwater life that are a snorkeller's dream, as well as the fantastic deep sea fishing that the area is famous for!

Lodge Profile

Quite simply THE best way to experience the magic of the greater Nosy Be Archipelago – whether you're snorkelling, fishing, swimming or just cruising!

Quick Overview

Rooms
3 - 5 cabins depending on the specific catamaran
Distance to Beach
1 small jump and you're in the water!
Air Conditioning
Adiva has air-conditioned cabins - otherwise no
Pool
Are you kidding? You're floating all the time on the biggest swimming pool of them all!
Recommended Stay
3 - 8 nights

We have to confess that the actual main island of Nosy Be holds little attraction to us at Barefoot Breaks - we find the beaches generally mediocre and the resorts that have been built on them even more so. Instead it's the outlying islands north and south of Nosy Be that are the area's real treasure and which have far greater appeal. This is where you'll find the magnificent unspoilt scenery, the superb white coral sand beaches, the pristine coral reefs teeming with underwater life that are a snorkeller's dream, as well as the fantastic deep sea fishing that the area is famous for. You could of course go and stay at one of the island lodges dotted around the archipelago and get a taste of what's on offer, but what better way to discover the complete package than by cruising from one stunning area to the next on your own luxury catamaran! We use a South African owned outfit called Bossi Adventures, who operate what we regard as the best fleet of catamarans in Nosy Be (and the best managed)

We went cruising here with friends for a week recently and we all agreed it was the best holiday any of us have ever experienced (and in the course of our business we've seen some great places as you can imagine!) - if you're a family or a group of friends wanting a real tropical adventure there's little to touch it! There are 2 very different types of cruises on offer: firstly the leisure cruises where you spend your days cruising from one beauty spot to the next, spending your days enjoying stunning snorkelling and swimming off deserted coral sand beaches whilst doing a little fishing along the way; or you get the hard-core deep-sea fishing cruises where you head off to fishing grounds not reachable by the daily deep sea boat operators from Nosy Be, and where you'll spend your days jigging and popping for seriously big GT's, sailies, yellowfin and dog tooth tuna as well as many different species of reef fish (a mate of ours who went recently reported that they caught more than 40 different species in the space of just a few days!)

There are 3 catamarans in the fleet that you can choose from: the smaller (and less expensive) Bossi and Calapso which are both 43 foot boats and can accommodate up to 6 guests (although the great thing is that you can even go cruising as a couple at the same per person rate!) Then there's the Big Daddy of the fleet, the stunning Adiva - a luxurious 53 foot cat with 5 double cabins and a stunning party deck where you can spend many happy hours lounging about shooting the breeze (fishing groups often team the Adiva with Bossi's specialist fishing boat, the Joz Joz, to allow them to fish comfortably with 3 to 4 guys fishing on each boat by day and everyone sleeping on Adiva) To be honest, you spend minimal time in your cabin other than sleeping there, with by far the majority of your daylight hours spent relaxing on the shaded party deck or sunning yourself on the spacious forward deck. Once you've chosen the boat that suits you best, you then have a choice of heading north towards the Mitsio Archipelago or south to the Radama islands – or simply leave it up to your captain who will choose the optimal itinerary to suit the weather conditions and the specific interests of your group.

Whichever route you end up following you're in for an absolute treat and will be left with memories that will last you a lifetime! Every morning you'll cruise off to another gorgeous island and spend some wonderfully lazy hours snorkelling on fantastic coral reefs (we were lucky enough to swim with about 7 or 8 turtles off Nosy Tanikely, one of the regular stops on these cruises – a true once-in-a-lifetime experience!) If the ice cold drinks on offer aren't refreshing enough, you can just jump off the boat and have fun swimming in some the most clearest, brightest and warm waters you'll ever have the pleasure of experiencing (and there’s a fresh-water shower on the rear of the boat to rinse off so you never feel sticky) Later, after yet another delicious lunch and an afternoon nap (this is really tough work after all!), you'll cruise off to find an ideal sheltered spot to moor for the night, the chef whipping up delicious sundowner cocktails to sip on as you admire another glorious sunset from the spacious front deck.

Whilst you're cruising during the day, you'll usually troll some lines behind the boat and wait for a hungry tuna or dorado to give you a few minutes of adrenaline drenched excitement – your catch will then be effortlessly transformed by the chef into sashimi for lunch or delicious fish steaks on the braai for dinner. As the darkness envelops you at the end of a sun soaked day of exploring and relaxation, it's time to gaze in wonder at the brightest view of the Milky Way you've ever seen, complete with shooting stars flashing across the night sky!

The crew who hosted us on board Adiva were fantastic – professional, wonderfully friendly and always went out of their way to meet our every need. They also made sure the kids on the boat felt involved and really enjoyed themselves; we travelled with two 10 year olds and a 5 year old and they all had an absolute blast – in fact they were basically in tears when it was time to leave the boat!

Going on one of these catamaran cruises is certainly not a cheap holiday – but when you consider everything that's included, it actually adds up to fantastic value for money. Apart from your accommodation and 3 delicious meals every day (so good were they that we gave our chef Gerard the title “King of Sauces”!) you effectively get a superb excursion as well as half a day's deep sea fishing thrown in every day of your cruise – if you had to add these costs to the price of staying at a normal lodge, the costs become pretty similar. Going cruising however creates those unforgettable experiences and memories that a land-based holiday simply struggles to match up to – for that reason it represents one of our all time “Best Buys”!

Pricing

per person sharing

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Booking Notes

  • Please note that this website displays 2 different versions of pricing based on where you are viewing it:
  • SOUTH AFRICANS: the package prices you see including flights from Johannesburg, accommodation and transfers are INDICATIVE prices based on mid-season airfares and mid-season room rates - these fluctuate throughout the year as do exchange rates, so please enquire with us for an accurate price based on your specific dates of travel
  • INTERNATIONAL CLIENTS: the prices you see are per person per night prices for accommodation only based on the normal public prices for the property in question - note that in many instances we are able to provide better prices to our clients, so please enquire with us

Child Policy

  • Children of all ages are welcome