When staying in Sal in Cape Verde, you probably wonder if it’s easy to travel to Boa Vista, taking a ferry. There’s no daily ferry connection between Sal and Boa Vista. But let us tell you how to travel between these islands.
It is possible to take a ferry from Sal to Boa Vista. This ferry leaves several times a week in both directions. Travel duration between the islands is up to 3 hours. However, they’re highly dependent on weather and sea conditions. The ferry gets canceled quite often. The most reliable way to travel between the islands is by taking a domestic flight.
The distance between Sal and Boa Vista is only around 31 miles (50 kilometers). Since 2019 a ferry runs between the islands. However, air travel is much faster and more reliable. Let’s find out the best way to travel between Sal and Boa Vista!
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Ferry Between Sal and Boa Vista
The national ferry company, CV Interilhas, from Cape Verde, runs ferries several times a week. With an average travel duration of 3 hours, it is not the fastest and most convenient way of traveling between these islands.
Also, because this ferry doesn’t run on a daily schedule, it is not recommended to use for a day trip between Sal and Boa Vista. Which is would be a multiple days trip anyway, because a return trip is not possible on the same day.
Find out more about these new ferry connections in Cape Verde in our article; How Do You Travel Between The Islands In Cape Verde?
Best Way To Travel Between Sal and Boa Vista
So taking a ferry from Sal to Boa Vista is not possible on a daily basis. And I think that’s for the better. During our 10 week roundtrip in Cape Verde, we experienced that most ferries between the islands aren’t reliable. The schedules changing quite often, and many times ferries are canceled due to rough sea conditions or technical issues.
It makes it a bit more difficult to travel between the islands. But when the sea conditions are too dangerous, it is for everyone’s safety when a ferry gets canceled. However, sailing boats or catamarans are a more reliable type of boat when sea conditions get more intense, and the most convenient way is traveling by plane.
Domestic Flights from Sal to Boa Vista
Both islands have an international airport where planes from many major cities in Europe arriving daily. Also, domestic flights via Binter Cabo Verde are flying between the islands several times a week.
Binter Cabo Verde is the domestic charter flight company in Cape Verde. You might also have heard from Cabo Verde Airlines. However, this company connects Sal to major cities in Europe, and a few direct connections to the United States.
Depending on the month, direct flights can leave daily. But this schedule changes often. Most of the time, the connecting flight between Sal and Boa Vista leaves on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday.
The flight time between Sal and Boa Vista is around 25 minutes. The cost for one ticket varies between 3600 Cape Verdean Escudos (32 Euro / 35 US Dollar) and 5700 Cape Verdean Escudos (52 Euro/ 57 US Dollar).
These exchange courses vary, so if you want to know the latest exchange course, I recommend using the XE Currency website. This website is also available as an app, both for iPhone and Android. We always use this app while traveling. It helps us stay up to date which the exchange course in the country we’re in.
For booking our flight tickets, we often use Skyscanner, which we find the most reliable search engine. Find out the best prices on Skyscanner using this link. However, when booking domestic flights between the Cape Verdean islands, you can also directly use Binter Cabo Verde’s website.
Sailing Trips between Sal and Boa Vista
Santa Maria is the main town on the island of Sal. It is the place where everything happens, where you find the most restaurants, bars, and shops to book an excursion.
Many different day trips are leaving from the dock in Santa Maria. Both fishing trips and catamaran trips. Most tours staying close to Sal island, within the boundaries of the island’s bay. In this part, the sea conditions are often calm, and thus relaxing for a roundtrip with many tourists.
There are a few companies offering catamaran day trips from Sal to Boa Vista. You can only book this tour when on the island. It is not possible to go on this tour and stay on Boa Vista for the whole day. You set foot on the island for a few hours and sail back at the end of the day to Sal.
This sailing trip between Sal and Boa Vista is highly weather dependent. Because of the tradewinds and warm temperatures, sea conditions on the open sea can be rough. And where most catamarans are made for these conditions, it’s not favorable to travel between the islands with people that are not used being on a boat. It’s simply too dangerous. That’s why I would say it is not recommended to going on this trip unless the sea conditions are favorable.
To sum it all up, I would always recommend taking a domestic flight when you want to travel between the Cape Verdean islands. It is much faster and more reliable. Unlesss traveling by plane is not possible. For example, the only way for traveling between the islands São Vicente and Santo Antão is by taking a ferry. Because Santo Antão doesn’t have an airport. But that’s more interesting to know when you want to go island hopping between the Cape Verdean Islands. If you’re interested in that, you might want to read our article ‘Can You Island Hop in Cape Verde?‘
Highlights of Sal
Sal is the most famous island in Cape Verde. Boa Vista is the second most visited island of the archipelago. Both islands are similar when you look at the landscape. However, Sal and Boa Vista have both their unique highlights which are interesting to visit.
Sal is known for its white sandy beaches, where its easy to go swimming in the sea. The island gets its name from the old salt mine, which was once the most important source of income for Cape Verde. You can still visit these salt lakes today, an interesting thing to do when on the tropical island.
Shark Bay is close to the salt mine, is also a must-visit for the adventure seekers among us. At this bay, it is possible to go snorkeling between lemon-sharks. It sounds dangerous at first, but these sharks are not really dangerous to humans!
Activities like snorkeling, scuba diving, and surfing are also perfect for doing when in Sal. Or you can go with one of the many daily catamaran or fishing trips around the island. There’s a high chance you spot dolphins, turtles, and other tropical fish.
It is possible to book your trips in advance via GetYourGuide. Find out the latest offers via GetYourGuide on their website.
When preparing for your trip to Sal, you probably want to know more about the island. Our article, ‘Best Things to Do in Sal‘, is an interesting read!
Travel Must-Haves For Every Traveler
These items are must-haves for every traveler, and I can highly recommend them without any hesitation:
This lightweight hammock is made of ultra-light parachute silk material. The hammock fits in a small portable bag and is very-easy-to you use. You can relax comfortably anywhere: on the beach, by the lake, in the forest, campsite, your hotel, Airbnb and even at home!
The North Face Backpack:
This is a high-quality, versatile, and practical daypack from one of the best brands in the world. It is a perfect choice, no matter what kind of travel plans you have.
Oasis Kindle E-reader:
A waterproof E-reader for unlimited reading while traveling. It is a must-have for every traveler that enjoys reading. This E-reader has an adjustable warm light to shift screen shade from white to amber. It also works with Audible, so you switch effortlessly from reading to listening.
Sony Noise-canceling headphone:
A world-leading noise-canceling headphone to make your travel trip more comfortable and less exhausting. One of the best travel products out there. Either for listening to music, podcasts. Or to block all the noise during traveling, for example, when you’re in an airplane.
GoPro HERO 8:
We’ve been using a GoPro camera since the first generation came on the market. It is our go-to travel camera ever since. Perfect for making the best pictures and memorable videos. It’s easy to use, waterproof and fits in your pocket or daypack. The new generation has a built-in stabilizer so that videos will be even better quality!
Check out our recommendations page for more travel gear and recourses.
Highlights of Boa Vista
While the landscape of both Sal and Boa Vista is similar, the islands are different. Sal is still a bit more developed, you find more luxury resorts on the island. But that’s mainly because Sal was earlier a summer vacation destination than Boa Vista.
Boa Vista thanks its name to the Portuguese explorers who discovered the island during the 15th century. They described the island as ‘A Beautiful View.’ If you translate this from Portuguese, Boa Vista means Beautiful View.
Where you’ll find at Sal more adventurous activities, Boa Vista is known as the island that is perfect for windsurfing and kitesurfing. There are many beaches on the island, and the wind conditions are ideal for these sports, almost every day. When you’re a surfing enthusiast, I recommend reading our article ‘Best Surf Spots in Boa Vista.‘
Boa Vista is also an exciting place for spotting wildlife. Humpback Whales are coming to the island’s bay every year to mate and have their young. And sea turtles are coming to shore for laying their eggs. Both unique experiences!
If you’re planning a trip to Boa Vista, you might want to know more about the activities on the island. In our article ‘What Can You Do In Boa Vista?‘, I’ll tell you about the best things to do in Boa Vista.
Recommended Articles Cape Verde
We visited the archipelago for ten weeks and traveled around many islands. During our roundtrip, we experienced that there wasn’t much information about Cape Verde. It was hard to find more about the best things to do and how to get around the islands. We decided to write several articles about Cape Verde, so you can more easily prepare for your trip to this tropical island group. You can find the complete list of articles here.
Also, a few articles that I think are worth reading are;