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Overview

Madeira is a Portuguese island located in the north Atlantic Ocean, just under 250 miles north of the Canary Islands. The Islands of Porto Santo, and the Desertas complete the Madeiran archipelago sitting in the Southernmost region of the European Union.

Madeira was claimed by Portuguese sailors in the service of Infante D. Henrique (Henry the Navigator) in 1419, and settled after 1420. The archipelago is considered to be the first territorial discovery of the exploratory period of the Portuguese Age of Discovery.

Today, it is a popular year-round resort, being visited every year by about one million tourists, noted for its Madeira wine, flowers, landscapes and embroidery artisans, as well as for its annual New Year celebrations that feature the largest fireworks show in the world. The main harbour in Funchal is the leading Portuguese port in cruise liner dockings, being an important stopover for commercial and trans-Atlantic passenger cruises between Europe, the Caribbean and North Africa.

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Destination Guide

Map
Things to Do
Weather
Places to See
Carnival on Madeira island

Hiking levada trails – pico das pedras
Following the path of Levadas, mountains and trails leading to Laurrisilva forests, the island has remarkably good hiking courses or trails. These trails are unmistakably an adventure in themselves on a holiday in Madeira. Usually tourists or visitors found on these trails are family members or friends picnicking on the cliffs and high attitudes.

Santana
This area of Madeira Island has scenery of beautiful and most remarkably designed thatches houses shaped triangularly. The whole architecture of these triangular looking houses comes from 16ht century and is based on sole purpose of protecting them, from the abundant rain. The valley with lots of greenery, willow tress, nature rich scenery, fruits and vegetables is something one should not miss when holidaying in Madeira.

Ilhéu da Camara de Lobos
This fishing village has a whole fishing and fishermen feel to it that has been attracting tourist and visitors for years. The village is home to huge number of fishermen and also has picturesque look to it with a popular 15th century chapel and the highest utmost huge sea cliff Cabo Girao.

The Santa da Serra golf club of Madeira is a popular golf destination for many and is also a host to the European PGA tour. This famous golf zone was designed way back by Robert Trent Jones and ever since has been restructured, to add to its facilities. With 3 nine-holes on its current design, the golf course is the result of the fame and popularity of Golf in Madeira Island, which is also enjoyed by many when holidaying in Madeira. The whole golf feel makes it s popular tourist spot for those who love the sport and thinking of planning a holiday in Madeira.

Parque Tematico de Madeira
This theme park of Madeira island is quite popular and presents a good entertainment for families or group of friends. With a pleasing garden, boating lake, playgrounds and major sports for the entire fun element, the park also has reality shows based on science, environment and historical background of the island as well as its traditions, presented virtually

Museum de Arte Sacra
This marvelous tourist spot is loved by tourist and visitors with interest inartistic collections, beautiful paintings and astounding artifacts. The museum is known for its assortment of Flemish work of art and canvases. Best time to visit or holiday in Madeira With a subtropical climate and annual temp of 22 degreesPsychology Articles, the island has a pleasant weather all year long. The island also has lots of rains from Oct-May. May is also the month when you can enjoy the green scenery and flourishing nature of the island. The island is a good place to enjoy and can be visited in anytime of year.

Beaches
Few sandy beaches on the Island of Madeira though, the Island of Porto Santo has some good sandy ones. Porto Santo can be reached from the main Island by a 3 hour ferry or a 15 min flight.

Most people who actually live on Maderia would say that they enjoy just about the perfect climate. It never gets too hot with a maximum average of around 24C from July to the end of September and a minimum of 17C. Off season, maximum averages drop to around 20C.

The amount of green vegetation confirms that Madeira does get its fair share of rain, however, the island is full of diverse microclimates. The bay of Funchal, protected by the highest peaks, enjoys the best sunshine. Further down the west coast at Ponta do Sol and Calheta, backed by the lower hills of the Paúl da Serra, the sun shines brighter during the summer months, but these areas are less protected from the sea winds.

The prevailing wind is the North Easterly Trade wind that gathers off the Portuguese coast and runs down to the Cape Verde Islands. It brings moisture and large sea swells to the north coast, and often, particularly in the morning, adversely affects the weather on the eastern end of the island between Caniço and Caniçal. However, a westerly wind in these areas can be surprisingly dry and sunny, while the southern and western coasts are duly soaked.

Let our experts at Mulberry Travel help plan your holiday itinery so you can enjoy visiting and experiencing all that Madeira has to offer. Choose from:

Historical and cultural attractions
Embark on an interactive journey through Madeira’s past at the Story Centre or simply wander the streets of the capital to encounter charming historical areas and picturesque squares. Numerous churches and convents date back to the 15th century, from the tiny basalt cave of Capela de São Vicente to the ornate interiors of the Sé Cathedral.

Agriculture is still an important part of the island’s resources and visitors will see ingeniously cultivated terraces along hillsides everywhere. Traditional street markets brimming with colourful pyramids of produce are a great way to experience local life.

Enchanting natural landscapes
Madeira’s abundance of protected reserves are a true wonder for nature lovers. Myriad walking trails through rare Laurissilva forests reward hikers with breathtaking mountain views, while scuba divers can explore the crystal clear waters of Garajau Natural Reserve. Numerous parks and gardens boast fascinating subtropical plants and a spectacular carpet of colour, culminating with the annual Flower Festival in springtime.

One of the pleasures of an island holiday is that the ocean is never too far away! Spend your days exploring the coastline of majestic cliffs, pebbled beaches and natural rock pools that attest to the island’s volcanic origins, or take a ferry or flight to Porto Santo and enjoy miles of golden beaches. Blessed with an almost perfect climate, visitors will soon realise that one trip to Madeira is simply not enough!

Carnival on Madeira island
Undoubtedly one of the best in Europe, the Carnival in Madeira is a guarantee for endless fun and entertainment!

Traditionally there are two Carnival parades in Madeira, which are very different from each other. The most important one, the allegoric parade, which takes place always on the Saturday of the Carnival weekend, is the more sophisticated one and needs a great deal of commitment and organisation from all the groups and the people involved. Numerous Samba groups with thousands of participants in magnificent and colourful costumes dance to electrifying Samba music through the streets of Funchal, spreading an ambiance evoking the Carnival of Rio.

The second parade, called ‘trapalhão’, traditionally floods the streets of the city centre with thrilling joy on ‘Mardi gras’ (Tuesday ending the Carnival period). In this parade everybody can take part and the – sometimes quite daring – costumes and depicted caricatures are left to the participants’ own imagination.

Both parades have a defined itinerary in the city centre and end at the Municipal Square where more entertainment with live music and costume competitions is provided.

At least one month before the Carnival peak time the best-known and established Carnival groups visit the hotels and entertain the guests with dance and music performances.

 

Market Suitability

Those looking for excellent hotel facilities located in a temperate oasis of plant and bird life where the local culture and history can be discovered and explored.