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Madeira is best for...

Walkers

A full day discovering the towering cliffs, beautiful views and tumbling waterfalls on the dramatic west coast.

Culture lovers:

Sample unlimited local food and wine. Enjoy a fado singer and watch dancers in traditional dress.

Beach lovers:

Explore the golden sandy beach at Porto Santo.

Fast facts

Language: The language spoken in Madeira is Portuguese.

Currency: The currency used in Madeira is Euro (€).

Local time: Madeira has the same time as GMT/UK time.

Fly to: The only airport on the island is Madeira Airport (FNC), around 16km northeast of the city of Funchal.

Flight time from UK: 3.5-4 hours

Tourist Information: Further Madeira tourist information can be found here.

Visa & Health:Before you travel, click here for recommendations and advice on visas and health for your holiday to Madeira.

Weather & Climate

Temperature: Averaging in the mid-teens (°C).

Best time to visit Madeira: Between May and September when the climate is comfortably warm with little rainfall.

Madeira weather is pleasantly mild during the summer. Thanks to the Gulf Stream, the weather in Madeira stays warm throughout the year, with an average temperature of 17 °C during the winter. Remember to bring a brolly though; Madeira’s sub-tropical climate means that rain is likely.

Getting Around

By taxi: With a number of ranks dotted around Funchal, taxis are an easy and convenient way of getting around the island. They’re easy to identify too; look out for the yellow cabs with blue stripes down the side.

By bus: Madeira has reliable and cheap buses that serve the whole island.

By hire car: If you fancy being adventurous, hire a car and explore the mountainous terrain outside of the city.

Events

Samba dancing: March is the month of Madeira’s Carnival, one of the biggest of its kind in Europe. Expect lots of samba dancing, glittering costumes and a riotous party atmosphere!

Flower power: Taking place two weeks after Easter, Madeira’s Flower Festival is one of the most popular annual events on the island. See Funchal come alive with colour as floats decorated with beautiful blooms travel through the city’s streets.

For culture lovers: The Atlantic Festival is a cultural celebration that takes place every June. Classical music concerts pop up across Funchal with a spectacular fireworks display every week.

Holidays in Madeira

Natural and botanical beauty are the hallmarks of Madeira, but this sun-drenched island also offers traditional villages, fresh seafood and stunning scenery. The bustling capital, Funchal, is where you will find everything from cable car rides to boat trips around the island. Madeira is affectionately known as the ‘Pearl of the Atlantic’. Hike through the lush, emerald green mountains at the heart of the island or sunbathe on the golden sands of Porto Santo on your holiday to Madeira. 

Prices start from £369

Madeira’s largest city, Funchal is located on the south coast of the island. For a taste of Madeiran life, take a wander through its narrow streets. Sample authentic Madeiran dishes like sopa de tomate e cebola, a tomato and onion soup topped with a poached egg, in one of its many traditional restaurants. Quaint little art galleries, museums and markets can be found throughout the city. Just 6km east from Funchal is the quiet seaside village of Caniço de Baixo. An oasis of calm, the idyllic resort is perched upon a hill overlooking the sea. Take a stroll along the cliffs and admire the panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean.

Funchal

Funchal’s cobbled streets boast restaurants, cafés, museums and the glorious Sé Cathedral. Either wander through its tropical gardens or take a walk in the nearby hills. A cable car rises from the Old Town to Monte village, offering unparalleled views. Most hotels in Funchal are on the west side, close to the city’s attractions.

Caniço de Baixo

Life in tranquil Caniço de Baixo revolves around the main square and its shops, restaurants and bars. Accessed by a steep winding road, this resort is good for walking and the clear waters of the Garajau National Marine Park are ideal for scuba-diving. Book a Caniço de Baixo hotel and check out the Manta Diving Centre.



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