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Madeira Island and Funchal information

There are so many wonderful things to do in Funchal and Madeira. Discover an exciting, safe island with a superb climate all year round. Here are just some things you can do near our properties. Make sure you explore the mountains but also the fantastic beaches and sea. Book a dolphin and whale boat excursion, swim in a pure ocean and discover a seafood paradise, make sure you buy some fish and barbecue it at home. Each month of the year has a different event to enjoy, book early for the most spectacular New Years fireworks in the world with the cruise ships in the harbor making a magical setting - you have excellent harbour and port views from all our villas.

Like us on facebook for weekly updates on events happening in Madeira. We have original photos and special tips to make your holiday in Madeira memorable. Recipes, Walks, restaurants and a lots more

Events in Madeira Funchal

Madeira Flower Festival 2017 and 2018; Madeira Atlantic Festival 2017 and 2018 (Every Saturday in June, fireworks display); Madeira Wine Festival 2017 and 2018 (early September); Madeira Nature Festival 2017 and 2017 (normally October); Madeira New Year 2017 and 2018 (Christmas and New Years Fireworks 2017 and 2018, between mid December-early january 2018, 2019). Madeira MIUT Ultra Trial, Madeira Madeira Golf Open, Funchal jazz Festival, Madeira Classic Motor Show, Madeira Extreme Sailing Series are also other events that happend year round on the Island.

Book early to get the best dates for next year. We offer repeat guests a nice discount.


OLD TOWN FUNCHAL


The Area
This is the lovely Santa Maria neighborhood, the first settlement on the island, chosen by the first explorers because of the perfect climate and proximity to the sea. This part of Funchal is still very much unchanged, most houses have been here for over a hundred years, and the residents are mainly Madeirenses who´s families have been part of this community for centuries. Here you can still find local grocers, antique shops, bakeries, cafés and lots of tiny interesting shops. This area is not touristy but still very authentic and portuguese, its also very welcoming to visitors and you will feel very much at home.

All our houses come with a detailed and updated guide of the best restaurants and things to do while you are here, here are just some tips:
 
Bakery - Padaria Mariazinha II , Rua Conde Carvalhal 125 B - Open 7 days a week day and night (up till 10pm or more). Nice fresh bread in a typical portuguese café. Also serves light lunches with soups and savories.
Local Grocer - Rua Conde Carvalhal 125 (next door to Padria Mariazinha) Open Mon-Friday 09.00-19.00 –Saturday 09.00-13.00 A fruit and veg section (local produce from the nearby farmers), small butcher section and all the basics.
Supermarket Pingo Doce - C. C. Anadia - Rua Visconde do Anadia - 9050 FUNCHAL Opens (winter schedule) 8:00-22:00 - This is the largest supermarket near all our properties. Opposite the Funchal market it has a good butcher and fish section. Perfect place to get your barbecue food & portuguese wine!

The best restaurants are in the Old Town down the road, to name just a few: O Forte, Gavião Novo, O Tasco, Armazem do Sal, Riso Rissotto.
 
Swimming in the Old Town
Barreirinha - Largo do Socorro, 9060-305 Funchal (in front of Old town Church)
One of the oldest swimming complexes on the island, the sea is warmed by the gulf stream so make sure you swim in this fabulous sea. A short walk from any of our houses.
Praia do Forte S. Tiago - This is the beach just by the Old Town fortress, good for a quick refreshing dip in the sea, Praia do Toco is also a more secluded beach near the house. Praia do Toco by the Jewish Cemetery is also a great sea access for the more adventurous.
 
Swimming in Funchal
Ponta Gorda - A very lively sea access with swimming pools and an MTV party like atmosphere.
Clube de Turismo- For a fee (a bit more expensive than normal) you can enjoy a spacious sea platform with swimming pool and good sea entries. Restaurant serves good local food with fantastic seaviews.
Paria Formosa- A large pebbled beach with beach bars. Quite tricky to get in but free of charge.


Whale & Dolphin boat trips
Nau Santa Maria (Columbus Replica boat) Lots of fun, touristy but in a good way. Book tickets near the marina on a nice clear day. Take your bathing suit. 3 hour trips morning & afternoon.
Seaborn Catamaran - Book tickets near the marina on a nice clear day. Take your bathing suit. The captain seems to know where the dolphins and whales are. 3 hour trips morning & afternoon.
 
Scenic excursions by Bus with Horario do Funchal (taking you to amongst others Botanical Garden, Nuns valley, Palheiro Gardens & Santana)

Levadas & Walks
Today a network of up to 1400 kilometres of levadas cover the island, these are
not wider than a metre, and about 60 cm deep. The paths used by the levadeiros, the maintenance workers, to keep the canals clean, are perfect for walking, and many planted flowers along the paths, making them even more attractive. There are walks in Funchal and Madeira to suit every type of hiker.
 
Levada do Caldeirão Verde
Distance: 6,5 km each way
Time: 5.50h
Start/End: Parque Florestal das Queimadas
Note: Flashlight recommended
Built in the eighteenth century this is one of Madeira’s most famous levadas, taking you through spectacular cliff edges, virgin forests, and hand carved tunnels. The Queimadas Forestry Park, which is the starting point, is located in Santana, where an original thatched house still hands. In all, the walk passes through four tunnels and waterfalls. The Caldeirão Verde lake with its 100 metres high waterfall can be seen the left of the levada, up a small path after the fourth tunnel.
 
Levada do Furado, Ribeiro Frio - Portela
Distance: 11 km
Time: 5.00 h
Start/End: E.R. 103 Ribeiro Frio
Note: Can cause vertigo, take a torch and anti-slip shoes
A classic walk, starting at Ribeiro Frio takes you along spectacular scenery of terraced fields in Faial, São Roque do Fanal, Porto da Cruz and the Penha d´Aguia rock formations. The levada carries water from various sources including the Ribeiro Frio valley and mountains of Santana. At the end of the Lamaceiros wooded area, a dirt track joins the Portela Levada, which goes around Lombo das Faias, ending at the Regional ER 102 highway. Throughout the walk you can admire the misty laurissilva forest.
 
Vereda da Ponta de São Lourenço
Distance: 4 km each way
Time: 2.30h
Start/End: Baia d´Abra car park
Note: Don’t get close to the edge, the ground is not safe & take a bathing suit
This trail is completely different from any other on the island, the landscape has been exposed to the northerly winds and is without trees. Named after the explorer Zarco´s ship the São Lourenço, this peninsula is linked underwater to the Deserta islands. The walk will reward you with many sightings of unique plants, in all about 140 species, 31 that are exclusive to Madeira. Walking to the far end of the peninsula one reaches the Cais do Sardinha, perfect for a swim in the clear waters.
 
Madeira Average Temperature
Average Temperatures Funchal - Madeira (It never snows in Funchal, and winter is very mild, never going below 14º. Summer is also mild max temp is 31º so not too hot).

 

weather

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Funchal Cottages - The finest collection of self catering properties in Madeira Island

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    CASA MAR
    Sleeps 6 • 3 Bedroom

    Lovely detached house on the seafront of Funchal. Very charming location in the heart of the old town, the climate is very warm and sunny year-round. No car necessary everything is a short walk away...

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  • ocean-view

    OCEAN VIEW
    Sleeps 3 • 2 Bedroom

    A very private charming villa with 3 spacious self-catering flats, surrounded by lovely garden and large pool.Balconies and terraces with superb sea & harbor views...

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  • bay-view

    BAY VIEW
    Sleeps 2 • 1 Bedroom

    A very private charming villa with 3 spacious self-catering flats, surrounded by lovely garden and large pool.Balconies and terraces with superb sea & harbor views. No car necessary...

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    ARTISTS COTTAGE
    Sleeps 2 • 1 Bedroom

    A very private charming villa with 3 spacious self-catering flats, surrounded by lovely garden and large pool.Balconies and terraces with superb sea & harbor views. No car necessary...

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    POOL COTTAGE
    Sleeps 2 • 1 Bedroom

    Fantastic sea views. A bright, private and spacious one bedroom flat set in a charming residential area of Funchal with swimming pool, garden, barbecue and terrace...

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    PAINTERS COTTAGE
    Sleeps 2 • 1 Bedroom

    Fantastic sea views. A bright, private and spacious one bedroom flat set in a charming residential area of Funchal with swimming pool, garden, barbecue and terrace...

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