Madeira Tours, Vacation, Travel Packages & Experiences
Madeira is a Portuguese possession situated off the west coast of North Africa in the Atlantic Ocean. It is actually made up of two islands, Madeira and Porto Santo. And, as a destination for Portuguese vacations, it offers natural beauty with springtime temperatures that prevail all-year-round. The capital is Funchal, a 500-year-old city. It is known for its many top-class restaurants, excellent hotels and vibrant nightlife and has a background of dramatic mountains, banana plantations and exotic gardens. It is known as one of the safest and cleanest cities in Europe.
The best way to get to know Funchal’s historic city centre is on foot. on Potugal trps The Gothic Cathedral was built in the 16th century with a cedar wood ceiling carved in the Mudejar (Moorish) style. In the former Bishop's Palace is the Museum of Sacred Art with its collection of Flemish art from the 15th and 16th Centuries., The Farmers' Market provides exotic fruits and traditional fare such as bolo de mel (honey cake). Also in the old town is the Sao Tiago Fort, which houses the Museum of Contemporary Art. There are also the Embroidery and Wine Museums where you can learn about the beautiful pieces of delicate lace here and the fortified Madeira wine that came to prominence in the 17th and 18th Centuries.
In the village of Camacha, 9 kilometres/ 5 miles from Funchal, you can shop for wicker crafts and enjoy a traditional dance of the region, the animated "Bailinho da Madeira”. You can see a live performance in one of the typical restaurants here.
On a Portugal tour, the island of Porto Santo is much quieter and the perfect place for rest and relaxation. The island, reached by ferry from Madeira, offers walks through breathtaking scenery, good beaches for swimming, whale watching and swimming with dolphins. It has a stunning 9 kilometre/5 mile long beach. The capital, Vila Baleira, offers palm-tree and bougainvillea-lined streets. Along the quay, you can find traditional crafts for sale made from shells, canes and palm fronds. You can perhaps head to the Thalassotherapy Centre for a treatment or simply go for a long walk and discover the beauty of a landscape formed from successive volcanic eruptions. Something special is a climb to Pico do Facho, the highest point on the island and Pico do Castelo from where you can view the deep valleys and the islets. For those wanting to be more active, there are boat rides, scuba diving, water skiing, and paragliding facilities available.
For golfers, Madeira is a great destination on a Portugal vacation. Between the two islands, there are three excellent golf courses, Palheiro Golf and Santo da Serra Golf Club, with 18 and 27 holes respectively on Madeira, both notable for the beauty of the surrounding scenery. The Porto Santo Golf is a 27-hole course.
One of Madeira’s greatest assets is its diverse vegetation with rich colours and shades of green. The Madeira Natural Park is classed as a Biogenetic Reserve where you can find a unique range of flora and fauna. The park covers about two-thirds of the island and a number of land and sea protected areas have been defined within it, making Madeira a true ecological destination.
Recommended is renting a car and driving around Madeira. The roads are very including coastal roads and hilly terrain offering fantastic views while on Portugal vacations.
Extend your Stay
Consider an additional stopover to your Portugal vacation at one of Goway's other European destinations. You can choose from a Paris vacation, a London vacation or an Amsterdam vacation. This can be done stopping over en route to or from Portugal.
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