I didn’t think Madeira would be so mountainous and I was expecting a few beaches at least, turns out I was wrong!! There are almost no beaches to be found in Madeira, and if they are, they have black sand. Far different from the beautiful white beaches you get in Portugal’s mainland. But on the bright side, water temperature is said to be much warmer then Lisbon during summer time.
|View from Cabo Girão|
We arrived super early in the morning, we left our luggage in our apartment and headed straight to the cable cars to go to Monte. We bought a combined ticket for the cable car (both ways) and Monte tropical palace which cost us 23€ each. It takes around 20 min to get all the way up to Monte and you’ll get to enjoy some breathtaking views of the city on your way.
The garden is relatively huge so it took us quite a while to explore every corner. We ended up having a late lunch in Funchal and headed back to our apartment to recover. Later that day we explored Funchal’s downtown. As a Lisboner, Funchal’s downtown wasn’t anything extravagant. It had the same features as in Lisbon, only that Lisbon is way more charming.
|Church of São João Evangelista|
|Interior of São João church|
As for our second day we had planned to rent a car and explore the island but somehow we ended up joining a tour company and we were quite pleased with the decision.
We went on a tour with a company called Madeira Happy tours and it cost us 20€ each for a full day bus tour (the regular price was 25€ however they seemed to have a special offer on that day).
I assume they are the most famous tour company on the island. They have half to full day walking tours as well as bus tours. We chose a route that would explore the west of the island which included some of the most important attractions of Madeira. The tour was great and the leader spoke very good English and Spanish. It started raining toward the end of our trip but in general it was totally worth it.
Here are a few places we got to see on our way:
|Bananas are one of the main produces of Madeira|
|Porto Moniz lava pools|
|Paúl da Serra|