All posts tagged: madeira

5 Nativity Scenes of Christmas in Madeira you’ll love…

“Nowhere in the world, perhaps, celebrate and enjoy Xmas so much, and feel for it as much enthusiasm and joy as in Madeira. These are days of lively rejoicing, of  religious and mystical contentment. ” Manuel Ribeiro I’ve just came back from Costa Brava last week and it was a great pleasure to arrive in Madeira and to feel Christmas all around. We call it “Festa” since this is “the true party” for the Madeirans. I went through the avenues of Arriaga Avenue, cheered up with the Christmas lights (which I love), listened to live music performances, went to the market to eat bread with” wine and garlic meat”, tasted liqueurs and cherry from the Nun’s Valley plus the typical sugar cane honey cake. I was well accompanied by the euphoria of Christmas, the one that we drink, eat and breath in this island…celebration is everywhere. This year, I also paid special attention to the nativity scenes or “lapinhas” “that link the religious traditions of Christmas to local life and nature”. There were 5 in total, …

“Meet the locals” – Fábio Teixeira, Machico

“Meet the locals “- Fábio Teixeira, Machico. I believe that the best way to experience a destination is through the eyes of those who live there. So, I created this entry on the blog called “Meet the locals”. The goal is to show, through short interviews with locals, the chosen destination. This time, I suggest a trip to Machico, with the tips of Fábio Teixeira, who currently lives there. I met him at my gym, the Fitness Innovation Lab as a Personal Trainer, a great professional which I highly recommend to you, plus he speaks English fluently. After a short time, I lost 3 kilos and 7% body fat. So, well worth the effort! Let me introduce you to Fábio Teixeira. Can you tell me a bit about yourself? I was born in Madeira, where I lived until the age of 18. I grew up by the sea, in Machico. I went to the University of Porto where I finished my academic training and lived very happyly! During my stay in Porto I worked as …

5 cool things to do when you visit Funchal

I am always happy that anyone wants to visit me and my city – Funchal. You see we (the madeirans) share this passion for the Island and we want visitors to experience the best spots. Funchal is a beautiful city. I know I’m biased since I just love living here (the more I travel the more I appreciate the benefits of this Island), but I challenge you to spend a few days in Funchal and then you can see it for yourself. Here I share 5 cool things to do when someone visits Funchal: # 1 Head to Largo do Socorro Funchal, the capital of Madeira, has three historic districts: Santa Maria (renown as Old Town), São Pedro and Sé. Santa Maria São Pedro |This photo was courtesy of Budgettraveller Sé Cathedral Many of the streets in these areas of Funchal are pedestrian, which means strolling around, photographing and discovering palaces, manor houses from the XIX century (which are now museums), viewpoints overlooking the sea, houses with flower gardens and typical Madeiran pavements made with …

rota das ponchas

A route of ‘ponchas’ in Madeira

I accepted the challenge proposed by a group of friends, to write this article on the blog – A route of the best ponchas in Madeira. (Due to practical issues, the route was divided into 2 parts, this is the route 1, to be coming soon is route 2) Some of the oldest grocery stores of Madeira are called ‘ Vendas or mercearias’ . These are the symbol of our grandparents lifestyle, when life had a quiet pace; other times. At those times, the products were sold by weight, without pre-packaging or pallets. The ‘Vendas’ sold pretty much everything. Since creams, potatoes, brooms and shovels, chewing gum, candies and even string. Right beside the groceries selling area, there was always a bar, selling wine with fizzy orange juice ‘ laranjada’ and local rum drink, Poncha. It was with joy and pleasure that through this route, I was able to relive the old days, where all the bills were registered in a “list” and paid at the end of the month. We were able to glance …

16 Do’s and Don’ts in Madeira

16 Do’s and Don’ts in Madeira 1. Do bring your best walking shoes. Madeira is a volcanic island with many hills, you will walk better in flats or sneakers. 2. Do bring a jacket. We are known as the Island of the “eternal Spring”, which means it’s mostly sunny here and you can certainly get 16ºC in Winter. However, we cannot guarantee that the week you’re here it will never rain or get chilly (specially at night or at 500 meters of altitude). 3. Don’t forget to wear sunscreen. Yes, please! Even if it’s cloudy, we’re in close distance to Africa so sun really ‘gets under your skin’. 4. Do join good guided tours. I have joined many amazing tours in Madeira and the insight and knowledge of some of these guides are well worth the investment. My advice is: start your holiday with a tour and then discover it at your own rhythm, knowing where you’d like to explore further. 5. Do hire a car, but only if you enjoy driving and like to …

Ayurveda Madeira

A rejuvenating Ayurveda Retreat in Madeira Island

A rejuvenating Ayurveda Retreat in Madeira Island To Relax and recover: wellness was, in fact, the first reason why tourism started in Madeira. Visitors came to escape the stormy winters, to enjoy the benefits of our beautiful landscapes, amazing food and good hospitality. I was very happy to discover that tradition is still alive in the Ayurveda Center, where many tourists come year after year, sometimes even 3 times a year, to recover from stress, health issues or simply to relax. This is the life, or as you would easily conclude after staying there, this is what a holiday should look like. The experience: Last January, I’ve spent a day at the Ayurveda Cure Center in Caniço. I was invited by the lovely Nathalie and mother Brigit who runs this center, it’s been 4 years now. It is located in Caniço de Baixo, next to the Hotel Alpino, in Madeira Island. The goal of this center is to promote health care by taking advantage of Ayurvedic treatment programs which are tailored to suit your needs. …

Madeira Map

A illustrated map of Madeira for kids!

In this illustrated Madeira Map I share 20 fun tips to enjoy your holiday in Madeira with kids. You’ll find a pocket guide in English on the back of the map. MADEIRA MAP for Kids Today, Google Maps is one of the most used tools to find the desired destination. The paper maps are relegated to a decoration, a gift wrap, or to a minority, who like me, loves paper maps. That’s how I started traveling and finding my way in unfamiliar cities. I loved getting to the destination alone, map in hand. I think that the more virtual our lives are becoming the more we need and appreciate what is natural and physical. It’s a bit like the books; ebooks are more convenient, take up less space in our homes and weigh less on luggage, but nothing compares to the pleasure of smelling a brand new book and turning its pages. Fortunately, the world of design continues to produce beautiful illustrations and so I’ve decided to create an illustrated Madeira Map. With the help …

40 pictures that will make you want to visit Porto Santo Island

Porto Santo Island has always been my idea of paradise. Possibly yours too? Picture a 9 km long golden sand, deserted beaches, crystal clear blue waters in a volcanic island with around 5400 locals, where? In Europe, right in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, as part of Madeira Island Archipelago, Portugal. It is situated at a distance of 50 Km northeast from Madeira Island. Porto Santo measures 11 Km length and 6 km in width. The highest peak is ‘Pico do Facho’ with 517 mt. The moderate climate is felt all year round with average air temperature of 23ºC (summer) to 19ºC (winter) and a sea temperature from 22ºC (summer) to 17ºC (winter). However, when you mention Portugal as a destination to travellers, you tend to find most tourists heading to Algarve or to Lisbon, considered to be the 2nd best destination in Europe. However for the curious traveller who is willing to run away from the crowds to experience something exclusive, still undiscovered to the majority of the world, you will discover an …

airbnb madeira

Airbnb Madeira – Wishlist

My favourite places to stay in Airbnb on Madeira| I love discovering new places to stay and to plan little getaways, whenever possible. In this post, I introduce you to some of my favourite properties to stay in Airbnb on Madeira including my own apartment in Funchal. Some of them I’ve experienced myself, others I can’t wait to visit. Airbnb offers some amazing properties, in fact, there are plenty to choose from luxury to budget rentals in Madeira. If you’re planning to visit Madeira, check these intimate places. They are located all over the Island: by the beach, in the middle of the mountains, with ocean views, in the heart of the capital, you name it. My choice was purely based on my personal preferences and guest reviews. I hope you like and it inspires you to visit to my beautiful Madeira Island. Let me know which one you would pick! TIP: If you are new to Airbnb, signup using this link to get  30 € off your first booking. Enjoy! 1. From Madeira to …

Shopping in Madeira

Shopping in Madeira Island

 When you visit Madeira, you’ll find the typical souvenir shops that sell Honey cake and Madeira wine. They are both great and I recommend it. However, one of the things I like when I travel is to seek for shops of local designers, which I do not find elsewhere. With this globalization, I always get a bit annoyed to see the same kind of shops everywhere and it delights me when I find a special store or any item that is unique. I also like to go home and whenever I look at that piece, I have a story to tell, being able to associate it with a moment of my life, or the person who gave it me. Incidentally, this is also one of the pleasures of traveling, finding pieces that tell stories (eventually) have a sentimental, timeless value. So I proposed myself to show my readers  special gifts from Madeira. I suggest wonderful gifts to yourself (or to anyone you like giving special gifts to), which are the result of Madeiran creativity, ranging …