Categotry Archives: Madeira 2011

Spending a day in Funchal

While in Madeira, we stayed in the capital —  Funchal. Funchal boasts about 110 000 citizens. Staying there over Christmas and New Year, the city was decorated for the holiday season. In addition, there seemed to be some local celebration going on with a mini-market set up in the middle of town where people were selling various types of craft, dressed up in traditional clothing. It was a nice addition to the holiday; it gave a good idea of what […]

Levada walk from Rabaçal

We have another early morning start, and drive back to Paúl da Serra, this time with the intention of hiking. We are lucky to have the company of a relative of Nelson’s, local to Madeira who knows the valleys, the paths and how to get around. At Paúl da Serra, we need to park: the road that winds down to the walking paths is closed. We learn that this is because of traffic accidents down the very narrow road: instead one shuttle bus […]

Quinta da Penha de França

We stayed at Quinta da Penha de França (a mouthful to say if your Portuguese is lacking), a nice hotel in the — admittedly — touristy part of town. It’s a ten-minute walk to the city centre, and therefore easy to reach once you are a bit familiar with the basic layout of Funchal.


Santana feels like a compulsory visit as a UNESCO heritage site. And so we go. The drive from Porto Moniz feels long, however. The landscape is possibly even steeper than in the south, the houses and villages more scattered and the roads older.

Porto Moniz

Porto Moniz is a town northwest on the island. It is not too far a journey from São Vicente, so we combine the two. This means that when we actually get to Porto Moniz, it is lunchtime and we are starving. This in itself is not the best idea. We park along the seaside, and start looking for a restaurant, but all we see are hotels, cafés with all-English menus, souvenir shops, and restaurants joining the hotels. The real town […]