Visits to the beautiful Se Cathedral, little churches, colourful botanic gardens and Museum of Madeira wine, are extremely popular with tourists
As is sitting at a pavement cafe in the main square, just watching the
world go by!
Another favourite relaxing past-time is an evening stroll along the sea-
front promenade to view visiting cruise ships or the expensive yachts,
that often call in for provisions as they sail to the Canariesor even
across the Atlantic.
Neighbouring Porto Santo is just a short island hop away from this harbour, if you are looking for a golden sandy beach!
The Porto Santo beach is five miles long!!
A cable car rises from Funchal Old Town to Monte Village, offering
Monte Palace Tropical Gardens has orchids, hydrangea and strelitzia mingling with lush tropical foliage. A traditional toboggan run down the steep hill, through the cobbled streets brings you back down into Funchal.
The modern part of Funchal exudes cosmopolitan charm and effortless sophistication.
There are at least seven 5-star hotels here, including the legendary Reid's Hotel, famous for its afternoon teas.
There are also several good quality 4-star hotels and an exclusive casino with its wonderful floor shows.
The city also has a lively night-life with several smart clubs. Many of the hotels stage live music and cabarets.
Outside Funchal, the tranquil village of Canico with its lovely little square, surrounded by relaxing restaurants and bars is a nice place to visit.
The views from the area are stunning.
The Palheiro Golf Course is not far away.
There are also stunning views from Cabo Girao, the world's second
highest sea cliff, whilst on the north coast, Santana, where houses
have triangular thatched roofs, is a very pretty place and worth
When it comes to Madeiran food, espada or scabbard fish from some of the deepest water fished by man, is a must! Don't be put off by the rather fearsome appearance of this fish, it is delicious!!
Caldo Verde, a Madeiran soup made from cabbage and potato, is a
popular dish, as is chourico, a spicy sausage.
Bolo de mel, or honey cake, is the most well-known pudding here and is a speciality of the island. It is particularly enjoyed by sweet-toothed diners who do not bother counting calories!!
In any case, who cares about calories whilst on holiday?
Why not enjoy yourself and have an extra glass or two of sweet Madeiran wine to round off your meals?