A small paradise in the middle of the vastness of the Atlantic. So we can classify the island of Madeira. Of volcanic origin, its privileged location offers a mild climate and warm seas throughout the year, as well as a spectacular landscape of mountains, valleys and cliffs, all covered in vibrant Laurissilva vegetation, named a Natural Heritage of Humanities and UNESCO.
The archipelago is made up of a group of islands, with Madeira and Porto Santo being the largest and only inhabited. There is an excellent choice in spas, historic monuments and large hotels and restaurants, where you can taste delicious gastronomy and award-winning Madeiran wines.
Despite being small, the island has activities for all kinds of travelers. See below four unique experiences of living in Madeira.
Picnic in Madeira at more than 1,800 meters
For travelers who like to wake up early to make the most of the day, a tip is to have a good breakfast at the top of the highest mountain on the island to watch the sun rise on the horizon, amidst the clouds.
Some hotels like The Savoy Hotel it is Belmond Reid Palace, and specialized companies such as Wine Tours Madeira, Adventure Land and Mountain Expeditions, offer this opportunity and prepare everything in advance. That way, when the guest arrives at the place, the table is already set with the best foods that a special breakfast can be.
Wine tour by luxury car
How about taking a nice ride in a Rolls Royce Wooden Garage through the island’s wineries and vineyards? The first stop of the tour is at Blandy’s Wine Lodges for a tasting of the famous Madeira Wines.
Afterwards, the tour leads to the Laurissilva Forest, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with lovely views along the way of an important wine producer: Quinta do Barbusano. There, a traditional feast accompanied by wine tasting. After lunch, the tour continues to Seixal for another round of wine and snacks to finish the day before returning to the hotel.
Boat trip through bay d’Abra
To explore the coast of Madeira and venture into the blue sea that surrounds the island, there is nothing better than a boat trip. Baía d’Abra is a beautiful bay with ancient geological formations.
In addition, the wildlife on the site is unique and along the way, tourists will definitely be able to see dolphins, whales, turtles, birds in the area and, with luck, even rare marine animals such as the Mediterranean monk seal. Among the companies that provide this service are Le Rev and Cetacean way.
Dinner in a Michelin star restaurant
After enjoying the wonderful sights of Madeira, why not take the opportunity to dine in one of the two Michelin-starred restaurants on the island? The first option is Restaurant William, from Belmond Reid Mansion. The dishes created by chef Luís Pestana bring the best and freshest local ingredients.
To pair with traditional Madeiran cuisine, the sommelier suggests the best wines to accompany the dish. The second option is Il Gallo d’Oro, a two-star restaurant located at The Cliff Bay Hotel, owned by the Porto Bay Group. The high-class atmosphere and overlooking the sea completes the experience of enjoying the dishes created by chef Benoit Sinthon, using products that he himself helps to grow in the restaurant’s vegetable garden.