The ‘Garden Island’ of Madeira is perhaps one of the few true paradise islands. It has a wonderful climate all year round and is blessed with some of the most stunning and beautiful landscapes and seascapes on earth. From craggy green mountain peaks through lush forests and blissful gardens down to a sunny shore where dramatic cliffs and rocky shorelines descend into the warm, clear waters of the Atlantic Ocean.
The Magic of Madeira
Viewpoints and trails are threaded all across the island’s verdant volcanic peaks. The walk to the top of the highest peak on the island may be a bit of a challenge, but those who do put in the effort to climb up to the summit are rewarded by breathtaking panoramic views of the island, where white clouds hover in bright blue skies over the rugged landscape, forged by fire. Those who have an interest in the volcanic past of this island should visit the Volcanic Centre on the North coast of the island, the astounding Caves of São Vicente, formed by lava from an eruption that occurred 400,000 years ago.
Paths wind their way along beside precipitous rocky drops and through steamy forests of lush green. The Laurisilva woodlands take up around 20% of the island and is said to be the biggest area of this type of forest in the world. This is a precious, balanced eco-system, an awe-inspiring privilege to be able to observe first hand.
With its perfect climate for a wide range of flora, Madeira is a botanist’s dream come true, and all nature lovers will succumb to Madeira’s manifold charms.
Black sands and pebble beaches have a dramatic beauty all their own, but if you are looking for perfect golden sands then you will not need to go far. Golden sands are specially imported to Calheto and Macchita for the tourist season. Or you could take a yacht or a plane to the island of Porto Santo, to enjoy the long, golden strand you will find there.
As for the accommodation, there are fine villas at the luxury resorts on the island. Choupana Hills Resort and Spa, or Palheiro Village, both of which have perfect views down to the ocean from its well-appointed villas up on the hillside. Hillsides also offer many wonderful golf courses to choose from. Why not play a round of golf at Palheiro Golf Course, or Santo da Serra?
Time spent on this relaxing garden island guarantees plenty to delight the eyes and the soul, making it easy for travel agents to tailor your own Madeira vacation itineraries.