Holidays in Madeira
Madeira’s dramatic landscapes, year-round sunshine and festival-filled calendar have won it plenty of fans over the years. We can help you uncover the island’s charms on our two expertly designed holidays to Madeira or on an ocean cruise that combines Madeira with the Canaries.
Our 8-day Madeira tours offer an ideal introduction to the ‘Pearl of the Atlantic’, with comprehensive tours of Funchal and the rest of the island. We’ll stay in the heart of Funchal, and you’ll enjoy plenty of time to relax and see the sights at your own pace (so it’s also a great pick for those who’ve visited before).
You can also visit Madeira during the springtime Flower Festival, when flower-bedecked floats parade through Funchal; shops compete to outdo each other with elaborate floral window displays; and street corners are often given over to flower ‘carpets’.View all holidays to Madeira
Tipping is customary for obtaining good service. For service in restaurants etc. 10% is usual.
Euro (EUR/€) 1€ = 100 cents.
Soup is a typical Portuguese dish. There is a wide and delicious variety of fish worth sampling. Portuguese wines are generally good value and Madeira
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The mainland climate varies from temperature in the north, to hot and dry in the south. Madeira has a mild, sub-tropical climate, with warm summers and extremely mild winters.
EHIC/GHIC - Following the UK’s exit from the EU, the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) is being replaced by the Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC). UK-issued EHICs are still valid and offer the same cover as GHICs in the EU. Once your EHIC has expired, you’ll be able to replace it with a GHIC and you can apply online. You should beware of unofficial websites that may charge if you apply through them. An EHIC or GHIC is free of charge.
Either card lets you get medically necessary state healthcare in Europe at a reduced cost or sometimes free of charge, however it isn’t a replacement for travel insurance, you should have both before you travel. Some European countries don’t accept either card (including the Channel Islands of Guernsey, Alderney and Sark, Norway, Iceland, and Switzerland). To access up-to-date details for the country you’re visiting, please refer to this information
No visa is needed for British citizens to enter Portugal (including Madeira). A standard 10 year British passport is required for all holidays, which must be valid for at least 6 months beyond your planned date of return travel.
London to Lisbon is approx. 2 hours and 30 mins, London to Madeira is approx. 3 hours and 45 mins
Funchal and beyond
Visitors to Madeira will have plenty of opportunity to explore the culture and history of the island. One of the best places to start is Funchal - it's been the island's capital for some 500 years.
Popular attractions in Funchal include the cathedral, built in the 15th century, and the Convento de Santa Clara, which features religious art and centuries-old architecture.
Other popular destinations for those on Madeira holidays include the village of Santana, with its charming A-frame houses houses and banana plantations, as well as Camara de Lobos, Cabo Girao and San Vicente.
Lush valleys and levada walks
On our Madeira tours, you'll discover that there's far more to this stunning island than beautiful beaches. Winding roads will take you past charming houses and through dense forest, high into the mountains. From the top of Pico Ruivo - the tallest point on Madeira - you'll enjoy inspiring views of the valleys below. You might even get a chance to spot some of the beautiful wildflowers that the region is famous for.
If you fancy a walk in the great outdoors, you could follow one of the levadas - or aqueducts - that were built in the 16th century to supply water to the southern parts of the island. The Levada do Canical is a popular walking route that stretches the seven miles between Marocos and Canical. There are also longer and more difficult trails along other levadas for more intrepid travellers to try.
Madeira Flower Festival holidays
Springtime holidays in Madeira land you on the island during the famous Flower Festival. In Funchal, the streets become a vibrant showcase of bright petals, as a magical parade with giant floats decorated with flowers travels through the city, accompanied by dancers, singers and children in costume. Other events include building the Wall of Hope from flowers placed by children, as well as various contests, concerts and street performances.
Ocean cruises to Madeira are a popular option and most depart from Southampton, meaning you can enjoy the ease and comfort of a no-fly cruise.
As well as giving you plenty of opportunity to explore the wonders of Madeira, cruises tend to stop off at a couple of the Canary Islands. Depending on the itinerary, you might also call in at the Cape Verde Islands, Lisbon and the historic Spanish port town of La Coruna.
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