Funchal: Travel and tourism

Desert Islands
Desert Islands
Funchal, the capital of the Madeira archipelago, combines well a cosmopolitan atmosphere (with numerous bars, hotels and casino) with its historical monuments, museums and a typical and colourful market.

Coming from the airport, the slopes filled with houses and gardens that gently meet the sea remind us of a natural Nativity scene. In the Old Town, fishermen's houses have been turned into restaurants; fine shops, museums and ancient buildings line the streets of central downtown.

Worth visiting, amongst many other sites, are the Cathedral (completed in 1514), the Sacred Art Museum (with rich religious art collections), Adegas de São Francisco (a wine lodge dating from the 17th century where tourists can taste the famous Madeira wines) and the beautiful Botanical Garden, displaying plants from all parts of the world.

Near Funchal, Quinta do Palheiro Ferreiro is also a paradise for flower-lovers, with gardens combining different species and layouts as well as a Baroque chapel and a beautiful 18th-century mansion.

After visiting the church at Monte, overlooking the capital, visitors can enjoy an exciting and unforgettable experience: it is the starting point for a 20-minute carro de cesto ride down to Funchal, in a wicker vehicle without wheels driven at high speed by two men along the steep slopes.
Hotel Quinta da Penha de França Hotel Quinta da Penha de França
$$$$ (100 to 150 euros)

Built around an old manor, the Hotel Quinta da Penha de França impresses with amenities such as a tropical garden, a sun terrace, a private car park and free wireless internet.

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