Places to see in Madeira
A verdant oasis in the Atlantic Ocean, Madeira’s diminutive size belies the exquisite beauty of this island. Plan your holiday itinerary with the help of CDM’s detailed guides to discover wonderful attractions from Funchal’s stunning jacaranda-lined avenues to the daring cliffs of Cabo Girão.
Historical and cultural attractions
Embark on an interactive journey through Madeira’s past at the Story Centre or simply wander the streets of the capital to encounter charming historical areas and picturesque squares. Numerous churches and convents date back to the 15th century, from the tiny basalt cave of Capela de São Vicente to the ornate interiors of the Sé Cathedral.
Agriculture is still an important part of the island’s resources and visitors will see ingeniously cultivated terraces along hillsides everywhere. Traditional street markets brimming with colourful pyramids of produce are a great way to experience local life.
Enchanting natural landscapes
Madeira’s abundance of protected reserves are a true wonder for nature lovers. Myriad walking trails through rare Laurissilva forests reward hikers with breathtaking mountain views, while scuba divers can explore the crystal clear waters of Garajau Natural Reserve. Numerous parks and gardens boast fascinating subtropical plants and a spectacular carpet of colour, culminating with the annual Flower Festival in springtime.
One of the pleasures of an island holiday is that the ocean is never too far away! Spend your days exploring the coastline of majestic cliffs, pebbled beaches and natural rock pools that attest to the island’s volcanic origins, or take a ferry or flight to Porto Santo and enjoy miles of golden beaches. Blessed with an almost perfect climate, visitors will soon realise that one trip to Madeira is simply not enough!