Madeira, small as it is, has its very own miniature climate zones. Whilst it may be pouring down with rain on the northern coast, Funchal could well be enjoying blue skies and brilliant sunshine.
On a heavily overcast day with intermittent rain, a journey into the mountains and above the clouds may well reveal the exact opposite. It is very difficult indeed to give a general weather picture for the complete island.
Therefore the following guidelines should be of help:
For mountain walking you will need to take warm clothing as the weather can change very abruptly.
If you choose to walk in light clothing or shorts and short-sleeved shirts, do use a sun block. The sun is very strong in Madeira and it is possible to get sunburned even on a cloudy day. Headwear should also be considered a must after 10.00 h.
A light raincoat or cape can save you from getting drenched unexpectedly by an even more unexpected rain shower. A raincoat or cape can also be useful as a windbreak.
Due to the nature of some walkers to venture a little too close to a ‘levada’, we would recommend that you carry a spare pair of dry socks in case your feet get wet.