Madeira - The Flower Island
With its spectacular scenery, mild climate and stunning flora, Madeira is the perfect destination for a relaxing sunshine break. The island is renowned for its abundance of flowers and many gardens, and you'll discover a whole host, starting with a tour of its capital, Funchal. You'll also visit the city's Botanical Gardens, the Palheiro Gardens and the Monte Palace Tropical Garden. The chance to discover ancient crafts and taste its signature Madeira wine are further treats on this tour, which also gives you plenty of free time to explore at your own pace.
With its spectacular scenery, mild climate and stunning flora, Madeira is perfect for a relaxing break.
PLEASE NOTE: Price is per person and based on two people sharing a twin/double room. Single room supplements and upgrades are not included.
- Return flights from Gatwick with British Airways
- 7 nights in a 4-star hotel
- 7 meals: 7 breakfasts
- Travelsphere Tour Manager and Local Guide
- Overseas transfers and local transportation
- Funchal's gardens, Madeira Wine Company and embroidery factory
- Botanical Gardens and Palheiro Gardens
- Gardens of Monte
- East island tour, including Quinta da Junta Gardens
- Day 1 UK/Madeira
- Depart on your scheduled flight to Madeira today. On arrival, we'll transfer you to your hotel in its capital, Funchal.
- Day 2 Quinta Vigia, Santa Catarina Park & the Madeira Wine Company
- Madeira is famed for its abundance of flowers and gardens, thanks to its sub-tropical climate, and you're going to discover a whole host on today's tour of Funchal. First stop is Quinta Vigia, which has been home to royalty and important public figures for centuries. Its spectacular gardens display many types of flora and attract a huge number of bird species, and the views of the harbour here are also stunning. Santa Catarina Park is next, where you'll see a wealth of trees and plants from all over the world. The lake here is a haven for birdlife, and boasts a purpose-built island on which many live and breed. Finally, explore the Municipal Garden Park, a former Franciscan convent in the heart of Funchal, to see many plants, both exotic and endemic. We're now going to make a welcome stop for refreshments at the Sao Francisco Cellars of the Madeira Wine Company to try this famous fortified wine. The island is also renowned for its embroidery, and your day concludes with visits to an embroidery factory and a farmers' market. Here you might like to sample some local produce.
- Day 3 Botanical Gardens & Palheiro Gardens
- Today, we're heading a little outside Funchal to the Botanical Gardens. Government-owned, they act as both a fabulous public space and an important scientific resource. During a tour we'll see as many as we can of the 2,000 or so plants here. After our visit we'll end the day at the Palheiro Gardens. Located 500 metres above sea level, you can imagine the views you'll enjoy up here! The exotic plants and ancient trees – some more than 200 years old – will also leave a lasting impression.
- Day 4 Levada Walk
- The choice is all yours today, you can spend time at leisure at your hotel, explore Funchal at your own pace, or join our optional levada walk. Levadas are water channels, which as well as supplying essential water, also provide a spectacular network of walking paths. If you join us today, you'll enjoy a gentle walk from Boa Morte to Cabo Girao, taking in the beauty of this scenic island as you go. Quaint villages, lush vineyards and the sparkling ocean are some of the sights you'll enjoy as together we cover approximately 8km.
- Day 5 Monte Palace Tropical Garden
- You can revel in the natural beauty of the Monte Palace Tropical Garden on your tour today. Rescued from years of neglect by businessman and environmentalist José Berardo, here you'll see a massive range of plants from every corner of the globe. From Scottish heather to rare cycads from South Africa, there is a new surprise around every corner.
- Day 6 East Island Tour
- You've a full day of discovery today, which starts at the picturesque village of Camacha. Nestled on a hillside overlooking Funchal, it is home to Madeira's thriving willow craft industry, and everything from ornaments to furniture is made using this age-old technique. Watch the craftsmen in action before moving on to the Quinta da Junta Gardens in Santo da Serra to see an abundance of camellias amongst other blooms. We're going to have a break for lunch but not before we've visited a trout hatchery en route to Santana, an area characterised by thatched triangular houses. Before we make our way back to Funchal we'll stop at the Rose Garden of Quinta do Arco. There are 1,000 varieties of roses here, some endangered, so we'll see as many as we can on a stroll. The wonderful views keep on coming even on the drive back to the hotel as we pass by beautiful scenery. We'll also travel through Machico, the island's first capital and the place where Portuguese mariner João Gonçalves Zarco landed when he discovered the island in 1419.
- Day 7 Funchal
- Spend a relaxing day doing just as you please. You might choose to enjoy the facilities at your hotel, or maybe you'll explore some more of the nearby gardens. Alternatively, we offer you the chance to take to the water on a dolphin and whale-spotting cruise. Before boarding the boat, an expert will tell you about the species usually found in the waters around Madeira, which include common and bottlenose dolphins and killer and sperm whales. While sightings of wildlife cannot be guaranteed, the Atlantic Ocean is teeming with life, and the chances of spotting cetaceans here are very high.
- Day 8 Funchal/UK
- Today we'll transfer you to the airport for your return flight to the UK.
- Hotel Girassol
- Located just a few minutes’ walk from the Lido area in Funchal, you may enjoy a pleasant stroll down to the city centre or relax in the hotel’s inviting surroundings. This beautiful part of Madeira is surrounded by colourful, well-tended gardens and offers a great number of restaurants and bars that create a friendly atmosphere that is best enjoyed with a glass of Madeira wine! Two swimming pools with plenty of sunbeds surrounded by a beautiful garden provide the ideal conditions for you to relax. A cosy restaurant and two bars offer snacks, drinks and delicious meals throughout the day. A small health club (at extra charge) close to the pool area has a few standard exercising machines, two separate saunas and a massage room for those hours where you look for complete relaxation. Those who wish to spoil themselves further with beauty treatments may head to the hairdresser’s at the entrance to the hotel. Wi-Fi connection is available free of charge in the lobby reception area. Recently refurbished accommodation gives the hotel a fresh, clean look. Spacious rooms decorated in warm, neutral colours immerse you in this comfortable environment. Pleasant garden or sea views may be enjoyed from a private balcony. All rooms have twin beds, a telephone with a direct line, a cable TV, a radio, an individual safe and a complete bathroom with a hairdryer.
- Levada walk
- Dolphin & whale-spotting cruise