Lisbon and Madeira
- Duration of the excursion: About 4 hours
A few hours to discover Lisbon, first of all we will cross the 25th April Bridge (if possible). On our return you get a fantastic view of Lisbon and its hills, and then we go on, to visit the Belém quarter, where you will find the most beautiful and historical monuments from the 15th and 16th centuries. A brief stop at the Belém Tower- world heritage by UNESCO (Torre de Belém), point of departure of some of the Portuguese maritime explorations, such as on the Monument to the Discoveries (Padrão dos Descobrimentos), built to celebrate the 500th anniversary of the “death “ of Prince Henry the Navigator. Then we visit the church of S. Jerome Monastery – world heritage by UNESCO (Mosteiro dos Jerónimos) a masterpiece of the “Manueline” style and the Coach Museum (Museu dos Coches) with one of the most important collection of old carriages in the world, (both closed on Mondays, replaced by the visit of Ajuda Palace or “Fundação Medeiros e Almeida”). Along the river we arrive at Alfama, an old and traditional district, where we have the opportunity to walk in its narrow streets, and visit a handicraft shop where we taste an aperitif of Port wine. We will pass by the downtown (Baixa) to admire the most important squares of Lisbon such as the monumental Trade Square (Praça do Comércio); Rossio Square, the heart of Lisbon and the symbolic Restauradores Square. Then we drive along the Liberdade Avenue the “boulevard” of Lisbon to finish at Pombal Square with the statue of the statesman from the 18th century.
- Duration of the excursion: About 8 hours
- Departure: Marquês de Pombal / Parque Eduardo VI 09:00
We leave in direction of the majestic and romantic Pena Palace, an astonishing fairytale castle, located in one of the highest peaks of Sintra mountain range. At the end of the morning free time to walk in the streets of the village of Sintra (Cultural Landscape by UNESCO) that enchanted Kings and inspired poets to appreciate the several handicraft shops and tea-rooms to taste the delicious local sweets like the “queijadas”. We leave to Colares*, region demarcated and recognized for its table wines, following until Cabo da Roca, the most western point in continental Europe, passing for the beach of Guincho until Boca do Inferno always sea viewing enjoying the landscape until Cascais where we take a glimpse of the fishing port. We return to Lisbon by Estoril Coast where we can have a panoramic view of the Casino and its gardens.
Funchal and Botanical Garden
- Duration of the excursion: about 4 hours (departure and return to hotel)
- Days of operation: Wednesday and Friday (morning)
We will start by presenting you the Old Town, including the Historical Nucleus of Santa Maria dated from 1425, when the settlement of Madeira began. From this period the nucleus still preserves the urban lines, the Chapel of Corpo Santo and a small door in manueline style. Then we visit the Fish Market, where you can see several types of typical madeirian fish like tuna fish, black scabbard fish and parrot fish, and the famous “Mercado dos Lavradores”, built in 1941, where flowers, fruits and fish are sold. In the inner court, you will find fruit and vegetable salesmen, which offer in wicker baskets exotic fruit and vegetables. The flower women in the typical costumes are offering orchids, birds of paradise, flamingo flowers and straw flowers of all colours. Not far from the market is an embroidery factory located. Here you will get acquainted with one of most beautiful handicrafts of Madeira and see how the embroidery is made. You will find here table cloths, napkins, handkerchiefs with monogram, among others, with the guaranteed seal from Madeira. The next Stop is in the Botanical Garden where you may enjoy a magnificent view over Funchal from the different sightseeing points. Here you can find, besides orchids, an enormous amount of tropical and subtropical plants from all over the world. To conclude, we will visit a wine cellar, where you have the opportunity to taste the famous Madeira Wine.
- Duration of the excursion: about 8 hours (departure and return to hotel)
- Days of operation: Saturday & Monday
Camacha is a wicker work centre located in the eastern part of Funchal. Here you cannot only buy wicker work products, but also appreciate the process of manufacturing. After passing by Poiso, we follow towards Pico do Arieiro, the third highest mountain in the island (1.818m).When the weather is clear you can see the neighbour island Porto Santo. We return through the same road towards the Natural Park Ribeiro Frio. Here, we have the opportunity to taste a typical Madeirian drink, poncha, made out of sugarcane brandy, honey and lemon juice (optional) and to visit a trout farm. After this stop, we continue towards Faial and Santana. In Santana you can admire the typical thatched-roof houses. The lunch is served in Santana (inclusive). Afterwards we continue towards Porto da Cruz and Portela, from where the impressive Penha d’Águia can be seen. Return along the southern coast, passing by the fishing village Machico.