Funchal (Madeira): The Complete Guide

Funchal, Madiera

The Portuguese archipelago of Madeira, consisting of two inhabited islands, Madeira and Porto Santo, along with the uninhabited islets of Desertas and Selvagens, has a rich history veiled in mystery. Unlike its more prominent counterpart, the Azores archipelago, Madeira is located just 500 miles off the African coast. Discovered by the Portuguese in 1420, these volcanic islands swiftly became crucial agricultural hubs, cultivating a diverse array of fruits, wheat, and sugar cane. This discovery marked the beginning of Madeira’s historical significance and its role in contributing to Portugal’s economic and agricultural endeavors.

Situated on a substantial incline overlooking the Atlantic and designed in the form of a natural amphitheater, Funchal stands as the primary hub for tourism, commerce, and culture in Madeira. Attaining city status on August 21, 1508, through the royal charter of King Manuel I, the capital city of this archipelago boasts a rich history spanning centuries, marked by enduring traditions, cultural richness, and a cosmopolitan European influence. Despite its evolution, Funchal maintains a harmonious relationship with the lush nature that envelops it.

The town derives its name from the aromatic wild herb, historically referred to as fennel (Foeniculum Vulgare), which thrived abundantly during its founding. Over time, essential regional products such as sugar and wine, symbolized in the municipal coat of arms and continuing as emblematic Madeiran commodities, played a pivotal role in Funchal’s economic prosperity, establishing it as a pivotal trade centre in the heart of the Atlantic.

Encompassing an area of 76.15 km², the municipality consists of ten parishes: Imaculado Coração de Maria, Monte, Santa Luzia, Santa Maria Maior, Santo António, São Gonçalo, São Martinho, São Pedro, São Roque, and Sé. Throughout this expansive territory, one can encounter a wealth of historical monuments, museums, recreational spaces, lush gardens, and scenic viewpoints. Embark on a journey of exploration in Funchal!

Visiting Funchal (Madeira) for the first time and wondering what are the top places to see in the city? In this complete guide, I share the best things to do in Funchal (Madeira) on the first visit. To help you plan your trip, I have also included an interactive map and practical tips for visiting!

This website uses affiliate links which earn a small commission at no additional cost to you.

Powered by GetYourGuide

41 Best places to See in Funchal (Madeira)

This complete guide to Funchal (Madeira) not only tells you about the very best sights and tourist attractions for first-time visitors to the city but also provide insights into a few of our personal favorite things to do.

This is a practical guide to visiting the best places to see in Funchal (Madeira) and is filled with tips and info that should answer all your questions!

Funchal City Hall

Town Hall Square Funchal
Public Domain / Jongleur100
The Funchal City Hall occupies a central position in the municipality, residing in a historic palace of significant architectural value. Originally constructed in 1758 as the residence of the Count of Carvalhal, this building later evolved into the City Hall of Funchal after being acquired by the City Council in 1883. Despite various modifications over […]
Location: Funchal City Hall, Praca do Município, Funchal, Portugal | Hours: Monday to Friday: 11:00 | Closed: Saturday, Sunday and Public holidays | Distance: 0.00km
Visiting Funchal City Hall

We recommend to rent a car in Portugal through Discover Cars, they compare prices and review multiple car rental agencies. Book your rental car here.

Funchal Sacred Art Museum

Sacred Art Museum Of Funchal
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Holger Uwe Schmitt
The Funchal Sacred Art Museum is housed in a 16th-century palace, the former Paço Episcopal, established in 1594 by D. Luís Figueiredo de Lemos. It stands as one of the oldest museum spaces in the capital of Madeira, Funchal. Originally serving as the residence of the bishops of Funchal, the museum now hosts an eclectic […]
Location: Sacred Art Museum of Funchal, Rua do Bispo, Funchal, Portugal | Hours: Monday to Friday: 10:00-17:30 | Saturday: 10.00-13.30 | Closed: Sunday and Public Holidays | Guided tours available | Price: Adult: €8 | Distance: 0.10km
Visiting Funchal Sacred Art Museum

Click here to read our blog about Madeira: Santana and the North Coast

Igreja de São João Evangelista

Funchal Igreja Do Colegio
CC BY-SA 3.0 / Hajotthu
The Igreja de São João Evangelista or Church of Saint John the Evangelistare, was part of the Jesuit Religious Order, as can be seen from the style on the main façade of the church. The temple dates back to 1624 and was completed in 1640. The building features a striking façade characterized by three portals […]
Location: Igreja de São João Evangelista / Igreja do Colégio, Largo do Colégio, Funchal, Portugal | Distance: 0.10km
Visiting Igreja de São João Evangelista

We recommend to rent a car in Portugal through Discover Cars, they compare prices and review multiple car rental agencies. Book your rental car here.

Adegas Pereira D'Oliveira

Adegas Pereira D’Oliveira, Funchal
CC BY-SA 4.0 / PESP/ Wikimedia
D.Oliveiras, a venerable and highly regarded company, offers a rich array of Madeira wines and boasts an inviting tasting room in the heart of Funchal, making it an essential destination for any wine enthusiast visiting Madeira. Occupying one of Funchal’s most historic buildings, dating back to the 17th century, D’Oliveira prides itself on having one […]
Location: Pereira D'Oliveira, Rua Dos Ferreiros, Funchal, Portugal | Website | Distance: 0.10km
Visiting Adegas Pereira D'Oliveira

Click here to read our blog about 7-Day Madeira Itinerary: How to See Madeira in One Week

Capela de São Luís de Tolosa (Funchal)

Capela-s-luis-tolosa
© https://www.visitarportugal.pt/
The chapel and its association with the name São Luís originate from the Seminary and Colégio São Luís, which were part of the original Episcopal Palace. Its establishment dates back to the year 1600, envisioned by Bishop D. Luís de Figueiredo de Lemos. Architecturally, the chapel’s façade is distinguished by a regional stonework portal, crowned […]
Location: Capela de São Luís de Tolosa, Rua do Bispo, Funchal, Portugal | Distance: 0.20km
Visiting Capela de São Luís de Tolosa (Funchal)

We recommend to rent a car in Portugal through Discover Cars, they compare prices and review multiple car rental agencies. Book your rental car here.

Sé Catedral do Funchal

Cathedral, Funchal, Madeira, Portugal
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Diego Delso
The Church of Santa Maria, initially known as “the Big Church,” was commissioned by King Manuel I to replace the Church of Our Lady of Calhau, the first parish on the island of Madeira. The original church was deemed too small to accommodate the growing number of faithful. Dedicated to Our Lady of the Assumption, […]
Location: Sé Catedral do Funchal, Rua do Aljube, Funchal, Portugal | Hours: Monday to Friday: from 7:15 am to 6:30 pm; Saturday from 8:00 am - 12:00 pm and 4:00 pm to 07:00 pm; Sundays and Holidays: 8:00 am to 1:00 pm and 4:30 pm to 7:00 pm. | Distance: 0.30km
Visiting Sé Catedral do Funchal

Explore Funchal (Madeira) yourself with our self-guided walking tour!

Madeira Photography Museum - Atelier Vicente's

Madeira Photography Museum – Atelier Vicente
CC BY-SA 2.0 / Ben Coombs
The Madeira Photography Museum – Atelier Vicente’s, situated in the heart of Funchal, stands as the oldest photography studio in the country, boasting an extensive collection dating back to the 19th century. Originally acquired in 1865 by Vicente Gomes da Silva (1827-1906), the Atelier Vicente’s, honoured with several distinctions throughout its history, concluded its operations […]
Location: Madeira Photography Museum - Atelier Vicente’s, Rua da Carreira, Funchal, Portugal | Hours: Tuesday to Saturday: 10h00 - 13h00 | 14h00 - 17h00 Closed: Sunday, Monday and Public holidays | Price: €3.00 | Website | Distance: 0.30km
Visiting Madeira Photography Museum - Atelier Vicente's

We recommend to rent a car in Portugal through Discover Cars, they compare prices and review multiple car rental agencies. Book your rental car here.

A Cidade do Açúcar Museum

A Cidade Do Açúcar Museum
CC BY-SA 3.0 / Jane White
Positioned in a prime location, the A Cidade do Açúcar Museum commemorates the golden era of the sugar industry on Madeira. Inaugurated in 1996, it resides in the memory of a 19th-century Manueline house once owned by João Esmeraldo, a place that also hosted the renowned navigator Christopher Columbus temporarily. The museum showcases a collection […]
Location: Museu A Cidade do Açúcar, Praça De Colombo, Funchal, Portugal | Hours: Monday to Friday 9:00 -17:30 | Price: Free entry | Website | Distance: 0.30km
Visiting A Cidade do Açúcar Museum

Click here to read our blog about Madeira: Sightseeing Tour through the North West Coast!

Statue of Joao Goncalves Zarco

Statue Of Joao Goncalves Zarco
CC BY-SA 3.0 / Alberto-g-rovi
To commemorate the contributions of João Gonçalves Zarco, one of Madeira’s discoverers and the first Captain of Funchal, the Governing Board commissioned sculptor Francisco Franco to create a statue. Architect Cristiano da Silva was responsible for designing the foundation, adorned with allegoric figures representing key aspects of the Discoveries, including ‘Conquer,’ ‘Settlement,’ ‘Wisdom,’ and ‘Evangelisation.’ […]
Location: Estátua João Gonçalves Zarco, Avenida Zarco, Funchal, Portugal | Distance: 0.30km
Visiting Statue of Joao Goncalves Zarco

We recommend to rent a car in Portugal through Discover Cars, they compare prices and review multiple car rental agencies. Book your rental car here.

Mercado dos Lavradores (Farmers' Market)

Mercado Dos Lavradores
CC BY-SA 2.0 / Funchal
Madeira is renowned for its exceptional regional products, a result of the fertile soils and subtropical climate that define the island. At the heart of Funchal, the Mercado dos Lavradores holds a special place, functioning as a vibrant living museum where the freshness, vitality, and tropical essence of the archipelago’s flavours come to life. Inaugurated […]
Location: Mercado dos Lavradores, Mercado dos Lavradores, Funchal, Portugal | Hours: Monday to Thursday: 07:00 - 19:00 | Friday: 07:00 - 20:00 | Saturday: 07:00 - 14:00 | Closed: Sunday | Website | Distance: 0.40km
Visiting Mercado dos Lavradores (Farmers' Market)

Click here to read our blog about Madeira: Sightseeing Tour of South West Coast!

Casa Museu Frederico de Freitas

Casa Museu Frederico De Freitas, Funchal
CC BY-SA 2.0 / Michael Gaylard
Nestled along the steep Calçada de Santa Clara, the striking reddish-colored building commands attention and stands as a prominent example of urban civil architecture in the historic São Pedro area and the heart of Funchal. Known as Casa Museu Frederico de Freitas or Casa da Calçada, this remarkable structure was once the residence of the […]
Location: Casa Museu Frederico de Freitas, Calçada de Santa Clara, Funchal, Portugal | Hours: Tuesday to Saturday:10:00 - 17:30 | Closed: Sunday and Public holidays | Price: €3.00 | Website | Distance: 0.40km
Visiting Casa Museu Frederico de Freitas

We recommend to rent a car in Portugal through Discover Cars, they compare prices and review multiple car rental agencies. Book your rental car here.

Blandy's Wine Lodge

Blandys Winery - Funchal, Madeira
CC BY-SA 2.0 / Richard Gray
The Blandy’s Wine Lodge narrates the centuries-long history of the exceptional Madeira wine, which has carried the archipelago’s name across the globe. Situated in a collection of Baroque civil architecture buildings, including the oldest Madeira wine cellars from the 17th and 18th centuries, this space stands on the grounds where the old Convent of São […]
Location: Blandy's Wine Lodge (former Adegas de São Francisco), Avenida Arriaga, Funchal, Portugal | Hours: Monday to Friday: 10:00 - 13:00 | 14:30 -18:30 | Closed: Saturday, Sunday and Public holidays | Price: Tours From €9 | Website | Distance: 0.40km
Visiting Blandy's Wine Lodge

Click here to read our blog about Madeira: Sightseeing Tour of the East Coast!

Natural History Museum of Funchal

Museu De História Natural, Palácio De São Pedro, Funchal
CC BY-SA 4.0 / PESP/ Wikimedia
The Natural History Museum of Funchal is a vital destination for those eager to explore the intricate biodiversity and evolutionary history of the Madeira archipelago. Operating since October 5, 1933, this museum is not just a repository of natural history but also an integral part of Madeira’s own historical narrative. Housed within the São Pedro […]
Location: Museu de Historia Natural do Funchal, Rua da Mouraria, Funchal, Portugal | Hours: October to March: 09h00-17h30 | April to September: 09h00-19h30 Closed: 25th December | Website | Distance: 0.40km
Visiting Natural History Museum of Funchal

We recommend to rent a car in Portugal through Discover Cars, they compare prices and review multiple car rental agencies. Book your rental car here.

Madeira Military Museum

1024px-Palacio De San Lorenzo-Museo Militar
CC BY-SA 3.0 / Alberto-g-rovi
Built at the beginning of the 16th century by order of King Dom Manuel I, São Lourenço Palace initially served as a fortress to defend the population of Funchal. Currently designated as a National Monument since 1943, the palace now hosts the Madeira Military Museum. Renovation efforts in 1991 transformed unoccupied spaces, such as the […]
Location: Military Museum, Largo da República, Funchal, Madeira, Portugal | Hours: Monday to Friday: 10:00-16:30 Closed: Saturday, Sunday and Public holidays | Distance: 0.40km
Visiting Madeira Military Museum

Click here to read our blog about Best Levada Hikes in Madeira

São Lourenço Palace Museum

Palácio De São Lourenço, Funchal, Madeira
CC BY-SA 4.0 / PESP/ Wikimedia
Strategically positioned for the defense of the island, São Lourenço Palace stands along Avenida Zarco in Funchal. Constructed in the 16th century by order of King Dom Manuel I and designated a National Monument in 1943, the palace now serves as a museum of significant historical and artistic interest. Within the palace’s chambers, an extensive […]
Location: Palácio de São Lourenço, Avenida Zarco, Funchal, Portugal | Hours: Monday: 12:30 | Tuesday and Wednesday: 10:00 | Thursday: 10:00 and 12:30 | Friday: 15:00 | Distance: 0.40km
Visiting São Lourenço Palace Museum

Funchal Customs House

Antiga Alfandega, Funchal, Madeira
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Paulo SP/ Wikimedia
Following the redevelopment of the city, the construction of the Town Hall and the Cathedral, the construction of the New Customs House of Funchal commenced and was eventually finished in 1519. It earned the name “New Funchal Customs House” because there was an earlier customs house from which its functions were transferred. During the 17th […]
Location: Alfândega do Funchal, Avenida Do Mar, Funchal, Madeira, Portugal | Distance: 0.40km
Visiting Funchal Customs House

Largo dos Varadouros

Porton Dos Varadouros Funchal Madeira
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Luis Miguel Bugallo Sánchez (Lmbuga)
The Varadouros Gate formed an integral part of the fortifications encircling the city. Among the city’s five gates, it was a crucial entry point leading to the boat landing at the former Praia do Calhau, now replaced by the present-day Avenida do Mar. Behind this gate lies Largo dos Varadouros, which served as the primary […]
Location: Largo dos Varadouros, Funchal, Portugal | Distance: 0.40km
Visiting Largo dos Varadouros

Quinta das Cruzes Museum

Museu Da Quinta Das Cruzes
CC BY-SA 2.0 / D-Stanley
Quinta das Cruzes Museum has been open to the public since 1953.  The museum is not only a showcase of a vast collection of artworks but also holds a unique historical significance deeply rooted in the city of Funchal. It served as the second residence for the family of João Gonçalves Zarco, the discoverer of […]
Location: Museu da Quinta das Cruzes, Funchal, Portugal | Hours: Tuesday to Saturday 10:00 - 17:30 | Closed: Sunday, Monday and Public holidays | Price: Adults: €3.00 | Website | Distance: 0.50km
Visiting Quinta das Cruzes Museum

Convent of Santa Clara (Funchal)

Convento De Santa Clara Funchal, Portugal
CC BY-SA 4.0 / GualdimG
Convent of Santa Clara dates back to the late 15th century. The convent stands as a remarkable monument in Funchal’s historical heritage, offering a glimpse into the city’s rich past. Originally established for a cloistered religious order, the convent is now open to visitors, inviting them to explore its architectural and artistic treasures. Situated on […]
Location: Convent of Santa Clara, Calçada de Santa Clara, Funchal, Portugal | Hours: Tuesday to Saturday: 9:00-12:30 | 14:00-17:30. Closed on Saturdays, Sundays and Holidays.| Distance: 0.50km
Visiting Convent of Santa Clara (Funchal)

Funchal Electricity Museum

Funchal Electricity Museum
CC BY-SA 3.0 / Jane White
Referred to locally as ‘Casa da Luz,’ the Museu da Eletricidade in Funchal serves as a repository for exhibitions detailing the evolution of the electricity grid in the region, offering a captivating journey through the archipelago’s history and beyond. Located on the premises of the former Funchal Power Station, which commenced operations in 1897 under […]
Location: Museu de Electricidade Casa da Luz, Rua Casa da Luz, Funchal, Portugal | Hours: Tuesday to Friday: 10h00-12h30 | 14h00-18h00 | Saturday: 09h30-16h00 | Closed: Monday, Sunday and public holidays | Price: Adult: €2.70 | Website | Distance: 0.50km
Visiting Funchal Electricity Museum

Baltazar Dias Theatre

Teatro Municipal Baltazar Dias
CC BY-SA 42.0 / PESP/ Wikimedia
The Teatro Municipal Baltazar Dias, a focal point of Funchal’s vibrant cultural scene, stands as a monument of great significance, exuding elegance in the heart of the city. Its historical and architectural value, coupled with its diverse programming, make it a noteworthy attraction. In response to the demolition of the Teatro Grande in 1833, the […]
Location: Teatro Municipal Baltazar Dias, Avenida Arriaga, Funchal, Portugal | Hours: Monday and Tuesday: 09:00 - 12:30 | 14:00 - 17:30 | Wednesday and Thursday: 09:00 - 21:30 | Friday: 09:00 - 21:30 | Saturday and Sunday: 13:30 - 21:30 | Website | Distance: 0.50km
Visiting Baltazar Dias Theatre

Madeira Story Centre

Madeira Story Centre
CC BY-SA 3.0 / Funchal
The Madeira Story Centre invites visitors to embark on an interactive journey summarizing fourteen million years of history in a captivating one-and-a-half-hour experience. Located near the cable car connecting Funchal to Monte in the heart of Funchal, this centre provides an ideal and enjoyable way to delve into the rich history of the Madeira archipelago. […]
Location: Madeira Story Centre, Rua Dom Carlos I, Funchal, Portugal | Hours: Daily: 09:00 - 19:00 | Price: €5 | Website | Distance: 0.60km
Visiting Madeira Story Centre

Capela do Corpo Santo

Capela Do Corpo Santo - Funchal - Portugal
CC BY-SA 2.0 / Vitor Oliveira
The Capela do Corpo Santo, also known as the Chapel of Corpo Santo, is a 15th-century chapel located at the end of the old village of Funchal. Dedicated to Saint Pedro Gonçalves Telmo, the “Corpo Santo,” the chapel features intricate decorations, including ceiling paintings, gilded carved wood altars, and sculptures in the Manueline style. The […]
Location: Capela do Corpo Santo, Largo do Corpo Santo, Funchal, Portugal | Distance: 0.80km
Visiting Capela do Corpo Santo

Fortaleza de São João Baptista do Pico

Perched 111 meters above sea level, São João Batista Fort, also known as ‘Pico Fort’, stands as a remarkable landmark on the Island of Madeira, offering breathtaking views of the Atlantic landscape. Constructed in the 17th century, the fort served the dual purpose of enhancing the city’s defenses against pirate attacks and initially housed the […]
Location: Fortaleza de São João Baptista do Pico, Rua do Castelo, Funchal, Portugal | Distance: 0.80km
Visiting Fortaleza de São João Baptista do Pico

Jardim de Santa Catarina

Parque De Santa Catarina
CC BY-SA 2.0 / Luke H. Gordon
The Funchal Bay is undeniably one of the most renowned attractions of the Madeira archipelago, celebrated for its stunning beauty whether admired from the sea or the island itself. Nestled amidst this natural wonder, the Santa Catarina Park stands out as a prime vantage point to take in this breathtaking vista. This picturesque park occupies […]
Location: Parque de Santa Catarina, Avenida do Infante, Funchal, Portugal | Distance: 0.80km
Visiting Jardim de Santa Catarina

Museu CR7

Museu CR7 Funchal
CC BY-SA 3.0 / Abby M.
The Museu CR7 is dedicated to showcasing the trophies of Portuguese footballer Cristiano Ronaldo and is situated in his birthplace, the city of Funchal on the Portuguese island of Madeira. Adjacent to the museum is a hotel, developed through a partnership between Ronaldo and the Pestana Group. The current museum floor, reminiscent of its predecessor, […]
Location: Museu CR7, Avenida Sá Carneiro, Funchal, Portugal | Hours: Monday to Friday: 10am until 5pm | Price: Adults: €5 | Website | Distance: 0.90km
Visiting Museu CR7

Fortress of São Tiago

Forte De São Tiago - Funchal
CC BY-SA 3.0 / H. Zell
Constructed in the early 17th century to defend against consecutive corsair attacks on Funchal, the Fortress of São Tiago stands as a prominent historical site. Strategically perched above the seafront in the Zona Velha (Old Town), this fortress began construction in 1614 under the guidance of Reais Jerónimo Jorge, the royal master builder, later completed […]
Location: Forte de São Tiago, Travessa do Forte, Funchal, Portugal | Hours: Tuesday to Friday from 9:30 am to 5:30 pm. Closed on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays. | Price: €2.50 | Distance: 1.00km
Visiting Fortress of São Tiago

Nossa Senhora da Conceição do Ilhéu Fort

Nossa Senhora Da Conceicao Do Ilheu Fort
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Brisille
The Fortress of Nossa Senhora da Conceição was constructed on the Ilhéu Grande. It is commonly referred to as Forte do Ilhéu.  Its construction commenced in 1652 and the fortress was officially inaugurated two years later, in 1654. As the name suggests, this area was once an islet, but with the expansion of the port, […]
Location: Estrada da Pontinha, Forte de Nossa Senhora da Conceição 9000-726 Funchal Portugal | Website | Distance: 1.20km
Visiting Nossa Senhora da Conceição do Ilhéu Fort

Madeira Botanical Gardens

Jardim Botânico Da Madeira
CC BY-SA 3.0 / H. Zell
Madeira Botanical Gardens encompass an area of approximately eight hectares, with five dedicated to landscaped areas, this verdant oasis boasts a diverse collection of tree species, ornamental shrubs, orchids, lawns, panoramic viewpoints offering expansive vistas of Madeira’s capital, and an amphitheatre. Hosting over 2000 exotic plants sourced from every continent, including some facing endangerment in […]
Location: Jardim Botânico D, 9060-135 Funchal, Portugal | Hours: Daily 09:00-17:30 | Distance: 1.80km
Visiting Madeira Botanical Gardens

Reid's Palace

Reids Hotel Funchal
CC BY-SA 1.0 / Stefan Bellini
eid’s Hotel, originally known as Reid’s Palace, has a rich history that dates back to its inception in 1891. The idea for this luxurious establishment was conceived by William Reid, a man who had arrived in Madeira as a cabin boy in 1836 and went on to amass his fortune in the wind trade. His […]
Location: Reid's Palace, A Belmond Hotel, Madeira, Estrada Monumental, Funchal, Portugal | Distance: 1.80km
Visiting Reid's Palace

Funchal-Monte Cable Car

Funchal-Monte Cable Car
The Funchal-Monte Cable Car connects the old town of Funchal on Madeira Island, Portugal, to Monte in a scenic 15-minute journey, offering panoramic views of the city. This cable car system comprises 42 cabins, each accommodating 8 seats, and operates on a single-cable telecabine system with a detachable clamp. Construction of the Funchal-Monte Cable Car […]
Location: Funchal-Monte Cable Car, Funchal, Portugal | Hours: Daily 9:00 - 17:45 | Price: Adult: One Way €12,50, Round Trip: €18,00 | Website | Distance: 2.90km
Visiting Funchal-Monte Cable Car

Monte Palace Madeira - Tropical Garden

Monte Palace Tropical Garden
Public Domain / Wouter Hagens
Monte Palace Madeira Garden, situated atop a hill with stunning panoramic views of Funchal’s bay, stands as one of the most distinctive places on the Island of Madeira, celebrated for its exotic flora and artistic elements. The history of this garden traces back to the 18th century when Charles Murray, the English consul, acquired the […]
Location: Monte Palace Tropical Garden, Caminho do Monte, Funchal, Portugal | Hours: Daily: 09:30 -18:00 | Price: Adults: €12,50 | Website | Distance: 2.90km
Visiting Monte Palace Madeira - Tropical Garden
Powered by GetYourGuide

Monte Palace Museum Madeira

Madeira - Monte Palace - African Sculptures
CC BY-SA 2.0 / muffinn
Situated within one of the most breathtaking tropical gardens in the archipelago, the Monte Palace Museum in Madeira showcases collections of significant value, providing visitors with the opportunity to embark on a journey through diverse geographic locations and cultures. Nestled atop a hill with a sweeping panoramic view of the Funchal bay, the Monte Palace […]
Location: Monte Palace Madeira, Caminho das Babosas, Funchal, Madeira, Portugal | Hours: Daily: 10:00 - 16:30 Closed: 25th December | Price: €12.50 | Website | Distance: 2.90km
Visiting Monte Palace Museum Madeira

Palheiro Gardens

Palheiro Gardens, Madeira
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Funchal
Perched on a hill east of Funchal, the Palheiro Gardens are an integral part of one of the largest and most opulent quintas on the Island of Madeira. Renowned for their botanical diversity and stunning landscapes, these gardens are a testament to the island’s natural beauty. Established in the early 19th century, the estate spans […]
Location: Palheiro Gardens, Funchal, Portugal | Hours: Monday to Sunday: 09:00-17:00 | Price: Adults: €10 | Website | Distance: 4.00km
Visiting Palheiro Gardens

Câmara de Lobos

Camara De Lobos View
CC BY-SA 2.0 / Norbert Reimer
Câmara de Lobos, nestled on Madeira’s south-eastern coast, is a picturesque fishing town perfect for a day trip from Funchal. Known for its vibrant night-time Scabbard fish fishing, the town reflects a robust fishing heritage. Quaint, traditional houses, home to multiple families, huddle together around the cliffs. As the day breaks, fishermen often head to […]
Visiting Câmara de Lobos

Eira do Serrado Viewpoint

Curral Das Freiras From Eira Do Serrado
CC BY-SA 3.0 / H. Zell
Situated at an elevation of 1095 meters, the Eira do Serrado viewpoint provides a clear panorama of , enveloped by the majestic emerald peaks that define Madeira’s landscape. Nestled in the mountainous expanse of the Câmara de Lobos municipality, this observation point is positioned at the core of the island. Accessible via a trail starting […]
Location: Eira do Serrado Viewpoint, Estrada da Eira do Serrado, Funchal, Portugal | Hours: 24 Hours | Distance: 8.60km
Visiting Eira do Serrado Viewpoint

Cabo Girão Viewpoint

Cabo Girão Lookout In Câmara De Lobos, Madeira
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Ximonic (Simo Räsänen)
Situated at an elevation of 580 meters, Cabo Girão claims the title of the highest promontory in Europe, but its fame extends beyond its impressive height. The Cabo Girão viewpoint, renowned for its captivating suspended glass platform known as the skywalk, has garnered international attention and stands as one of the most visited and photographed […]
Location: Cabo Girão, Câmara de Lobos, Portugal | Price: € 2 | Distance: 9.00km
Visiting Cabo Girão Viewpoint
Powered by GetYourGuide

Ribeiro Frio

Pond In Ribeiro Frio
CC BY-SA 3.0 / Sergey Ashmarin
Ribeiro Frio, translating to “Cold Stream” in English, is a quaint village nestled in the interior of Madeira, approximately 15 kilometers from Funchal, the island’s capital. This charming village is renowned for its trout farm, attracting numerous tourists who use it as a starting point for various levada walks, including the popular trail leading . […]
Location: Ribeiro Frio, Portugal | Distance: 9.50km
Visiting Ribeiro Frio

Curral das Freiras (Nuns Valley)

Madeira.Curral Das Freiras
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Bybbisch94, Christian Gebhardt
Curral das Freiras, situated in a deep valley resembling a volcanic crater, stands out as one of the most picturesque locations on the island of Madeira. Its unique setting is characterized by towering mountain peaks that embrace the town. Covering an area of 25.07 km² and hosting a population of approximately 2000, Curral das Freiras […]
Location: Curral das Freiras, Portugal | Distance: 9.50km
Visiting Curral das Freiras (Nuns Valley)

Pico do Arieiro to Pico Ruivo Hike (PR1 and PR1.2)

Pico Do Arieiro To Pico Ruivo Hike
CC BY-SA 3.0 / Bjørn Christian Tørrissen
The trek from Pico do Arieiro (1817m) to Pico Ruivo (1862 m) stands out as the , Portugal. The route is is commonly known as PR1 or Vereda do Arieiro. The route guides hikers along slender pathways, navigating through daunting staircases and dark tunnel chambers. Pico do Areeiro is also the third highest peak in […]
| Sunrise Tour @ Pico Do Areiro | Distance: 9.60km
Visiting Pico do Arieiro to Pico Ruivo Hike (PR1 and PR1.2)

Vereda dos Balcões (PR11)

Vereda Dos Balcões PR11
CC BY-SA 4.0 / Ramessos
The journey commences in Ribeiro Frio and unfolds towards the magnificent Balcões belvedere, a destination reached through a brief yet spectacular walk amid the lush greenery of Madeira’s forest. From the Balcões belvedere, a panoramic spectacle unfolds, allowing you to marvel at the numerous peaks of Madeira Island, with Pico Ruivo (1861m) and Pico do […]
Visiting Vereda dos Balcões (PR11)

Best Time to Visit Funchal (Madeira)

Madeira offers a consistently mild Mediterranean climate throughout the year, making it an ideal destination whenever you have the opportunity to visit. Despite its lush landscapes, the island experiences moderate rainfall without reaching uncomfortably high temperatures. The varied microclimates, notably the contrast between the windy and damp northeast and the more arid and sheltered south due to the mountainous terrain, provide diverse weather conditions.

Visiting Funchal in the Winter

For those seeking winter sun, Madeira doesn’t disappoint. In December, January, and February, daytime temperatures can reach 20°C in the lower regions below the ‘banana line,’ known for ideal banana cultivation. However, glimpses of snow on the mountaintops are not uncommon. Carnival celebrations, a major attraction, occur from the Friday before Lent to Shrove Tuesday, requiring early booking if you plan to travel during these dates.

Visiting Funchal in Spring

Spring, especially from March to May, offers delightful weather with shorts and T-shirt conditions, though occasional heavy rain is possible. The vibrant foliage during walks is particularly striking, and Funchal comes alive with color during the Flower Festival in May, featuring parades and floats adorned with fragrant blooms.

The island’s annual Carnival and Flower Festival, held in May, stand out as highlights in the events calendar. Walking holidays are available year-round, with spring and summer particularly enchanting due to vibrant vegetation and warm sunlight.

Visiting Funchal in Summer

Summer is optimal for whale watching, with daytime temperatures around 24°C. From June to August, the leste, a dry and hot wind from the Sahara, can raise temperatures to 33°C. Mornings in June and July may start with cloud cover, gradually clearing over the day.

Visiting Funchal in Autumn or Fall

Autumn, spanning September to November, brings a quieter atmosphere to Madeira. The weather remains pleasant and sunny, with warm seas suitable for comfortable swimming. While rainfall increases slightly, temperatures stabilize around a balmy 22°C, making it an ideal time for leisurely walks in shaded areas.

Average Temperatures in Funchal (Madeira)

  • January 17°C 6
  • February 17°C 7
  • March 19°C 6
  • April 19°C 6
  • May 19°C 3
  • June 21°C 3
  • July 23°C 0
  • August 26°C 1
  • September 23°C 3
  • October 22°C 7
  • November 19°C 8
  • December 18°C 9

How to get to Funchal (Madeira)

Travelling to Funchal by Plane

Travelers heading to Madeira have two primary entry points. The first is Cristiano Ronaldo Madeira International Airport, situated in the city of Santa Cruz, serving as the main hub for arrivals and departures in the region. It is also known as Madeira Airport, Funchal Airport,  or Santa Catarina Airport It’s worth noting that international flights to Funchal from significant European cities are both frequent and reasonably priced. On average, these flights take approximately three to four hours, providing efficient and accessible travel options. For those departing from Lisbon, the journey to Madeira is notably shorter, taking just 90 minutes. Whether arriving by air or sea, Madeira is well-connected and easily accessible for visitors from various locations.

The airport is located 13.2 km (8.2 mi) east-northeast of the regional capital, Funchal.

Visiting Funchal by Ferry or Boat

The second option is the Port of Funchal, strategically positioned along the route of major international cruise ships. It is a 15 minutes walk from the centre of Madeira’s capital, to the Funchal harbour.  There is occasionally a ferry service operating from Portugal to Madeira, although this does vary year to year!

Travelling to Funchal by Road

The journey from the airport to the city typically takes a mere 15 to 20 minutes, ensuring swift and convenient transportation. For budget-conscious travellers, local bus services offer an extremely affordable option, efficiently taking visitors to various locations in and around the city.

Travelling to Funchal by Bus

Passengers can enjoy splendid views from elevated bus seats, and the drivers, known for their expertise, provide a sense of safety throughout the journey. Four companies manage the public transport system in Madeira: Horários do Funchal, SAM, Rodoeste, and EACL (Empresa de Autocarros do Caniço), each covering different parts of the island.

For most people, SAM and Rodoeste buses can be boarded at their main departure points on Avenida do Mar, and tickets can be purchased directly on the bus or, in some cases, at the operators’ kiosks near the departure points. It’s worth noting that fare-saving tickets are available for the orange town buses (HF). Travelers should be aware that identical bus numbers may serve different routes, for example, the orange town bus 20 to Monte and the green/cream country bus 20 to Santo da Serra.