Madeira's unique riches are also a rich selection of fresh fish and seafood, from crabs and a variety of shellfish to juicy tuna and saberfish. This is also an abundance of fruits grown on rich volcanic soils, which require almost no chemical fertilizers. These are also famous winesknown under the general name "Madera": dry Sersial - a wonderful aperitif, semi-dry Verdelyu, semi-sweet Boil - go well with cheese, and sweet Malvasia is indispensable for dessert. This is also an excellent cuisine with its famous "shpetade" (shish kebab), which is fried on fire on bay spits, and eaten with fragrant homemade bread with red wine.
Madeira is also famous for its colorful festivals and carnivals, such as the New Year's Fireworks Festival (December-January), the February Carnival (miniature of the famous Brazilian Carnival), the Flower Festival (April-May) or the Wine Festival (September).
Madeira's healing air and the local climate perfectly tone and restore strength; thanks to them, the island has become a favorite holiday destination for many representatives of the European nobility over the centuries. It is difficult to find the best place to relax and forget about your problems for a while, as Winston Churchill did while relaxing and painting watercolors. This is also confirmed by facts from the biography of Christopher Columbus and the Austrian Empress Sisi. The first found all the best on the off the offs of the Port of Santo, the second - in Madeira.
In short, Madeira is a real paradise on Earth. We invite you to visit this corner and get an unforgettable experience of this fantastic place. We are sure that you will undoubtedly want to come back here again and again.
We have prepared for you articles that will help you organize your holiday on the island of Madeira!
Who are we? , Where are we?, Climate on Madeira Island, Brief history of Madeira Island, Accommodation in Madeira, Local cuisine, Madera Wine
Hiking trails and levadas, Laurisilva (beam forests), Gardens and parks, Beaches and pools, Reserves, Active tourism
Traditions and customs
Holidays and celebrations, Folk art, Madeira traditional embroidery, Vine weaving, Festivities and interesting events Madeira Island
Funchal - Capital
North Coast - Porto Moniz, São Vicente, Santana
South-East coast - Santa Crush and Mashiku
South coast - Camara de Lobos, Ribeira Brava, Ponta do Sol and Calheta
Madeira Island has an area of 459 square miles (741 km2) (35 miles long and 13 miles wide).
The water temperature in the sea is also very moderate due to the influence of the warm Gulf Stream, an average of 22oC in summer and 18oC in winter.
The archipelago is located on the African Plate in the Atlantic Ocean between 30 ° and 33 ° north latitude, mainly at the same latitude as Casablanca, about 1000 km southwest of Lisbon, about 500 km west of the coast of Africa and 450 km north. Canary Islands.
This archipelago is formed by Madeira with an area of 741 km2, Porto Santo with an area of 42.5 km2, the Desertas Islands with a total area of 14.2 km2, consisting of three uninhabited islands, and the Selvagenes, consisting of 2 islands and sixteen uninhabited islands. They are an area of 3.6 km2. Of the eight islands, only the two largest (Madeira and Porto Santo) are inhabited and can be reached through Madeira Funchal Airport and Porto Santo Airport.
Funchal, the capital of the Madeira archipelago, can be reached by sea, there is a modern port. As for cruises, more than half a million passengers a year land here. The rest of the islands are nature reserves.
For hundreds of years, Funchal was the only city in the autonomous region of Madeira until 5 other cities received this status between the late twentieth century and the beginning of the next century: Camara de Lobos, Santa Cruz, Mashiku, Santana and Vila Baleira.
The island of Madeira has a very rugged area, the highest point is Pico Ruivo (1862 m), Pico das Torres (1851 m) and Pico do Ariiro (1818 m), respectively, the third, fourth and fifth highest points in Portugal. The northern coast is dominated by high cliffs, and in the western part of the island you will find the only plateau on the island of Paul da Serra with a height of 1300 to 1500 m.
The geological history of the Madeira archipelago is closely related to the expansion of the Atlantic Ocean, a process that began about 200 million years ago and continues to this day, moving at a speed of about 2 cm / year. The archipelago is an example of intra-plate volcanism (volcanic origin).
The island of Madeira rises above a vast underwater plain within the African Plate, forming a volcanic massif more than 5.5 km high, from which only one third comes out.
The island evolved through successive phases of intense volcanic activity, separated by periods of some activity, during which erosion reduced the size of the volcanic structure. During periods of intense erosion, valleys appeared and rough reliefs were created.
The resumption of activity during the next volcanic season led to the petrification of debris sedimentary materials and erosion reliefs. Madeira's latest volcanic stratigraphy, which occurred 6000-7000 years ago, is a phase of rejuvenation characterized by volcanism implanted into the erosion relief of forms created at the previous stage. It is believed that Madeira Island is still at this stage of evolution, and volcanic activity is temporarily asleep.
Currently, tourism is the main engine and largest source of income for the Madeira economy. In agriculture, banana production, focused primarily on regional and national consumption, flowers and famous Madeira wine also make an important contribution to the regional economy.
The gross domestic product of the Madeira region in 2020 amounted to 5,224 million euros, which is 3% of the national figure and 1.7% more than in 2009. GDP per capita in the region is 21.1 thousand euros, making it the second largest after Lisbon and above average in Portugal and 27 EU countries.
Trade activity accounts for 11.9% of total employment in the region, and hotel business and catering - 12.9%.
Industrial activities in Madeira are dominated by small and medium-sized companies. In the manufacturing industry, which accounts for 4.2% of employment, we are engaged in needlework aimed at export, such as embroidery, tapestries and wicker products, and other activities, especially those focused on the regional market, such as mills and bakery and confectionery, dairy products, wine, beer, tobacco, etc.
Madeira has been an autonomous region of Portugal since 1976, in which the Madeira Legislative Assembly and the regional government are state bodies.
The Autonomous Region of Madeira is an integral part of the European Union with the status of the furthest region of the Union.
The Legislative Assembly of the Autonomous Region of Madeira is a legislative body that also oversees the parliament, which is the highest body of self-government of the autonomous regions. The Legislative Assembly of Madeira is a unicameral parliament currently consisting of 47 members. Members are elected for a term of four years on lists submitted by parties in one constituency. The President of the Legislative Assembly of Madeira is Mr. José Manuel Rodríguez.
On July 1, we celebrate the Day of the Autonomous Region of Madeira and the Madeira Communities, or simply Madeira Day. This is a holiday dedicated to the autonomy granted by Portugal to Madeira in the 1976 Constitution of Portugal. The Portuguese state represents in the region the Representative of the Republic in the autonomous region of Madeira, whose position is held by Ireneu Cabral Barreto.
Parties in the Autonomous Region of Madeira are associated with large parties of the Portuguese political spectrum. SDP-Madeira won the last regional elections held on October 6, 2019, with 39.42% of the vote. The president of the regional government of Madeira is currently Miguel Filipe Machado de Albuquerque.
The autonomous region of Madeira has about 270,000 inhabitants, and the population density is 267,785 people per km2.
Despite the fact that this population density is higher than the national average, 75% of Madeira's population lives only on 35% of the territory, mainly on the southern coast. It is here that Funchal is located, the capital of Madeira, where 45% of the population (130,000 inhabitants) lives, with a population of 1,500 people / km2. This is where most of the hotels are located.
The population of the autonomous region of Madeira traditionally professes Catholicism.
The Diocese of Funchal was established on June 12, 1514, and its current bishop - D. Nuno Brush da Silva Martins.
In 1991, Pope John Paul II visited Madeira Island and to this day he was the only Pope to visit the island.
Protestantism is practiced by few natural people and small groups. To serve this cult, Funchal has an Anglican Rite Temple, an English Church and another Scottish Rite Temple, the Evangelical Presbyterian Church of Funchal.