Overview

Our ten-night Madeira family activity holiday is the perfect mix of down-time and adventure.

Madeira’s reputation as the new action capital of Portugal is well-deserved. Gone are the days of uninspiring all-inclusive hotels and retirees on sun loungers. 21st Century families are discovering that Madeira is a playground for anyone that loves outdoor pursuits – whale watching, body boarding, horse riding, paddle boarding and canyoning are all part of your stay.

That’s not say you can’t choose to spend the day relaxing by the pool. The beauty of our Madeira family activity holiday is in its careful balance of excursions and free time – time to explore the magnificent mountain peaks, secluded valleys and sea-torn cliffs which make this island such a unique holiday destination.

Home is the beautiful cliff-top Casa do Julio – our three-bedroom family villa, with an outdoor pool and terrace overlooking the sunny south coast harbour town of Calheta. We’ll also include a hire car to help you get around, and we’ll suggestion a few of our favourite things to see and do when you’re not spending time with our resident guides.

We’ve based this trip around a ten-night stay for a family of four, but it’s easy to extend your holiday to a full two weeks – or you could split your stay between Madeira and the beach-island of Porto Santo.

Itinerary

You'll begin your holiday by flying from the UK to Madeira. You’ll be collected on arrival in Funchal by our driver, for your transfer to accommodation. A welcome hamper is included with some essential supplies (and a few lovely Madeiran treats).
Your hire car will be delivered to your villa this morning. You could spend your first day exploring Funchal; capital of Madeira and the island’s bustling, cultural centre. Take the Teleferico cable car from the old town district up to the Monte Palace Tropical Gardens, returning on the famous Carro de Cesto wicker toboggans.
You'll head down to the marina for your first whale and dolphin watching trip. Trips begin with a safety briefing and a chat through the species currently being sighted, before you head out to sea.
You might like to explore north-eastern Madeira: visiting the forest park at Ribeiro Frio and the town of Santana: home to the Parque Temático da Madeira.
It’s a short drive from your villa to the town of Machico - the spot where Joao Goncalves Zarco and Trisao Vaz Texiera first landed when they discovered the island on 1st July 1419. You could spend the morning at the beach and the afternoon exploring the barren Ponta Sao Lourenco.
You’ll spend today with our resident guide, getting off-the-beaten track by jeep. Tours are private and flexible - we'll normally recommend heading north to the Casacata Veu da Noiva waterfall, the Encumeada mountain pass and the outdoor swimming pools in Porto Moniz.
You could take a drive along the south coast to the harbour town of Camara de Lobos – home to some of the island’s largest banana plantations and vineyards. Winston Churchill famously visited the town during a stay on the island in 1950 – the ‘Miradouro de Winston Churchill’ was named in his honour. A more modern miradouro is close-by at Cabo Girao – a glass skywalk which extends out over the 580m high Cabo Girao seacliff.
You might like to personalise your holiday with a sunset sailing trip around Sao Martinho and Ponta da Cruz. There's a chance to see Cabo Girao from below, and time for a snorkel before the return journey as the sun sets.
You could take a drive to the Eira do Serrado – the famous miradouro (viewpoint) overlooking the Curral das Freiras, or Nuns Valley. The nuns of the Convent of Santa Clara famously took refuge here in the mid-16th Century, following attacks by French pirates on Funchal. Cherries and chestnuts are the main crops grown on the terraces that you’ll see lining the steep sides of the valley - the annual Chestnut festival on the 1st November is one of the island’s most popular celebrations.
You'll spend your final day canyoning down the Lomba das Faias, scrambling down a narrow forest gulley and abseiling down cascading waterfalls.
You'll return your hire car to the airport before flying home.

From £8000, based on a family of four

We can create a tailor-made holiday to suit your budget.

INCLUDED: direct return flights from the UK, accommodation in a four bedroom villa on self-catering basis, ten days car hire, a stand up paddleboarding session, a whale and dolphin watching trip, a body boarding session, a guided horse ride and a half-day canyoning trip.

Accommodation

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