Madeira

Mark and David's verdict
Madeira is not just winter sun and blue rinses. This lush mountainous sub-tropical island marooned in the Atlantic Ocean enjoys a perfect year-round climate and boasts fine hotels, superb restaurants and picturesque paths - levadas - that hug the fertile valley walls.

Recommended tour operator: Mercury Holidays

Mercury Holidays says

There are few destinations that offer year-round sunshine and are less than four hours flying time from the UK. Madeira has most definitely moved on from its former reputation as a winter retreat for the more mature traveller.

  • Easy flights
  • Natural wonders
  • Year-round sun

There’s a huge range of things to do year-round from whale-watching to horse-riding, walking trails and golf. Head out from your hotel in the evenings for a superb dinner in one of the many restaurants – the fish and seafood in Madeira are exceptional and very reasonably priced.

We’ve hand-picked the best of Madeira’s hotels in the capital, Funchal, and further afield. Many offer superb spas and all deliver exceptional value for money and outstanding service – some of the best in Europe. You will find a mix of B&B, half-board, all-inclusive and self-catering options.

For contemporary luxury on the seafront, Vidamar is a stylish choice, with a top-notch spa and direct access to the sea. Or check out The Vine, which has funky interiors and some rooms with a Jacuzzi. It ranks as one of Europe’s leading design hotels.

The more traditional Royal Savoy is ideally located close to Funchal’s centre, perfect if you want to explore the local area when you’re not luxuriating poolside or in the spa.

For an even more traditional feel, oozing character and atmosphere, there’s Quintinha Sao Joao in the heart of Funchal and Quinta da Bela Vista, on the city’s outskirts.

Madeira is a popular choice year-round for solo travellers, with its gentle pace of life, warm welcome wherever you go and choice of activities. We have negotiated no single supplement at a choice of eight hotels in Funchal and Canico.

Working with local experts, we have created two escorted walking holidays in Madeira. Levada walking is unique to Madeira  – explore the mountains on foot along levadas (irrigation channels) and footpaths through stunning countryside and take the chance to visit the Unesco-listed Laurisilva forest.

Madeira is also a centre for water activities. You can explore the rich ocean landscape with a canoe, kayak or stand up paddle boarding as well as parasailing, banana boat trips and jet ski tours.

Local tour options include the chance to visit some of Madeira’s quaint villages including Porto Moniz, famed for its volcanic rock swimming pools, and Santana, known for its A-framed cottages.

Explore our holidays in Madeira, including the latest special offers. Also see the best time to visit Madeira.

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