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mark-hodson
Award-winning travel writer
Annabelle Thorpe

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Madeira

Our verdict:

The sub-tropical island of Madeira is a perfect winter sun destination for those that want to do more than fly and flop. Set against a backdrop of dramatic cliffs, mountains and lush valleys, Madeira offers an outstanding choice of hotels, including some beautifully-restored quintas, great local restaurants and 600 miles of marked walking trails.

Recommended tour operator: Classic Collection Holidays

Quinta da Bela VistaThe spectacular coastlineLush scenery for great walkingContemporary hotel options

Classic Collection Holidays says

Just 32 miles long and 12 miles wide, the sub-tropical island of Madeira offers stunning and diverse scenery ranging from spectacular mountains to tumbling waterfalls and beautiful flora.

Known as the “floating garden” the island is warm and sunny year-round and less than four hours’ flight away, making it ideal for a winter break.

Madeira’s famous Levada walking trails offer spectacular views whether you want a gentle stroll or a more challenging hike. There are also two golf courses, scuba diving,deep sea fishing and even paragliding.

If you want an adrenalin rush, don’t miss a sledge ride down the cobbled streets from Monte down to the capital of Funchal. Steered and powered by two men known as carreiros, it’s not for the faint-hearted! For a more gentle ride, take the cable car from Funchal or the spectacular Botanical Gardens.

The standard of accommodation in Madeira is very high; our choice includes a range of luxury hotels in Funchal and boutique hotels and traditional quintas elsewhere on the island. Many properties offer excellent spas, with locations ranging from spectacular cliff tops, hillsides and golf courses to Funchal itself. Our knowledgeable team will help you find the perfect property for you.

Eating out in Madeira is a pleasure. There are hundreds of restaurants from gourmet dining to cosy family-run establishments where service excels. Island specialities include fresh Atlantic fish and espetada – beef cooked over a fire of laurel and served on a skewer.

Non-stop flights are available from 12 UK airports.

Find out more about our short breaks and longer holidays in Madeira.

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