In October 2004, we went to Madeira
for a week. Our friends, Ros and Adrian arrived a week ahead of
us because they had a little more time than we did. They did the
hard work of investigating all that the island had to offer, so
that we could just choose from a short list. We enjoyed the week
immensely, a mixture of beautiful scenery, long walks and general
relaxation, with lots of laughs and shared experiences.
The airport is interesting, although
Geoff was a little alarmed to see how short the runway appeared
One of the first places we visited
was the market in Funchal, with an amazing fish section
It didn't take Adrian and Geoff
long to find the real taste of Madeira, while Bruce and Ros went
off shopping (with an emergency stop for coffee and cake, no photos
of this, unfortunately!)
We did a lot of sightseeing, mostly
by hiring taxis. This gave us a lot of flexibility because the drivers
knew all the best places to go and how to navigate the roads, some
of which were quite scary!
The cable car ride was really fun.
Geoff was a little uneasy at first, but soon started to enjoy it
Close to where the cable car stopped
was the Monte Palace Tropical Garden. We spent a few happy hours
strolling through them.
Then it was time for the return
trip back to Funchal
The beach directly below our hotel...
...showing the restaurant where we
had a delicious meal one evening
One day, we went off on our own
for a long "Levada" walk. It was quite a lot walk, with
some parts quite steep. We think Ros and Adrian had some prior insight,
which is why they chose not to join us!
We were rewarded with some specatular
...and some lovely woodland flowers
along the way.
Our hotel, the Madeira Regency Palace,
was very comfortable.
Another taxi adventure, with more
More coffee and cake, this time
at the botanical gardens!
Sadly, it was time to leave just
as we were starting to relax!