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With houses built on the side of a hill, an attractive bay and a mountainous backdrop, Funchal has one of Portugal’s most beautiful settings. The coastal city is the capital of the island of Madeira and combines a modern beach resort with hundreds of years of history. Surf, tour ancient buildings and sail the ocean to see whales and dolphins.
The town is named for the bright yellow fennel (funcho in Portuguese) that grew here when the Portuguese settled the area in the early 15th century.
Funchal’s natural beauty isn’t confined to the coast and surrounding mountains. Spend a few hours in the sunken, rose and French gardens of Jardins de Palheiro. Stroll through Jardim Orquidea’s miniature jungle filled with varied orchid species. Enjoy thousands of blooms at the Madeira Botanical Gardens.
Explore the historic buildings of the old town area. Admire the stained-glass windows, baroque altars and gothic arches of the 16th-century Sé Cathedral. Amble along cobblestone streets lined by old buildings, some dating back to the 15th and 16th centuries. Visit the Museo Municipal for its natural history exhibits. Gaze at the collection of Turkish and North African decorative tiles at the Frederico de Freitas Museum.
Ride the cable car up to Monte, a small village 1,804 feet (550 meters) above sea level. When you want to come back down to Funchal, ride a toboggan. These resemble large wicker baskets and are pushed down the steep roads by drivers.
Walk along the promenade from the city center to the Praia Formosa, a collection of beaches. Venture farther out to sea on a dolphin- and whale-watching trip or take a boat cruise along the coast.
As Madeira’s capital city, Funchal has good transportation links. Madeira Airport is 13 miles (21 kilometers) away. With Funchal’s mild subtropical climate, its beaches, gardens and historic sites can be enjoyed year-round.
Funchal has a reputation as an excellent destination, with no less than 125 Funchal hotels that are bookable through Expedia.
Make reservations for the Belmond Reid's Palace or the Hotel Royal Savoy, a couple of the more upscale hotels that the island offers. At the cheaper end of the accommodation spectrum are the highly popular Residencial Monte Verde and the A Casa do Caseiro.
Would you like to make some amazing memories? A holiday is the ideal time to dive into some amazing new experiences.
Start off your trip to Funchal by checking out one or two of these things to do:
If you'd like to check out all the activities on offer, jump onto our Funchal things to do page.
This is my second visit to this hotel it’s absolutely amazing with lots of pools free shuttle bus excellent staff fabulous amenities outstanding views and fabulous price and we w stay again and again
Great Location. Great Views, Wonderful Staff. Will be even better when connected to the property being built next door.
I like the scenery and the village and the sun and finally the poncha
The front desk person that attend me was no nice. Has an actitude and kind of rude. The parking is terrible
The rooms were spacious and clean with a balcony overlooking the water. It is a shame that none of the outdoor pools are heated. Booking restaurants on site was difficult and we couldn't eat in the Japenese Restaurant as it was fully booked for the 3 days which we were there.
Incredible views, pools, staff (except for one male receptionist), well kept large and spacious rooms. Amazing breakfast spread, best enjoyed on the terrace of the in-hotel restaurant. Lovely trip advisors to help book adventures - one lady went above and beyond to get us on a dolphin boat tour after ...