Madeira Flower Festival and The Wall of Hope

8 Days

29th Apr 2019 - From £1199 pp

FM4

All Info

Overview

Camara da Lobos, where Winston Churchill painted
Camara da Lobos, where Winston Churchill painted

Come with us to beautiful Madeira, lapped by the waters of the Gulf Stream and blessed with warm summers and mild winters. In Madeira, Springtime is honoured with the Flower Festival held after Easter featuring hundreds of children placing flowers on the ‘Wall of Hope’ plus the Flower Parade of floral floats and carpets. Included excursions take in the best of the island, including Camara da Lobos, where Winston Churchill painted, and the glass platform at Cabo Girau with breathtaking views over the highest sea cliffs in Europe. We stay near Funchal centre with all meals and drinks included at the hotel.

Funchal Europe’s most picturesque and cleanest capital, is a modern, cosmopolitan city, well known for its subtropical climate and exotic plants. Nestled in a great natural amphitheatre, facing the blue Atlantic with a backdrop of dramatic mountains, Funchal is located in the south of Madeira, on its sunniest coast amidst banana plantations and gardens where flowers bloom all year round.

Madeira flower festival float
Festival floats are a riot of colour

Madeira Flower Festival Floral species originating in many parts of the world bloom in Madeira. The island’s special climat allows species from both tropical and cold regions to flourish. Springtime is honoured like a Queen being crowned with the Flower Festival held every year after Easter. The festivities begin on Saturday with the building of the The Wall of Hope. This initiative, held since 1979, on an appeal to the world for peace, involves over a thousand children who go from Avenida Arriaga to Praça do Municipio to place one flower each on a wall to symbolise hope. The next day dozens of floats decorated with the island’s most typical flowers leave the scent of gentle but ephemeral perfumes in the air - it is time for the Flower Parade. At the same time, to mark the occasion, Madeiran artists devote their time to building unforgettable floral carpets.

Itinerary

Monte Palace tropical garden, Madeira
Monte Palace tropical garden


View from Picos dos Barcelos Madeira
View from Picos dos Barcelos

glass platform at Cabo Girau Madeira
The amazing glass platform at Cabo Girau

Funchal, Madeira‘s capital
Funchal, Madeira‘s capital

An exciting toboggan ride into Funchal
An exciting toboggan ride into Funchal

Encumeada Pass, Madeira
The Encumeada Pass


Day 1:
Check in at your selected airport for the flight to Funchal. Transfer to the hotel Raga.

Day 2:
Morning free. Half-day afternoon tour of historic Funchal including the Quinta das Cruzes museum of ancient buildings, orchids, porcelain, furniture and silverware, or the Frederico de Freitas museum created by a lawyer and art collector. Visit the Santa Clara Convent and finish the tour at the church of the Colegio.

Day 3:
Morning free. Afternoon half-day tour to the centre of the island. Travel to Pico dos Barcelos, west of the capital, for amazing views then stop at Eira do Serrado, a look out point on a crater in the `village of the nuns’ Curral des Freiras. Continue to Monte to see the grave of Charles I of Austria, and have the opportunity to descend by toboggan (fare payable locally). Originally a fast means of transport down to Funchal for people living in Monte, these toboggan sledges appeared around 1850. This exciting experience on narrow, winding streets down to Funchal, is in two-seat wicker sledges gliding on wooden runners, pushed and steered by two men traditionally dressed in white cotton clothes and a straw hat, using their rubber-soled boots as brakes.

Day 4:
This morning we visit the Madeira Botanical Gardens and take a cable car ride with views out to sea.

Day 5:
Free day at leisure.

Day 6:
Full day excursion with lunch. Visit: Camara da Lobos, where Winston Churchill painted; the amazing glass platform at Cabo Girau with it’s breathtaking views over the highest sea cliffs in Europe; Ribeira Brava; Ponta do Sol; Madalena do Mar; Loreto and the plateau of Paul da Serra protected by UNESCO. Continue to Porto Moniz with it’s lava pools and enjoy lunch by the sea at Sao Vicente. Return via the Encumeada Pass and the Serra d’Agua valley, a World Heritage Site. This afternoon we will watch the moving Wall of Hope Ceremony.

Day 7:
Morning Free. This afternoon we transfer into Funchal and take our grandstand seats (included) to watch The Flower Festival Float Parade. This event is known for the magnificence and splendour of the floats and costumes of the hundreds of participants, mostly children, richly adorned with numerous, varied and magnificent floral displays parading to the sound of festive musical themes.

Day 8:
Transfer to Funchal airport and check in for your flight back to the UK.

Your Hotel

Hotel Raga pool

Hotel Raga – 3 Star
The hotel is situated a short distance from the city centre, on a hillside in Funchal’s renowned Lido area with spectacular views from its high vantage point. Enjoy all-inclusive catering with 3 meals per day, bar snacks, and free drinks from noon to 11pm. The outdoor, heated swimming pool overlooks the sea and Lido area.

Land View Rooms look out over the hill behind the hotel and have a balcony with a table and two chairs. All have flat screen satellite TV, air conditioning, telephone, mini bar, safe, sofa, desk & chair, hair dryer and bath/shower/wc.

Sea View Room - add £70pp total
The hotel’s enviable hillside location ensures that its sea view rooms offer fabulous views of the Atlantic ocean and the Lido promenade.

The hotel‘s rooftop restaurant



A sea-view room

Included


  • Return flights with luggage to Funchal - supp’t may apply - see Flights tab

  • Return airport to hotel transfers

  • 7 night’s sharing a land view room

  • 7 breakfasts, 6 lunches (including 1 by the sea at Sao Vincente with drinks) & 7 dinners plus bar snacks 4pm-6pm at the Pool Bar. Tea & Coffee is included 4pm-6pm &  with meals

  • Free Drinks noon-11pm. House Brands - Beer, Red or White wine by the glass, Rum, Vodka, Gin, Whisky, Brandy, Soft drinks (not bottled water)

  • Use of the hotel gym and outdoor heated pool

  • Porterage

  • Excursions as stated including Grandstand seating for the Flower Parade

  • Services of a Tour Manager in resort

Flights

Return flights are possible from Belfast, Birmingham, Bristol, East Midlands, Edinburgh, Gatwick, Glasgow, Leeds, Manchester, Newcastle and Stansted direct to Madeira. On arrival transfer to the hotel.

  • Flights are subject to availability at time of booking and a supplement may apply

  • Includes 1 carry-on bag and 1 checked-in bag per person

  • Transfer time from Funchal Airport to the hotel is approximately 25 minutes

  • Please call us on 01895 83 33 33 to discuss your flight requirements