- Madeira Beach
Just imagine the following scene: in the blue waters of the Atlantic is mountainous green island. The mountains look in the crystal clear waters of the ocean, lost in its mysterious depths. Waterfalls cascade falls from the cliffs and fall into a natural swimming pool with thermal water, formed in volcanic rocks … a dream? Not at all. All this extraordinary beauty and pristine purity of nature can be seen in Madeira.
Madeira is located just 500 km from the coast of Africa and 1000 km from mainland Portugal (and a half hour flight from Lisbon). The population totals 260,000 people, half of whom live in the capital – the city of Funchal. The island stretches for 57 km in length and 22 km in width (the total area of 741 square km). In Madeira archipelago includes the island of Porto Santo and the uninhabited islands Dezertash and Selvazhensh.
The climate in Madeira is very modest: the average temperature in summer 22 ° C, winter 16 ° C, water temperature, respectively, 22 ° C and 18 ° C, which is due to the proximity of the Gulf Stream. There is practically no change of seasons, so the island can without exaggeration be called the island of eternal spring.
The favorable climate of Madeira made it a favorite vacation spot: The winters are quite warm, and summer is never a strong suffocating heat. And all this thanks to the wind rose, due to the geographical location of the island. Curative air Madeira and the local climate perfect tone and restore strength and excellent hotels offer their guests literally royal holiday. It is hard to find the best place to relax and temporarily forget about their problems.
Seven years later the island had grown the first settlement. Their inhabitants have begun processing fertile soil, using the favorable climatic conditions for growing sugar cane. Getting rich on this “white gold”, the settlers brought to the island of slaves to work the land, fields, terraces, and irrigating canals (meadows), which to this day are used to “recharge” the steep slopes. Sugar was not only a major source of income, but also to a product that has brought the island world famous. After all, without it would be impossible to manufacture “Madera” – wine, the taste of which drew in the second half of XVI century British travelers. They stopped here to relax and enjoy the tropical climate on the way home from India.
Refers to the wealth of Madeira and its cuisine. The restaurants of the island offers a truly wide choice of seafood and fresh fish from a variety of crabs and shellfish to juicy tuna and sword fish. One of the most famous dishes – eshpetada (barbeque) – roasted on the spit of a laurel tree. Eat eshpetadu with fragrant homemade bread, washed down with red wine. Impressive is also an abundance of fruit, grown on rich volcanic soils, which require virtually no chemical fertilizers.
Madeira built a unique irrigation system. Rainwater is stored in reservoirs or lakes, and then assigned to a network of narrow channels (here referred to as meadows), which encircle the entire island. Levada carry water over long distances to the vineyards and fruit plantations. Their total length is more than two thousand kilometers, and some were held in the XVI century. But meadows There is another advantage that is particularly appreciated hikers. With footpaths laid along the meadows, open the most spectacular views. Many tourists enjoy the natural beauty of Madeira, walking along the meadows, where you can choose a guided tour or wander on their own. Impossible to get lost – traveler issued maps of the canals. So Madeira – a real paradise for those who like to make walking and enjoy the beautiful scenery, not suffering here from the unbearable heat, high humidity and troublesome insects.
Of course, the island of Madeira gained fame water sports center. These same fans come to water skiing, surfing and windsurfing, scuba diving, sailing. In recent years Madeira has also become a first class international center for underwater fishing. It happens that there are caught blue marlin weighing up to 500 kg. Rich in local waters and various types of tuna.
Bathed in Madeira, mainly in the basins, as the steep slopes of the island not always make it easy to go down to the ocean. But fans of extreme rest in Madeira offer swim in the natural volcanic pools, which fills the ocean water. Those who want to relax on a sandy beach, it makes sense to go to the island of Porto Santo. Before he can be reached in ten minutes by plane or 2 hours by ferry. At the time Columbus discovered yet, that this cozy island – an ideal place to make the time to forget about everyday worries and problems. He himself had lived here for several years, marrying the daughter of a local governor. Along the coast of Porto Santo stretches for 9 km strip the stunning and rare to clean beaches. Their golden sand is famous for its healing properties. To bathe in the warm and calm waters of the Atlantic all year round. Fans of outdoor activities will find excellent opportunities for water sports, as well as on Porto Santo, a flat terrain than in Madeira, many prefer to bicycle to any other means of transport to become more familiar with the island.
More than 500 years of cultural and historical heritage of Madeira is reflected in the numerous monuments that can be seen in churches and museums of the island. In the past, many wealthy merchants donate to churches, magnificent paintings and other works of art, the most valuable of which are now stored in the museum of religious art. The island can be found throughout the work of local craftsmen and applied art. Center for handicrafts is a place Camacha, which produces the famous wickerwork. Madeira is famous for its embroidery and beautiful tablecloths.
Madeira is also famous for its colorful festivals and carnivals, such as New Year’s holiday fireworks (December-January); February carnival (a small copy of Brazilian Carnival), Easter celebrations (March-April), Festival of Flowers (April-May); Wine Festival (September) .