Author: Sophia B.
Position: Madeira, Funchal
Nautical position: 33°47,5N , 14°9,5W
Etmal: 0 NM (total: 2641 NM)
Today ends our very enjoyable stay in Madeira. Last Tuesday, the 3rd of November we arrived in the harbour of Funchal, the capital of Madeira. We were all very relieved that we made it to Madeira although we were in a little time delay because of the engine problem in the Mediterranean Sea.
The teachers organised a few very cool days here for us. Our stay started with a very nice hike. We drove with a bus along the eastcoast of Madeira to a car park from which the hiking tour directly started. After one minute out of the bus, we were surprised by a rain shower and a lot of wind. But the mood was still good and so we started to hike up the east-peak of Madeira.
On Thursday we had free shore-leave the whole day. Most of us just went to the city-center of Funchal, strolling around, do food shopping, buy some souvenirs and just enyoing the time together.
After we got the information that we are going to stay a few more days in Madeira because the flight of our new Captain Chris was cancelled, the teachers planned a surfing day for us. Most of us have never done surfing before, so we were quite excited to learn it. We were picked up by a bus and drove to the beach of Seixal in the north of Madeira. We met three very kind surfing teachers who were supposed to teach us surfing. After about 10 minutes of theoretical training on the beach, we tried our luck in the water. It was not that easy to stand up on the boards and most of our tries ended with funny drops into the water. Nevertheless I think all of us did a great job and we had a lot of fun!
Must do’s for Madeira
Now that we experienced a lot of Madeira I want to give you some tips and places we liked the most.
There is a big market hall in Funchal where you can find a lot of little booths with fruits, spices, wine, plantseeds and many other local specialties. It is very interesting to stroll through it and just enjoy this special atmosphere. Furthermore you will be invited to try all kinds of crazy fruits. The most popular here is the pineapple-banana, which is a mix of both and tastes very good. We were also tempted to try various kinds of maracuja-mix fruits. There is for example a maracuja-banana, maracuja-orange and even a maracuja-tomato! You just have to be aware that it is much cheaper to buy fruits at the little street stands than in the market hall. Anyway it is totally worth to visit it!
Hiking track Ponta de Sao Laurenco
As described above, it is a very nice tour even for not so experienced hikers. You will have some incredible views! It took us about 2,5 hours but we also did a few breaks to enjoy the view and of course a lunch break.
Old town of Funchal
Funchal has a very nice historic centre with a lot of narrow alleys and small local boutiques. Moreover there are some beautiful botanical gardens. So a big recommendation from us!
Insider tips from Ocean College
- There is a bakery named “A CONFEITARIA” where you can buy a lot of delicious things. Especially you should try the portugese Pastel de Nata. It is a little cake out of puff paste with a caramel-pudding filling.
- “Santa Catarina Cafe”: It is located opposite the harbour on a little hill in a lovely garden. Clara and I went there to drink a homemade lemonade and of course ate a Pastel de Nata. We had such a nice time there with the beautiful view across the sea, the harbour of Funchal and most important, the Pelican!
So all in all our visit to Madeira was great fun for all of us and we really enjoyed the time here. Now we are looking forward to sail again and to visit another beautiful place- Tenerife!
PS: Da ich nun die Chance habe, möchte ich gerne meine Familie und Freunde ganz lieb grüßen. Mama, Papa, Krisi, mittlerweile habe ich alle eure Briefe geöffnet. Ich habe mich über jeden einzelnen sehr gefreut und bin dankbar, so eine tolle Familie hinter mir stehen zu haben<3