It's hard to write something about Madeira that hasn't been available on the internet yet. Especially when you go there without a bicycle. I found out about it when I started googlać what to do at all. The first result: a dozen or so strollers, a few places - great, read, marked on the map, we keep going. Another result: exactly the same. Still the same. Foreign entries - the same. The initial excitement about the trip subsided a bit, because how is it? When everyone recommends the same thing, it gets dangerous.

Other blogs better

So, if you are looking for practical information about Madeira, please visit elsewhere:

60 carefully written routes (EN): https://www.journeyera.com/madeira-hikes/
Poorly described routes, but more legible and with a rating + appka (EN): https://walkmeguide.com/en/madeira/trails-list/
Polish island guide: https://coupleaway.com/przewodnik-madera/
Entry for lazy people with a map and in Polish: https://www.mamasaidbecool.pl/madera-atrakcje-punkty-widokowe-mapa/
for this, of course, classics like By bus through the world, Wheels Toczy and so on.

So I invite you to enter the same entry as the existing ones, but with worse photos and a much lower level of excitement, knowledge and details. But with more skepticism! If you ask me why read this - I answer: I don't know.

Prices.

I like to write about prices. Blog entries do not disappear and regularly, a few years after each publication, I receive e-mails with the content "Hey, but these prices are from your butt there. We were and it was more expensive ". Thanks to these e-mails, I can read these messages aloud at random moments in my life in the company: "hey, do you know that the accommodation in the Californian hotel that I recommended 3 years ago is now twice as expensive?" Everyone then laughs to death. I mean, if I were in company, they would laugh.

We buy a trip to Madeira on Thursday afternoon. This information is important because the departure is at 6 am on Saturday, which is about 1.5 days later. We catch last-minute on the website of ... ITAKA travel agency. This is our first "organized trip". For very good flights on time (Saturday departure - Sunday return) and a very nice hotel, we pay just over PLN 2,000 per head for 8 days. Hotel Duas Torres it's cool because it has a kitchenette, sea view and it is in front of Portugal's best store - Pingo Doce (Jeronimooo!). And the hotel manager threw us champagne to our room for Sylwia's birthday, but this, of course, does not affect the assessment. Unless other hotel managers are reading this then it has. It was better cost-effective than organizing the trip yourself.

We pay 15 euros a day for a car from Guerin rental. It is worth adding that we do not take the cheapest one, because we know well that on vacation you get fat and that the hills in Madeira are steep - we need a power reserve. Just like the white Clio has. Until the end of the trip, we look at everyone in Smarts and 500 with superiority *. The times when the whole company had to leave the bus before the climbs on Traffik trips to the Tatra Mountains taught us a lot. We pay 56 euros for fuel to drive 900 km. A lot of kilometers, because we drive most suboptimal. Something like my attempts to approach the traveling salesman algorithm in college.

*except when one of my favorite photographers in the country parks on our favorite beach, but by the time I believe Sylwia he is, we're a long way off. Then I look with admiration.

- I cannot write that the traditional Madeiran bread tastes like a garlic baguette from Biedronka

- But it tastes like that

Most restaurants cost between 10 and 20 euros per dish. For a grazing double dinner consisting of soups, main course and dessert, we usually pay about 20-30 euro per person. From restaurants worth mentioning: Tradicional (because a lot, tasty and rich) and And Pipa (because it is one of those "hidden, tourist, hacked"Places).

Generally it is cheap.

Madeira doesn't.

For years, the words of Wojtek have been pounding in my head. He once said that if he takes a ready track from someone, it then feels like he is living his life. I have the same thing with trips, which I base on what I can find on other blogs. In the case of Madeira, it was felt like never before, even though I had about 2 days to prepare. When on every blog you see the same photos, the same places and the same walking routes, it is impossible to turn off the lights of being someone else. Because does this place offer nothing more than the "top 10/20 best Madeira hikes"? This is the Stelvio effect. You are in places that you haven't been, and it feels like you've already been there.

This leads to a situation where someone sees a cool photo on the internet and decides: I have to go there, do the same so that others would be jealous and want to go there too and have such a photo.

From my humble view, this is also the case in Madeira. number miradours is enormous, the list of strollers as well, but you are unlikely to discover anything new. Most of them are marked on google maps, and almost everything within 2-3 hours from the island's capital. Not only that, there is even a special asphalt road leading to most of them, ended with a parking lot.

And guess what? That's okay. Madeira is worth it.

While on the first day I was a bit skeptical after seeing the most famous cliffs of the island, each subsequent day surprised me more.

The biggest disadvantage of Madeira (for me) is the fact that the trails do not form meaningful loops. In order not to return the same road, our tours are over 20-30 km long and cover the walks with asphalt. Of course, you can count on a taxi at the target parking lot, but I will illustrate the problem differently. The most popular mountain route is about 7 km - with a 3-hour walk. To return by taxi from the target parking lot to the initial one, you have to overcome 37km asphalt (over an hour's drive). There are some buses, but they are an option for people with an unlimited amount of time.

Madeira yes.

Madeira is for me an island of a very active pensioner - in a positive sense, of course. Mental, not physical, pensioner. A tired man who does not want to plan too much, but just wants to walk among the trees, go for a walk in the mountains, look at the ocean, eat like a pig with seafood and massacre with Poncha (their more lemon). And that's all in the release weatherproofbecause it's gonna be fun anyway.

Overall it's great and I hope the photos are enough to prove it. If not - I refer to other blogs. Madeira is a place where you can relax. It is clean, nice, pleasant and touristic. The exact opposite of most places we normally visit.

Madeira I don't know.

The weather in winter has little to do with what you expect from a "trip to warm countries". Near the ocean it is stable 15-20 degrees, at the peaks it is stable 5-10 degrees. A week after our departure, snow is falling on Rouvio. We had such a wind that it kidnapped small children, and their parents later found them somewhere in Tenerife or the Azores. In preparation for the trip, I suggest you buy waterproof shoes, socks, pants and a jacket with a hood, and then enter a bathtub filled with water.

Then you can think about it, conclude that all this water resistance makes no sense and accept being wet. Because it rains a lot. Even when it is not raining, it still rains ... or it does not rain, but it flies from a waterfall. Or it's raining a little. Or it's raining at the hotel, and not 30 minutes away by car. And vice versa. Same with visibility. The advantage is that we could do the same route every day and it would look completely different each time.

Madeira kills.

In my opinion, dark weather suits this island much more than a full lamp (unless you prefer beaching on stones). Madeira is a bit deceptive though. The trails are well marked, secured in such a way that even a person with an above-average fear of heights can manage and everything seems simple. It is exactly like in any Jurassic Park movie - nice, idyllic, vacation and suddenly a tyrannosaur bites your head off. It is not difficult to do in Madeira. In all this bliss it is easy to forget that if the wave pulls you from the promenade into the sea, you will never sail out. If you put your foot wrong on a 400-meter cliff, you will have a lot of time in flight to think about this mistake. Or finally, when you discover that the stones on the road were not placed there, but fell off the slope. In my opinion, this is a place where it is easy to die. Worst of all, it's easy to die stupidly.

This is not Morocco, no one here will say that you died of exhaustion, far from civilization, in the Atlas Mountains, and your dried remains were eaten by wild animals. Here, when you die, the family will say "well, you died on a walk by stumbling on an all-inclusive trip". A beautiful epitaph for this brave cyclist, who fought so bravely at the Tatra Road Race

Madeira by bike.

If there is any place where I have been without a bike and I have not regretted it (and there are not many of them), Madeira is definitely it. Because yes, the roads are, even pretty cool. You can even find some side, less frequented. They have great views and I suspect that the asphalt between Pico Areeiro and the Valley of the Nuns or the ER110 road I would call "epic", but it's probably not worth it. The slopes are too large and too frequent. I have never been in a place where such steep and long climbs were crammed so close together. If I lived in Madeira, I would love to have a bicycle, but if I were going there for less than 3 weeks, I would have the impression that I am missing the best of everything.

Here, even in the tunnels, it's so steep that you can't pretend to be a professional Livigno cyclist who wants to stay dry despite the rain in training. Sorry, hermetic again.

Although, of course, there are many people on the island with large shock absorbers and I believe that they have a lot of fun from the descents. However, they have to come back by bus - such skiing, but cycling.

Bicycles are already attacking us at the airport. When I stand at the car rental desk, 10 NS Bikes cartons pass me by. Even then, however, I am almost sure that no one normal is doing a big group trip here and it must be for a photo session. Well, unless it's a trip aimed at mastering the perfection of removing tires from the rim in combat conditions - a course for the most outstanding and talented. Sorry, such a hermetic joke from Rondo.

Evidence.

From those ~ 200,000 steps around Madeira and 900km by car, which are definitely too small numbers to be able to speak authoritatively about the island, I brought some photos. Very similar to the photos of all the others who have been to Madeira, because they are probably exactly the same frames. It just shows that they weren't lying. Below are the places that are most worth mentioning.

Vereda da Ponta de São Lourenço

Every (almost) entry about Madeira starts with Sao Lourenco - I didn't want to be worse. A very nice place for such a 3-4 hour walk. If your plane lands at a decent time, you can go here right away. Getting there is easy, the route is very easy and from the airport it takes about 15 minutes. Generally, it is a walkway through the cliffs and although I usually avoid such strong comparisons - they are probably even better than those in Orzechowo. A lot of people, the return trip is the same. It is worth "passing" at the very beginning of the trip, because in the following days they will not make such an impression ... and they do the first.

Vereda do Areeiro (Pico Areeiro -> Pico Ruivo)

The most famous and most obvious mountain route on the island. However, it does not diminish her, because it is also one of the best scenic routes I have ever seen (and I have seen little). I am even tempted to say that in the ratio of views / experiences / difficulty this is one of the best routes I have walked - comparable with the "wow effect" to the routes through American National Parks (only infinitely smaller). It goes between the highest and the third highest peak of the island. Areeiro (the third one) is great and you get on it with a car, Ruivo (the tallest) is honestly - that's what. Anyway, I recommend it - if you have one day on the island, this is the route (and if you go fast, you will also catch the cliffs in one day).

It is worth planning more than one visit, because the weather is very changeable and the landscape looks dramatically different depending on the conditions. In my opinion, the worse the better, unless it's quite bad, then it's actually bad.

+ Pico to Cedro

And when you are there, from the parking lot at Areeiro, you can jump to the neighboring Pico, where there is no one (because the trail is average), but there is a perfect panorama of the mountains. That is, when it is. Here, for example, was when I started taking out the camera, but by the time I squeezed the trigger it was gone:

Vereda to Fanal

This is the forest that everyone says the uglier the prettier. I do not know, because we aimed specifically at the ugly one and we left the hotel in such a way, and you can see how it turned out in the pictures. The most important information here is that when you reach the parking lot under the famous Fanal forest and go on the Vereda do Fanal walking route (from which you will then smoke a few kilometers with asphalt), you will bypass all these trees. Because the trail in this parking lot ends, it does not start, and the trees are a bit further. Which, of course, does not mean that the stroller is not worth doing - it is very pleasant. These are some of the best trees I have seen in my life (and I have seen a lot of trees). Especially when your girlfriend is a fan of hiding in and jumping out of trees. Mine is.

West Coast

If I were to point to the most surprising place, it would be the entire western part of the island. Huge cliffs, much less people, smaller roads, more interesting towns and attractions in the style of Teleférico das Achadas da Cruz, one of the steepest railways in the world. Well, with a 98% slope, the field for rivals remains small. Downstairs, a very nice, empty town (from which it is impossible to escape reasonably in the evening, because the cable car runs until 6.00 pm) and great sunsets. There on the right, at the bottom, you can see a wagon in the photo:

Levada da Ponta do Pargo

This is the second best place in the west - the aforementioned laweda goes through the slopes and the forest and avoids all the best, but to close the loop, it is worth walking along the coast. In the category of "the most beautiful place on the island" Miradouro de Boa Morte definitely wins with us. Then there are some waterfalls, lanterns, etc., but nothing makes such an impression as a church + a cow + a cliff, all in a native scenery from the Azores. If you want to keep in mind "your nice place to get away during meetings on Teamsach" - here you can save.

Levada Fajã do Rodrigues

This is a completely random levada that we went to during extremely bad weather. Well, not all tree and rock sheltered trails are good in a downpour. It's against the internet - it wasn't. Maybe the internet was on this route when it was raining a little less.

It's fair to say it was very wet in every part of the body. But it does not matter - Madeira is nice, even when it is ugly - especially with waterfalls. I mention the route because it ends in a tunnel that is over a kilometer long. It is low, narrow, with a great potential to fall into the water up to your knees. Defeating it subjectively takes several hours (Strava says 30 minutes). The best thing about it is that after you cover it, you will be left with maybe 100 meters of the route and you will reach a place that I would call "this it?" or "that is what I was going here for?" and the only way back is another half an hour of walking in a huddled position with your head bumping against the stone ceiling and tearing apart Ultralight against the walls. Very nice. For people with homeofficem for years, this position should be natural. Anyway, the experience is interesting, but I don't know if it's needed.

Caldeirão Verde + Caldeirão do Inferno

The popular route extended by another popular route, and then by another and another, which resulted in a trip that was 33 km long and ended with a more than 800-meter ascent to Pico Ruivo (the highest peak). I do not recommend this version, but in my opinion the two title routes are around TOP3 of the island. Even though you go back and forth, it doesn't bother you too much, because you know - the views in different directions are different. It's like Jurassic Park - mountains, rocks, waterfalls, green, water, earth, hallucination, hemoglobin, these things.

Here, of course, it is worth adding that the grande finale of Caldeirao Verde, i.e. the title waterfall, is 100 meters behind the route. I mean, on the route, but for closing it, because someone was buried there once. Of course, we avoid this waterfall as well as all other tourists, because it would be irresponsible to climb behind these small barriers. On this route (as well as most others) the waterfalls are too big for my camera.

Levada das 25 Fontes + Levada to Risco

Probably one of the most popular strollers on the island and by far the worst of all we have climbed. Don't get me wrong, the walk is quite pleasant, although a lot of people, and the waterfall at the end would probably be impressive on the first day, but we saw much better on the island. It is wide, in an interesting basin, and if I had to come here for one photo of my girlfriend posing in a dress, it would probably be right here. Because the hashtag on Instagram is probably the most popular.

Ponta do Sol

One of the few places in the world where Sylwia has decided to sunbathe. I do not know if it is caused by an extremely rocky beach, large waves, no children, or the possibility of sitting in a hat, but it is a fact. We sat on the beach and it was good. Right next to it, there is a famous waterfall that falls into the middle of the road, so you can wash your car in a bucket style. Like a Real Pole, you can leave the girl on the beach and jump and wash the cart.

In conclusion: I highly recommend Madeira. Clean, nice, pleasant, interesting and cheap. I have nothing more to say.