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      our holidays > Walking Holidays > Portugal & its Islands > Landscapes of Western Madeira

Landscapes of Western Madeira

Explore a verdant paradise on foot
This Holiday in a nutshell
  • self-guided, single-centre walking holiday
  • discover Madeira’s more traditional side
  • easy access to three distinct walking areas with your hire car
  • homely accommodation with a swimming pool
  • choice of routes, including some lesser-known levadas
  • upgrade to a spacious cottage

The name ‘Madeira’ conjures up images of levadas (waterways) lined with exotic flowers, and of luxuriant mountain slopes. Western Madeira is no different in this respect – there is certainly no shortage of drama or colour in the scenery – but what does set it apart is that it is the quieter, lesser visited side of the island.

The sugar plantations that were once a feature of this part of the island have long gone, but the villages retain a timeless feel, clustered around traditional churches.

The levadas here are not as well known among walkers as those elsewhere, and many of the villages still feel quite remote – their backdrop of forbidding cliffs and mountains meant that, until a generation ago, some were virtually cut off from the outside world. Further inland, the high Paúl da Serra also feels startlingly different, its wild expanses of moorland grazed by cows and sheep. Thanks to your hire car, you can explore all this and more on this very flexible holiday suitable for walkers of all levels.

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 Average Temperatures & Rainfall
  J F M A M J J A S O N D
°C 16 16 16 16 18 20 22 23 23 21 19 17
mm 111 93 74 48 29 17 8 10 39 81 110 108

The average maximum daytime temperatures and monthly rainfall relate to the nearest weather station and are intended as a guide only.

As you explore this Atlantic island’s coast, interior and mountains – all of which have their own microclimate – you should be prepared for variations of temperature, and for rain – Madeira has high levels of humidity. There are flowers all year, but April, May and June are particularly colourful.