Madeira was certainly good enough for Christopher Columbus, who lived in this archipelago for some years towards the end of the 15th century. Madeira is a truly stunning island, surrounded by picture-book blue seas and verdant vegetation. Its capital is Funchal, which sits cosily in a wide bay surrounded by mountains. The island became independent from Portugal in 1976. In terms of geography, it lies about 250 miles north of the Canary Islands.
Madeira is mountainous, which makes it perfect for adventure sports, tours and sightseeing. In addition, it is a nature-lover*s paradise, lending itself to photography, art, walking and water sports like scuba diving. There are many home-grown foods and wines available.
Three golf courses are set amongst stunning scenery and sea views. The culture is vibrant, featuring outdoor concerts, theatre and carnivals, plus friendly people.
All this hints at why firms such as sellmytimeshare.tv are seeing so much timeshare activity here. Short of selling up and moving to this incredible island, you may just find yourself booking flights for years to come!
Some great things to do include:
Walk along the prom from Funchal to Camara de Lobos (Sir Winston Churchill used to paint here)
Go to the Botanical Gardens
Try the famous toboggan ride – not for the faint-hearted.
Visit restaurants and cafes dotted around the island. Food portions tend to be quite large here, but don*t worry, there are lots of walking trails to burn off the calories. However, some of the pathways are winding and hilly, so it is advisable to take a walking stick
Find out when the street festivals take place. Don*t leave Madeira without going to one. Madeirans love wine, music and dressing up in flamboyant costumes Late May is a wonderful time to see the violet jacaranda trees in full bloom Take a cable car. The views are just magnificent ! Wear comfortable shoes. There are a lot of cobbled streets in Funchal!
Draw an imaginary parallel line from Madeira, and across the other side of Africa lies Malta, a tiny island some 16 miles long and 9 miles wide. The island thrums with activity. It is host to sports tournaments, music, theatre and dance.
Some forthcoming events for spring / summer 2015:
Two magnificent Easter parades, which take place on Qormi (Good Friday) and Vittoriosa (Easter Sunday)
Medieval Mdina Festival, depicting life in the middle ages. Music and theatre, April 6 – 7 From late April to early May, the International Fireworks Festival takes place around Valletta*s Grand Harbour. This signals the start of party time in Malta!
Village festivals take place all year long
Malta Open Bowling Championships, May 26 (3 days)
Isle of MTV Malta Special Music Festival, June 25
L’Imnarja Summer Folk Festival, Buskett Gardens. A party!
Malta Arts Festival, June 28 – July 12
Malta Jazz and Rock Festival, July 19 – 21
Farsons Great Beer Festival, July 27 – Aug 5
Victory Day, September 8