Land ho! Madeira, Portugal. 4/6/19

After a reasonable night’s sleep we are ready to explore the beautiful island of Madeira, Portugal. What a change from St. Martin. Our ship pulls in at about noon and we are scheduled to take a tour at 1:15PM. I am feeling much better today and we are so happy to get on land.

Arriving in Madeira
First impressions are favorable

After a delightful ride through the city of Funchal and the countryside with its terraced farming gardens we arrive at the Cabo Girão Skywalk. The skywalk is partially a see-through section down the cliff and spectacular views of the island abound.

Bird of Paradise plants on the walk out to the skywalk
Wow, what a view
It’s a bit windy up here
John’s hair does not move in the wind

Later we travel down to the fishing village of Camara de Lobos where we are treated to the local drink, poncha, a combination of rum, lemon juice, and honey. We have a brief time to walk around as well.

A street in the small fishing village of Camara de Lobos
Our group bellying up to the bar for some poncha
The bar crew squeezing the lemons, muddling the rinds, and straining the poncha
John enjoying his glass of poncha
Look! I found a little church to visit
The small natural bay at Camara de Lobos
Noah’s Ark landed here
Portuguese fishermen playing cards by the bay. The stones keep the cards from blowing away

Finally we end up in their biggest city, Funchal. It is clean and lovely. There are flowering trees and shrubs everywhere. We had hoped to see their early 16th century cathedral but it was closed by the time we get there. Unfortunately we get to this last site late and only had 20 minutes to explore. Otherwise this is one of the better included tours we have been on from the Viking Ocean trips.

Statue of Joao Goncalves Zarco (1390-1471) He was a Portuguese explorer who established settlements and recognition of the Madeira Islands and was appointed first captain of Funchal by Prince Henry the Navigator. (Wikipedia)
This is the early 16th century cathedral in Funchal that we did not get to see
Fancy bank building
Downtown garden across from our location

Later we have dinner at The Restaurant. The food is seeming repetitive at this point. Everything comes with a garnish of watercress. They must be out of everything else.

Seared foie gras with watercress garnish
John starts with a scallop ceviche
We both have the Bergen fish soup which is much like the fish soup we actually had in Bergen
My dish of dried out chicken with watercress garnish
John has a quick seared piece of tuna with a watercress garnish

 

 

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