Scooter Tour of Funchal: Serving as the capital of Madeira, a Portuguese island nestled in the Atlantic Ocean, Funchal is a city brimming with historical, cultural, and natural allure. Boasting an array of attractions, from enchanting gardens and museums to charming streets and bustling markets, Funchal captivates and delights visitors with its diverse offerings.
In this article, we will explore Funchal through a scooter ride, a fun and practical way to get to know the city. We will cover the main tourist spots in Funchal and discover some lesser-known but equally interesting places. Additionally, we will provide some tips on where to eat, drink, and have fun in Funchal, so you can make the most of your stay in the capital of Madeira
Scooter Tour of Funchal: Advantages
If you’re looking for a fun, economical, and eco-friendly way to explore Funchal, a scooter is a great option. With a scooter, you can enjoy the beauty and culture of the city with more flexibility and freedom than other means of transportation. Here are some reasons to choose a scooter as your travel companion:
- Avoid traffic and the stress of finding parking. A scooter is easy to manoeuvre and can access places that cars or buses cannot.
- Save time and money. A scooter consumes less fuel than a car, meaning you can travel more with fewer expenses. Additionally, you can make the most of your time as you don’t have to wait for public transportation schedules or rely on taxis.
- Better appreciate the scenery and weather. A scooter allows you to feel the wind on your face and the sun on your skin while admiring the stunning views of Funchal.
- Contribute to environmental preservation. A scooter emits fewer pollutants than a car, helping to reduce the ecological footprint of your journey.
As you can see, a scooter is a mode of transportation that offers many advantages for those who want to experience Funchal differently and enjoyably. If you’re intrigued by this idea, don’t hesitate to rent a scooter with 7M Rides. You’ll be surprised by what this city has to offer.
Scooter Tour of Funchal: Preparing for the Ride
Before hitting the road with your scooter, it’s important to prepare well and follow some tips to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience. Here is some practical information on how to rent a scooter in Funchal and the legal and safety requirements when riding a scooter:
- To rent a scooter in Funchal, you need to be at least 18 years old and hold a valid motorcycle or car driver’s license. You also need to have liability insurance, which is usually included in the scooter rental price. Additionally, you must adhere to traffic rules and signs, and avoid riding in restricted or prohibited areas.
- To ensure your safety and that of others, you should always wear a helmet. You should also wear appropriate clothing, such as a jacket, pants, and closed-toe shoes, to protect your body from potential injuries. Furthermore, you should check the condition of your scooter before setting out, including the tires, brakes, lights, and fuel. Finally, you should drive with care and attention, maintaining a safe distance from other vehicles and pedestrians, and avoiding dangerous overtaking or risky manoeuvres.
If you want to make the most of your scooter ride through Funchal, I have some suggestions for points of interest to visit, ranging from viewpoints, gardens, museums, and other iconic locations. Here’s a possible itinerary you can follow, with some specific highlights along the way that showcase the beauty and uniqueness of Funchal:
- Start your ride at Funchal Marina, where you can admire the boats and sea views and be able to book Boat tours around Madeira Island.
- Continue along Avenida do Mar, one of the city’s main roads that connect the marina to the historic centre. You will pass by several historical buildings, such as Fort São Tiago, a 17th-century fortress that houses the Museum of Contemporary Art, and the Cathedral Sé, a 16th-century church blending Gothic, Manueline, and Baroque styles.
- Enter the Zona Velha, the oldest and most charming neighbourhood in Funchal, where you can appreciate colourful houses, narrow streets, and doors adorned with urban art. Don’t miss the Mercado dos Lavradores, a traditional market where you can find exotic fruits, flowers, fish, and local products.
- In Monte, visit the Monte Palace Tropical Garden, one of the most beautiful gardens globally, featuring a collection of exotic plants, fountains, sculptures, and tiles. You can also explore the Church of Nossa Senhora do Monte, an 18th-century church.
- Back in Zona Velha, stroll along Rua de Santa Maria, one of the oldest and liveliest streets in Funchal, where you’ll find various restaurants, bars, art galleries, and craft shops. Take the opportunity to try some Madeiran gastronomic specialities, such as espetada, bolo do caco and poncha.
Local Experiences and Gastronomy
If you’re looking to have a local and gastronomic experience in Funchal, I have some recommendations for you. Madeiran cuisine is rich and varied, reflecting the influence of the various peoples who have passed through the island. Some typical dishes you can try include:
- Espetada: skewered beef seasoned with garlic and bay leaf, grilled and served on a laurel stick. It is accompanied by fried corn, salad, and bolo do caco, a type of flatbread.
- Black scabbardfish with banana: a white and tender fish, fried in olive oil and garlic, topped with banana slices. It is served with boiled potatoes and salad.
- Grilled limpets: a marine mollusc with a hard and colourful shell, grilled on the griddle with butter, garlic, and lemon.
- Honey cake: a dark and dense cake made with cane honey, flour, sugar, dried fruits, and spices. It is traditionally consumed during Christmas but can be found throughout the year.
Unveiling Funchal’s Cultural Tapestry and Delights
In addition to enjoying good food, you can also take the opportunity to learn about the culture and traditions of Funchal by participating in some authentic activities or experiences that visitors can enjoy during their journey. Some suggested options are:
- Visit museums and exhibitions: Funchal offers a diverse cultural scene, ranging from contemporary art to ethnography and heritage. Some museums and exhibitions you can visit include the Museum of Contemporary Art, located in the 17th-century Fort São Tiago; the Design Centre Nini Andrade Silva, housed in the Fort of Nossa Senhora da Conceição, showcasing the works of the famous Madeiran designer; the Sugar City Museum, narrating the history of sugar production and trade in Madeira; and the Museum of Quinta das Cruzes, displaying a collection of antique furniture, artefacts, tiles, and jewellery.
- Attend a folklore show: Folklore is a vibrant expression of the culture and identity of the Madeiran people, manifested through music, dance, traditional costumes, and instruments.
- Wine tasting: Madeira wine is one of the most famous and cherished products of the island, with a history dating back to the 15th century. You can participate in a wine tasting at some of the wineries and specialized shops in Funchal.
Scooter Tour of Funchal: Conclusion
In conclusion, exploring Funchal through a scooter ride proves to be an immersive experience, providing visitors with a comprehensive view of the city. The advantages of using a scooter, from flexibility to cost-effectiveness and environmental respect, make it an appealing choice for urban explorers. Before embarking on this adventure, it is crucial to prepare adequately, adhering to safety standards and legal requirements.
The suggested itinerary highlights the historical, cultural, and natural charms of the city, from Funchal Marina to Zona Velha, Monte. The journey is not just about the main destinations but also about the local, gastronomic, and cultural experiences that enrich the visit. From enjoying folklore performances to tasting the rich Madeiran cuisine and exploring museums, Funchal offers a comprehensive experience for all types of travellers. By opting for a scooter and following this itinerary, visitors have the opportunity to immerse themselves in the authentic wonders of the capital of Madeira, making their stay truly memorable.