Madeira Island Local Customs

  • Carneval in Madeira.
    Carneval in Madeira.
    by cachaseiro
  • Preparing for carneval in Madeira.
    Preparing for carneval in Madeira.
    by cachaseiro
  • Carneval in Madeira.
    Carneval in Madeira.
    by cachaseiro

Most Recent Local Customs in Madeira Island

  • solopes's Profile Photo

    Popular Saints

    by solopes Updated Feb 7, 2013
    Ribeira Brava - Madeira

    May-June, when the heat comes but people don't flock to beach... yet, is festivity time.

    All pretext is good to gather people eating, drinking, dancing, and having fun. The popular saints, in June, are celebrated all over the country, each village concentrated in one of the saints, to free the other to the neighborhood.

    Being so touristy, Madeira couldn't be an exception, and, by the end of June the party was still on. We had great fun in Ribeira Brava!

    Related to:
    • Arts and Culture
    • Festivals
    • Eco-Tourism

    Was this review helpful?

  • cachaseiro's Profile Photo

    Try some poncha.

    by cachaseiro Written Dec 27, 2012

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Poncha from Madeira.

    On madeira Island they have a very popular local drink called poncha.
    It's a mix of sugarcane alcohol and fresh orange and lemon juice with a good splacs og honey in it and it's sweet sour and pretty strong at the same time.
    You might compare it a little to sangria but it generally hits a little harder.
    The locals like to have this in late afternoon right after work and no trip to madeir ais complete without a poncha with the locals.

    Was this review helpful?

  • solopes's Profile Photo

    Folklore

    by solopes Updated Aug 31, 2012
    Madeira Folklore

    The folklore in Madeira has many contact points with the continental one (as expected) but it has a funny distinctive detail - the dancers perform always bended, with the eyes in the floor. Tradition says that the humble workers in sugar cane plantations didn't dare to face their masters while dancing.

    Related to:
    • Arts and Culture

    Was this review helpful?

  • cachaseiro's Profile Photo

    Carneval in Madeira.

    by cachaseiro Written Mar 7, 2012

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Carneval in Madeira.
    4 more images

    Madeira has a quite big carneval that is celebrated the same time as the carneval in Brazil which is the weekend after ash wedensday.
    The carneval in Madeira is quite similar to the one in Rio and they have samba schools competing aswell as many other parties around town during the week.
    I have experienced it once and was quite impressed by the size of it and there is sure some similarity to the famous one in Brazil which i have experienced aswell.

    Related to:
    • Arts and Culture
    • Festivals
    • Music

    Was this review helpful?

  • schnaider's Profile Photo

    Espetadas - Restaurante Santo Antonio

    by schnaider Updated Apr 4, 2011

    1.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Espetadas (meat/fish/chicken barbecue) are the typhical food from Madeira island! It gets along very well with the typhical "milho frito"! I ate that at the best Espetadas place, brought by locals, so it must be really TEH PLACE!! :) Its a restaurant called Santo Antonio in Camara de Lobos region.

    Related to:
    • Family Travel
    • Budget Travel
    • Food and Dining

    Was this review helpful?

  • Jerelis's Profile Photo

    Talk to someone who knows!

    by Jerelis Written Aug 8, 2007

    1.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    I guess we all agree on this on; there is nothing more exciting than going travelling - exploring another country, experiencing a different culture, travelling around in new ways, sampling the local cuisine and chatting to the local people for a different perspective on life.

    However during our travels we learned that there is one certain thing that you should be aware of and prepared for to make sure that the trip is as easy and enjoyable as possible. We always try to see everything once we're there, but this is not always an act of responsible travelling. We always talk to the locals and we know that they have the information about just the right spots to visit and how to undertake them. It will not only enhance your experiences but also avoid any unnecessary hassles.

    For us the travel tips we have written in this section made the most of our travel experience and we came home in the same happy, healthy state that we left.

    Related to:
    • Family Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • MarioPortugal's Profile Photo

    Banana Trees

    by MarioPortugal Updated Jun 3, 2007

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    4 more images

    Banana Trees are grown in Madeira and I must confess that those orchards are interesting to see for a European mainlander like me :)

    If I'm not mistaken, the Madeira Island is the only place of the Portuguese territory where Bananas are grown.

    The Bananas from Madeira are smaller in size but more flavour than the ones one usually find at the mainland supermarkets.

    Related to:
    • Family Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • pikuu's Profile Photo

    yummy Milho Frito

    by pikuu Written Oct 30, 2006

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Milho Frito

    This simple dish is one of my best Madeira tradition discoveries. English translation is fried corn. But it has no connection with corn-cob, seeds or popcorn.

    Milho Frito is the collection of small cubes prepared from corn-flour and ingredients and fried in deep oil or olive. Crispy outside and soft inside this is a good companion for meat or fishes. I like it very very much with tuna steak.

    Related to:
    • Food and Dining

    Was this review helpful?

  • pikuu's Profile Photo

    Poncha da Madeira - memories on your tongue

    by pikuu Updated Oct 28, 2006

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Madeira resident & Poncha fan:)

    Writing about great products of Madeira soil (like: wine, liquers, banana or mango) I promised the recipe for home-made Poncha da Madeira.

    You need:
    - one measure of alcohol called "aguardente" which is white wodka made from sugar cane
    - a little of sugar cane honey (specific kind of honey, different than 'normal')
    - fresh lemon juice nad orange juice (roughly 2-3 lemon to 1 orange measure)
    Stir it and stir and stir again....
    And you have you own Poncha. Particular proportions are secret of every producer. So you can try and find you own golden mean.

    The taste is excellent. You can drink the chilled in the hot-time or 'normal temperature' during the awful autumn.
    Salud!!

    Related to:
    • Food and Dining

    Was this review helpful?

  • sunchasers's Profile Photo

    Car Driving in Madeira

    by sunchasers Written Sep 9, 2006

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Honk...honk...speed...honk.....then repeat.

    Locals will drive much faster than car rentals (and they also love riding up on your a@@), just stay out of their way and drive at your own pace. Don't worry if you feel as if the entire island is honking at you. Just pretend it's their way of giving you a warm welcome to their island :)

    Was this review helpful?

  • Jerelis's Profile Photo

    Have some Madeira, M'dear!

    by Jerelis Updated Sep 4, 2006

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Madeira Wine we drunk at Madeira
    1 more image

    Who doesn't know the Flanders and Swann song "Have some Madeira, M'dear"? It has even been translated into a dutch song as well! We do consider ourselves wine lovers and having Madeira wine of course was a must once we were at the island.

    Madeira wine is a fortified wine made at the island with the same name, which is prized equally for drinking and cooking. The maturing of the wine is peculiar and characteristic, because the wine needed to survive long voyages over sea and was subjected in buildings called estufas. It's also deliberately exposed to air, causing to oxidize. Due to this practice the wine has a very characteristic flavour.

    Usually Madeira wine is very stable, an opened bottle of Madeira wine will survive unharmed for a considerable time, up to one year. Not that we needed that as we finished all the bottles we opened! :-) We also did see some Madeira wines in the stores that were pushing the century mark.

    Bu anyway, we liked the local wine and even took some bottles to the Netherlands. Enjoy!

    Related to:
    • Wine Tasting

    Was this review helpful?

  • Sininen's Profile Photo

    AZULEJOS - BLUE PORTUGUESE TILES

    by Sininen Updated Jan 22, 2006

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    1 more image

    Like in he mainland Portugal you can see blue tiles everywhere. They can be decorative like the well in the photo or tell a whole story like the tiles on the wall of the market.

    Portugese tiles, which are known as azulejos, are not orginally a Portugues invention but brought by the Moors. In the 16th century Portuguese and Flemmish arstists began to produce blue and yellow tiles, which pictures mainly flowers and religious patterns, but as the Portuguese empire expanded the exotic themes appeared on the tiles as well. By the end of the 17th century blue tiles became popular, probably influence of the Chinese blue and white porcelain, which was imported to Europe.

    Related to:
    • Hiking and Walking
    • Photography
    • Women's Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • Sininen's Profile Photo

    GOD'S KISS

    by Sininen Written Jan 14, 2006

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Our guide told us a story about how Madeira was born and I thought it was such a nice story, so I thought I?d share it with you. God had created the world and was very satisfied with his work, so in joy he kissed the ocean and on that spot grew the island of Madeira. I love stories like this and like to believe in them more than the real truth.

    Related to:
    • Photography
    • Hiking and Walking
    • Adventure Travel

    Was this review helpful?

  • quartinb's Profile Photo

    faith

    by quartinb Updated Nov 14, 2005

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    .
    being the portuguese, a great percentage anyway, roman catholics, Funchal obviously has is share of houses of faith.
    the one in the pic is located in the monte and it's called
    igreja de nossa senhora.

    Was this review helpful?

  • AnaMargarida's Profile Photo

    Arraiais (Popular party)

    by AnaMargarida Updated Aug 1, 2005

    3 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Espetada in Popular Party, S. Vicente

    In Summer, around the island, you can find so many popular party´s, with tradicional music and food. Great folk festivals and religious celebrations.
    In this picture, you can see aespetada (most tradicional meat food in Madeira)

    Related to:
    • Budget Travel
    • Food and Dining

    Was this review helpful?

Instant Answers: Madeira Island

Get an instant answer from local experts and frequent travelers

81 travelers online now

Comments

Madeira Island Local Customs

Reviews and photos of Madeira Island local customs posted by real travelers and locals. The best tips for Madeira Island sightseeing.

View all Madeira Island hotels