Fly to Funchal from Manchester Airport, a low cost airline from the north of England, is planning to fly to Madeira Islands starting in the summer of 2010.

The airline is offering one way flights from Manchester Airport including taxes from as little as £49.99 to Funchal (Madeira). Departures can be booked now online and will start from 3rd of May 2010.

Route Planner

The website of ViaMichelin offers a very comprehensive and highly accurate route-planning service. By giving a specific location (address, station, zip code, city or airport) for both your departure and destination, it determines your route. Additional is also offers several extra choices to improve the accuracy of your generated map. This is one of the most popular route planners online.

If you think that the Michelin’s route planner does not have an island such as Madeira in its database … then you thought wrong. I have managed to generate a few routes with the airport of Madeira Airport as the starting departure point to several destinations on the island. I must confess that you need to know the exact name of the location and that the stipulated route is not as detailed and accurate as I thought it would be …. but it gives you an idea the time and distance between the two places.

For those who arrive at the airport and have arranged a rental car for the first time here on Madeira, they can use the following driving directions to calculate and plan their route to their hotel, casa, apartment, quinta or holiday villa …. however I advise to always follow the official driving instructions you received when booking the accommodation.

Click the next lines for the ViaMichelin’s route planner from Madeira International Airport ….

To Calheta
To Porto Moniz
To Santana
To Curral das Freiras (‘Nuns Valley’)

    The author of this blog or article can not be held responsible for anyone who uses the above links and gets lost when driving on Madeira. Nor is the author of this blog responsible for any damage or losing time or any discomfort caused by using the information from these links. You hereby acknowledge that any reliance upon any of the above shall be at your sole risk.

Ferry link to Madeira starts again

The seasonal weekly ferry service, from our neighbouring Canary Islands to our archipelago, starts again on June 16.

The Naviera Armas ferry, Volcan de Tamadaba will be leaving Santa Cruz every Saturday night at 10.30 pm over summer and docking in Funchal the following morning at 8 am.

See also our previous blog about the ferry

New EU security rules at airports

To protect passengers against the new threat of liquid explosives, the European Union (EU) has adopted new security rules that restrict the amount of liquids that a passenger can take through security checkpoints …. departing from airports in the EU whatever their destination.

These new security rules will be introduced on November 6, at all airports in the European Union plus Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Switzerland.

The rules represent a restriction on the quantity of liquids in carry-on baggage. However as before, passengers will be allowed to pack such items as toiletries in their carry-on baggage.

The following applies starting on November 6:

  • Liquids, gels and spray in containers of up to 100 ml may be packed in carry-on baggage;
  • Bottles, cans, tubes etc. must be placed in a transparent plastic bag and must fit without problems in the bag, which must be closed;
  • The plastic bag must be re-sealable;
  • Not more than one liter capacity per passenger

If you are unable to find such a bag, they will be available at airports. But prepare as much as you can, so that airport procedures will be as smooth as possible.

You may also carry:

  • Medicines
  • Baby food
  • Liquid included in a special diet you need during the flight.

Please pack liquid medicines, baby food and special diet food in a way that you can easily show them at the airport security screening point. They do not have to be in plastic bags, however.

The term liquids refers to the following:
Liquids include gels, lotions, liquid/solid mixtures and the contents of pressurized containers, such as water, toothpaste, hair gel, beverages, soups, syrups, perfume, shaving foam, aerosols and other items of similar consistency.

  • The following items are not affected: You will still be allowed to buy duty- and tax-free goods after the security screening point at the airports.
  • Checked baggage is not affected by the new restrictions. There are no restrictions on the size of containers or the quantity of liquids you may pack in such baggage.

See also Press Release: EU acts against liquid explosives – Questions and answers

Electric Minibusses

Funchal now has a public transport service in the urban centre of the city based on the use of highly mobile, completely electric minibuses with low environmental impact.

Gulliver Electric Minibus

The objective is to provide both residents and tourists with the possibility of moving round the centre of the city of Funchal comfortably and quickly, attenuating the problems of traffic congestion and also contributing to a reduction in the local pollution levels, and improving the quality of the air and the population’s wellbeing.

This minibus Gulliver operates on Mondays to Fridays, from 8:00 am to 8:00 pm, and on Saturdays from 8:00 am to 2:00 pm. There is no service on Sundays. The tickets cost 50 cents for adults and 30 cents for children, and the minibus runs from Avenida Calouste Gulbenkian to Rua Oudinout and vice-versa. (source: Madeira Tourism)


Gulliver’s electrical engine is powered only by batteries. Funchal is one of the first Portuguese cities that uses new generation batteries (ZEBRA) which allows for a day’s operation without exchanging them.

GULLIVER weighs 6 tons, it is 5,3 m long and 2,07 m wide; it has a capacity for 22 passengers, 8 of which seated. It has an automatic ramp and is fitted to transport one wheelchair. It reaches a maximum speed of 33 km/h.