FusiON Art by Porto Bay @ Zona Velha

More than 30 Portuguese and Spanish artists participated, live and in public, in ON by Porto Bay, … a fusion art festival that took place in Funchal’s historic Old Town.

Event organised by the Porto Bay Hotel Group designed to foster urban entertainment events in the city of Funchal, with the idea that private organisations should also contribute to making the city a more dynamic place. Festival aims to raise funds for charitable purposes.

For more information: www.onbyportobay.com

Protect yourself against the sunrays

Here are a few hints how to protect yourself against the dangerous UVA– and UVB-rays from the sun.

The UV rays emitted by the sun are strongest and most harmful at mid-day, between the hours of 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.

Calheta SunMost people think that they are well protected against these harmful sunrays by wearing just a T-shirt. Well … they are wrong! Only thick and dark clothing can protect your skin from these UV rays.

Best protection offers among others denim and thick wool. Light clothing of cotton or linen, which are moreover slightly of color, generally offers only moderate protection … which can be compared with a sun lotion factor 10.

Keep a long-sleeved shirt in the trunk of your (rental)car to put on when you go for an unexpected walk, or find yourself without sunscreen.

Of course we all realize that during the (hot) summer days most people will not wear thick trousers and pullovers. Therefore the advice is to use sun blockers and sunscreen lotions. Purchase sunscreen that has at least a sun protection factor (SPF) of 15 or higher. Use it liberally, better too have more than less when being exposed to ultraviolet rays. Introduce the creme approximately a half hour before and …. an excessive lubrication of your skin is most worthwhile … even a must. Also a water-based sunscreen lotion is the best option above the other alternatives.

Enjoying the sun on Madeira - photo by sognocaliforniaThe main key to successful protection is reapplying! It might be that you will find no application “rules” on your bottle or that it is in a language you do not understand, but the suggested norm is every couple of hours. If you are sweating or swimming, most recommend reapplying more often.

Buy several smaller tubes of sunscreen, rather than one large tube. Keep one at home, near the front door, and one near the back door for easy access. Keep one in the car and one in your purse or briefcase.

Wear a hat with a wide brim when you are outside. This will protect your head, nose and ears from sun damage, and can also protect you from sunstroke.

For more information about UV Radiation, check also:

Pico Ruivo Time-lapse – Madeira

An excellent (time-lapse) video made by Hugo Câmara (photographer) …. 1862 meters (6107 ft) high above the clouds … Pico Ruivo.

Pico Ruivo, the highest peak on the Madeira Islands, which usually one could reach via Pico do Arieiro (a strenuous hike), but that path is temporary closed due to repair. Advice is to do it from Achada do Teixeira. Contact an official guide and/or Madeira Walking organization for details.

Vintage Film Madeira 1927 – 1975

VINTAGE FILM MADEIRA – Private collection of Hugo Reis – Year: 1927 – 1975. Production: Hugo Reis (www.hugoreis.com)

Madeira 1927-1975 Islands.Doc Festival

This film will be exhibited at the ISLANDS.DOC Festival
Date & Time: Saturday 21 of May at 15h00
Location: Centro das Artes – Casas das Mudas, Calheta – Madeira.
Click here to see where Casa das Mudas is located

Synopsis:
Hugo Reis was born in Funchal in 1971 and works as a photographer. Through international auctions, private sellers and throughout internet, Hugo Reis has acquired since 1996 films (film reels) related to Madeira. These films vary in their format (35mm, 16mm, 9.5 mm (Pathé), 8mm and Super 8mm).

Aware of the fragility of the film degrading easily over time and the importance of preserving these memories from the past, Hugo Reis proceeded with the digital conversion of about half of his collection (about 30 film reels) in order to preserve them permanently. These digital conversions were made in a proper studio in the U.K. The rest of the collection (about 40 films of various formats) are awaiting the opportunity to be converted in the near future.

Madeira Flower Festival 2011

The theme “The flower that I chose” sets the tone for the Flower Festival of Madeira, which this year is celebrated in the peak of spring. Historically, the flowers are a fundamental feature of the landscape of Madeira.

Read more >>

Columbus Festival – Festival Colombo 2011

The Columbus Festival was first held in 2000 with the aim of launching a quality cultural tourism offer on the island of Porto Santo. This year it will be held from 15th till 17th of September 2011.

The event is based around the historical figure of Christopher Columbus, who had close links with Madeira both as a sugar trader during the island’s sugar boom years and as the result of his marriage to Filipa de Moniz, the daughter of Isabel Moniz and Bartolomeu Perestrelo, the first Captain-Donatory of Porto Santo, and is held in tribute to the man who became a famous 15th century explorer.

In recent years, the festival has taken on the format of a historical recreation of everyday life in the 15th century, in particular in the period marked by Columbus’s time on the island, which enchants tourists and residents alike.

The programme includes a 15th century fair and supper, the landing of Christopher Columbus, a military detachment, a children’s area with Renaissance games, circus displays, plays, displays by groups of buccaneers and non-stop fun and entertainment including lots of music and European and oriental dances.

The local population and tourists are encouraged to take the part of characters in the festival and period costumes are provided that give an authentic feel to the event.

There are other side attractions taking place simultaneously, including regional gastronomy, crafts and other activities adding to the general bustle amid the historical figures.

Source: Madeira Turismo

This festival needs a better disclosure. Write the dates down in your agenda and visit Porto Santo on those days. It is worth it!

Festa da Anona

The idea of the Festa da Anona (Cherimoya Feast) was born in 1990, through a group of producers of Faial, that wanted to promote their products (fruit) and thus to call the attention the madeirenses in general.

Anona - Cherimoya

The initial idea was a Regional Cherimoya Exhibition, nowadays also known as the Anona Festival, … which is to be held at Faial (Santana), on the North Coast of Madeira Island. This is an exhibition specially dedicated to this fruit and its derivatives,…. such as liquors, puddings, ice creams and (beaten) drinks. The programme, with the participation of some hundreds of farm owners, … includes music and contests, … with a traditional Madeira flavor.

    The cherimoya (Annona cherimola) is a species of Annona. It is a deciduous or semi-evergreen shrub or small tree reaching 7 m tall. The flowers are produced in small clusters, each flower 2-3 cm across, with six petals, yellow-brown, often spotted purple at the base. The fruit is oval, often slightly oblique, 10-20 cm long and 7-10 cm diameter, with a smooth or slightly tuberculated skin. The fruit flesh is white, and has numerous seeds embedded in it. Mark Twain called the cherimoya “the most delicious fruit known to men.” Source: Wikipedia


Festa da Anona

Related page (most popular): Regional Festivities Calendar

Madeira … The Green Pearl of the Atlantic

Madeira, “The Green Pearl of the Atlantic”, with its spectacular variety of landscapes, the island that they say it sometimes is 6 different continents in one mini-continent. The friendly locals and the picturesque villages make Madeira a perfect island for those seeking a combination of adventure, sports, nature, sun and rest.

An island with many faces, that is Madeira. Still famous for its Levada, miles-long irrigation channels, ideal for walkers. But Madeira is more: there are beautiful hiking trails through vast Eucalyptus and Laurel Forest, “cobbled roads” between friendly villages and narrow roads on sunny slopes.

Madeira Levada Walking

In the East, Madeira Island is very woody and you can visit the many nature reserves. Middle Madeira is also known as the Rocky Mountains because this part of the island is not very easy to access, but certainly worthwhile to take the challenge. The south coast of Madeira makes you think you are on the sunny coast of southern Europe. There are many fishing villages and (pebble) beaches where you can enjoy the sun. In the west you can find a more efficient environment, but once you have arrived on the plateau above, you will certainly enjoy the beautiful view over the mountains and the Atlantic Ocean. The north coast is more a jungle of steep cliffs, interrupted by deep green valleys.

Nature lovers will really love this island. You can explore one of the many protected reserves or gardens for colourful flowering fauna and discover why Madeira is also referred to as ‘The Floating Garden of the Atlantic’. You could start your holiday with a trip to the Botanical gardens of Madeira located in Funchal, or the Ponta de Sao Lourenco – a peninsular located on the East of the island that boasts amazing coastal views and a variety of flowering fauna perfect for the botanist in you.

Ponta São Lourenço, Madeira island

Various secondary roads winds through banana plantations and agricultural lands, taking you higher up through forests of fragrant eucalyptus trees. The roadsides are full flowering Agapanthus, Bougainvillea, Hibiscus and Begonias and the houses, which are scarcer towards the top, have Roses and Orchids in large quantities in their gardens and/or balconies.

What is Carnival / Carnaval?

Soon the Carnival fever will start here on Madeira Island … see previous post Carnival – Mardi Gras – Carnaval

But have you asked yourself … what does the word “Carnival” stand for?

Wikipedia offers some answers:

The Carnival Season is a holiday period during the two weeks before the traditional Christian fasting of Lent. The origin of the name “Carnival” is unclear. The most common theory is that the name comes from the Italian carne- or carnovale, from Latin carnem (meat) + levare (lighten or raise), literally “to remove the meat” or “stop eating meat”.

Also how do other countries celebrate it?

England

In England Shrove Tuesday is celebrated as Pancake Day, but apart from the serving of pancakes and occasional pancake races and football matches (see Royal Shrovetide Football), little else of Carnival survived the Reformation. Caribbean influence has led to the establishment of several “West Indian” carnivals, but these are not held in Carnival season. The leading festivities are Notting Hill Carnival in August (reputedly the world’s largest), and Bridgwater Guy Fawkes Carnival in November.

Netherlands

In the Netherlands (where it is called ‘Vastenavond’, ‘Karnaval’ or ‘Carnaval’), the last day of Carnival, the day before Ash Wednesday, is held exactly 40 days (not counting Sundays) before Easter. Dutch Carnival is most celebrated in Catholic regions, mostly the southern provinces Noord Brabant and Limburg, where it is also known as Vastenavond (literally “Fasting evening”, although that strictly refers only to the last day). The most popular places where Carnival is held (although every city, town or village celebrates it) are Maastricht, ‘s-Hertogenbosch, Bergen op Zoom and Breda.

Germany

Germany, especially the western part (North Rhine-Westphalia and Rhineland-Palatinate) is famous for Karneval celebrations such as parades and costume balls. In the South of Germany and Austria carnival is called Fasching and especially Munich developed a special kind of celebration. In Franconia and some other parts of Germany a carnival is called Fastnacht. Although the festival and party season in Germany starts as early as the beginning of January, the actual carnival week starts on the Thursday (“Altweiberfastnacht”) before Ash Wednesday.

Spain

Arguably the most famous locales in Spain are Sitges, Vilanova i la Geltrú, Tarragona and specially Cádiz, Santa Cruz de Tenerife and Aguilas, where the celebration normally takes place the week before Lent. At Santa Cruz de Tenerife the parties of the cities are not only well known in Spain, but also worldwide. It is famous for thematic costumes, and the election of the Carnival Queen. There is also a parade of Drag-Queens, known as reinonas.

Brazil

An important part of the Brazilian Carnival takes place in Rio de Janeiro, with samba schools. These are large, social entities with thousands of members and a theme each year. Blocos are small informal groups also with a definite theme, usually satirical of the current political situation, and bandas are samba musical bands usually formed by enthusiasts in the same neighborhood.

Portugal

Carnival in Portugal is celebrated throughout the country, most famously in Ovar, Madeira, Loulé, Nazaré, and Torres Vedras. The carnivals in Podence and Lazarim incorporate pagan traditions such as the careto, while the Torres Vedras celebration is probably the most typical Portuguese carnival.

Ironically, although Portugal introduced Christianity and the customs related to Catholic practice to Brazil, the country has begun to adopt some aspects of Brazilian-style Carnival celebrations, in particular those of Rio de Janeiro with sumptuous parades, samba and other Brazilian musical elements.

Madeira

On the Island of Madeira, Carnaval maintains its distinctive local roots as well. Funchal, the island’s capital, wakes up on the Friday morning before Ash Wednesday to the sound of brass bands and Carnaval parades throughout the downtown area. That night festivities continue with concerts and shows in the Praça do Município for five consecutive days. The Main Carnaval street parade takes place on Saturday evening with thousands of Samba dancers flooding the streets of Funchal. The traditional public street Carnaval takes place on Tuesday, where the island’s population displays its ingenuity and imagination by creating daring caricatures for the parade.

More information about “carnival” you can read at Wikipedia Carnival