The captivating wealth of nature in Madeira

Madeira floating garden of Europe.

Madeira travel blog

Amidst the vast Atlantic, the Portuguese island of Madeira blooms like a botanical gem. This blog entry is an ode to its lush landscapes and vibrant ecosystems that beckon nature enthusiasts and travelers alike.

Madeira’s Floral Wonderland

Madeira’s eternal spring climate is the master gardener of its world-renowned flora. The island is a riot of color, with flowers blooming year-round, painting the landscape in broad strokes of red, yellow, and purple. The Madeira Botanical Garden in Funchal is a living tapestry that displays this diversity, with over 2000 plants from various continents, making it a must-visit for any green-thumbed explorer.

Laurisilva – A Green Time Capsule

The laurel forests, or Laurisilva, are the heart of Madeira’s natural wealth. A UNESCO World Heritage site, this prehistoric forest is a remnant of the age when dinosaurs roamed the earth. Wander through the misty paths of Fanal or the Levada dos Cedros and immerse yourself in this ancient ecosystem, listening to the calls of endemic birds like the Madeira Firecrest.

The Majestic Peaks and Levadas

Madeira’s mountainous terrain offers dramatic views and trails for all levels. Pico Ruivo and Pico do Arieiro, the island’s highest peaks, are accessible by well-marked trails and provide panoramic views that stretch to the horizon. The network of levadas, unique irrigation channels, lead hikers through verdant valleys and alongside rushing waterfalls—a testament to man’s ingenuity harmonizing with nature.

The Floral Sanctuaries of Monte

Monte, rising above Funchal, is not only a place for thrill-seekers riding on the famous wicker sleigh. The Monte Palace garden is full of plants and ponds, offering peace and beauty in equal measure. The garden’s collection of cycads, some of the oldest in the world, is a bridge to the distant past.

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The Ocean’s Riches

Madeira’s relationship with the sea is profound. The waters surrounding the island are a sanctuary for marine life. Go whale watching, and you may encounter dolphins or even a majestic blue whale. The Porto Moniz natural lava pools offer a unique swimming experience, blending the ocean’s natural rhythm with volcanic landforms.

Why I think Madeira is a botanical treasure of Europe

Madeira’s rich volcanic soil, diverse microclimates, and isolation have created a haven for biodiversity. From the highest peak to the deepest valley, the island is a living museum of botanical and ecological wonders. Madeira’s commitment to conservation ensures that this treasure trove of nature is protected for future generations to marvel at and study.

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