Explore the Ocean
It is all about the blue skies and blue ocean!
When you are visiting Madeira, one thing you will find are the different shades of blue from the sky to the ocean. The average temperature of the sea water around Madeira is 22 degrees in the summer and 18 in the winter. Thus, all year round you can always experience an exhilarating swim in the ocean.
We do not have natural golden sandy beaches on the island, but those can be found in Porto Santo Island, two hours ferry trip from Madeira. There you will find one of the most beautiful golden sand beaches of Europe.. 9 Kilometres of pure beauty! In Madeira there are many rolled stone beaches, some dark sand beaches and seafront infrastructures all around the island, that allow easy access to the crystal clear and translucent waters. Take a snorkel mask with you and be rendered breathless by the majestic underwater life.
Whales & Dolphins in Madeira. Due to Madeira’s great location, we are privileged to see many different species of cetaceans on their migratory passage.
There are various boat trips available. The chances of seeing these magnificent creatures and other sea life, such as sea turtles, are about 95%. There are even some boat companies that give you a free second trip if you are unsuccessful on your first attempt. Some of the boat trips anchor off the coast of Cabo Girão where you can try a bit of snorkelling or just swim in the warm Atlantic Ocean or sit back and relax with a soft drink in the sun. It is truly an unforgettable experience. Please note that the time spent near the whales and dolphins by these boats is highly controlled to avoid causing any stress to the animals.
Big Game Fishing
Another activity you can enjoy is Big Game Fishing (tag and release). It has been said that Madeira is a perfect destination to catch Blue Marlins. It is common to find specimens with more than 300 kg! Excellent fishing can be found within 15 minutes from the ports of Funchal!
What about surfing? Surfing started in Madeira in the 70s, but only became popular in the 90s. It was really a surprise for us to discover that we had great conditions to surf. Since 1996, top Portuguese surfers from the mainland compete in the Madeira regional edition of the ‘Billabong’ Challenge. In 2001, the World Big Wave Championships was held in Madeira.
Nowadays there are surf schools in the island and you can try to do it on safe spots like Porto da Cruz or São Vicente which are excellent for beginners.
Paul do Mar: this surf spot according to surf experts has the best barrelling waves (also known as tubular or tunnel waves) on the island. Both stand-up surfing and body boarding are practiced at this spot. The ISA World Surf championships have been hosted on the islands which are better known to be held in areas such as Hawaii. Paul do Mar region of the island is respected throughout the surf community as it offers eight meter high waves and fantastic tubular tunnels. The World Big Wave Championships 2001 was held at Paul do Mar.
Windsurfing in Madeira is thrilling! These water sports are very popular on the island, which offers excellent conditions for anglers of all ages and levels of experience.
The island has many fantastic places for windsurfing. In the south you can find beaches with better access. Funchal, Porto da Cruz, Achadas da Cruz, Caniçal, Paul do Mar and Porto Santo are some of the best locations for windsurfing throughout the year. You can also try kite surfing in the bay of Funchal, in Praia Formosa and Porto Santo.
Madeira is very proud of João Rodrigues who is windsurfing world champion and one of the best sportsmen of the RS: X. Represented Portugal at the Olympic Games for more than 16 years, participated in 121 international competitions and won 51 medals – 22 gold, 16 silver and 13 bronze. Won the first world championship in Port Elizabeth, South Africa in 1995.
You may also fancy going diving in warm and clear waters with a visibility range up to 50 meters to discover the marine life. Blankets, Bicudas, Groupers, Morays and Barracudas are some of the species that you might be able to observe. We also cater for the experienced divers who love to do deep sea diving.
There are few marinas with good infrastructure here, so if you are sailing in the Atlantic, you will not regret to stop by for a few days and enjoy the island!
We hope you will take advantage of all the experiences that our ocean has to offer!