Madeira Mix

Madeira island news and views.

Archive for April, 2012





  • Introducing our new  (UK)
  • Personal Training Sessions

Our Personal Trainer “Marron” brings 24 years of experience to the session and a training method which gets results.  Training Programs vary depending on your body type, fitness level and of course, health condition.
Weight loss
Physical rehabilitation

Training sessions are twice weekly at Palheiro Spa Gym which is reserved just for you during your lesson.

For more information please contact Palheiro Spa on:-
291 790 352 or

  • Apresentamos as nossas Aulas com Personal Trainer

O personal trainer Marron traz-nos 24 anos de experiência e métodos de treino em que vê verdadeiros resultados. Os programas de treino variam de acordo com o tipo de corpo, o nível de fitness e claro, a sua condição de saúde.
Reabilitação Física
O treino será feito duas vezes por semana no ginásio do Palheiro Spa, o qual estará reservado para si na hora acordada.

Para mais informações contacte o palheiro Spa:
291 790 352 ou



As a long time Island resident I was brought up on the story that the Madeira Trocaz pigeon lived exclusively in the laurel forests on the north of the island and fed on laurel berries; when they ventured out to eat newly planted cabbage, furious farmers used to shoot them and so the population was in decline .  Much of this continues to be true though birds are seen in small pockets of laurel forest on the southern side of the island and have now been protected for many years. The population is now believed to be increasing.

David Bannerman in volume two of his book  “Birds of the Atlantic Islands” gives pride of place to the Trocaz with a coloured frontispiece plate and saying how the adult bird could be distinguished by its red bill, silver ring round its neck, pinkish tinge on the breast and very long middle toe or claw. (See picture). There are indeed several mounted examples of this magnificent bird in the Funchal Natural History Museum.

As a frequent visitor to the Palheiro Gardens over the years, I have noticed an ever increasing number of Trocaz`s. At first I thought they might have lost their way or had been frightened by forest fires or hunters . Now they are more established and Luis Alves the Palheiro golf greenskeeper believes there must be several dozen living in the woods and feeding off the Laurels, Holm oaks and kindred trees . They have become quite tame as indeed they must have been when the island was first discovered. Recently a wounded juvenile, unable to fly, was found and placed in a cardboard box; Dr.Frank Zino and Dr. Manuel José Biscoito curator of the Natural History Museum were consulted and the latter arranged for the bird to be collected by João Silva, keeper of the Museum collections. The bird responded to his treatment, is now feeding itself and endeavouring to fly, –  albeit somewhat erratically….  Hopefully it may one day be returned to fly again in the sanctuary of Palheiro. I was told that this was the second such case as another very young chick fell out of his nest last year at Palheiro and was looked after by João Silva who initially had to hand feed it before it was happily returned to its natural environment.

In the Palheiro gardens they can sometimes be seen on the lawns and drinking from  the ponds.  Recently I witnessed a courtship at close quarters as a cock fanned its tail and turned round  bobbing about in front of two admiring females.   In the late afternoons they can be seen flying to the nearby Ribeiro de Inferno. I believe they are most probably nesting there either in holes or ledges of the stone cliff above the spring at the base of the cliff or in the laurel trees. Visitors to the gardens rarely visit this wild area containing a number of Madeira endemic trees.

Richard Pell

As a frequent visitor I find that March, April and May are the most colourful  times to visit the Palheiro gardens.

Camellias and sea of Arum lilies and Nasturtiums growing wild greet you along the entrance drive studded with Plane trees and old Oaks.

The orange pincushion Proteas and pink Judas trees are flowering in the Main garden whilst the bright red Captain Rawes reticulata Camellia signals the peak of another Camellia season .  Rhododendrons, wild Freesias and mauve Moschosma mix with the rare Clematis  grandiflora which is also in flower .

The spectacular red Telopeas from Western Australia are flowering above the Chapel and red Tritonias grow alongside the lowest pond below near the giant Auracarias.

White and blue Wisteria, Delphiniums, Californian poppies, Sweet Peas and a myriad of other annuals vie for attention in the Lower garden.  Time also for the  beautiful Cantua buxifolia with its red long trumpets and blue Echium candicans or Pride of Madeira below the lily ponds near the Tea house.

The Roses add a splash of colour in the walled Rose garden created several years ago though their main flowering time is yet to come.

Visit Palheiro Gardens here

The Madeira Flower Festival – 19th to 25th April
Flower Festival Programme 2012

April 19th, Thursday
Performances by local folk dancing groups, background music and floral decorations in down town Funchal (until
April 25th)
3pm – 8pm – Performances by the Camacha Cultural and Recreational Association
Flower Market – Flower Sculptures – Arriaga Avenue, opposite the Regional Secretariat of Culture, Tourism and
Transports (Tourism Office)
Floral Carpets –Arriaga Avenue central squares (Cathedral, Baltazar Dias Municipal Theatre and “Loja do Cidadão”)
57th Flower Exhibition at Restoration Square (Largo da Restauração) – Organized by the Regional Secretariat
for the Environment and Natural Resources
Artistic project “The Butterfly and the Paradox Violet” – Sculpture on display in the northern garden of the Saint
Lawrence (São Lourenço) Palace
“Madeira Embroidery inspired by Flowers” – Organized by the Madeira Wine, Embroidery and Handicraft Institute
(IVBAM) – Arriaga Avenue central squares, opposite the Municipal Garden
9 pm – Ballet: “Russian Seasons in Madeira” by “Paladar à Música” – Madeira Congress Centre

April 20th, Friday
10 am – 3pm – Performance by the Camacha Cultural and Recreational Association
3pm – 8pm – Performance by the Boa Nova Ethnographic and Folklore Group
9pm – Ballet: “Russian Seasons in Madeira” by “Paladar à Música” – Madeira Congress Centre

April 21st, Saturday
Children’s Procession and the Wall of Hope Ceremony
9 am – Children gathering at Arriaga Avenue, opposite the Municipal Garden
10 am – Children’s Parade
Itinerary: Arriaga Avenue, Zarco Avenue, (Rua) Câmara Pestana Street and Municipal Square
11am – Symbolic construction of the Wall of Hope at the Municipal Square:
– Pigeon’s release and live show for children by an entertainment group.
3 pm – 8 pm – Performance by the Jardim da Serra Folklore Group
Reid’s Palace Classic Auto Show – Estrada Monumental between restaurant Vila Cipriani and Peace Square (Largo
da Paz)
Golf Tournament – Santo da Serra Golf Course
8 pm – “Madeira in Bloom” Ball – Pestana Casino Park Hotel

April 22nd, Sunday
10am – 3 pm – Performance by the Camacha Cultural and Recreational Association
4 pm – Flower Festival Parade
Groups/themes in order of appearance:
– “Madeira – Europe’s Jewellery Box” – João Egídio Rodrigues
– “Dolls – Flowers of Madeira” – Escola de Samba Caneca Furada
– “Enchanting Flowers” – Associação de Animação Geringonça
– “From the Sea to the Island of Flowers” – Fábrica de Sonhos
– “Memoires and Traditions go hand in hand with Flowers” – Turma do Funil
– “Madeira, the Masterpiece” – Associação Fura Samba
– “Eleven Colourful Municipalities” – Bairro da Argentina Sports, Cultural and recreational Association
– “Disco” – Chico & Companhia
– “Glorious” – Isabel Borges
Itinerary: Departure from Avenida do Mar e das Comunidades Madeirenses (south lane), Francisco Sá Carneiro
roundabout, Francisco Sá Carneiro Avenue (south lane) until the Sea Square (Praça do Mar).

April 23rd, Monday
10 am – 3 pm – Performance by the Monteverde Folklore Group
3 pm – 8pm – Performance by the Boa Nova Folklore and Ethnographic Group

April 24th, Tuesday

10 am – 3pm – Performance by the Monteverde Folklore Group

April 25th, Wednesday

11 am – 4pm – Performance by the Casa do Povo da Camacha Folklore Group

Now is a good time to consider purchasing a property on the Portuguese island of Madeira, with rising tourist numbers helping to boost the rental market.

Speaking to the Financial Times, Linda Beaney, from Beaney Pearce, a firm that markets one of the villa developments on the island, explained there is a robust real estate sector in Madeira at present.

“The sales market in Madeira has continued at a steady pace over the past three years,” she stated. Ms Beaney added although the number of British buyers has fallen slightly, investors from Brazil, Germany, South Africa and Scandinavia have expressed a growing interest inPortuguese property on the island.

According to the most recent figures released by the Instituto Nacional de Estatistica, Madeira was one of the only regions in the country where the number of overnight stays by tourists increased in 2011, compared to 2010.

The island also recorded the highest occupancy rate in the nation for its holiday accommodation in the same period, which may be a good sign for those hoping to rent out property in Madeira.

See original article at Property Showrooms: