1st January 2017 – Funchal, Ponta Gorda
The event of the year will take place on the 1st of January at noon, at Ponta Gorda Bathing Complex, also known as “Poças do Governador”. The first plunge of the year is a tradition rooted in some cities of the country and the World, but it will take place for the first time in Madeira.
The initiative aims to create an event that brings together locals and tourists who wish to be part of the ritual, with the condition of bringing a xmas hat.
Singing of the Kings (Cantar os Reis)
5th January 2017– Entertainment in downtown Funchal
Cantar os Reis is a charming Madeiran festival filled with carols and songs, celebrated on the 12th night after Christmas. Traditionally, troupes roamed the streets at night, singing and playing music from door to door. Today, outdoor concerts are held all over the island, including Ribeira Brava, Câmara de Lobos and the auditorium in the Jardim Municipal (Municipal Garden) in Funchal. The lively traditional carols are performed by local musical groups.
Santo Amaro’ Festival
13th - 17 th January 2017 – Santa Cruz
To commemorate the close of the Chriatmas season ‘Santo Amaro’ is celebrated throughout Madeira. Christmas delicacies are laid out on every table as families share a final festive meal and take down Christmas decorations, traditional lapinhas and nativity scenes. Festivities in Santa Cruz include stalls, music and food, as well as a candle-lit procession to the Igreja Matriz to honour the patron saint.
29 th January 2017 – Funchal
The Madeira Athletics Association (AARAM) promotes this major international sporting event.
This sports event consists of three main races, the Funchal Marathon (42.195,00 meters), the Funchal Half Marathon (21.097,50 meters) and the Funchal Mini Marathon (5.900 meters).
This race will once again be run on a flat course, almost entirely on a closed, attractively landscaped circuit, offering the perfect setting for healthy competition between athletes from different nationalities.
22nd February – 1st March 2017 – Entertainment in downtown Funchal
25nd February 2017– Great Allegoric Carnival Parade
28th February 2017 – Slapstick Parade
One of the biggest street parties in Europe, Madeira’s Carnival evokes the riotous spirit of Rio de Janeiro! The festivities begin on Saturday with an elaborate parade through Funchal featuring the island’s best samba bands and troupes dancing through the streets in dazzling costumes. The party continues throughout the weekend and concludes on Shrove Tuesday with the fantastic ´Trapalhão parade´ – when the streets are full of locals in outlandish costumes.
Cherimoya Fruit Festival (Festa da Anona)
March 2017 – Faial, Santana
This event aims to support the production of this fruit and its derivatives, such like liqueurs, puddings, ice cream and milkshakes, in an environment with a lot of entertainment and music.
March 2017 – Canhas, Ponta do Sol
This event. is held in Farmers Market located in west coast of the island, there is programm with lots of music and entertainment. Exhibition regarding the sugar cane molasses production proces is not missing. The more active can also partake in the sugarcane harvest which takes place on Saturday morning.
Porto Santo Ultra Trail
5th March 2017 – Porto Santo
The Madeira Athletics Association (AARAM) is hosting this sport event, which is anually held in the Golden island. The Porto Santo Ultra Trail shall have three races that will cover the island from one end to the other (the main race being 42 km; the second, 21 km; and the shortest relay, 7.5 km).
26th March 2017 – Funchal, Câmara de Lobos
The first edition of Halfmarathon Atlantida will be held in Madeira between Funchal and Câmara de Lobos. The race is sponsored by local mark Atlantida and beer company Coral.
Madeira Film Festival
17th April- 23rd May 2017 – Funchal
The Madeira Nature Film Festivals an international independent film festival inspired by nature,that brings together various initiatives related to sustainability, art, education, ecotourism, recreation, a tribute to the Laurissilva Forest, recognised by UNESCO as World Natural Heritage.
MIUT - Madeira Island Ultra Trail
21st - 23rd April 201 7 – Funchal
The Clube de Montanha do Funchal annually promotes the MIUT (Madeira Island Ultra Trail) a mountain race that offer its participants a unique experience of crossing the island highest peaks/mountains.
The 2016 edition had a total of 2000 participants and 48 diferent nationalities, congregating some of the main national and international athletes of reference in this area. This competition covered the areas of Porto Moniz and Machico, crossing the island's best tracks, including the central massif - Encumeada - Ruivo Peak (1861 m) - Areeiro Peak –, in a very challenging circuit of about 115 km. There are more possible tracks 85 kms Ultra, 43 km Maraton and 16 km Minimaraton.
Madeira flower festival
4th - 21st May 2017– Exhibits and Entertainment in downtown Funchal
6th May 2017 – The Wall of Hope Ceremony
7th May 2017 – Great Allegoric Flower Parade
14th May 2017 – Madeira Auto Parade (historical car parade)
21st May 2017 – Concert ´The Sound of Flowers´
Every year, two weeks after Easter, Madeira’s flower festival fills the main streets of Funchal’s centre. On the eve before the street parade, thousands of children gather in the Praça do Município where they build a ‘Wall of Hope’, made of thousands of flowers. Other activities during this time include the making of flower carpets in the streets, folklore performances, flower shows, classical music concerts and variety of shows.
Lemon Festival (Festa do Limão)
7th – 8th May – Ilha, Santana
The annual Lemon Festival is celebrated in the town of Santana, in the parish of Ilha. Local farmers proudly exhibit their products and there are plenty of stalls selling cakes and traditional food containing this vital ingredient. The parish of Ilha produces about 90 tonnes of lemons per year, which represents about 25% of the island’s production. The ´Festa do Despique´ is also part of the festivities – a type of improvised folk music accompanied by traditional instruments.
Onion Festival (Festa da Cebola)
May 2017 – Caniço, Santa Cruz
Dedicated to the humble onion, Festa da Cebola is a charming tribute to local farmers and the agricultural produce of Caniço. Part of the event is the parade of tractors and cars decoratively covered with onions. Traditional music, craft stalls and a selection of food and wine ensure this festival is a popular event for all ages.
Madeira Uphill 2000
14th May 2017 – Funchal
Madeira Uphill 2000 is an athletic event of an international scope, which will be hosted for the third time in the city of Funchal and which concecrates the athletes of many countries. The circuit has a unique scenic frame and is ideal for long distance runners. The race shall start at Avenida do Mar and finish at Pico do Areeiro, where the finish line is set at 1,818 m. A smaller distance of 10 km starts near Monte and finnishes also at Pico do Areeiro.
Madeira Classic Motor Show Exhibition “Madeira Classic Revival“
27 th May 2017 Funchal
The "Madeira Classic Car Revival" is an annual automobile event comprised by the most representative types of old classic and vintage vehicles exhisting in Madeira Islands, such as automobiles, motorbikes and bicycles manufactured prior to 1980. This event takes place at Praça do Povo and aims to award prizes to the most beautiful and representative old vehicles on display.
On the following day, May 28th takes place the “Rampa dos Barreiros” a sports car race, in tribute to a historical car race held in 1935.
Book Fair (Feira do Livro)
May 2017 – Funchal
It is held under the beautiful jacaranda trees in Funchal’s Avenida Arriaga, the annual Funchal Book Fair is a week-long event. With poetry sessions, literary seminars, entertainment for children as well as exhibitions and live music performance.
Madeira Island Open (PGA European Tour)
May 2017 – Santo da Serra
The Madeira Island Open is one of two Portuguese golfing events on the official PGA European Tour for men. All three golf courses in the archipelago have hosted the event since 1993, including Santo da Serra Golf Club and Porto Santo Golf Club in recent years. Each course is set in a serene natural landscape with spectacular ocean views and lush greens – perfect for championship golf!
Festival ´Fica na Cidade´
27th May – 4th June 2017 – Funchal
The streets surrounding the Funchal Cathedral come alive at the end of May during the Festival Fica na Cidade (before Festas da Sé). This cultural event intends to bring to the city center of Funchal a set of musical starring various national, international and regional artists. During the course of eight days, this cultural festival will host a total of 70 concerts including various musical styles such as Rock, Pop, Jazz, apart from other performances and street entertainment shows to be held in six different stages located at Funchal downtown, such as: Praça Colombo, Largo do Chafariz, Funchal Old Quaters, Rua da Carreira and for the first time at the Funchal Farmers Market.
Atlantic Festival - Fireworks Contest
3rd, 10th, 17sh and 24th June 2017 – Funchal
The Madeira Atlantic Festival is an event that sets the beginning of the summer season in Madeira. This event consists of a diverse set of initiatives spread throughout the month of June, with emphasis on the pyromusical shows, the Atlantic Roots Festival and the Regional Arts Week. The pyromusical shows are held on four consecutive Saturdays of the month of June, at 10:30 p.m. at the pier outside Pontinha. These wonderful and exciting performances, lasting about 20 minutes each, combine fireworks and music in a unique experience for tourists and residents.
Sixteenth Century Market
2nd – 4th June 2017 – Machico
Machico hosted the 11th edition of the 16th-century Market under the motto " The grain from the Captaincy", an event that evokes the historical period of the discovery of the island, which has gained a prominent cultural status. Organized by the Municipal Council of Machico and in partnership with the Elementary and Secondary Schools of Machico, this initiative takes place in Machico´s downtown at Largo da Praça, in Alameda Dr. José António de Almada, and oers a number of cultural and musical activities.
Ultra Sky Marathon
3rd – 4th June 2017
The “Clube Aventura da Madeira”, in partnership with the Portuguese Federation of Camping and Mountaineering, will promote the 4rd edition of the Ultra Skymarathon® Madeira. This is the fourth skyrunning race taking place in Portugal, integrating for the second time the Skyrunner® National Series in Spain, Andorra and Portugal. Skyrunning is a technical aspect of mountain racing, with steep slopes of high technical degree, which will surely attract many participants, not only for its features but also for the scenery and great beauty of the natural landscapes of the northern coast of the island. With the picturesque city of Santana and its surrounding areas as a backdrop, this will be an unprecedented national sporting event, as it will make known the natural heritage of this municipality, combining the tourist potential of its pedestrian routes to the town’s culture and traditions.
The event will consist of three races of different distances, the Ultra Skymarathon® Madeira (USM 55km 4000m D+), the Santana Sky Race (SSR 21 km 1350m D+) and the Mini SkyRace (MSR 13km 400m D+).
Festival of the popular Saints (Festa dos Santos Populares)
12th - 29th June 2017
The Festa dos Santos Populares is one of the best-loved festivals in Madeira. Dedicated to three saints, traditional parades fill the brightly decorated streets of Funchal and there is plenty of music, bonfires and food stalls. Santo António is the saint of love and many marriages take place during this time. São João – the patron saint of Porto Santo – is honoured with candle-lit balloons. São Pedro is the protector of the fishermen, and lively celebrations are held in the fishing ports of Câmara de Lobos (28th June 2017) and in Ribeira Brava (28th – 29th June 2017).
Tour of Madeira – Classic Car Rally
24th – 25th June 2017
A fleet of beautifully restored classic and vintage cars are on display at the annual Classic Rally at the end of June. Visitors can admire the unique vintage vehicles along Avenida Arriaga before participants traverse the winding roads for over 400 km through the breathtaking landscapes of the island. The rally is held over a number of stages, from Funchal to Câmara de Lobos, beautiful Machico and Santana.
1st July 2017
Madeira Day is a public holiday celebrating the anniversary of the archipelago’s independence from mainland Portugal, granted in 1976 in the Portuguese Constitution. Official ceremonies are held throughout the Autonomous Region of Madeira, while families and friends enjoy picnics and plenty of lively local events.
July 2017 – Santa, Porto Moniz
The Santa Agricultural Fair, an event which dates back to 1955, seeks to foster the development of the local livestock sector with the presence of many exhibitors of products and materials related to agricultural activity. Alongside this exhibition, there are stalls selling food and drinks in a true and typical festival environment.
Cherry Festival (Festa da Cereja)
July 2017 – Câmara de Lobos
The sweet, ruby-coloured fruit of the cherry is the guest of honour at the Festa da Cereja, an annual festival held in Câmara de Lobos. A number of varieties are harvested throughout early summer including the large Norberto variety, which has been adapted to Madeira’s climate and soil. The festive ethnographic parade, stalls and music offer plenty of entertainment.
Madeira Big Game Fishing Championship
4th July 2017
Madeira Islands hosts this well-known event in the panorama of world sport fishing, which takes place simultaneously in various parts of the world. This is an initiative directed at the sport fishing lovers, whose challenge is to capture the largest specimen of blue marlin.
The great marine biodiversity that characterizes the Maritime Zone of Madeira confirms its reputation as one of the best geographical spots of the world for big game fishing.
Funchal Jazz Festival
July 2017 – Santa Catarina Park, Funchal
The Funchal Jazz Festival has grown into one of Madeira’s most popular cultural events. Visitors come to the island to enjoy performances by renowned jazz artists from across the globe as well as local bands and musicians. The festival is held annually in the open air at Santa Catarina Park, which offers splendid views of the city’s mountainous backdrop and Funchal Bay. Jam sessions, master classes and workshops for jazz enthusiast are also popular event.
24 hours Dancing Folklore
July 2017 – Santana
Experience a taste of authentic Madeiran culture at ‘24 Horas a Bailar’, in the town of Santana (33rd edition). Local troupes perform traditional folk dances in colourful costumes, accompanied by musicians playing Portuguese instruments. Special groups from different parts of the island are invited to perform, while stalls selling local culinary specialities, drinks and crafts line the streets for this festival.
Limpet festival (Festa da Lapa)
July 2017 – Paul do Mar
For three days in July, Festa da Lapa is a tribute to the limpets harvested in the rocky shores around Paul do Mar, which are an important part of the local economy. Visitors can admire picturesque ocean views while enjoying one of the favourite local dishes – grilled lapas with garlic butter and lemon. Simply delicious! Entertainment includes traditional dancing, DJs and live music.
Banana Exhibit (Festa da Banana)
July 2017 – Madalena do Mar
Festa da Banana is a tribute to one of Madeira’s most important and best known local products, which flourish in huge bunches in Madeira’s pleasant subtropical climate. Held in the town of Madalena do Mar – home to the largest banana plantations on the island – visitors can enjoy the spectacular displays of fruit and flowers.
Madeira Bike Tour
July 2017 (date to be confirmed)
The Madeira Cycling Association hosts the 41st edition of the Madeira Bike Tour. Participating regional, national and international cyclists will ride the islands windding roads. Competition is filled with colours and challenge full of adrenalin.
Regatta of Traditional Madeiran Canoes
July 2017 – Funchal (date to be confirmed)
Funchal bay annualy hosts the Traditional Madeiran Canoes Regatta (fishing boats). This sports initiative has a 2.5km route, starting and finishing at the dock of Funchal, goes all the way to the beach of Barreirinha in the city’s Old Town.
end of July - beginning of August 2017 – Machico
Held in the summertime by the sea, Machico Food Festival Week showcases the unique flavours of Madeira’s wonderful cuisine for over 10 days. A wide range of restaurants and bars are set around a stage in Largo da Praça in Machico next to the sea where visitors can order a mouthwatering selection of traditional local delicacies including fish, limpets, crabs and espetadas, accompanied by Madeira’s finest wines. Music and entertainment are provided throughout the week.
Madeira Wine Rally
August 2017 (date to be confirmed)
The “Madeira Wine Rally”, is the largest racing event in the Region. Rally cars dominate Madeira’s picturesque landscape over three days during the annual Madeira Wine Rally. This top race attracts a number of European competitors whose skilful driving is tested by the island’s mountainous routes, winding roads and unpredictable weather.
Black Scabbard Fish Festival (Festiva Peixe Espada Preto)
August 2017 – Câmara de Lobos
The bay of Câmara de Lobos annually hosts the Black Scabbard Fish Festival dedicated to one of the most typical gastronomic specialties of Madeira. The event combines cuisine and entertainment in a festival filled with show cooking performances, dance performances and plenty of music, in order to let people know a bit more about the fishing activity in the picturesque bay of Câmara de Lobos and show the gastronomic potential of the tasty black scabbard fish. There will be plenty of food and drink stalls at this festival.
14th – 15th August 2017 – Monte, Funchal
The Monte Festival is one of the largest religious festivals on the island. The Nossa Senhora do Monte Church, located in the hills, is beautifully decorated with flowers in honour of the patron saint of Madeira Nossa Senhora do Monte. Pilgrims take part in a procession to the church, with the streets covered in flowers. This picturesque place comes alive with entertainment and festivities, including music, dancing and stalls serving local food and drinks. On this day there are feast all over the Island, but Monte stays the main one, where you can meet lots of emigrants cannot leave this feast out!!!
Funchal City Day
21th August 2017 – Funchal
Day of the city Funchal commemorates the anniversary of the Royal Charter signed by King D. Manuel I in 1508, which officially recognises Funchal as a city. Historically an important sea port for trade, Funchal was the first European city built in the Atlantic. Official ceremonies include a mass at the Colégio Church and an assembly at the Town Hall, as well as plenty of local events and festivities
Gastronomy Festival of Caniço
August 2017 – Caniço
The Cultural Centre of the village of Caniço hosts an annual showcase of culinary flavours that have come to be established as the tourist attraction for this location.
Wine Harvest Festival
August 2017 – Porto Santo
Porto Santo’s Wine Harvest Festival is one of the biggest events in Porto Santo. Held in Largo das Palmeiras, visitors enjoy the opportunity to get to know the grape varieties produced on the island. Activities include wine tastings, winemaking demonstrations and an exhibit of some of the tools and equipment used to cultivate and harvest the grapes, including a traditional wine press. Music and folklore groups provide plenty of entertainment.
Madeira Wine Festival
27th August – 10th September 2017 – Entertainment in downtown Funchal
3rd September 2017 – Historical Parade
4th – 10th September 2017 – Performances held on the various municipalities of the island
9th September 2017 – Live Harvest in Estreito de Câmara de Lobos
Recalling the social and economic importance of Madeira wine by reliving old wine-growing traditions, the Madeira Wine Festival is held in September during the main period of grape harvesting. The festival begins in the village of Câmara de Lobos with the actual picking of the grapes, the pickers' parade, the treading of the grapes and other related traditions that are enjoyed by locals and visitors alike. In the centre of Funchal, the Madeira Wine Festival includes light, exhibitions, sound and folk shows, all related to old wine-making traditions, and many stands serve typical seasonal Madeiran food and drink specialities.
Nossa Senhora da Piedade Festivity
end of September 2017 - Caniçal
Thousands of people participate in the festivity in honour of Our Lady of Mercy, which is held on the third weekend of September. This festivity is very similar to other religious festivals in Madeira. The particularity of this festival is that the procession is made by sea to the small chapel located at the top of the hillside. The ritual is as follows: on Saturday afternoon, there is a procession that goes to the chapel to get the figure, which then remains in church of Caniçal overnight. On Sunday, the people join again in procession to return the image to its place of origin, thus ending the festivities.
14th – 16th September 2017 – Porto Santo
This festival is dedicated to the great navigator Christopher Columbus and recalls the discoverer’s life in the Madeiran archipelago, his voyages to America and the glorious times of the Portuguese Age of Discoveries. Held in Vila Baleira on Porto Santo Island, this week-long event features lots of music, exhibitions, parades and street parties. Columbus’ first visit to Madeira was in 1478, when Funchal was an important sugar trade centre. However, his closest ties to the archipelago result from his marriage to Filipa Moniz, daughter of the first captain-donee of Porto Santo. Columbus lived in the archipelago for a few years during the last quarter of the 15th century and his first child Diogo was born in Porto Santo. The highlight of this week is the re-enactment of Columbus’ and his party’s arrival in Porto Santo’s harbour.
Apple Festival (Festa do Pêro)
September 2017 – Ponta do Pargo
This characteristically rural event brings together many farmers from several neighbouring regions, which turn the production of the “pêro”, common name for apple, into a widely animated festival of great projection, along with its usual food and drink stalls.
Apple Cider Festival
September 2017 – Santo da Serra
The Apple Cider Festival promotes the popular Madeiran tradition of making delicious apple cider from the apples grown in the district of Santo da Serra. This festival comprises a small procession, which includes the pressing of the apples, as well as much music and lively activities connected to an agricultural theme.
World Tourism Day
27th September 2017 – Funchal
Madeira celebrates World Tourism Day with activities and entertainment that recognise the importance of tourism on the island. Downtown Funchal is beautifully decorated with flowers for the occasion and visitors enjoy free entry to a number of gardens and museums in Madeira. Music and folk dancing groups provide plenty of cultural entertainment throughout the day, while visitors will also be greeted with flowers, gifts and entertainment at Madeira Airport.
Madeira Nature Festival
3rd - 8th October 2017
The Madeira Nature Festival promotes for a week tourist activities based on nature thus encouraging a direct contact with the rich natural heritage of the archipelago of Madeira. Discover the natural beauty of Madeira with the Madeira Nature Festival, a new addition to the island’s annual events calendar. The dynamic programme offers insights into Madeira’s natural and cultural heritage, as well as a wide range of adventurous activities for all ages, from paragliding over the mountains to sailing the deep blue Atlantic.
Funchal Eco Trail
October 2017 (date to be confirmed)
The city of Funchal is part of an international route of Eco Trail events, a kind of trail running that is unique for the fact that it includes an urban circuit. All necessary conditions have been met to ensure the excellence and quality of this event. This competition integrates various classes, and is comprised of three races in distances of 80, 40 and 18 km.
31st October 2017
A popular holiday in the UK and North America, Halloween is also celebrated on the island of Madeira. At few shopping centres in Madeira, kids dress up in costume, get their faces painted and then go trick or treating from store to store. The Madeira Magic Park also organises a Halloween party for kids with a program of exciting events. Bars and nightclubs throughout the city also host parties for Halloween.
Chestnut Festival (Festa da Castanha)
1st – 2nd November 2017 – Curral das Freiras
On the first day of November in the rural district of Curral das Freiras, homage is paid to the chestnut, which grow in abundance in this area. Chestnuts are used as a main ingredient in many local recipes including baked goods, soups, and liqueur. This feast reflects the numerous cultural and traditional aspects of this rural area.
Saint Martin Festivities
11th November 201 7 – Funchal
The 11th November is celebrated by both the Catholic Church and people who take the opportunity to roast the last chestnuts. The Saint Martin Festivity is very illustrative of the faith and traditions of the people of Madeira. A grand festival dedicated to its patron saint is held at St. Martin Church, where the traditional pilgrimages once took place.
Christmas and New Year’s Festivities
1st December 2016 – 8th January 2017 – General Illumination of Funchal Amphittheater
1st December 2016 – 8th January 2017 – Christmas exhibits in downtown Funchal
31st December 2016 – New Year´s Eve Firework Display
5th January 2017 – Chants of Epiphany, Municipal Gardens
8th January 2017 – Closing of the Christmas illuminations
Christmas and the end of the year celebrations are deeply rooted in the traditions of the people of Madeira and a varied programme of cultural, folk and artistic events can be enjoyed in Funchal’s centre. The festive season starts in Madeira in December when the colourful illuminations are switched on in the city’s main streets and lasts all through January 8th. Already from 1st December on Funchal’s streets are magnificently decorated with innumerable colourful lights put up in motifs relating to the island and the festive season.
New Year’s Eve is celebrated everywhere on the island, in hotels, restaurants, bars, and even in the streets. The highlight of the New Year’s Eve festivities are spectacular fireworks set off from approximately 50 posts that illuminate the skies over Funchal for the duration of about ten minutes. This is a truly unforgettable event, which brings back a multitude of visitors to the island each year.
Night at the market
23rd December 2016 – Funchal
Shopping for the final Christmas gifts on the night of the 23rd of December is a tradition that leads thousands of Madeireans to the Market streets in Funchal. The surrounding streets of the Market are closed to traffic and become a gigantic window of local products display: fruits, vegetables, flowers, sweets and typical Christmas drinks. The bars located nearby are open all night, joining forces to turn this into one of the longest and cheerful nights in Madeira.
St. Sylvester´s Race
28th December 2016 – Funchal
The Tour of the City of Funchal is an event promoted by the Madeira Athletics Association and considered one of the oldest of its kind in Portugal and Europe. This competition has attracted several national and international athletes to Madeira, bringing lots of adrenalin to the downtown area of the island’s capital.