Exclusively for Mail on Sunday readers, enjoy the blooms of the Madeira Flower Festival with Christine Walkden
Rising from the seabed 600 miles southwest of Lisbon, Madeira is a subtropical paradise that captures the hearts of all who visit.
It is often referred to as the “Floating Garden of the Atlantic” thanks to its fertile volcanic soil. A plant lover’s paradise, this beautiful Portuguese island boasts a huge biodiversity, from purple flowering jacaranda trees, orchids and bird of paradise plants to its Unesco listed native laurel forest. It was named Europe’s Leading Island Destination 2019 at the World Travel Awards.
On this eight-day trip next spring, you’ll be in time for the famous Flower Festival, when the streets of the capital, Funchal, are filled with the colors and scents of flower floats. There are daily parades and performances as locals celebrate the beauty of their thriving island.
Lively: Tour some of Madeira’s most beautiful gardens, like the Monte Palace Tropical Garden (pictured), on The Mail on Sunday’s exclusive eight-day trip
You’ll enjoy the excitement in the company of a very special guest – gardener and TV presenter Christine Walkden, who will join you at the festival, give an exclusive talk and spend a day with you touring some of Madeira’s most beautiful gardens.
Funchal, where you will stay, is packed with highlights such as the 15th-century cathedral.
You’ll also discover the delights of the farmers’ market, taste the local wine and take a trip to the beautifully manicured botanical gardens in the hills overlooking the city.
On the next trip, visit Madeira in time for the famous Flower Festival, when the streets of the capital, Funchal (above), fill with the colors and scents of flower floats
ABOUT OUR SPECIAL GUEST
They are accompanied by Christine Walkden
Christine Walkden is a popular television presenter and, with a horticultural career spanning more than 40 years, is highly respected for her knowledge of all aspects of nature. She has worked at Kew Gardens and has presented on Gardeners’ World, Christine’s Garden and is the gardening guru on The One Show.
reasons to book
Discover Funchal: Nestled in a large natural amphitheater overlooking the blue Atlantic Ocean and set against a backdrop of dramatic mountains, footballer Cristiano Ronaldo’s birthplace is the island’s largest city.
The city is often referred to as “Little Lisbon” for its port and magnificent 18th-century buildings. Explore the narrow, winding streets, lively squares and tree-lined walkways, as well as landmarks like the Socorro Church.
You’ll also enjoy a Madeira wine tasting and see the patterned sidewalks, carefully put together by hand, and the colorful street art.
Enjoy the Madeira Flower Festival: One of the highlights of the island’s calendar, you’ll be mesmerized by the sights and smells of the colorful festival that parades through the streets of Funchal.
Meet Christine Walkden: The garden expert will accompany you to an evening reception, give an insightful lecture and guide you in exploring the flower festival and some of Madeira’s beautiful gardens.
Stay Comfortable: The stylish four-star Enotel Magnolia Hotel has a spa and two swimming pools where you can relax after a busy day.
See incredible landscapes: During the trip you will have ample opportunity to explore Madeira’s diverse and often spectacular landscapes.
The east coast is home to some of the island’s highest peaks, as well as Ribeiro Frio National Park, where you can enjoy some of the best views of this amazing island.
- Visit to the Madeira Flower
- Festival with Christine Walkden (with reserved space)
- Discussion and aperitif with Christine Walkden
- Walking tour of Funchal
- Seven nights all inclusive at the four-star hotel Enotel Magnolia
- Visits to several of Madeira’s best gardens including the Botanical Gardens and Jardins do Lago
- Visit to a winery and wine tasting
- Afternoon tea at the Belmond Hotel, Reid’s Palace
- Return flight from London to Funchal
YOUR ITINERARY: DAY 1 & 2 Discover Funchal DAY 3 East Madeira DAY 4 Visit Curral das Freiras, Eira do Serrado and Camara de Lobos DAY 5 Palheiro Gardens DAY 6 Monte Palace Tropical Garden, Quinta do Lago and Jardins do Lago DAY 7 Botanical Garden and Flower Festival DAY 8 Departure
HOW TO BOOK
The data: 3rd-10th May 2023 The price: £1,699 per person*
CALL 0330 828 1196 and quote MOS MADEIRA. To find out more visit mailtravel.co.uk/madeirawalkden.
TERMS AND CONDITIONS: *Price is per person based on two people sharing a double room. Single supplement on request. Deposit: 30%. Prices and itineraries shown are subject to availability and are subject to change. Travel is operated by TS Travel Ltd (ATOL bound) a fully independent company and is subject to TS Travel Ltd booking conditions. For full cancellation policy see tstours.co.uk/assets/tandc.pdf. In the event of unforeseen circumstances, experts may be substituted and all expert-led events are subject to change. Expert(s) will not accompany you for the entire duration of the trip unless otherwise stated.