5 Best Beaches You Have to Visit in Madeira

13th July, 2022, in Travel Advice & Guides

Madeira has rocketed to the top of many holiday wish lists over the past few years. Its perfect climate, stunning scenery and the array of incredible food means it has leapfrogged many other holiday hotspots, and is not to be missed.

Earlier this year, it came third in a poll by website European Best Destinations on the most luxurious destinations on the continent.

Holidaymakers often stumble upon Madeira during a boat cruise of surrounding areas, and once discovered, people are eager to return. Regularly hosting over one million visitors each year, we have picked the best beaches for you to enjoy once you make your way to this Portuguese archipelago.

Are there beaches in Madeira?

There are, and whether you’re after golden sands, mountain views or blue waters, each beach caters more than enough for everyone. Although eight islands make up Madeira, only two are inhabited, with the others being nature reserves.

You can enjoy temperatures of 22°C and above from June through to October, giving you four months to top up the tan. However, if you prefer a slightly cooler beach holiday, January through to May will give you a comfortable 19°C on average.

So, what are the best beaches you can visit in Madeira?

1.      Praia do Porto do Seixal

Golden sands and crystal-clear waters meet incredible cliffs at Praia do Porto do Seixal. Located in the Northwest of the main island, this beach heaven-sent.

Whilst Seixal itself has many beaches; this is the one to see when in the area. Whether just to enjoy its waters and cosy nature, or to make your social media followers jealous of the views, this beach stands out from the others in this area. It is smaller than many others, but this just adds to its allure. The perfect destination for a romantic proposal perhaps?

Head to Praia do Porto do Seixal from Funchal and you can reach it in your hire car in about 40 minutes.

2.     Porto Santo Beach

Heading off the main island over to the second of the inhabited areas Madeira, you will reach Porto Santo. With huge stretches of perfect sand that apparently contain healing properties, Porto Santo’s beach is a popular destination for both locals and tourists. It is also rumoured to be a holiday hotspot of Cristiano Ronaldo’s mother, so any football fans visiting may hope to see Ronaldo paying her a visit. From this beach, you will have access to the Miradouro de Portela, which boasts possibly the best view in Madeira.

Also home to a world-famous golf course, plus fantastic diving opportunities, Porto Santo gives you the chance to both rest and engage in fun activities during your holiday.

3.     Praia do Vigario

This beach is well worth a visit, even if you choose not to sunbathe or enjoy the water. Home to the Cabo Girao, the highest cliff in Europe, you can marvel at is splendour from the beach itself. Or venture to the very top for breath-taking views of the blue waters and stunning scenery. Located in Camara de Lobos, this beach thrives on the ‘lazy day’ vibe, and is popular with families as well as couples. It also provides visitors with showers and changing rooms, allowing for a quick change into your swimwear on a hot day.

4.     Machico Bay Beach

Once you land in Funchal, you are only a short drive away from this beach situated in the island’s capital, Machico. Extremely popular due to its location and amenities, this beach offers plenty of options aside from sunbathing on the golden sand. Adorned with restaurants and entertainment, it is hard to get bored here. Also, for wildlife lovers, don’t miss the opportunity to enjoy a dolphin or whale watching tour.

Collect your hire car from the airport and you can get to this beach within 20 minutes.

5.     Prainha Beach

Located in Canical, this secret beach offering is one where you can enjoy a little more peace and quiet than you may at some of the others on our list. This beach is tucked away and not visible by road. With that in mind, you can enjoy food and drink in one of the venues upstream. Located fairly close to Machico bay, you can bypass the busier areas by heading a few minutes further down the road.

Picnic tables mean that you could bring your own food if you wish, and relax in peaceful surroundings as you hear the waves lapping on the shore.


Have we tempted you with these beach hotspots yet? If so, check out our comprehensive car hire guide for Madeira. With detailed listings of the best car hire companies, you can head to the beach right from the airport! Contact us to find out how we can protect you from costly excess car hire fees whilst you are away. Our car hire excess insurance Europe policies mean you can enjoy your holiday without fear of a surprise bill at the end of it. Get a free quote today.


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