By Wim Reichert (Netherlands)
In 2007 we travelled the first time to Madeira. We had 4 days of pouring rain and wind, but to my surprise I noticed a change in myself…
From day one to another I felt at home, and a relaxing feeling got hold of me. I cannot give any specific reason, but after those 4 days I felt very relaxed and calm. We came to visit friends, but also to see the island. We did two island tours in the pouring rain, so we really got only a “wet impression” of the island, but that was enough to make us want to come again.
The last 9 years we went to Madeira several times each year, and always when we arrived I got that kind of “homecoming feeling” again and the feeling of relaxation. In those years a lot has happened in my private life, and the Madeira visits helped me to come over this.
"I cannot give any specific reason, but after those 4 days I felt very relaxed and calm."
We have now more friends there, and we see them always when we are on the island. We can stay with them if we like, but we always choose the same hotel in Funchal to stay. That way our friends can keep their privacy and we can do our own thing. The hotel we stay feels like a second home and the staff always gives us a warm welcome, like we are family coming home. Most work there from the start of the hotel in 2007 (our first stay was actually a tryout of the hotel) and they (and we) are very happy to be there.
We have done all the known tours of Madeira, most of them in good weather and got a good impression of the island now. We use a taxi to go from the hotel to the city center and 6 years ago we had the same taxi driver, a few days in a row. We had a kind of click with him and decided to go round the island for a day with him. He knows a lot about the island so we saw places where not many tourist will come. Since then he is a good friend of us, and during each stay on Madeira we go out with him for a day or 2. This way we got a good insight of how local Madeiran people live and work.
Madeira for us is now a place to find our rest, peacefulness and to relax, but also to meet interesting people. It has a magic touch on us.
Check out a slideshow of our latest visit to Madeira Island: