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Santana

Bus & Minivan Tours

Our most recommended Santana Bus & Minivan Tours

Madeira: Best of the East Tour from Funchal

1. Madeira: Best of the East Tour from Funchal

Discover the diverse landscapes of Madeira on a day-long tour. Wander charming towns, enjoy panoramic views and learn about the area from your expert guide. Depart from the meeting point at Funchal's Lido or take advantage of a free hotel pick-up in selected areas. The first stop is at the beautiful viewpoint of Terreiro da Luta, located a few kilometers outside Funchal. Next, drive toward the mountain of Pico do Arieiro. At an altitude of 1,818 meters, the third highest peak on the island offers breathtaking views. Once you've been to the highest drivable peak in Madeira, head back down through the forest on the way to the coast. Admire some of Madeira's emblematic straw-roof houses, pass pretty villages and get stunning seascape views. Arrive at the very eastern point of the island for some superb panoramas of the north and south coasts. Discover the popular start point for the levada walks, Ribeiro Frio, on the northern slopes of the island. See interesting trout pools and original vegetation. Madeira was once completely covered by laurissilva forest, a relic from prehistoric times. Stop for lunch in Santana, characterized by its small, thatched triangular houses. Past Portela go towards Ponta de São Lourenço, situated in the eastern part of the island. This is a place where a fantastic combination of rocks, sea, and nature combine. The last town to be visited is Machico, a viewpoint where you can look over the bay and the golden sandy beach.

Madeira: Full-Day Laurel Forest Guided Walking Tour

2. Madeira: Full-Day Laurel Forest Guided Walking Tour

Experience the magic of Portuguese forests on an adventurous trail hike. Madeira is known for its "levadas", a system of aqueducts, popularly used as hiking trails. Drive to the quaint town of Santana and up to Queimadas Forestry Park to journey through one of the famous levada walks. Deep in the Laurel forest, find a typical thatched house, which serves as a park landmark and creates a fairytale setting to begin your journey. This magical trail runs through the Serra de São Jorge and wanders through an emerald green paradise. Take in outstanding views of the valleys and villages that lie below, until finally reaching the magnificent Caldeirão Verde waterfall. Make contact with the lush greenery as you walk along this historical levada in the company of your experienced guide.

Northeast Madeira 4X4 Tour from Funchal

3. Northeast Madeira 4X4 Tour from Funchal

Head out from Funchal on a full-day tour of Madeira’s north-east. Leaving the town behind, stop in São Vicente, and take in amazing 360-degree views. Marvel at the contrast of colors from the vineyards. Enjoy a drive along serpentine roads and through forests. Discover the unique scenery of the area from an open-top 4X4 vehicle. Before lunch, visit a water mill and see the traditional thatched houses of Santana. Stop to enjoy lunch in idyllic surroundings, and later visit a sugar cane and rum factory, where you can taste the local rum. Finish your tour in Caniçal, where you’ll have spectacular views of Ponta São Lourenço – the eastern part of the island.

From Funchal: Santana and Pico do Areeiro East Island Tour

4. From Funchal: Santana and Pico do Areeiro East Island Tour

Explore the wonders of Madeira on this guided minibus trip from Funchal to the east side of the island. Visit Camacha, Pico do Areeiro, Ribeiro Frio, Faial, Machico, and more. Enjoy a long stop in the village of Santana to see local life and have time for lunch. Enjoy a great start to the tour by visiting Camacha, one of the most rural and rustic villages in Madeira where folklore is still hugely in practice. Camacha makes Madeira world-renowned for its industry of wicker and cane. The next stop is Pico do Areeiro, the third highest peak on the island with an altitude of 1818 m, where you can take in unbeatable 360-degree island views. Often, rocky formations can be seen to be piercing through the clouds creating one-of-a-kind visuals and photo opportunities. Next, move on to Ribeiro Frio (meaning cold river). Ribeiro Frio is a small village situated in the heart of the Laurissilva forest. It is the largest surviving area of laurel forest in the world and is believed to be 90% primary forest. In this classified UNESCO World Natural Heritage Site, you can enjoy a variety of plants and species in their natural habitat. Get the chance to also observe a trout farm made up (as naturally as possible) of stone enclosures and fresh flowing levada water, set against a backdrop of pure nature. The tour continues to Faial, where you can view the imposing rock of Penha de Águia, which separates Faial from Porto da Cruz. With a lengthy stop at the village of Santana next, you will have ample time for lunch and to see Madeira’s world-famous typical thatched roved triangular houses, painted in happy primary colors. Pass by Portela en route to Ponta São Lourenço, which is situated in the most eastern part of the island. Take in the unique landscape characterized by the fantastic combination of rocks, sea, and nature. Your final stop is the larger city of Machico, the first area of the Island that the Portuguese navigators came across. Later, return round-trip to your pickup location in Funchal. 

Caldeirão Verde Hiking Tour

5. Caldeirão Verde Hiking Tour

Walk through the stunning greenery of the Laurisilva forest to the 100m high waterfall Caldeirão Verde. A green cauldron is what you’ll find at the end of this marvellous walk - the waterfall crashing down along intense green rocks. This walk starts at Queimadas, in a lovely forest, from where the levada will lead you through the mountains to the end of the trail: the beautiful Caldeirão Verde. Go through a jungle of vegetation, enjoying great views of the village of São Jorge and the immense mountains that surround this area. Enjoy the silence you can only find when immersed in nature. The only sound you will hear will be waterfalls crashing down. The levada follows the curves of the mountain, in a constantly changing scenery, green walls covered with moist rock faces, constantly dripping with streams of water. Walking from Queimadas to Caldeirão Verde and back will cover around 12 km. On the trail you will encounter short tunnels, where you will need to use a flashlight.

Madeira: Private Guided Half-Day Tour of Northwest Madeira

6. Madeira: Private Guided Half-Day Tour of Northwest Madeira

Start the day with a convenient pickup from your accommodation or the cruise port of Funchal and depart with your private guide to the first stop of tour at São Vicente, where you'll see a beautiful sight over the valley. Continue along the north coast as you go to Chão da Ribeira, another beautiful spot where you can appreciate more of the valley within the Laurisilva of Madeira, the largest surviving area of laurel forest on the island. Advancing toward the north end of the region, you’ll reach the viewpoint of Ribeira da Janela where you can appreciate the contrast betweens the mountains with the sea. Finally, visit Achadas da Cruz, a place that marks the transition between the north coast and the south of the island. If you wish, you can ride the cable car and visit one of the most beautiful and quiet places on the island constructed from landslides and lava flows.

Madeira: Private Half-Day Guided Gardens Tour

7. Madeira: Private Half-Day Guided Gardens Tour

Embark on a half-day tour dedicated to the Madeira's gardens, one of the island's greatest treasures. Visit the Monte Palace Tropical Garden and be impressed by its beauty and diverse culture. See traces of Portugal's history since the reign of its first king, D. Afonso Henriques. Wander through the Monte Palace, which occupies an area of 70.000 square meters and houses an exotic collection of plants from different regions in the world. Watch swans and ducks floating on the lake as well as peacocks and chickens walking freely in the main areas of the property. Visit the museum inside the palace that houses a unique collection of minerals and gems.  The tour ends in the Botanical Garden, founded in 1960 by a Madeiran Botanist. Find more than 2500 species of plants from different parts in the world, all brought together in the “Garden of the Atlantic.”

Madeira: Private Half-Day North East Island Tour

8. Madeira: Private Half-Day North East Island Tour

Following a pickup from your accommodation in either Funchal, Canico, Machico or Santa Cruz, head to the first stop of the day, Faial. From this local viewpoint, marvel at the majestic landscape of the valley with its green hills and blue oceans. You will also see the rock of Penha de Águia. Continue the tour rising 900 meters above sea level to visit Das Queimadas Park in Santana, home of the island’s famous thatched houses that have existed here for many years, having become synonymous with Madeira. You will then head further north along the old roads and admire the breathtaking scenic views along the way as you travel through Vigia and Cabanas.

Madeira: Private 1.5-Kilometer Levada dos Balcões Hike

9. Madeira: Private 1.5-Kilometer Levada dos Balcões Hike

Once having been collected from your Madeira accommodation, drive through the mountains before arriving to Ribeiro Frio. Following a short but grandeur walk through the beautiful Laurisilva Forest, arrive to the fabulous Balcões’ belvedere. From this belvedere it’s possible to contemplate the many peaks of Madeira Island, from which Pico Ruivo and Pico do Areeiro stand the highest. Pico do Gato, Pico das Torres, and the well-known Penhad’Águia also constitute part of this breathtaking scenery. This area is also ideal for bird watching, due to the fact that it is home to a huge variety of different species. These birgs include the firecrest, the chaffinch, grey wagtails, blackbirds, robins, buzzards, and the very rare Madeira's long-toed pigeon.

Madeira: Santo da Serra to Ribeiro Frio Private Walk

10. Madeira: Santo da Serra to Ribeiro Frio Private Walk

Journey from the center of Santo da Serra to Ribeiro Frio, two of the main points of interest on Madeira Island, visited not only by tourists but also by residents. Walk through a forest road passing by the Trout Fishing Park, where you can relax for a while, having a tea or simply enjoying the surroundings. Immerse yourself in the amazing nature at the Levada, enjoying every step while you appreciate the wide variety of endemic flora and fauna of Madeira Laurisilva. Discover open areas that offer magnificent views of the valley and peaks of the island. Continue walking along the levada, enjoying the energy of all this pure nature surround you.

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What people are saying about Santana

Overall rating

4.0 / 5

based on 1 reviews

Best tour we did! Super interesting and funny guide. Great transport, although air con is poor. Lunch too long in Santana, but overall a wonderful tour with the right amount of stops. We were very lucky with weather!

It was a really great day with Nuno making our journey even more enjoyable. Nice viewpoints, nice stories, nice to learn about Madeira and see it in the same time.

This route passes through several points of interest and with good viewpoints. It's a good way to get to know a little more about Madeira Island.

A spectacular tour with an attentive guide, telling the island's history with great knowledge. I recommend!

Excellent itinerary, places of stops well chosen. The guide was very friendly and very nice. To do.