Madeira, Portugal Weather and Climate
Madeira is an island of volcanic origin in the Atlantic Ocean and, together with the small neighboring island of Porto Santo and the uninhabited Desertas Islands, forms the Madeira archipelago.
Around 240,000 inhabitants are at home on Madeira and mainly live in the metropolitan area around the capital Funchal and the fishing village of Câmara de Lobos, which became famous primarily through a painting by British Prime Minister Winston Churchill.
Even today, Câmara de Lobos and the luxury hotel Reid’s Palace are of outstanding tourist importance for the British. The entire main island of Madeira has the character of a medium to high mountain range and falls spectacularly into the ocean on the coasts.
The Portuguese island with spring-like temperatures all year round is above all a paradise for hikers and nature lovers. Madeira’s highest peak is the Pico Ruivo with a height of up to 1862 meters, which can be found in the rugged high mountains.
Santa Catarina International Airport in Santa Cruz can be reached from Germany in around four hours by plane. Alternatively, you can travel to Lisbon with a stopover, for example.
Climate in Madeira
The notorious climate of Madeira is made up of different mesoclimates. The north of the island has a lot of rainfall and therefore has particularly lush vegetation, while the south of Madeira is much drier and has more hours of sunshine.
So that the southern half of the island can benefit from the rainfall in the north, sophisticated irrigation systems – the open levadas – ensure that water flows to the plantations and fields.
Overall, the climate can be described as Mediterranean-subtropical and is characterized by spring-like temperatures all year round, only rarely getting particularly cold or particularly hot. The average daytime temperatures are between around 19 degrees (January,February) and 26 degrees (August, September).
When to go to Madeira
In principle, Madeira is easy to travel to all year round, which is precisely the special characteristic of the permanently pleasant temperatures. Since there have been repeated storms and even snowfall between November and February in recent years, we do not recommend winter as the best time to visit the island. Statistically, the wetter season on Madeira begins
from mid- October, which causes increased rainfall until the end of March. We therefore recommend May to mid-October as the best travel time for Madeira. As a transition time, April is already very sunny and therefore equally popular.
Temperatures, precipitation, sunshine in Funchal (Madeira)
|Daytime temperature||19 ° C||19 ° C||20 ° C||20 ° C||21 ° C||22 ° C||24 ° C||26 ° C||26 ° C||24 ° C||22 ° C||20 ° C|
|Night temperature||13 ° C||13 ° C||13 ° C||13 ° C||15 ° C||17 ° C||18 ° C||19 ° C||19 ° C||18 ° C||16 ° C||14 ° C|
|Water temperature||18 ° C||17 ° C||17 ° C||17 ° C||18 ° C||20 ° C||21 ° C||22 ° C||23 ° C||22 ° C||20 ° C||19 ° C|
|Precipitation in mm||103||87||64||39||19||12||2||3||37||75||101||100|
|Hours of sunshine||5||5||6||6||7||7||7||8||7||6||5||5|
The annual average temperature in Funchal is 18.7 ° C. For comparison: Munich reaches an average of 8.6 ° C, in Berlin it is 9.6 ° C. The warmest month is August (22.3 ° C), coldest month of February with averages of 15.9 ° C. The maximum water temperature in Funchal is 23 ° C. Comfortable bathing is possible at these temperatures. All months have a water temperature of at least 17 ° C. Bathing is then possible to a limited extent. The months of July, August, September and October have a water temperature of at least 21 ° C and are therefore suitable for a beach holiday.
The annual precipitation is 642 mm on 61 days with precipitation. For comparison: In Munich, 967 mm, in Berlin 570 mm, precipitation is measured annually. There is no rainy season, i.e. months with more than 175 mm of precipitation. You cannot expect snow in any month in Funchal.
As our climate table shows, August is the sunniest month with an average of 7.7 hours of sunshine per day. On average over the year the sun shines 6 hours a day. For comparison: In Munich and Berlin, the sun shines an average of 4.7 hours per day throughout the year.
Attractions in Madeira
The island of Madeira impresses above all with its natural attractions and is therefore particularly popular with active holidaymakers. Hikes along the irrigation canals (levadas) offer very intense nature experiences and fantastic panoramic views in many places.
A climb from Pico Ruivo in the rugged Massif Central up to Madeira’s second highest peak, the Pico do Ariero, is particularly impressive. Much more relaxed and well suited for beginners is the path from Blandys Garden to Monte along magnificent tea houses.
From Monte you can either take a traditional basket sledge or take the cable car back to the beautiful capital of Funchal. A stroll through the city’s market halls is just as important as a visit to the green oases such as Santa Catarina Park or the Presidential Palace Garden.
Bathing is of course possible on Madeira, but you won’t find any white sandy beaches on the island. This is only available in the raised lagoons Machico and Calheta or on the enchanting neighboring island of Porto Santo. Otherwise, there are various natural sea pools, for example in Porto Moniz.
Madeira weather in March, April and May
Daily temperatures averaging 20 to 21 ° C can be expected over the next three months. The temperatures hardly fluctuate during this time.
Do you want to go on a beach holiday? The water temperatures are in March, April and May 17-18 ° C. This is good weather for a great time on the beach and in the water.
The expected rainfall is around 7 days in March, around 5 days in April and around 3 days in May.
In the period from March to May , the sun shines an average of 6 to 7 hours a day. The sunniest weather in Funchal is in May, but with a little less sun you will have to get by in March.