According to theinternetfaqs, Madeira is a real paradise for gourmets. This is the richest selection of fresh fish and seafood: from crabs and a variety of shellfish, to juicy tuna and swordfish, and an abundance of fruits grown on rich volcanic soils.
If you are a soup lover, then you should try sopa de tomate e cebola. This is a tomato and onion soup with eggs. The most popular soup among the locals is acorda made from bread, garlic, eggs, chabra (herb) and olive oil. Madeira cuisine has a large number of meat dishes. It is worth trying espetada and carne de vinho e alhos. Espetada is made from chunks of beef rubbed with garlic and salt and grilled over charcoal. Carne de vinho e alhos is made from finely chopped pork marinated for a day with garlic, wine vinegar and bay leaves. With meat, it is best to take a side dish milho frito – deep-fried bars of cereals. As for vegetables, you will find mainly those grown on the island – carrots, green beans, pumpkins, peas, which are prepared in a very simple way. The most common salad is tomato salad,
Seafood is an integral part of the diet of the inhabitants of the island. Tuna, espada (swordfish), cod, gaiado (a local variety of cod), potas (looks like a large squid) are prepared in all sorts of ways. Traditionally, tuna is marinated with garlic, olive oil, salt and oregano and then fried. Portuguese chefs know about 300 ways to cook cod. Noteworthy is bacalhau com natas – cod with potatoes and cream. In Madeira, try espada, a dish made from white fish and bananas that combines mild taste and tropical aroma.
After spending a few days on the island, you will understand that its inhabitants are very fond of sweets. It is on the menu of all restaurants, cafes and eateries, where you can choose from a wide range of desserts, pies and sweets. The list of sweet dishes is very long, but among them you should definitely try queijadas – a small pie made from cottage cheese, eggs and sugar. Also appreciated is the bolo de mel honey cake, Madeira’s oldest sweet dish. Bolo de mel began to be prepared at a time when the island was a major exporter of sugar.
In Madeira, it is worth trying exotic fruits that grow only on this island: nespera (nectarine and quince at the same time), anona (something like a green cone with pulp like custard), fruta de delicia (a bluish “cucumber” with pineapple flavor).
Of the drinks, the first place in popularity is occupied by wines with the Madeira brand. A common drink is also nikita, a refreshing sweet cocktail made from beer, ice cream and pineapple chunks. Everywhere on the island you will find poncha – a mixture of sugar cane alcohol, freshly squeezed lemon juice and honey. This drink can be drunk both hot and cold.
Communication in Madeira Islands, Portugal
In Madeira, international calls can be made from almost anywhere on the island. Payphones run on coins, plastic cards, and some work on credit cards. Calls from a hotel, restaurants and bars are much more expensive than from a pay phone. There are also several internet cafes on the island.
To call from Russia to Madeira, dial 8 – 10 – 351 – area code – phone number.
To call from Madeira to Russia, dial 07 – area code – phone number.
Emergency Phones in Madeira Islands, Portugal
National Emergency Number – 112
Police – 291-208-400
Hospital – 291-705-600
HOLIDAYS AND WEEKENDS
January 1st – Feast of the Virgin Mary
April 25th – Liberty Day
May 1st – Labor Day
June 10th – Portugal Day
August 15th – Assumption of the Virgin
October 5th – Proclamation of the Republic
November 1st – All Saints Day
December 1st – Restoration of Independence Day
December 8th – National Day Immaculate Conception
December 25 – Christmas
Madeira is also famous for its colorful festivals and carnivals, such as the New Year’s fireworks festival (December-January), the February Carnival (a miniature of the famous Brazilian carnival), the Flower Festival (April-May) or the Wine Festival (September).
When visiting Madeira, you should remember a few rules of conduct. Here it is not customary to yawn and stretch in public places, in a conversation you should not discuss problems related to the family and especially children. Do not question the historical greatness of the country – the Portuguese are justifiably proud of their past, especially against the backdrop of the modest place that the country occupies today. In addition, do not compare the Portuguese with the Spaniards – despite the unconditional similarity of languages, customs, national cultures and characters, the Portuguese perceive such comparisons very painfully.
Shops in Madeira are open from Monday to Friday from 9:00 to 19:00, lunch break – from 13:00 to 15:00. On Saturday, shops are open from 9:00 to 13:00. Shopping centers and supermarkets are open 7 days a week from 10:00 to 22:00.
Tipping in Madeira has not received official status. If you are satisfied with the service, you can leave 10% of the bill in a restaurant, cafe, taxi
NATIONAL CHARACTERISTICS The
Portuguese are calm and sociable, they consider hospitality their main commandment.
There are several medical centers in Madeira and one in Porto Santo. Some of the staff speaks English.
Before the trip, you should take out a medical policy.