It was at Machico beach, in 1419, that the navigators Gonçalves Zarco and Tristão Vaz landed for the first time in Madeira, kicking off the colonization of the island, and also celebrated the first Franciscan mass in these lands on July 2nd, the day of Santa Isabel visitation. The great epic of the Portuguese Discoveries had begun! Later, on May 8th 1440, Infante D. Henrique donated the captaincy of Machico to Tristão Vaz and his descendants, thus giving rise to the archipelago's first seat of captaincy. Situated in the extreme east of Madeira island, Machico's municipality covers an area of 68.3 km2 and is constituted by the Água de Pena, Caniçal, Machico, Porto da Cruz and Santo António da Serra parishes. Despite the great climatic diversity that exists throughout the island, with great thermal variations in places quite close to each other, Machico enjoys mild temperatures throughout the year, which makes this area of the island very attractive for tourism and also for the production of sugarcane during the 15th century, which gave rise to the first machines that have transformed this product in "sugar buns" to be exported around Europe. This trade was the main cause of this hamlet's development until it was, along with the town of Funchal, officially declared as a village in the second half of the 15th century. The origin of the city and county name is not unanimous, although many people believe that it has been originated by the legend of the foiled British marine Robert Machin, who sank and was washed up in the island's coast, in a time were it still wasn't officially recognized as Portuguese, and whose grave was found by Gonçalves Zarco. Other people state that its name may have been originated in the hometown of this Portuguese navigator, Monchique. Today, and in addition to hotel trade, shipbuilding industry, civil construction, bakery and fitters, trade and services, the county essentially lives of agriculture and fisheries, served by the ports of Machico and Caniçal, where tuna and skipjack fisheries arrive. These are essential ingredients in much of the local gastronomy, in dishes such as bife de atum com milho frito (tuna steak with fried corn), gaiado seco (sun-dried skipjack tuna), gaiado de escabeche (sun-dried pickle) and atum de escabeche (marinated tuna). Not to be missed are also the sopa de trigo (wheat soup), sopa de couve (cabbage soup), moganga soup, couscous and milho cozido com chicharros (corn cooked with mackerel), very characteristic delicacies in this part of the island.
What to do in Machico
Praia de Machico
Basalt-pebble beach with great conditions for sun and sea bathing. It has two swimming pools, football and volleyball pitches, entertainment boats and water bikes, beach settees and umbrellas rent.
Ponta de São Lourenço
The Ponta de São Lourenço is a peninsula classified as Partial nature reserve, and the islet of the Wharf as Natural Reserve, both integrated in the Natural Park of Madeira and in the list of sites of Community interest Natura 2000. It consists of some volcanic hills of recent origin and steep rocky cliffs and very high that plummet over …
Porto de Recreio de Machico
A protected port at the Machico bay for small and medium sized boats. There is an area with several infrastructures of entertainment and leisure.
Miradouro da Ponta de São Lourenço
Belvedere offering a magnificent view over the sea and the green slopes of the island.
Miradouro do Pico do Facho
Belvedere offering a lovely view over the Machico valley, stretching until the central peaks of the island and covering the Ponta de São Lourenço, and also the sea.
Núcleo Museológico de Machico
The Museum Centre of Machico is a cultural institution created by the city of Machico, after the recovery of the real estate Riverside Manor (built in the 17th century). In this museum you can find, in a way, interactive stories …
Clube de Golfe Santo da Serra
This was the first golf course at Madeira, built in 1937 and reconstructed in 1991. It has tree courses, each one with two par-5, two par-3 and five par-4.
Forte de São João Baptista / Forte do Desembarcadouro
The Fort of São João Baptista, next to the Marina of Machico, was built by order of the Governor, captain general Duarte Sodré Pereira, in the year 1708. His name is also strong in the Wharf because nearby landed the …
Forte de Nossa Senhora do Amparo
Ancient fortress, built in the XVIII century to defend the Machico beach. It now works as information’s post.
Museu da Baleia da Madeira
This space makes known the history of whale fishery, the biologic aspects of these animals and the protection actions of which they are object nowadays.
Praia da Alagoa
Beach also known as Complexo Balnear de Porto da Cruz, with clear water, black sand and good sea access. It has a catering area, locker rooms and bathrooms.
Miradouro de Gambão
Belvedere offering a magnificent view over the sea, the green slopes of the island and the natural pools of Porto da Cruz.
Prainha do Caniçal
This is the only yellow sand beach in Madeira. It is placed near the Ponta de São Lourenço, characterized by high cliffs, so being hard to reach.
Engenho de Cana-de-açúcar no Sítio das Casas Próximas
This is a device of 19th century sugar cane, classified as Local Cultural Value. The Northern Mills company, which still produces sugar cane brandy, is the only sugar mill passeios original 19th-century technology, constituting a Museum of great patrimonial importance.
Igreja de Nossa Senhora da Conceição / Igreja Matriz de Machico
Temple built by Branca Teixeira, daughter of the first Captain-Donatário Tristão Vaz Teixeira, based on the 13th century Chapel of the Magi, remodeled and expanded in the second half of the 15th century and becoming the array of Machico.
Up to date tourist information about the city's top attractions
Levada Walks in Madeira: 10 Routes for an Unforgettable Adventure
If you are a passionate fan of nature hikes and need a good excuse to visit the island of Madeira, All About Portugal p…
Where to eat in Machico
Portuguese, Seafood restaurant, Vegetarian
Com uma carta de vinhos vasta, desenhada para acompanhar as especialidades da ementa, fica perto de…
Portuguese, Regional, Seafood restaurant
Modern and pleasant space with a nice esplanade.
Portuguese, Regional, Seafood restaurant
Large space, simple and friendly, serving up some delicacies from the national cuisine. It has a fr…
Portuguese, Seafood restaurant
Large, rustic and welcoming restaurant serving up regional dishes. It has a nice, covered esplanade.
Espaço rústico e acolhedor, que faz parte do hotel Costa Linda, a servir uma variedade de pratos tr…
Where to sleep in Machico
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Friendly and welcoming Inn, with ten rooms, a bar and a dinning room serving regional gastronomic specialities.
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Ponta do Sol
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