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Sweet Madeira – Portuguese island develops a taste for high adventure

Raising a glass (or two) to the many delights of this multifaceted jewel

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You can’t visit Funchal and not take a trip on the cable car up to Monte

You can’t visit Funchal and not take a trip on the cable car up to Monte

Wicker’s world – tobogganing from Monte to Livramento in baskets

Wicker’s world – tobogganing from Monte to Livramento in baskets

Joe Coyle and Buddha at the Monte Palace botanical gardens in Funchal

Joe Coyle and Buddha at the Monte Palace botanical gardens in Funchal

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You can’t visit Funchal and not take a trip on the cable car up to Monte

You tend to remember precisely where you were when you see your daughter visibly swoon and fall hopelessly in love with a man for the very first time. The following evening, you’re very present as you notice she just happens to have picked out her favourite dress and new shoes, dressing to impress at dinner.

I’ll forgive her – and I only have fondness for this man. Dressed impeccably all in white, he was the hotel manager who came to our daughter’s rescue – like an exotic James Bond – to apply a tiny plaster to the finger she had hurt on a hot iron in our room. In fairness, he seemed smitten too. She was four years old.


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