For our holiday this year we decided to try Madeira, especially as it is known for its sunny climate. When researching Madeira, I found that it’s made up of four islands just off the coast of Africa, with lovely beaches, high cliffs, and lots to see! However, it’s only after visiting Ponta do Sol that I’ve started planning a return trip!
Ponta do Sol is a small village located to the south-west of the island, dating back almost 500 years, and is where we decided to spend the last two days of our trip (12th – 14th August).
We’d chosen to stay in the Estalagem da Ponta do Sol, which translates to inn or small hotel, and is named after the Ponta do Sol village. It’s a renovated farmhouse and is nestled into the side of a cliff. The hotel is a part of the Design Hotels group, and has had a high-spec finish which gives it a sophisticated edge.
You really do appreciate the effort that has gone into this place, especially with the grandeur of the hotel, and how special it is. After short journey in a lift to reach the hotel, we were greeted warmly by the staff.
After signing in, with all COVID precautions being taken, the staff took our luggage to our room for us. We weren’t ready to go to our room yet, so we used the free Wi-Fi and had a drink in the hotel bar, which was much needed after travelling all day.
I was impressed with how modern and minimalist the hotel looked, with wooden furniture paired with slate flooring and white walls. With an option to choose either a garden-facing or ocean-facing room, we’d gone with the ocean view. I’d really recommend if you enjoy listening to the waves, as it was so calming that we kept our balcony doors open. The room itself was clean and tidy, with air conditioning and everything available if you wanted to make yourself a cup of tea or coffee.
There is also plenty to do if you don’t want to leave the hotel, from the spa and wellness centre to the amazing infinity pool. From playing tennis, to reading a book by the pool, there is something for everyone. If you also want to join one of the many exercise classes, then it’s best to book beforehand as they are very popular.
During our first night, we had the chance to join in with a digital nomad party in one of the hotel bars.
Getting the chance to meet so many cool people in the one place, everyone was exchanging socials and wanting to keep in contact.
However, our second night was spent visiting one of the town’s local grill houses, and the food was amazing. It was a lovely romantic end to our Ponta do Sol stay.
If you have the chance to visit Madeira, you should also check out the following places to visit:
Visit Pico do Arierio
As the third highest peak on Madeira, it’s no surprise that the Pico do Arierio has become one of the most popular sunrise and sunset locations in the area. Crowds have been known to gather to watch the sunrise, and when the sun breaks through the thick clouds, there is the illusion you are standing on top of the world. If hiking is your thing, then there is one of the best day hikes you can imagine; Pico do Arieiro to Pico Ruivo.
Explore the local area
Funchal is the capital city of Madeira, and is only a short journey from Ponta do Sol. Whether you visit the more modern areas, or prefer the more historical locations, there are plenty of places to explore and wander around. If you are looking for something to inspire you, this is a good place to start.
Relax at Porto Moniz
Located to the north-west of Madeira, Porto Moniz is made up of mountains and rugged scenery. However, what draws visitors to the area doesn’t have to do with hiking, but with unique lava pools. These are made from the rising tide and provide a warm and safe place for swimming. If you want to explore more of the area, then you will need a car due to the wild and remote landscapes.
It’s no secret that this hotel is something special; from the views of the ocean to the simple fact it is located on a cliff. With the positives generally outweighing the negatives, visiting this inn should be on your bucket list (it’s definitely on mine!). Plus, with double rooms as low as £65 in the quiet seasons, this could make a nice place to work from.
Don’t be shy to follow your dreams!
Your Darya Yakovleva