A little pearl in the middle of the ocean - till next time

in Pinmapplelast year (edited)

I don't know what is wrong with us, but we really wanted to try every single adrenaline thing on this island. But of course it is impossible to do everything. Almost impossible.

Our guys decided that the last day of the vacations is a good day to go surfing. I always wanted to try this, but I don't think this was the right day for me to try it. Because of the fall with my bike, I was still in pain and for surfing, you need a lot and I really mean a lot of energy and strength. But I was not the only one. My husband and Anja also crashed with their bikes and they were also still in pain, so we decided not to go, we are going to be support group for our two boys. I really don't know where are this guys taking so much energy.

You have a lot of places to surf on Madeira, but they told us that Porto da Cruz is a perfect place for beginners. This is a village on the northeast corner of the island, about half an hour from our apartment

So, time to take our guy's surfing. They called the agency for surfing lessons and made an appointment for 9 o clock in the morning. We were already there in this town a few days earlier, and here I hurt my back because the waves didn't like me. That's why it was a little scary because we already know how big are waves here. But this surfing school was on another beach a little further away, which is a little more surrounded by rocks and, in principle, the sea is not so rough

When we woke up it was really sunny so we thought this is really the perfect day for surfing. When we got there, we were again surprised by the weather. Fog, rain and greyness. I was somehow convinced that they wouldn't surf in this kind of weather, because when I looked towards the sea, the waves were really huge, but apparently it's great weather for this because it's not that hot. And it didnt last long, in a half a hour it was sunny again. Wow.

During this time, the three of us sat down in the bar next to the platform where they had their initial training before going into the sea. First, everyone gathered to get dressed in wetsuits (neoprene suits), then they did stretching exercises and then they started learning the basics of surfing, how to position yourself on the surf, how you lie, how you handle the board, how to react when you fall and how to sit properly on the board when you are waiting for the next wave. Memorizing all this in one hour is quite tiring, but where is a will, there's strength.

And then it was time to go to the beach. The three of us equipped ourselves with cameras and a drone because we knew there would be quite a few funny moments to capture. But we were also a great support group because we cheered like crazy when we saw that someone managed to catch a wave and stand on the board. 😊 They had 2 hours to surf. When you sit on the shore like this and watch the waves, and pro surfers come out of them and do all kinds of tricks, you probably think how easy everything is. Our boys thought that too.

The most important thing in all of this is that you have the right equipment and that is taken care of safety, and that you don't overestimate yourself and don't underestimate the situation, and that you always listen to the coach. I heard this from the coach before they went into the water. Stick to this advice.

And so they went. At first they really struggled with the waves and tried to stand on the board several times, but then they realized that they had to calm down and adapt to the waves. They caught quite a few waves and it looked very tiring, but after an hour they still didn't give up. I was really impressed with them.

They came back to the beach with a huge smile on their faces, and we saw they were exhausted, but still happy, and we needed to promise to try it next time.

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After this experience, we went back to the apartment for some rest, because at the evening it was time to go in the Funcal city for last best Madeira dinner. We have already been there the previous days, but today we took the time to take a closer look at this wonderful architecture of the city. The old town (zona velha) of the capital city of Funchal calls out for exploration, or rather getting lost among the old streets.

While discovering the city, you are surrounded from all sides by vivid colors, artistically painted doors, old restaurants with a special character, and the bustle of people walking along Rua de Santa Maria. In this area, you can see walls and doors with pictures that the residents made with a lot of creativity and ideas. Every painting is different and every painting tells a story, some of the artworks are said to be over 200 years old, but unfortunately I can't confirm that just by looking. These are truly incredible works of art and worth seeing, especially painting. In this area you can find a lot of traditional restaurants and bars serving excellent food that is popular on this island and of course everywhere you can order a poncho, which is a must on this island.

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In the middle of the city, you can also take a cable car that takes you above the city and you can enjoy the wonderful view. However, since we had a rented car, we didn't use it.

I definitely wanted to see the largest local market in Funcal, which is called Mercado dos Lavradores. So many fruits, flowers and vegetables in a pile, and these wonderful colors that brighten up the entire market. I think I didn't know 50% of the fruit on display. It is very important to know that the prices here are really expensive, because everything is organic and it is a local business, but I was still disturbed by the fact that you pay 75 euros for one kg of fruit of your choice. They warned us earlier that we should not buy fruit here and rather go across the street to a store where they sell the same fruit for half the price. Probably people don't do enough research, so they don't know there are other stores. But you must try some local fruit, because the sweetness is incomparable with what is sold in the rest of Europe. I don't think I've ever tasted a mango as sweet as here.

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Nightlife here is very active, there are parties everywhere. But they warned us that if we want to go to a disco or a bar that is open all night, we should go around one o'clock in the morning, because the real parties start then. But, we are somehow too old or we no longer have the will for night parties, so this was not for us. Maybe few years earlier.

The last stop was on the coast, where we ordered their traditional dish Prego for the last time, and then headed back to the apartment with a heavy heart.

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Our journey has come to an end. I think there are no words to describe my feelings, with all these experiences and relaxation. The memories will last forever.

The island is really remarkable and I recommend everyone to go here at least once. We will definitely come back.

Thank you to everyone who followed my journey and for all the nice comments.

p.s. I have so many pictures to show you, so after I gather everything together, from my phone and camera, I will share it with you. Picture say more than a word 😊

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“Wherever you go becomes a part of you somehow” – Anita Desai

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