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Jeep Safari in Madeira

Jeep Safari in Madeira

Postby khkate » 04 May 2013 15:36

When we did a cruise to Canaries in January 2013, the shore excursion we booked in Madeira was a Jeep Safari. This was brilliant - in Landrovers and included going off road on the forestry tracks up in the mountains. Very well organised, some magnificent views and the weather as a bonues was goos too.
CRUISES BOOKED:
Spirit of Discovery - Dec 2020, Dec 2021
Spirit of Adventure - September 2020, March 2021, June 2021, October 2021
khkate
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Joined: 03 May 2013 19:30
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Re: Jeep Safari in Madeira

Postby khkate » 13 Mar 2014 21:24

Our first Jeep safari in Funchal - January 2013
Thoroughly enjoyable and well worth doing - although to get best view, try to get in the middle row of seats, rather than the sideways ones at the rear. Also having 4 people in the rear would be a very tight squeeze.

We progressed through the terminal and then were directed towards a line of jeeps which could take a maximum of 7 passengers each. We were in the 3rd jeep – which took 3 passengers in the middle seats and then Harry and I had the back to ourselves. They were sideways facing bench seats (would have been a tight squeeze with another 2 people in there), but it gave us a bit more room to move around. We did find it restricted our views a bit. There were seat belts – and we found we needed them. There were eventually another 3 jeeps behind us. The driver showed us on a map where we would be going, which included some off-roading and would be going up to some very high viewpoints. We would be stopping at a little village for refreshments before dropping back to sea level. One of the Dance Hosts, Richard, was the Saga escort and he was in the lead jeep. We headed out of the capital via motorways and then turned off into some little villages where the roads were just wide enough for the jeep to go up (and they were 2-way roads) with incredibly steep hills and lots of tight angles. The first stop was to look down over the “Chicken Village” (so called because it was supposed to resemble the shape of a chicken) which is in the Nun’s Valley. Then it was onto another viewpoint with a little chapel before heading along to the village where we had refreshments. There was a choice of potcha (the local brew made from oranges, lemons and honey) or fresh orange juice and some almond nuts to eat. Then it was back into the jeeps for some serious off-roading along forestry tracks (huge craters exacerbated by the severe floods a year earlier). We had a stop at a viewpoint above some cliffs (encountered some of the coach tours here) and then carried on down to sea level to Camara de Lobos, a typical fishing village for another short stop and then back onto the motorway to head back to Funchal and the ship in time for lunch.

Our second Jeep safari in Funchal - March 2014
Basically visited the same places as before, but using different viewpoints. The start of it was cloudy, above the Chicken Village, we were in bright sunshine because we were above the cloud, but for the rest of it we were in the cloud, so no view, until Camara da Lobos, the fishing village. Less blossom out than we had on previous visit in January 2013. The chicken village is so called (or so we were told this time) because it is where a lot of people breed chickens. We stopped at the same bar for refreshments as last time, where you get served with "potcha", the local drink made from rum (from sugar cane), honey, orange and lemon. You also get a monkey nuts (in their shells) as a snack. It might be worth mentioning that if you don't want the potcha, you can ask for orange juice. Nobody was told this and we only knew from our previous time of doing the trip. Several people who saw us drinking the orange juice asked us how we got it. Go past where they are dishing out the potcha and round the other side and there is a man who will give you very freshly squeezed orange juice (lovely and thick). Also, there is a little shop next door where you can buy bottles of the potcha if you want, or in the bar, if you want extra shots, or another alcoholic drink, you can purchase it. Toilets are available there (two) but no separate facilities for women (unisex), quite a few passengers remarked on it. After the stop at the bar, off to the viewpoint over the cliffs and then on down to Camara da Lobos (the fishing village. We then went back to the ship via the coastal road, which was quite interesting.
CRUISES BOOKED:
Spirit of Discovery - Dec 2020, Dec 2021
Spirit of Adventure - September 2020, March 2021, June 2021, October 2021
khkate
Rear Admiral
Rear Admiral
 
Posts: 3495
Joined: 03 May 2013 19:30
Location: UK


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