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When is the Best Time to Visit Madeira Island?

best time to visit Madeira

If you have been following Epic, you might know that a majority of our staff including the founder of Epic are based here in Madeira Island.

So why did we choose to make this tiny Portuguese Island our HQ?

Well, it is pretty damn nice here year-round and for hiking or outdoor adventures; there is not a month of the year where hiking is not possible. 

The nuanced question remains: when is the best time to visit Madeira?

Below we break down the subtle differences in seasons, what months are best for hiking in Madeira, and the different microclimates found in Madeira that might impact your trip. 

Don’t forget to check out our Madeira Expedition trip page if you are keen on discovering a side of Madeira few get to see!

General Climate in Madeira

Madeira’s climate is characterized by its subtropical and Mediterranean influences, creating a pleasant year-round environment and some of the best conditions for hiking we have found anywhere.

The island experiences mild winters and warm summers, thanks to the moderating effect of the Atlantic Ocean. The average temperatures range from 19 to 24 degrees Celsius (66 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit) in summer and 15 to 20 degrees Celsius (59 to 68 degrees Fahrenheit) in winter.

For travelers, this translates into the feeling that there is no real “wrong time” to visit Madeira, though of course, the seasonal changes bring subtle differences. 

madeira hikes

Madeira Micro Clmates

We like to say “the sun is always shining somewhere in Madeira” because it is so true; if the weather is bad in the mountains, it is probably glorious on the south west coast or vice versa.  

Madeira boasts a tapestry of microclimates that exemplify the island’s diversity. From the lush coastal plains to the verdant valleys and ascending slopes, Madeira is a testament to the remarkable interplay between altitude, farmland, laurisilva forests, ocean currents, and prevailing winds.

 In the lower elevations, a mild and subtropical climate prevails, nurturing a myriad of exotic flora that thrives under the constant sun.

Ascending to higher altitudes and forests, one encounters a profound transition, as the air grows cooler, and the mist-laden atmosphere sometimes dominates the landscape. Here, among the undulating terrain, the climate transforms into a sanctuary for delicate orchids, charming hydrangeas, and the iconic Madeira laurel.

In the higher mountains and Central Peaks dramatic shifts in temperature and precipitation create an ethereal backdrop. Enveloped by a mantle of clouds, these elevated realms witness a more temperate climate, where moss-covered forests, mystical ferns, and hardy heather species thrive.

The below photo gallery shows the different micro climates one can expereince in Madeira in a single day:

Seasonal Breakdown of the Best Time to Visit Madeira

Spring in Madeira (March to May)

As “winter” (if you can call it that here in Madeira) bids farewell, spring welcomes you with pleasant weather and blooming landscapes. March to May is an excellent time to visit Madeira if you prefer milder temperatures and fewer crowds. The island comes into its full floral potential in spring as flowers blossom across its lush valleys and botanical gardens.

Summer in Madeira (June to August)

Summer in Madeira brings warmer temperatures and longer days, making it an ideal time for swimming in the sea and water sports enthusiasts. With temperatures ranging from the mid-20s to low 30s Celsius (mid-70s to low 90s Fahrenheit), you can bask in the sun on Madeira’s rocky beaches or take a refreshing dip in the crystal-clear waters of the Atlantic Ocean. Summer also marks the festive season, with traditional celebrations and lively events happening throughout the island.

Summer is also when most of Europe and the USA has its summer holidays, which means Madeira can feel very busy during these months. Also – with the summer you have cruise ships – many of them – and with the ships come cruise ship people by the thousands… Something to consider anyway! 

Autumn in Madeira (September to November)

Autumn is a delightful time to visit Madeira, offering pleasant temperatures and overall less tourists visiting the island.

September to November is particularly appealing to those who enjoy a quieter atmosphere and want to explore the island’s natural wonders – which is actually why we tend to run our Epic Madeira Expedition during this time period.

Madeira can experience cooler weather, especially in the mountains. Historically speaking though, the past Epic trips we have run in November have been shorts-and-t-shirt weather of hiking. 

Winter in Madeira (December to February)

While most parts of Europe experience harsh winters, Madeira enjoys a mild and pleasant climate during this time. Winter is an excellent choice for travelers seeking a warm escape and fewer tourists. With temperatures ranging from 15 to 20 degrees Celsius (59 to 68 degrees Fahrenheit), you can still enjoy outdoor activities such as hiking and golfing. The island’s festive spirit comes alive during December, with colorful Christmas decorations and lively markets adding to the magical atmosphere.

So what is our pick for the best month to visit Madeira? November or May is our top choice!

madeira hiking tour
November in Madeira is pretty mild!

Best Time to Visit Madeira for Hiking

While hiking in Madeira is possible all year, there are advantages to hiking during certain periods of the year. 

Our favorite times to hike in Madeira are the spring and fall. 

There are fewer people hiking in Madeira during these seasons versus in the peak summer, temperatures are not too hot (especially for coastal hikes), and the rain is less frequent than it can be during the winter months. 

Madeira can be unpredictable sometimes though – even in summer. Rain, strong wind, heavy fog – all of this can be possible at any time of the year. 

We plan our trips during the spring and autumn time as we have found it to be the best of both worlds; fewer tourists around and pleasant weather – but for sure a bit of luck for good sunrise conditions is always needed too!

best month to visit maderia

Best Time to Visit Madeira for Flowers

If in addition to hiking, you want to check out some pretty plants – Madeira has got a different flower to marvel at for every day of the year!

Madeira is often referred to as the “Floating Garden of the Atlantic” due to its abundance of stunning flora. If you want to witness the island’s floral explosion, the best time to visit is in the spring months of March to May. During this period, Madeira is transformed into a paradise of blooming flowers, including exotic orchids, colorful azaleas, and the world-famous Madeira geranium.

The annual Madeira Flower Festival, held in April, showcases extravagant flower displays, parades, and live music, adding to charm of Funchal (Madeira’s largest city). 

We have found that during the flower festival in Funchal, there are as many vendors selling Poncha (Madeira’s favorite rum cocktail) as there are selling flowers… classic Madeira vibes right there!

best time to visit madeira

Wrap Up: Best Time to Visit Madeira

There you have it guys; now it is time to start planning your trip to Madeira!

With its pleasant climate, natural beauty, and endless hiking routes, the best time to visit Madeira depends on your preferences, interests, and of course, on your holiday schedule. Whether you seek challenging mountain hikes, a waterfall or two, chill coastal days, or a mix of all 3, Madeira has something to offer travelers in every season.

 Plan your visit accordingly and immerse yourself in the wonders of this captivating island and the HQ of Epic Expeditions staff!

Be sure to check out our trip calendar page for our next available Madeira Island Expedition! 

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Welcome to our Journal!

snow lake trek pakistan

Here at Epic Expeditions, adventure is constantly on our minds. 

Our blog – or Journal as we like to call it – contains epic trip stories, photo diaries, and news about new tours. 

Thanks for checking it out! 

What's new in the journal?

The trip we're most stoked about

Horse Trekking in Mongolia Expedition

Next trip: September 3rd - 17th, 2024

Adventure Guide

Hailing from the Toronto region of Eastern Canada, with a background as a former standout athlete (hockey of course) and a  love of mountain adventure, Clark is a welcomed addition to the Epic team.

In addition to being a keen photographer and adventurer, Clark brings his brilliant sense of humor, leadership skills, and positive attitude to everything he puts his mind to. 

When he is not leading trips, he is working on taking over the hard apple cider game in Canada as a skilled craft brewer. 

Adventure Guide

Noemi grew up in the mountains of German-Speaking Switzerland where she naturally developed a deep love and respect for mountain environments.

She is a talented photographer, aspiring climber, and speaks at least 5 languages fluently including Arabic (and probably a few more that we don’t know about), which she taught herself in a matter of months by watching YouTube videos. 

Noemi has spent the last several years traveling, hiking, and photographing her way around many different countries in the Middle East, South and Central Asia, and Europe, and we could not be more stoked to welcome her to the Epic team! 

Adventure Guide

As our man on the ground in Mongolia, there is not much this legend can’t do. As a native the Bayan-Ölgii province of the Western Mongolia Altai, Syerik has been working as a guide and tourism entrepreneur…

for the past several years and is one of the rising stars in Mongolia adventure travel industry. 

He is currently building a beautiful Ger (Yurt) camp near his hometown where he will host Epic Mongolia team members on our trip as well as other travelers from around the world! 

He is the perfect guide for your trip to Mongolia. Serik did an amazing job giving us a well rounded experience in the Altai NP region and down in the Gobi…
The food was fantastic and Serik gave us many opportunities to learn about the Kazakh culture in that region including traditional meals. (I can’t recommend enjoying the milk tea enough!)

– Coastal

Head of canine operations

Choriza started off life as a care-free vagabond on the streets of Madeira Island without any place to call home. From the moment we met her, we knew this dog was just different, and it was pretty much love at first sight. 

She gave up the dog street life in favor of joining her new dad Chris to become a full-time member of the Epic family towards the end of 2022.

These days she can be found listening in on the fringes of important Epic business meetings while half-asleep on the couch. She is a keen hiker, lover of mud, rare steak, and might just be the sweetest little dog we have ever seen. 

Adventure Guide

An experienced trek leader and
IFMGA aspirant ski guide, avid alpine climber, devoted adventure photographer.

Organized and guided trekking expeditions, climbs and ski tours in Tajikistan’s Pamirs, Patagonia, Peru, Morocco, Nepal, Kyrgyzstan, Georgian and Russian Caucasus and Kamchatka.

A full member and meets the organiser of the British Alpine Club. Visited over 40 countries, lived in the UK for four years. Certified first-aider.

We joined Andrew on a fantastic trip to the Fann Mountains in Tajikistan, pure nature and magnificent scenery! Andrey was super prepared and led us safely up and down numerous passes and through some rough and icy cold rivers. Thank you for a very memorable trip, your planning and prep was excellent!

– Monika Steinlechner

epic expeditions team

Adventure Guide

Our man in Nepal, Sandip is what we like to call a “Swiss Army Knife”. There is not much Sandip can’t do when it comes to helping Epic to run our expeditions smoothly in Nepal.

His tireless work ethic, passion for all things trekking in the Himalayas, and smart decision-making mean that Sandip is a truly invaluable member of our team.

Sandip is passionate about showing visitors to his country an amazing time, and he goes above and beyond to make sure that happens. 

His company Himalayan Masters is Epic’s trusted partner in Nepal and one of the country’s top new tour agencies.

We really enjoyed the entire journey, and I would like to say that Sandip is truly professional. He guided us and he is a hardworking person, providing us with the best service and taking care of each one of us. Plus, he is super funny! The kind of professionnal you always want to find on your path for your explorations! 

– Alexandra Ruth

Fairy Meadows

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Our Favorite Experiences

#1 Sunrise from Reflection Lake

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#2 Hiking to Nanga Parbat Base Camp

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#3 Playing cricket with the locals

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Trips Where We Visit Fairy Meadows

Our flagship Pakistani adventure tour.  Road trip with some  hiking and cultural immersion.

A trekking-style tour that features some very remote locations, inlcuding a K2 viewpoint.

Adventure Guide

João has born in the mountains of Madeira Islands in Portugal. Nature lover, writer, musician, guide, for him, a day without contact with outdoor vibes is a nightmare. 

With a degree in Cultural Studies in Portugal and a Master of Arts in Global Cultures and Creativity in the U.K.

João found out what really matters in life can be found on the trails, and in the contact with people from different backgrounds and cultures.

Guiding, crazy trekking missions, and sharing observations about the natural world, – these are some of João’s passions. 

After trekking to K2 Base Camp and exploring all over Northern Pakistan, he fell in love with the country and the local people. His experiences resulted in his desire to share these feelings with the world.

João is one of the most experienced guides at Epic and his skillset and positive mindset in the mountains is second to none

When not in Pakistan, João is  guiding and exploring in the Madeira Islands trails –  discovering some of the hidden treasures on his Portuguese Island.

João I can not thank you enough for the off the beaten paths and views you keep giving. Definitely one of the most challenging and amazing hikes we did 1200m meters all the way up to Fanal forest and circling back to the hidden village. Wow!

– Jeffery 

travel hunza valley

Adventure Guide

Sohail is the newest addition to the Epic team and we are beyond stoked to have him on board. As a veteran of the Karakoram and a native of Karimabad in Hunza, there is not much Sohail can’t do in the mountains. 

Besides having the ability to speak more languages than we can count, Sohail has explored every corner of Gilgit Baltistan and logs more trekking miles 

in a year than most people will do in a lifetime. As of the summer of 2022, Sohail has summited Gasherbrum 1, Gasherbrum 2, and K2 – three of Pakistan’s five 8000-meter peaks. Sohail guides several trips including our annual bespoke expeditions but specializes in Hunza Valley tours.

Chris and Sohail, and the team at Epic are FANTASTIC! Highly recommend anyone to do a tour with ‘Epic’. They have the perfect balance of fun, excitement and wild adventures, tied in with being super professional and ensuring your safety/health in a foreign environment. Don’t waste a moment and book a tour with these guys as the value for money is UNREAL!

– Borgan

iran travel tour

Adventure Guide

Pedro’s been traveling all around the globe since 2009. His keen interests in documentary photography, rural life, and local people from different ethnic groups have been the focus of many of his professional projects.

Since 2012, he has developed his passion for travel and awesome shared experiences into a full-time adventure photography tour leader position.

Pedro has found himself continuously going back to the Middle East, with his likely favorite destination being Iran. Pedro lead his 11th tour in Iran with Epic in spring 2020

When Pedro’s not traveling the world with Epic Expeditions, you’ll find him based in the western south of Portugal planning he’s next adventure missions, logistics and working out his photos in local exhibitions.

 I loved the combination of hiking, camping around breathtaking scenery mixed with the cultural aspects. The guide (Pedro) is knowledgeable and work very hard to make the trip as memorable as possible. All in all an epic adventure with some extremely epic individuals! Go for it, you won’t regret it!

– Coastal

Diane Bouvet

Adventure Admin / Marketing

After fleeing from the corporate fashion world in Paris towards the start of 2020, Diane has been working as a web developer and graphic designer remotely from various bases across the globe

She brings all of her incredible design and organizational power to Epic Expeditions and is responsible for many of the beautiful behind-the-scenes design elements. 

Diane has been to Iran and to Pakistan twice including all over Gilgit Baltistan and KPK.

k2 gondogoro la trek

Head of Operations | Guide

A veteran of Pakistan travel, Ralph is an experienced guide, photographer and writer who specializes in documenting remote locations. 

Not one to simply go where everyone else does, he insists on exploring new and lesser-known areas.

Together with Epic Expeditions, he shows people parts of Pakistan that most other operators don’t even know about. He is particularly fond of the village of Barah, which he believes will become just as famous as Hunza one day.

Just got back from EBT’s Trekking Amongst Giants 15 day tour. The experience was first class. Ralph, our head guide, ensured that the entire trip ran smoothly and relatively on time (a bonus for anyone travelling in Pakistan). We had so many unforgettable days on the tour and the trekking was well-planned, safe but also a rewarding challenge. 

– Calvin

Traveling to a non-tourist destination can be a little intimidating but EBT takes all of the worry and trepidation away. From the pre-trip call to meeting the wonderful staff in person you can tell that you are dealing with a company that has a passion for what they do each and every day. Ralph, Zahid, and Khan were supportive, kind, and always willing to go the extra mile to make sure that everyone on the trip was getting what they wanted out of the experience.

– Katrina 

adventure tours pakistan

Founder | Adventure Guide | Director

Since he started exploring the world, Chris has been seeking out every shade of adventure in various parts of the globe and had visited more than 70 countries along the way. 

Over the last 10 years, Chris has logged more than 7000 trail miles across five continents and climbed multiple 6000 + 7000 meter peaks in Pakistan and Nepal.

A few years back, a distant dream and a deep passion for the mountains and the people of Pakistan led Chris to co-found Epic Expeditions at a time when foreign adventure tourism in Pakistan was almost nonexistent. Since then, Chris has guided more than 20 expeditions to various parts of Northern Pakistan.

Chris believes in using photography and powerful adventure experiences to dismantle negative stereotypes regarding what mainstream media considers “dangerous” countries while facilitating unique and meaningful memories in the mountains for countless people from around the globe. 

For him, an ideal start to the day begins with a steaming cup of good coffee, the beam of a headlamp, alpine boots, and a camera in hand.

He lives in Madeira Island when not leading expeditions in far-flung lands. 

Chris also works as a writer and photographer on his blog Off the Atlas – an adventure travel blog all about Pakistan.  

Read this interview our staff did with Chris to learn more about him!

Chris believes in Pakistan and its people, and he believes in the value of journeys shared with others and family cultivated on the road. Honesty and integrity are at the heart of what he does, and this really shines through in his work as a guide. He also makes great coffee – whether at 5am in an empty guesthouse or half way up a Himalayan peak.”

– Will De Villers

Pakistan is a magical country! Had 3 of the best weeks of my life thanks to Epic Backpacking Tours with owner, and one of our awesome guides, Chris. From detailed itinerary, preparation with an equipment list, and visa assistance. To amazing food, great porters, helpful guides, and great accommodations. Epic really hit home run after home run. […]

Their desire for adventure and amazing trip is just as high as yours. Bring a good pound of coffee for the trip. French press coffee every morning and no average tin coffee, plus you’ll be in your guides good books.

– Clark Tyler

epic backpacker tours

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