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FUNCHAL JAZZ FESTIVAL kicks off the festivities in July, held over 3 days in Santa Catarina Park. Porto Moniz holds its AGRICULTURAL EVENT in the middle of the month, well worth a visit. The MADEIRA WINE RALLY towards the end of the month is a popular event and well broadcast. The Political rally at CHÂO da LAGOA is a good party to attend, very busy though, with more than 20% of the island attending; it’s an all day party going well on into the evening. Other festivals in July all towards the end are: BANANA FESTIVAL in Madelena do Mar, LAPAS (LIMPITS) FESTIVAL in Paul do Mar, WHEAT THRESHING in Prazeras, and PARISH FESTIVAL in Caniço with the traditional flower carpet round the town.
Late November/beginning of December sees the first stage of the Christmas lights being switched on , and over the next 2 weeks the whole island becomes drowned in lights and decorations. These last through till about the 8th December. 23rd December is the traditional Market Night, the best night of the year and not to be missed. Sao Silvestre Race is held on the 28th December a traditional long distance race around the city of Funchal. 31st Dec the Grand Fireworks Display, finishes the old year and sees in the new. Madeira still holds the guinness world record since 2006 / 2007 for the largest display in the world.
November is probably the quitest month with everyone getting ready for the Christmas celebrations, but November 1st brings the Chestnut Festival in Curral das Freiras (Nuns Valley); a very popular festival and a good time to try everything chestnut from cakes to soup and liquors.
2012 introduced a new event Semana do Mercardo (Market Week) Funchal market comes alive with stalls, exhibitions, local food and drink tasting from the 16-24th November and open untill 11pm every evening. This will become a yearly event but dates will vary.
Beginning of the month you’ll find the Madeira PARAGLIDING COMPETITION. Lord of Miracles Festival (Festa do Senhor dos Milagres) is around the second week of month in Machico. Mid-month brings the APPLE FESTIVAL in CAMACHA. Ribeira Brava holds the Regional Brass Band Meeting in the middle of the month. The last week of the month holds the Madeira ‘Round the Island by Bicycle’ tour race, so if your feeling energetic get those bike clips out.
The beginning of the Month brings the MADEIRA WINE FESTIVAL, with Estrieto de Camara de Lobos as one of the main places to be. There is also plenty to see in Funchal as well. Festa of Bom Jesus, first weekend of September in Ponta Delgada is the last of the 3 largest festas on the island. The following weekend hosts another lot of Festivals around the Island. It will be hard not to see one , they include Caniço, Gaula, Faial. The Madeira national car rally starts mid month around Santo Serra and Portela. Festa da Uva (Grape Festival) normally the first weekend of September in Porto da Cruz.
MACHICO GASTRONOMIC FESTIVAL starts the first week of August for 10 days , with lots of food and music on stage plus fireworks on the last night. MONTE FESTIVAL is one of the largest religious festivals on Madeira and gets very busy. It’s on the middle weekend of the month. FESTIVAL IN SÂO VICENTE towards the end of month, 1 of the 3 largest on the island. 21st August FUNCHAL celebrates 502 years with lots going on in town plus the great historic parade. Mid-month you can also see the flower carpet round Estreito de Camara de Lobos. This is the biggest flower carpet on the island and really is a must-see if visiting at this time. Caniço de Baixo holds its Festa gastronomic in the last week of the month, with lots of food drink and entertainment along the promenade. The festival runs for 10 days from Friday to Sunday, with fireworks closing it on the Sunday evening. Curral das Freiras holds a Festival at the end of August