The following excursions and/or activities are usually available and may be arranged locally. Estimated costs are provided below for guidance only, are on a per person basis unless shown otherwise, and may depend on the number of participants. Prices quoted are correct as of the date these tour notes were originally issued but may change at any time due to currency fluctuations.
Please note: These activities are booked and paid for direct with the supplier and do not form part of your Explore holiday contract.
Santana - Transport to/from Machico (between 20.00 and 23.00):
Minibus 8 seats - 112 Euros per minibus
Minibus 12 seats - 168 euros per minibus
Minibus 16 seats - 180 euros per minibus
Funchal - Blandy's wine lodge guided tour and tasting €6.50 (14:30, 15:30 and 16:30); Botanical gardens €6.00; Tropical gardens at Monte €12.50 (take the cable car from Funchal €16 return); Whale Watch on a boat €49.50 (summer months only 2.5 hours); Dolphin swimming and boat trip €65 (summer months only); Reids Palace Hotel - Afternoon tea €36; Catamaran trip €35 half day; Full day Boat trip to Islas Desertas inc. lunch €80
Porto Santo - Ferry €57.40 (apr - Sep) €46.95 (Jan - Mar) return ticket
Tobogganing from Monte, 2km descent taking approximately 15 minutes- €25 (one person), €30 (2 people), €35 (3 people max)
Christmas dinner at the hotel - €19.50 per person (starter, main & desert, not a special Christmas menu)
€6 per person - half a bottle of wine or 2 beers or 2 soft drinks, water, coffee or tea
€ 4 per person - 1 glass of wine, water or juice (instant juice)
New Years Eve - Gala dinner supplement (drinks included): € 95 per person, New Year's Fireworks on board a catamaran (22.30 to 01.30) boarding at 22.00 from Marina of Funchal (open Bar, soft drinks, tapas, champagne, music) € 120 euros per person.
July and August are the warmest months, though the islands are freshened by cooling sea breezes. Bring light and comfortable clothing that can be layered according to the temperature. It can become cool, especially at night, so bring warmer layers. Tops made from wicking materials which keep you drier, a warmer fleece is recommended as a mid layer, and walking trousers are preferable to trousers of heavier material such as jeans. A waterproof jacket is essential at all times in case of rain and wind.
-Breathable wind and waterproof jacket (you may also wish to bring waterproof trousers)
-Long sleeved tops
-Shorts (if you prefer to walk in them)
-Swimwear and towel
-Socks (liner and thicker pair)
Luggage: On tour
Bring one main piece of luggage and a 20-30 litre day sack is recommended. You will need to carry what you need for the day which may include a raincoat, jumper, camera, sun-cream, water and picnic lunch. On hot days you will carry fewer clothes but more drinking water.
-Small Torch (with spare batteries and bulb)
-Walking poles (if you usually use them)
-Personal first aid kit - On each walk a first aid kit is carried but you should have your own blister kit, supply of plasters, aspirin and other essentials.
-Small waterproof dry bag (for items such as your mobile phone)
-Reusable water bottle (minimum 1 litre) - Get 15% discount on a Water-to-Go bottle www.explore.co.uk/about-us/responsible-travel/water-to-go-discount-with-explore
-Lunch bag/Tupperware (for packed lunches)
At your discretion you might also consider tipping your Tour Leader in appreciation of the efficiency and service you receive.
Although entirely voluntary, tipping is a recognised part of life in this region of the world. Some local staff will look to members of the group for personal recognition of particular services provided. Accordingly, you should allow approximately €15 for tipping.
In order to make things easier for you, the Tour Leaders may organise a group's tips kitty and if this is the case, they will account for it throughout the tour.