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Santana is a town and municipality on the northeastern coast of Madeira.

Understand[edit]

Santana is on a high plateau above the sea of ​​the north coast of Madeira, which can be described as extensive by Madeiran standards. The mountains retreat so far here that agriculture can be practised in the immediate vicinity. The name goes back to a chapel built here in 1572, which was dedicated to Santa Ana (Sant-ana).

The city is the administrative seat of the district of the same name, which extends to Pico Ruivo.

The district has been classified as a World Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO.

  • Tourist Information, Sítio de Serrado (in one of the three thatched roof huts next to the modern town hall building), +351 291 572 992.

Get in[edit]

Map of Santana (Portugal)

By car[edit]

Via the coastal highway ER-101, Santana can be reached from the island's capital Funchal in approx. 40 minutes, from Santa Cruz airport in approx. 20 minutes.

To the west is the only area of the coastal motorway that has not yet been tunneled under by expressways (apart from the west coast). As far as Ponta Delgada, the very narrow and winding old coastal road follows every valley cut and is more to be seen as a tourist adventure than a traffic route.

By bus[edit]

The operators SAM and Horarios do Funchal (line 56,129) often connect Santana to the airport and to the capital via the east coast or the eastern hill country.

There are also connections westwards to Arco de São Jorge. From there, Rodoeste operates lines to Sao Vicente, Ribeira Brava and Porto Moniz (the latter with a rather complicated change in São Vicente).

Get around[edit]

See[edit]

Madeira houses in Santana
  • Casas de Colmo. Santana was known for decades for this traditional form of living, also known as Madeira houses or Santana huts. These are thatched wooden houses that crouch under a triangular gable roof that extends almost to the ground. Painted in different colors and decorated with flowers, they look cute; in fact, the families are crammed together under them. Almost all of the original houses have now fallen into disrepair or, as can be seen on the outskirts, are used as makeshift storage sheds. At the so-called Núcleo de Casas Típicas at the town hall or in the Parque tematico, the huts can also be explored from the inside to get a feel for former living conditions. Otherwise it is more like folkloric replicas.
  • Parish church Iglesia matriz. Built in 1638, with baroque carvings and azulejo tiles in the chancel.
  • Miradouros (viewpoints):
    • Fortim do Faial: View to the mountains.
    • Cabanas: View over São Jorge and Arco de São Jorge.
  • 1 Madeira Theme Park (Parque Temático da Madeira), Estrada Regional 101 - Fonte da Pedra (turn right at the entrance to the village), +351 291 570 410. 10:00 - 19:00, partly closed on Mondays. 3D animations, small gondola rides and films in IMAX format, especially on rainy days. The museum's explanations of history are very ambitious, and handicrafts and the Casas de Colmo are also very descriptive explanations. Price: €6, children €4, group discounts.

Do[edit]

Rocha do Navio cable car
  • Cable car (Teleferico Rocha do Navio). W Sa 09:00–10:00, 12:00–12:30, 18:00–19:00. In the past as a means of transport for cultivating the fields near the coast, today it is also used by tourists for walks on the beach, which is a designated nature reserve. €3.50.
  • There are bathing opportunities in nearby Faial and São Jorge.

Hiking[edit]

  • In the village on foot to the Rocha do Navio viewpoint and from there by cable car to the shore
  • The forester's house in Queimadas can be described as the centre of the UNESCO biosphere reserve, where smaller trails can also be used. This is the starting point for one of Madeira's most famous hikes into the Caldeirão Verde and further into the Caldeirão do Inferno. A head for heights and surefootedness are at least required.
  • From the Achada do Teixera to the Pico Ruivo
  • Coastal walks at Sāo Jorge and on the eagle cliffs of Faial.

Festivals[edit]

  • Festa dos Compadres. One week before Shrove Sunday, two straw dolls are carried through the town during the Festa dos Compadres. A public hearing is staged with them about a man who murdered his wife after an uncovered affair, whereby not inconsiderable amounts of alcohol help you to think. infoto edit
  • Santissimo Sacramento. At the end of July and beginning of August the church festival Santissimo Sacramento of the local parish with mass and procession with flowers. Then a fiesta with stalls and small attractions. infoto edit
View from the Caldeirão Verde to Santana

Buy[edit]

Farmers market. Sundays 09:30 to 18:00.

Eat[edit]

There is no shortage of restaurants, but the larger ones are often visited as part of the daily bus tours at lunchtime. They should be avoided at these times. The following are highlighted:

Quinta da Furāo (see accommodation) with a beautiful panoramic terrace. All other hotels also have restaurants

Drink[edit]

Sleep[edit]

In Santana there is a wide range of hotels, apartment complexes, natural facilities (Casas Rurales) and private holiday apartments. Some offers can also be booked as part of package deals. Often booked addresses are (without rating):

Connect[edit]

Go next[edit]

Ribeiro Frio , the cold stream, is known for trout farming, which thrives in the oxygen-rich water. Very good hiking opportunities to levadas. Old coastal road to Ponta Delgada as an adventure drive Ponta de São Lourenço peninsula

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