We had a chat with Bartek Kolaczkowski – photographer, traveler, Land Rover enthusiast, and Fat Moose ambassador – about his travels to Madeira, an island known for its diverse and breathtaking nature. We wanted to get tips for Madeira from somebody who knows exactly how to explore the island. Here are Bartek’s thoughts on and recommendations for Madeira:
Describe Madeira with 3 words:
Nature, Land Rovers & fun
How many times have you visited the island and why Madeira?
I have been to Madeira 3 times already. It is a beautiful island and there is always something new to discover. It is a great location for photo projects as the landscape is so diverse. The island also used to have the biggest Land Rover dealer in Portugal, so there are a lot of the classic cars to spot around the island, and there are some unique pieces to be found. The community around these cars is amazing, so this is a big reason for me to come back to this island. I’m so thankful that I got to explore the island in the best way - with classic Land Rovers.
What's two must-see attractions on the island?
In my opinion, when the weather conditions are good at Pico do Arieiro during sunset - it is magical! The second place that I would highly recommend is Ponta de Sao Lorenco. The best option is to be there at sunrise and start the hike to the easternmost point of this island.
What’s something that surprised you?
The weather is unpredictable, so people expect to visit the island and spend the summer holidays there, but Madeira has a saying about it – the island of all year spring – meaning you’ll never know what to expect. But what is cool about it, is that those unpredictable weather conditions always give you different experience on the island and I absolutely love it! Some say that the sun always shines somewhere on the island, you just have to find the spot.
Where did you have your best meal in Madeira?
For me it’s always the most important thing, when I’m visiting new places, to meet locals. I listen to their recommendations and follow their advice, which usually results in amazing, authentic experiences. Also remember about trying „Poncha” to have the best experience after (or before) your meal!
I recommend the coffee place called Padaria do Calhau in Sao Vicente. It’s a local coffee place located next to the ocean so when you are visiting this part of the island it’s really worth a stop.
Would you go back?
Always! And I'm sure I will. I have really good friends there and I love the weather, so there’s no doubt that there will be coming more of photos from this island and many new Land Rover stories from there!