There is certainly something for everyone in Funchal. If relaxing all day by a pool is your thing you can certainly do that, though where we stayed at the Hotel Porto Santa Maria in the old town probably wouldn’t suit at present as the construction can be pretty noisy at times. However if you want to get out and about with minimum inconvenience then this hotel is perfect.
In one week we did Monte Palace Gardens by the cable car; a levada walk from Monte to Palheiro Ferreiro (up by cable car, back by bus); the walk from Eira do Serrado down to Curral (number 81 bus – extreme bus riding!); thorough exploring of the old town; the mandolin orchestra concert at the English church – brilliant!
We would also have taken the113 bus to Ponta de Sao Lourenco if we hadn’t got the bus times wrong. (The one I had carefully printed from the SAM website didn’t correspond with the one displayed at the bus stop).
Oh and we did a 4 wheel drive jeep trip with Upmountain Madeira that was great fun.
The old town restaurants are excellent too. You can find one you like and keep going back or try a new one every evening.
We will certainly return at some time in the future.