A traditional Christmas in Madeira
Jingle bells can already be heard in a merry rhythm at night and we are only days away from the happiest, most colorful celebration of Europe. A traditional Christmas in Madeira is what you should escape if you are planning on spending a (not so very) white winter in an attempt to escape the cold of home.
Decidedly, the warm weather lures thousands of visitors here during the cold season. But another ingredient is the people, commonly regarded as the friendliest, kindest in the world. Everything coupled with the beauty of the wild landscape, with its walks through the Laurisilva (levadas), steep hills and sandy beaches by the calm Atlantic Ocean.
Boasting a rich history, along the course of which the Madeirans had the opportunity to interact with many peoples and finally forge their own identity. Christmas traditions in Madeira resemble those in Portugal mainland, but there are local particularities that make the celebration of Nativity even more colorful and merry.
One of the most common traditions here is Presepio, the Christmas Nativity with all its characters. Nativity scenes are common throughout the Catholic world, as are reenactments of the Birth of Baby Jesus. But the Madeiran Lapinha, on the other hand, has something more: Baby Jesus is usually set on top of a mountain or hill with fruits and what at the bottom. It is said that if the wheat grows well, this is a sign that the coming year will be a prosperous and happy one.
If the common city decorations in the cold part of winter consist of electric lights and decorated trees, in Madeira, December is the month when the town of Funchal is decorated with flowers. The locals also work to create a huge crib at the center of the city to welcome Baby Jesus.
You’ve still got a bit of time to prepare a traditional Christmas in Madeira, so plan your trip and book plane tickets and airport transfers today!