FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.
Wines on the Wing

The Most Romantic Places for Couples to Dine in Madeira

by Barbara Rogers

Sep 7, 2019

Stillman Rogers

Travel Tips

The island of Madeira is steeped in romance. Rising almost vertically out of the ocean, 600 miles off the coast of mainland Portugal, it combines a dramatically mountainous inland with an equally dramatic coastline of high cliffs and crashing surf. Flowers bloom everywhere, thriving in its balmy tropical climate.

 

This same climate gives Madeira an abundance of tropical fruits (there are seven different varieties of passionfruit alone) and the sea provides an equally wide palette of fish and shellfish. You may be surprised at the creative ways Madeira’s chefs combine these two into delicious dishes. To appreciate the variety of fruits and seafood, stop in at the daily market in the capital city of Funchal. Or better yet, dine your way around the island at its most romantic spots.

 

Champagne for two, Restaurant Do Forte, Funchal, Madeira, Portugal. Photo: Stillman Rogers

In an Old Fort

Sip Champagne on the ramparts overlooking the sea, before descending to the dining room of Restaurante Do Forte. You can arrive at the 17th-century Sao Tiago Fortress in a classic Rolls Royce or other in the restaurant’s fleet of antique cars, which will pick you up and return you to your hotel. Or stroll there though the neighboring narrow Rua de Santa Maria, admiring its painted doorways, decorated by local artists.

 

Beside a Romantic Garden

The Portuguese have a talent for creating the world’s most romantic gardens, and Monte Palace Gardens are a prime example. Tropical greenery and blossoms seem to tumble down through a ravine to a plant-ringed pool with an island. Winding through this lush setting are paths and staircases bordered by walls of magnificent colored tiles. Beside the garden entrance, savor lunch at Pátio das Babosas, where the chef creates dishes whose artistic presentation matches their flavor.

 

Dine by Design

At Nini Design Center Restaurant in the studio/show room of the internationally known Nini Andrade Silva, you can admire her designs in the gallery before taking a table overlooking the harbor. Choose sea bream carpaccio with crab meat, or scallops in a creamy sauce with caviar and herbed risotto. Presentations are spectacular, as you might expect at a restaurant in the atelier of a preeminent designer.

 

On a Clifftop

West of Funchal the intimate Estalagem Quinta da Ponta do Sol is reached by an elevator and sky bridge to its cliff-top setting. From the glass-enclosed dining room or a table on the terrace you can look almost straight down into a pretty little village square. Time your reservation for the spectacular sunsets.

Sunset at the Estalagem Ponta do Sol, Ponta do Sol, Madeira, Portugal.

Sunset at the Estalagem Ponta do Sol, Ponta do Sol, Madeira, Portugal. Photo: Stillman Rogers

Under a Cliff

You’ll ride down to the secret hideaway of Fajã dos Padres, in a vertigo-inducing cable car that descends almost vertically to a narrow shingle beach. Walk through the garden — where the ingredients for your dinner were grown — to a row of tables for two, shaded by palm trees and overlooking the sea. You simply won’t believe the miracles they perform with tuna, so when the server suggests you should begin with that salad, don’t argue. The restaurant is open until 6 p.m., and it’s easy to spend an afternoon over lunch on this little strip of land between the soaring cliff and the sea.

 

#WhereverFamily

Insta Feed
Destinations
Feb 23, 2024

6 Spring Break Destinations for Families in 2024

Spring break is a great time for family travel, and these six destinations might be the inspiration you need for this year’s getaway.

Travel Tips to Help Protect Your Health and Your Trip

Five Tips to Help Minimize Potential Travel Problems

Destinations / Asia
Feb 22, 2024

Don’t Miss These Family-Friendly Attractions in Tokyo

Tokyo is a fascinating city that draws visitors for many reasons. Some go for the city’s exceptional cuisine, some look to experience a city teeming with technical innovations, while others go to discover Japan’s fascinating culture. But one theme seems to be constant no matter what your reason for visiting the city; it is a great place for family travelers, with plenty to see and do.

Parents
Feb 22, 2024

Tiny Traveler: A Safer Way to Travel with a Baby

Are your upcoming family travels taking you on a road trip? It’s not always easy trying to keep an eye on the little ones while also keeping an eye on the road, but with Tiny Traveler, parents can have peace of mind about their child's safety on the road. This safe companion monitors the kids and can even record precious moments for eternity.

Unearth Seoul’s Hidden Gems

Filled with hidden treasures waiting to be discovered, Seoul invites travelers to unearth its many gems, and Seoul Tourism Organization is here to help travelers do just that. Through thoughtfully created initiatives like the Theme Tourism County Competition, Seoul Tourism Organization works closely with local districts to identify and showcase what makes each district unique and charming in all seasons.

Slideshow
Feb 22, 2024

5 Muscat, Oman, Destinations for Family Travel

It’s time to start dreaming of your next family trip. Here’s some destination inspiration for you. Take a visual journey through Muscat, Oman, with us.