Car hire in Madeira. Compare car rental with Woopcars.

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If you like to get out there and explore, Madeira is the island for you, as some of the most rewarding sights can be found off the beaten path. You will want to have a car that is perfect for the roads you are going to drive, and the season you are visiting, and we can help with that.


Information, driving tips, travel guide...

madeira car hire, discover the island

Car hire Madeira

Madeira is a stunningly beautiful archipelago that is an autonomous part of Portugal that sits just a few miles northwest of Africa. It’s a popular tourist attraction, and because the main island is not that large, it’s the perfect place to rent a car if you do decide to visit. If you do decide to explore the island of Madeira in a hire car, you are going to need to know the rules of the road, as well as some of the highways that you can take to get to the best tourist attractions.

The first thing that you need to know when driving in Madeira is that you will be on the right-hand side of the road. You are going to want to make sure that you are strapped in at all times, as seatbelts are required in the front and back of the vehicle. Children under the age of 12 need to be seated in the rear, and of course they also need to have their seatbelts on. When driving the highways in Madeira, the speed limit of 120 km/h needs to be obeyed at all times, and that limit drops to 80 km/h when driving on secondary roads, many of which lead to the more popular attractions on the island.

You are going to find that getting around in your hire car is really quite easy, as the highways have been laid out in a way that makes getting from Point A to Point B a breeze. If it’s a scenic route you are looking for, then we suggest that you spend some time on the coast highway. It goes all the way around the island and goes through all the major cities, including the capital of Funchal. The coast road, which is known as ER101, was the first real road laid on the island, and while it has been updated with tunnels through the mountains and re-paved areas, you can also still follow the old route if you want to enjoy the road as it was originally intended.


Read about the top things to do in Madeira

visit funchal with a car, what to do in Funchal


Funchal – While we definitely recommend that you hire a car while visiting Madeira, we certainly do not suggest that you spend all of your time behind the wheel. The island is absolutely brimming with things to do, not all of which take place on dry land. There are all manner of different churches and historical buildings waiting to be explored, as well as amazing botanical gardens that are alive with color. If you want to ditch your hire car for a few hours and get out on the water, there are countless dolphin watching tours that you can book yourself onto, not to mention the opportunity to just get out on a boat and take in the stunning Madeira coastline, which includes the breathtaking cliffs at Cabo Girao.

Seafood in Funchal Madeira, what to see in madeira


Funchal – When you visit the town and cities in Madeira, you will come face to face with the culture of the place, from restaurants serving authentic cuisine, to street markets where you can buy all of your souvenirs for your friends and family back home. There is a lot to pack into your visit in a short period of time, which is why we suggest that you hire a car. Getting to where you want to go on the island is easy when you have reliable transportation, and you won’t miss any of the sight that you want to see when you plan ahead. The journey across this beautiful part of the world really begins once you land in the main airport, which is why we are going to spend a little time talking about what’s available there.

madeira map road


The main highway on Madeira is known as the Via Rapida, and is the road you will exit onto once you get your hire car out of the airport. While this is the main highway, it is not the widest road you will ever encounter, and in fact only has two lanes on either side. Going in one direction takes you towards Funchal, while heading back the other way takes you to Santana. The exits on the Via Rapida are well marked, but you should know that they tend to be a little short, so be careful when exiting the highway. You should also be aware that the roads can become steep, curvy, and tricky to navigate once you get off the main highways, but if you take your time, and drive carefully, you will encounter many great little villages in your Madeira car rental.


Some information about Funchal Airport

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Car hire at Funchal Airport

The Madeira airport is located in Santa Cruz, and while that may be a surprise for those of you looking to visit the capital city of Funchal, the reality is that you are just a short drive away from the main city. When you land at the airport, you will see that there are plenty of car rental options available to you, although we do suggest that you book in advance, especially if you plan on visiting in the busy summer months.

Some people refer to their landing spot as the Funchal Airport, as it is roughly about a 18-20 minute drive from the front doors of the airport to the capital city. Once you exit the airport by hire car, you will be on the Via Rapida, or VR1, which is the main highway that will take you directly to Funchal. If you need to wait in Funchal airport while your car rental process is completed, you will find that there is plenty to do. There are numerous places where you can sit down and have a drink and a bite to eat, and you can use the free Wi-Fi in the airport to plan what you are going to do on your visit.

Airport Facilities

As filled with amenities as the airport is, we are sure you will want to get out on the road after you rent a car at Madeira Airport, as there is a world of beauty and adventure out there just waiting for you.