Immerse yourself in the lush landscapes of this Portuguese paradise, capturing the dramatic cliffs, mysterious woodlands and colorful flora unique to the island. From charming coastal villages to the mystical and ancient Laurisilva Forest, every corner of Madeira offers an opportunity for stunning photographs.
May 20 - May 27, 2024
Day 1 - Funchal
On the first day, you’ll be picked up from the airport and transferred to our hotel in the center of Funchal. After check-in, you’ll have some time to explore the city, and we’ll have our first group meeting around 6 p.m. During a nice dinner with local cuisine, you’ll be able to meet your fellow travelers and discuss our plan for the next day.
Day 2 - Ribeira da Janela, Fanal Forest and Pico do Arieiro
The day starts with the sunrise shoot at Ribeira da Janela, a rocky coastline with towering cliffs that plunge into the Atlantic Ocean. The rocks on the shore create a beautiful foreground for your landscape masterpiece, especially when combined with the waves in the background, shot with a long exposure.
The next stop for today will be the well-known Fanal Forest, located in the heart of the Laurisilva Forest, which offers endless possibilities for your photography. One of the most distinctive features of Fanal Forest is its natural amphitheater-like clearing, where the ancient laurel trees are densely clustered, creating a sense of sanctuary and serenity. This clearing, often shrouded in mist, is a favorite spot for photographers and nature enthusiasts. The forest is also home to various bird species, adding to the auditory delights of the area with their songs and calls.
We’ll have a couple of hours to rest before we head to our sunset spot – Pico do Arieiro. The summit of Pico do Arieiro provides awe-inspiring panoramic views, especially during sunset, when the sky is painted with hues of orange, pink, and purple. If the weather permits, we’ll see neighboring peaks, such as Pico Ruivo, the highest peak in Madeira, and the distant silhouette of Porto Santo, another island in the Madeiran archipelago.
Day 3 - Ponta de São Lourenço & Pico Ruivo
We start our morning at Ponta de São Lourenço viewpoint. Waiting for the sun to rise, we’ll see the eastern horizon gradually brighten, casting a soft, golden glow over the jagged cliffs and rocky outcrops that define Ponta de São Lourenço. The Atlantic Ocean, stretching infinitely towards the horizon, shimmers under the gentle sunlight, creating a mesmerizing play of colors. The waves rhythmically crash against the cliffs, creating a soothing soundtrack that enhances the tranquility of the moment.
After sunrise, we’ll go back to our hotel to eat breakfast and have a lecture about landscape photography from one of our guides.
For sunset, we’ll drive to Pico Ruivo – the highest peak of Madeira that offers unique views of the mountains, rolling green hills, deep valleys, and distant coastal cliffs. The summit of Pico Ruivo is often surrounded by mist and clouds, creating a mystical atmosphere. As the mist swirls around the peaks, it adds an ethereal quality to the scene, making the experience even more enchanting.
Day 4 - Waterfalls & natural pools
For our sunrise shoot, we'll drive to the north coast of the island to photograph The Véu da Noiva waterfall. Véu da Noiva, which translates to "Bride's Veil" in Portuguese, is one of the most iconic waterfalls in Madeira. Véu da Noiva waterfall cascades gracefully down a sheer cliff, resembling the delicate and flowing fabric of a bride's veil, hence its name. The water plunges from a considerable height, creating a mesmerizing sight as it descends into a pool below.
After our sunrise shoot, we’ll head to the natural pools of Porto Moniz, which, formed by volcanic rock and filled with crystal-clear seawater, create a series of natural swimming pools that blend seamlessly with the ocean. Set against the backdrop of the dramatic cliffs and overlooking the vast expanse of the Atlantic Ocean, these pools offer a surreal and picturesque setting. After photographing this stunning natural wonder, we can enjoy a refreshing swim while being surrounded by the stunning natural beauty of the volcanic landscape.
For our sunset shoot, we’ll go once again to the Fanal Forest for a chance to photograph it in a different light.
Day 5 - Monte Palace and Ponta de São Lourenço
On this day, we’ll meet for breakfast after a longer, refreshing sleep. After breakfast, we’ll have post-processing workshops from our masters and then head to the Monte Palace, a lush botanical garden and cultural space located in Funchal. This magnificent garden is renowned for its stunning collection of exotic plants, beautiful flowers, and breathtaking views of the city and the surrounding landscapes.
Day 6 - Ilhéu de Santa Catarina & Faial
We’ll wake up early to photograph the sunrise at the Ilhéu de Santa Catarina – a small and picturesque islet located near the coast of Funchal. The islet is characterized by its rugged coastline, with cliffs rising sharply from the azure waters of the Atlantic. The rocky terrain is adorned with vibrant coastal vegetation, including shrubs and wildflowers, adding to the islet's natural charm. The surrounding seascape provides breathtaking views of the open ocean and the distant coastline of Madeira, creating a scenic backdrop for your landscape photographs.
After the morning shoot, we’ll head back to our hotel for breakfast and will have a couple of hours to rest.
In the afternoon, we’ll head to the Foz da Ribeira do Faial for the sunset shoot. Faial is a scenic natural spot located on the northern coast of Madeira, where the Ribeira do Faial river meets the Atlantic Ocean, creating a picturesque and tranquil environment.
Day 7 - Black sand beach Seixal
For our last sunrise shoot of the trip, we’ll head to the black sand beach Seixal. The contrast between the dark sand, the deep blue waters of the Atlantic Ocean, and the lush greenery of the surrounding cliffs creates a visually stunning and dramatic setting.
After the morning shoot, we’ll explore Funchal and its surroundings and enjoy the tour of the local winery, followed by a Madeira wine tasting! We’ll also go to the viewpoint to photograph the city’s panorama.
In the afternoon, we’ll enjoy the boat tour during the sunset, and if we’re lucky, we’ll get to see and photograph whales and dolphins.
After the boat tour, we’ll have our farewell dinner, and you’ll be able to say goodbye to your new photography friends.
Day 8 - Departure
Breakfast and check out from the hotel.
Accommodation for 7 nights, based on double occupancy
Transportation in a comfortable bus
A welcome kit full of goodies from the Luminar team
Education from some of the world’s leading photographers
All the activities on the island included in the tour plan
Flights to/from Iceland
International medical and travel insurance
Alcohol, snacks, and beverages (including your room mini bar)