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Madeira travelling from England but don’t want to fly - What is the journey like?

49 replies

RedSquirrelsAreAwesome · 04/06/2021 08:52

We are thinking about booking a holiday to Madeira next year but we have a baby and would prefer not to fly until she is older. Has anyone made the journey via ferries? Could you please advise what the journey involved and what it was like? Was it doable or too much and you wouldn’t do it again?

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YellowScallion · 04/06/2021 08:55

Are you aware of exactly where Madeira is?

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Gloschick · 04/06/2021 09:02

Sounds like madness! We were once stranded in Madeira due to a pilot strike, and so briefly mulled over other routes, and it really brought home how isolated/ far away Madeira is. Madeira is fine but really not worth a several day journey to get there, nevermind with a baby. If you don't fancy going on a plane, just go to France or maybe Northern Spain.

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HotToddyColdSauvignon · 04/06/2021 09:04

@Gloschick

Sounds like madness! We were once stranded in Madeira due to a pilot strike, and so briefly mulled over other routes, and it really brought home how isolated/ far away Madeira is. Madeira is fine but really not worth a several day journey to get there, nevermind with a baby. If you don't fancy going on a plane, just go to France or maybe Northern Spain.

This

Why wouldn’t you want to fly with a young baby?? That’s when they’re the easiest age to fly with. Once they start moving and walking it’s the hard part.

If you don’t want to fly then stick to a 2 hour ferry to France and drive
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Jasmine245 · 04/06/2021 09:07

A ferry to mainland Spain takes at least 17 hours. A far as I know there are no ferries from the UK to Portugal or Maderia. Maybe a cruise would suit you better?

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Iknowtheanswer · 04/06/2021 09:08

Almost impossible I would think. I think flight time is 4 hours, so it would take several days by car and ferry.

We took ds to madeira when he was 20 months, and it was a brilliant holiday, but if you want to drive, France is best.

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FelicityPike · 04/06/2021 09:09

Crazy idea.

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YellowScallion · 04/06/2021 09:09

A far as I know there are no ferries from the UK to Portugal or Maderia.

There was one briefly a couple of years ago I believe, but it's no longer running. 22 hours from the Algarve so even if it still existed who'd want to do that trip with a baby?

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Branleuse · 04/06/2021 09:09

Is there even a ferry?? Its pretty far out into the atlantic so id be surprised if there was a passenger boat

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grenadines · 04/06/2021 09:10

You could go to mainland Portugal by taking the Brittany ferry to Spain and driving from Santander. Although with a young baby I would just get the ferry to France or Spain and go somewhere within 3 or 4 hours drive of the port as it isn’t good for young children to be in car seats too long and they may not enjoy traveling at that age

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Chemenger · 04/06/2021 09:10

Where would you get a ferry from? Madeira is over 300 miles from Morocco and further from mainland Portugal. I’m sure there must be a sea route of some description but it would be very time consuming. Corsica would be a better choice of island for a non-flying holiday, it has ferries from the south of France.

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Librariesmakeshhhhappen · 04/06/2021 09:11

Stick to holidays in the UK or France if you dont want to fly. Utter madness to try and get to Madiera without flying. You'll have days of travel (and it might not even be possible).

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ineedaholidaynow · 04/06/2021 09:13

Do you really mean Madeira?

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idontlikealdi · 04/06/2021 09:15

So you actually mean Madeira?!

Just drive to France.

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RedSquirrelsAreAwesome · 04/06/2021 09:18

Good to know. We had no idea if it was possible. Certainly wouldn’t want to travel such a difficult journey with the baby. We had heard Madeira is nice from a friend but maybe we will look at France or Spain instead. We’ve been to Corsica and didn’t enjoy the holiday.
Thanks all.

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RedSquirrelsAreAwesome · 04/06/2021 09:19

Yes I did mean Madeira!

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RampantIvy · 04/06/2021 09:19

As far as I know the only way to get to Madeira by sea is on a cruise.

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Badgertadger · 04/06/2021 09:29

If you're intent on this batshittery, Rome2Rio and seat61 are the best sites for multimodal non-air options.

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milinhas · 04/06/2021 09:43

Perhaps Sicily or Sardinia instead of Corsica? Though it depends what you disliked about Corsica of course!

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RedSquirrelsAreAwesome · 04/06/2021 10:00

@Badgertadger

If you're intent on this batshittery, Rome2Rio and seat61 are the best sites for multimodal non-air options.

I’m not intent on this batshittery!

I will have a look at cruises next.

Thanks everyone. It really just was an enquiry to see if anyone had any experience of doing this journey. It is obviously a ridiculous idea, just as my DH thought but neither of us knew if it was possible so just thought I’d ask the wise people of MN!
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RedSquirrelsAreAwesome · 04/06/2021 10:04

@milinhas

Perhaps Sicily or Sardinia instead of Corsica? Though it depends what you disliked about Corsica of course!

Corsica wasn’t for us, it started off with a villa which was lovely but the owners were not so that spoilt things and kind of got worse from there!
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Heyha · 04/06/2021 10:10

Majorca would be doable I would expect, I'd be surprised if there wasn't a ferry from Barcelona or Valencia or somewhere and more family-oriented. And a LOT nearer.
Actually that sounds quite nice- leisurely drive down through France and northern Spain over a few days, ferry to Majorca, few days there, leisurely drive back up a different route with different stopovers 🤔

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TheOnlyLivingBoyInNewCross · 04/06/2021 10:16

Madeira is over 1,500 miles from the UK. And to you that seems a preferable journey by ferry rather than by plane? You must REALLY hate flying Confused

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ineedaholidaynow · 04/06/2021 10:16

Of all the places to choose why choose there if you don’t want to fly?

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RedSquirrelsAreAwesome · 04/06/2021 10:25

@ineedaholidaynow

Of all the places to choose why choose there if you don’t want to fly?

We haven’t ‘chosen it’ it was just an enquiry!
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MoiraNotRuby · 04/06/2021 10:27

It will really help if you look at a map when choosing where to go.

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