The following excursions and/or activities are usually available and may be arranged locally. Estimated costs are provided below for guidance only, are on a per person basis unless shown otherwise, and may depend on the number of participants. Prices quoted are correct as of the date these tour notes were originally issued but may change at any time due to currency fluctuations.
Please note: These activities are booked and paid for direct with the supplier and do not form part of your Explore holiday contract.
Funchal - Blandy's wine lodge guided tour and tasting €6.50 (14:30, 15:30 and 16:30); Botanical gardens €6.00; Tropical gardens at Monte €12.50 (take the cable car from Funchal €16 return); Whale Watch on a boat €49.50 (summer months only 2.5 hours); Dolphin swimming and boat trip €65 (summer months only); Reids Palace Hotel - Afternoon tea €36; Catamaran trip €35 half day; Full day Boat trip to Islas Desertas inc. lunch €80
Porto Santo - Ferry €57.40 (apr - Sep) €46.95 (Jan - Mar) return ticket
Tobogganing from Monte, 2km descent taking approximately 15 minutes- €25 (one person), €30 (2 people), €35 (3 people max)
Christmas dinner at the hotel - €19.50 per person (starter, main & desert, not a special Christmas menu)
€6 per person - half a bottle of wine or 2 beers or 2 soft drinks, water, coffee or tea
€ 4 per person - 1 glass of wine, water or juice (instant juice)
New Years Eve - Gala dinner supplement (drinks included): € 95 per person, New Year's Fireworks on board a catamaran (22.30 to 01.30) boarding at 22.00 from Marina of Funchal (open Bar, soft drinks, tapas, champagne, music) € 120 euros per person.
July and August are the warmest months, though the islands are freshened by cooling sea breezes. Bring light and comfortable clothing that can be layered according to the temperature. It can become cool, especially at night, so bring warmer layers. Tops made from wicking materials which keep you drier, a warmer fleece is recommended as a mid layer, and walking trousers are preferable to trousers of heavier material such as jeans. A waterproof jacket is essential at all times in case of rain and wind.
-Breathable wind and waterproof jacket (you may also wish to bring waterproof trousers)
-Long sleeved tops
-Shorts (if you prefer to walk in them)
-Swimwear and towel
-Socks (liner and thicker pair)
Luggage: On tour
Bring one main piece of luggage and a 20-30 litre day sack is recommended. You will need to carry what you need for the day which may include a raincoat, jumper, camera, sun-cream, water and picnic lunch. On hot days you will carry fewer clothes but more drinking water.
-Small Torch (with spare batteries and bulb)
-Walking poles (if you usually use them)
-Personal first aid kit - On each walk a first aid kit is carried but you should have your own blister kit, supply of plasters, aspirin and other essentials.
-Small waterproof dry bag (for items such as your mobile phone)
-Reusable water bottle (minimum 1 litre) - Get 15% discount on a Water-to-Go bottle www.explore.co.uk/about-us/responsible-travel/water-to-go-discount-with-explore
-Lunch bag/Tupperware (for packed lunches)
Tipping isn't compulsory, and we work hard to ensure that our leaders all receive a fair wage. You may however, want to recognise a leader that has done a great job or really added to your trip by giving them a tip. We're often asked about the recommended amount. It is a tricky one, and down to personal preference, but we would recommend £15 to £20 per person per week as a guideline.
Although voluntary, tipping is a recognised part of life in this region of the world. Some local staff will look to members of the group for personal recognition of particular services provided. Accordingly, you should allow approximately £15 of local c urrency for tipping. In order to make things easier for you, the Explore Leader may organise a group's tips kitty and if this is the case, they will account for it throughout the trip.