Floral species originating in many parts of the world bloom in Madeira, as the island meets specific climatic conditions that allow species from both tropical and cold regions to flourish.
The Flower Festival is a tribute to spring, and the celebration of metamorphosis and rebirth, fertility and the abundance of the flowers that colour, perfume and inebriate the surrounding environment and that give value and take the good name of this tourist destination across borders. Find out more about what to expect from the Flower Festival in Madeira:
On Saturday morning the Children’s Parade takes place, in which hundreds of children, dressed for the occasion, parade to Praça do Município to build a beautiful flower mural symbolically named “Wall of Hope”.
This initiative, which has been held for over three decades, combines childhood innocence and the delicacy of flowers in a ceremony calling for peace in the world. Each child takes a flower and the ceremony usually culminates with a release of doves and a children’s show.
Friday to Sunday
On Sunday afternoon, the streets of Funchal city centre are once again filled with music, colour and soft aromas, with the sumptuous float parade, which harmoniously combines numerous floral species with blooming decorations full of creativity. The Flower Festival Float Parade, held since 1979, is one of the most striking and eagerly anticipated events of the entire festival, for tourists and residents alike. This event is known for the magnificence and splendour of the floats and costumes of the hundreds of participants, mostly children, richly adorned with numerous, varied and magnificent floral species, parading along a planned route to the sound of festive musical themes and performing both simple and elaborate choreographies.The Flower Festival is also a cultural event. Tradition is particularly associated with the event, whether through the performances of folk groups, or through the construction of the beautiful floral carpets. At the same time, homage is paid to flowers at the magnificent Flower Exhibition and the city is animated with music concerts and variety shows.
Other initiatives that are included on the schedule:
Flower Market and Exhibition
The flower market, an initiative included in the event since 2007, has turned out to be an excellent asset. In addition to raising awareness of the countless existing ornamental and floral species, this market also allows for locals and visitors to buy them, in a picturesque and traditional setting, where the saleswomen, the “florists of Madeira”, appear dressed in regional costumes. This Flower Exhibition is held in the very centre of Funchal, more precisely at Largo da Restauração, located at the back of the iconic Palace of São Lourenço, which is no more than an extension of the exhibit held at Funchal’s Ateneu Comercial, dating back to the early 1950s. Still today, this exhibition allows for the finest flower specimens, examples of all kinds of flowers, cultivated in Madeira and grown with much care and devotion, to be appreciated and evaluated. The flowers exhibited in the parade are evaluated under various categories and the best are awarded prizes by a panel of experts.
Flower Carpets and Decorations
The abundance of Madeiran flora has greatly contributed to the establishing of this art form. This traditional creation of flower carpets thrives a little bit throughout the island and had its origins in the decoration of religious processions. Due to its undeniable beauty and detail, for the past several years, the flower carpets have been reproduced on the streets for the Flower Festival, establishing alongside the floral sculptures, a major contribution to the magnificence of the city’s decorations, as their careful construction is shared and admired by visiting tourists. These wonderful pieces of floral art are displayed in the central walkways of Avenida Arriaga.