20 Sep 2017
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Monte
monte_280_300
Monte is one of the most pleasant places in Madeira. 

With a privileged location over the amphitheatre of Funchal, the parish of Monte, located about 9 Km from the centre and 550 m above sea level, is no doubt one of the must see places in Funchal.

With lush vegetation and amazing views over the amphitheatre and the bay of Funchal, it has always been a preferred place for the visitors of Madeira since the beginning of tourism in the Island.
In the following day, 15th of August, dedicated to Santo de Guarda (Guardian Saint), after the mass, a great number of believers follow the procession, which walks along a great part of the parish.

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The Cult to the Virgin of Monte
NossaSenhora_1p There are several legends about Nossa Senhora do Monte, which survived generations since the beginning of the settlement to the present time.
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The Festival of Nossa Senhora do Monte
festa_monte_280_300 The Romaria de Nossa Senhora do Monte dates from the beginning of the colonization of the island, it is the biggest and most popular Christian festival in Madeira.

The festival begins on the 14th of August in the evening. It is very animated and lively and a great night of fun. Thousands of people come to the centre of the parish where nothing is missing including the traditional 'espetada' beef on the skewer and the regional drinks from the island. Throughout the night there is singing and dancing, both contemporary and traditional rhythms.
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The Hotels of the time
hoteis_monte_280_300 During the last quarter of the 19th century, the Island of Madeira was target of several initiatives in order to create essential infrastructures for tourism, which would develop during the following century.

The natural beauties of the island made it attractive to foreigners. Its exotic atmosphere pleased many artists who allow it to be known abroad. The landscapes, the main monuments, the 'Quinta', culture and traditions are well documented in their pictures, which were widely reprinted. Photography was also established in Madeira very early on and soon became a modern form to document the past and allow people to remember the best moments.
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The manor estates (Quintas)
quintas_monte_280_300 The designation 'Quinta', as a spacious living house surrounded by gardens started to diversify during the 18th century. It was usually a two-storey house, with large bedrooms, corridors, living room, quarters for servants, store-rooms and a place for the animals.

What characterizes 'Quinta Madeirense' is its decorated garden with plants from the island and others from tropical areas, walks among trees and enchanting hiding places with stone benches and water fountains.
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Caminho-de-Ferro do Monte
comboio_monte_280_300 The train from Monte, also known as elevator or lift, was a great contributor to the development of the parish of Monte, which would become the most known Tourist Resort in Madeira.
The Monte Train was planned in 1886 by engineer Raúl Masnier Ponsard, also responsible for the lift in Santa Justa, in Lisbon.

Although the Madeiran people were reluctant to contribute capital for the Monte Railway Company, the first track between Pombal and Levada de Santa Luzia was inaugurated on the 16th of July 1893.
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The New Train in Monte
novo_comboio_280_300 A replica of the old train that connected the centre of Monte and Terreiro da Luta between 1912 and 1943 is now being built.
The 1300 meters line will use funicular like equipment with capacity for 60 people, 43 seated and 17 standing.
The line is expected to be finished before the end of 2006.

According to the approved project, the recovery of the train includes the old station of Largo da Fonte and the new station of Terreiro da Luta. In these two spaces there will be visible marks of an important past in the history of the place, namely, in terms of architecture, similar to the time when the train was operating. Therefore, the decoration of the two stations, the signals and uniform of the employees will follow the same criteria.

The station of the Monte funicular is to be installed in Largo da Fonte, the centre of the parish and will occupy the same building where the old station once existed. This building will be recovered according to its time. It will have a ticket office and a waiting room for passengers able to accommodate 60 people. A new part will be built to host a teahouse and an outdoor coffee shop. The recovery of the old kiosk is also being considered.

The station of Terreiro da Luta will be built according on the one that existed there once; it will include a ticket office, waiting room, coffee shop and shops.
A estação do Terreiro da Luta será feita a partir de uma reconstituição da que existiu, terá uma bilheteira, sala de espera, cafetaria e um espaço comercial.

 
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