The city´s name comes from the abundance of fennel (funcho) found on the island. It was an important shipping center during the 15th-17th centuries. It is one of the most beautiful cities in Portugal. It is a modern, cosmopolitan, rejuvenated city, well known for its many top class restaurants, stunning new 4 & 5 star hotels and warm climate all year round. The city itself is nestled in a great natural amphitheatre, facing the blue Atlantic with a backdrop of dramatic mountains. It is located in the stunning south of Madeira, on it’s sunniest coast amidst banana plantations and wonderful gardens. Funchal has also for many years been one of the Atlantic Cruise-ship’s main ports of call, with the Liner harbour right in the middle of the town. Once ashore, the cafés, restaurants and history that mark this famed capital are just a stroll away. Tourists in Funchal can also enjoy activities such as diving in the crystal-clear waters, surfing the waves, taking day excursions along the coast and through the eucalyptus smelling mountain woods.