15 April 2012

Porto Santo in the low season

I love Porto Santo in the low season. For me, April, May and the beginning of June is the best period to enjoy the island. The Winter season is normally cold and grey and the island is somehow desert. Nevertheless there are always a few hardcore tourists that enjoy it during those colder months.
It's only a question of relativity. For me fifteen degrees in Porto Santo on the peak of Winter might mean just that. For a German tourist coming from Bavaria, that  air temperature is Spring time. Be that as it may, I try to run away from Porto Santo during the Summer months. The island gets to crowded for my taste and it's only enjoyable if you are on vacations, whitch is never the case when I'm visiting.
So, if you enjoy the Algarve or South of Spain-alike Summer environment in the middle of the Atlantic, by all means, go for it. If you prefer more peacefulness and relaxation together with nice weather, avoid the peak of Summer months. Go for the Spring time and early Autumn.
And a beautiful Spring day is what I've found on arrival to the island, early four days ago. With only two flights during the day connecting Madeira to Porto Santo (one in early morning, at 0800, and the other later in the evening, around 2000), besides the, also twice-per-day maritime ferry connection, and with the berthing manoeuvre of the M/V Funchalense 5 scheduled for 1700, we cannot say I had plenty of flights to choose from. So I woke up at 0600, arrived at the Santa Catarina airport at 0700 and after a calm flight with SATA we  landed in Porto Santo at 0820.
At 1000 in the morning I was already at the hotel, waiting for the afternoon manoeuvre. And, with nothing more to do, I went to the city to make a few pictures in a particularly calm morning.
On the old pier we have the best view of the seven kilometre golden-sand beach.
There are years in witch all the sand of the beach almost disappears. Those years form part of the natural cycle of nature, according to the local seamen. The sand sometimes goes away, only to driven back one year later. So, for this present year, King Neptune blessed us with a perfect sandy beach.
A perfect Spring weather was what I've found on my last trip to Porto Santo. Clear blue skies, sunny weather and peaceful sea are normal conditions in Porto Santo during this time of the year. Normally, with the advance of Summer, the beach becomes more windy, since it is, due to the flatness of the island, exposed to the fresh predominant NE winds, typical of the hot season.
On the picture, you can see the old pier and , behind it, the Ilhéu da Cal. Reminder of a time when there was no harbour in Porto Santo, and when the movements of cargo and passengers were, therefore, more difficult, the old pier is nowadays a pleasant walk that everybody takes at evening time, during the many calm nights of Porto Santo.