Carreiros do Monte, Funchal

Carreiros do Monte is a major tourist attraction in Madeira and provides a 10 minute 2km steep downhill journey in traditional wicker toboggans from Monte to Livramento in Funchal. The toboggans are driven by two runners dressed in white with straw boaters and special shoes. They date back to the early 19th century when they were used as a means of transport to travel quickly down to the city of Funchal. Charges begin at 25€ for a single passenger. Minibuses bring the runners back from Livramento to Monte, from where it is a short walk back to the departure point to wait for more customers.  When we visited in December 2016 it was very busy around lunchtime but then went really quiet mid-afternoon – hence the pictures of runners killing time.  Customers generally travel up to Monte by bus or cable car. We went to Livramento to see the other end of the route, but made the mistake of going on a Sunday, when it was closed! No doubt there are plenty of taxis offering to take people the remaining distance down to the centre of Funchal.