Cristiano Ronaldo International Airport, Madeira, commonly known as Madeira Airport or Funchal Airport or Saint Catherine Airport is an international airport in the civil parish of Santa Cruz in the Portuguese archipelago and autonomous region of Madeira. The airport is located 8.2 miles east-northeast of the regional capital, Funchal, after which it is sometimes informally named. It mostly hosts flights to European metropolitan destinations due to Madeira’s importance as a leisure destination, and is pivotal in the movement of cargo in and out of the archipelago of Madeira. It is the fourth-busiest airport in Portugal. The airport is named after Madeiran football player Cristiano Ronaldo. The airport is considered one of the most peculiarly perilous airports in the world due to its location and its spectacular runway construction. It received the Outstanding Structure Award in 2004 by the International Association for Bridge and Structural Engineering. The History Channel program Most Extreme Airports ranked it as the ninth most dangerous airport in the world and the third most dangerous in Europe. Pilots must undergo additional training to land at the airport. Despite all of these assertions Alex and I found the landing to be completely non-eventful, we did not detect any turbulence or difficulty in the landing either due to favorable weather conditions or the skill of the pilot.
As you can see spectacular views of the island as you come in for a landing. The airport itself was clean, modern and full of the famous Portuguese Azulejo Tiles.
We took a cab to make out way to Porto Moniz, I would suggest renting a car instead. The cab was very expensive but be aware if you do rent a car know how to drive a standard shift and maneuver on winding narrow mountain roads.