The Monte Toboggan is one of Madeira’s most famous attractions. Dating back to the 1850s, the Monte Sledge — a wicker toboggan — was the primary means of downhill public transportation in Funchal (Madeira’s capital city).
Today, and for many years now, the “Carro de Cesto” is used to entertain and transport tourists from the steps of the Nossa Senhora do Monte Church downhill to Livramento — a suburb of Funchal — two kilometres away.
Two men, called “Carreiros” dressed in white and wearing straw hats, will be your chauffeurs on this downhill adventure. They wear special, rubber-soled shoes that help them steer and brake the toboggan, which is essentially a wicker basket attached to two wooden runners (that glide on greased up rags).
The trip to the bottom takes about 10 minutes down a curvy road, and you can expect to reach speeds up to 30mph!