Madeira Photography Tour

It’s shocking that so close to home for me in Portugal, I’ve never been to Madeira. It appears to be one of the most photogenic places on the planet and absolutely ripe for new discovery. I mean, seriously, check out the google image search for Madeira photography. It is epic.

Thus, in 2023 I’m kicking off my photography explorations of this mystical island.

While I intend on building a full classic photography tour out to Madeira at some point, the first step is always a scouting trip.

VIP scouting trips offer extremely small groups (only 3 participants) the opportunity to join me on an epic adventure in location scouting a destination. These are shorter, but higher intensity trips focused on discovery. We’ll spend a lot of time taking pictures, and lots of time hunting for locations. On my classic trips, we focus entirely on getting great photos. On the scouting trips, we focus on finding things that are unique, special, and are out exploring from dawn to dusk (and sometimes later).

This is as close to joining me on a professional travel photography assignment as possible.

Photo by Robert Pügner:

Trip Info

  • Dates = July 20-26, 2023
  • Start/End Airport = Funchal, Madeira
  • Max Participants = 4
  • Fitness Level = Moderate. Some hiking, walking. Nothing intense.
  • Hotel Level = 3 star
  • Cost = 3,300 Euros


On most of my classic trips we have pretty fixed itineraries. On my scouting trips, we stay flexible and chase good weather, good light, and the right situations.

Madeira is fairly small. You can basically drive a loop of the whole island in 3 and a half hours.

To keep things simple, we’ll be based on the east half of the island for half the time, and the west for the other half.

Potential locations include:

  • Lagoa do Fanal
  • Ponta de São Lourenço
  • Nova and Moinho Waterfall
  • Bica da Cana
  • Miradouro Eira do Serrado
  • Véu da Noiva
  • Ribeira da Janela
  • Much More…

There are so many incredible photo locations in Madeira. Everything from high mountains, to seascapes, to woodland forest. The variety is endless. So, we’ll want to keep our schedule as flexible as possible to take advantage of that.

Book Now

Since there are only 3 spots available, this will sell out quickly.

To book, click the product below and you’ll be asked to pay the deposit for this trip. The final payment will be due 4 months before the travel date.

**Note** This trip is now fully sold out. If you’re looking for another scouting trip, there is still limited space left for Azores.

If the trip is full and you would like to join the waiting list, please email me at brendanvanson at gmail dot com

There will be more scouting trips at some point in the future. I’ll be running a scouting trip to The Azores this coming winter. Also, there will be a full-sized photography tour to Madeira at some point, so if you’re interested please sign up to the newsletter at the bottom of the email.


What is a Scouting Trip?

It’s a trip to either a destination I haven’t been, or one that I want to dig deeper into. These trips are essentially an opportunity to dive into a place full-on, discovering the best it has to offer.

Why Join a Scouting Trip?

There are 3 big reasons. The first is that there are only 3 participants. This means that you’ll have a lot of attention out in the field, and say into the things we do. Secondly, these trips are photography intensive. If you want to make A LOT of images, we’re going to be out taking pictures all day, and often into the night sky. And finally, freedom and flexibility. We aren’t going to be hamstrung by fixed itineraries. We’re going to always photograph the best scenario available.

What’s The Average Day?

There will be no average day. It will all depend on the weather, and what we choose to explore. We will be exploring most of the day. We’ll be photographing the best light (sunrise, and sunset). And, we’ll often be out capturing the night sky as well (if clear).

What is the Accommodation Situation?

One of the cool things about these scouting trips, is that we’ll be doing things a bit on the fly. I’ll be making reservations at the start and the end of the trip, and keeping an eye on the accommodation during the trip. But, we’ll stay at accommodation that suits our day-to-day exploration. It’s one of the advantages of being such a small group.
Each night, the hotels will be at least 3 stars.

What’s Included?

All the local transport, accommodation, and entrance fees to parks will be included. Breakfast is also included. Photography assistance, and any other local guides required are also included.

What’s Not Included?

Flights to/from Madeira are not included in the price. Lunch, Dinner, and snacks are also not included.

Flights to Madeira?

Actually, Madeira is fairly easy to get to. There are lots of direct flights from within Europe. There are multiple daily flights from London and Lisbon – for example. Search on for options.

Can’t Join This Photo Trip?

If you can’t join this one, be sure to sign up for my mailing list to keep informed about the latest photography tours and workshops. The sign up form is below.