Around 1.6 million light bulbs will be switched on from December 1st in Funchal, marking the beginning of the Christmas and New Year festivities, announced today the Regional Secretariat for Tourism and Culture of Madeira.
The Christmas lights will color the center and surroundings of Funchal between December 1st and January 8th, says the regional secretariat in information sent to the Lusa agency, noting that, this year, “there will be around 1.6 million light bulbs streets, buildings and different places in the city”.
Among some of the novelties for this year, the guardianship highlights the ‘mapping’ video projections on the corner of the Cathedral in Funchal and on the north wall of the Palace of São Lourenço.
The CR7 square “will be improved, offering more space to visit the decorations”, and in Praça do Povo a 30-meter Christmas tree will be installed, “which works as a ‘photobooth'”.
On the Funchal pier, an electronically animated tunnel will provide visitors with “a walk through the water towards an angel placed at the end of the pier”.
On the other hand, some spaces in the city will have different interactive technologies, namely augmented reality, which, “through a mobile application, will present animated Christmas figures synchronized with music”.
Some locations will also have sensory technologies that trigger different lighting animations with the presence or passage of people.
In this edition of the Christmas and New Year festivities, lights come on at 6:00 pm and will be turned off at 1:00 am on most days, unlike previous years, when they usually closed at 2:00 am, in order to reduce the energy consumption.
There are, however, exceptions for the 23rd, 24th and 31st of December, with the lighting being turned off at 6:00 am, and on the 25th and 30th of December to be turned off at 4:00 am.
The Regional Secretariat for Tourism refers that it has already had this concern with energy consumption for several years, pointing out that the electricity bill consumed by Christmas lights in the Madeiran capital has been reduced by around 70% in 10 years, “as a result of the growing commitment to increasingly economical and environmentally friendly lights”.
“This reality did not imply a decrease in the distribution of lights. On the contrary, it has even registered growth and innovations annually”, he adds.
The ‘Mercadinho de Natal’, installed every year on the Central Plate of Avenida Arriaga, will also be in operation between December 1st and January 8th.
It opens every day at 10:00 am, and on Fridays and Saturdays it closes at 01:00 am and on the other days at 00:00 am. There are also exceptions for the 23rd, 30th and 31st of December, closing at 04:00. On December 25th and January 1st it will be closed and on Christmas Eve it closes at 18:00.
The line lighting of Funchal’s amphitheater, the decoration of the trees in the city streets, gardens and roundabouts, as well as the lighting of the contours, balconies and lintels of public and private buildings and of the three rivers that cross the downtown area are some of the characteristics that usually mark the Christmas season and are a great attraction for residents and visitors.
The Regional Government launched two public tenders, worth a total of 3.9 million euros (VAT included), for the design, construction, assembly and dismantling of Christmas and New Year lighting in 2022/2023 and 2023/2024 and Carnival in the next two years.
The lights are in charge of the companies LuxStar, Iluminações Teixeira Couto and Castros – Iluminações Festivas.