Rua dos Tanoeiros

Although it has had other names, Rua dos Tanoeiros has used this name since the 16th century, when it housed several workshops dedicated to the art of cooperage, essential for the transport and storage of the famous Madeira Wine.

The street, which runs from Rua dos Ferreiros to Rua da Alfândega, is practically parallel to Rua 5 de Outubro, but with a steeper slope and still has the typical and almost disused basalt cobblestones of Madeiran streets.

For several decades in the second half of the twentieth century it was known as Rua das Sapatarias (cobbler’s street), due to the high number of shops in this sector, nowadays almost all closed or transformed into other branches of activity.

Nowadays, as a result of an initiative by Funchal City Hall, the art that exists here, as a tribute to the cooperage, lives on in the form of sculptural pieces made of barrels, like the ones the cooperages used to make every day.

Just walk down the street with your eyes set higher than the ground to find several examples of authentic works of art, each offering a perfect link between the past and what can be made today, even if it is for decoration.

You cannot leave this street without visiting one of the most important commercial houses there. It is at the southern end of the street, on your left, that you will find a friendly grocery store named Pharmácia do Bento, which sells spices from all over the world, stacked almost out of sight. It is also very popular for its traditional or multi-flavoured poncha that it serves visitors.