More often than not, traveling means a pretty drastic change in your day-to-day routine. It affects everything from your diet and exercise regiment to what time you go to bed and wake up. Although the trade off of traveling to a new and exciting city or your favorite beach destination is typically worth the change in routine, traveling doesn't mean all of your healthy daily habits must be abandoned.
I get it – vacation for most of us is all about relaxation. Relaxing on the beaches of Hawaii with an ice cold piña colada in my hand is much more enticing than hitting the gym for a workout. And let's face it – healthy options like gym accessibility and nutrient-rich menu items aren't always available.
But traveling doesn't necessarily have to be unhealthy. It also doesn't have to be as intense as making a commitment to hitting the gym for three hours everyday and eating steamed broccoli for dinner each night. If you make a conscious effort, you can always find ways to stay active and eat nutritiously on vacation.
However, it certainly helps to stay somewhere that promotes your wellbeing by offering active programs, a fitness facility, healthy dining options and spa services. And while it is difficult to find a place that offers all of those things, it is not impossible. In fact, Hotel Galomar, located on the small Portuguese island of Madeira (yes, as in Madeira wine), has all that and more.
Located along the beautiful southeast coast of Madeira and within the Galo Resort, Hotel Galomar is an adults only hotel that has a unique cliff-edge location, a sea water outdoor pool, a lounge and bar, a spa and an on-site restaurant. It is also walking distance to the resort's two additional restaurants and the large gym with free weights, vast cardio equipment options, benches and barbells, weight machines and 70 weekly exercise classes – all available for no additional cost. Hotel Galomar also offers active outdoor excursions such as mountain biking, hiking and canyoning through the outdoor company LokoLoko Madeira.
The resort's state-of-the-art gym is home to more than just your everyday treadmill and generic set of dumbbells. There are over a dozen indoor cycling bikes, ellipticals and treadmills, as well as a weights area with a large selection of dumbbells, kettlebells and weight machines, a CrossFit room, a yoga and meditation room, squash courts, a heated indoor pool and a sauna.
Hotel Galomar's on-site restaurant, Restaurante Atlantis, offers a daily breakfast buffet with options ranging from tropical fruits, a selection of fresh bread and pastries, smoked salmon, egg dishes and more. In the evening, Restaurante Atlantis transforms into an upscale grill that specializes in nutritious seafood and fish dishes.
One of the other dining options located within the resort is Restaurante Ondamar. Similar to Restaurante Atlantis, it also offers a daily breakfast buffet. Each evening Restaurante Ondamar also offers a house buffet. With daily themes and a vast selection of gluten free, vegetarian and organic food options, the house buffet provides numerous nutritious options and can whet just about anyone's appetite.
If exploring the unique culture of Madeira strikes your interest, Hotel Galomar is steps away from a local bus stop. For less than $5, you can purchase a round trip ticket to Madeira's capital city of Funchal. Another option is to have the hotel's front desk staff call you a local taxi, which will cost you a bit more. Renting a car in Madeira is also an option, but the roads are extremely steep and windy, making driving quite a challenge if you're not a local.
Funchal is a cosmopolitan city well known for its natural beauty, cable cars and upscale restaurants. The city overlooks the blue waters of the Atlantic Ocean and is backdropped by the island's luscious green mountains. The best views of the city can be experienced from the Madeira Cable Car, also known as the Teleférico do Funchal. It starts in Funchal's Old Town and travels over 10,000 feet to Monte, one of the most historical areas of Funchal.
Funchal is also home to the Funchal Ecological Park. The park offers multiple hiking trails, trails for mountain biking and all-terrain biking, bird watching experiences, canyoning and more.
There is no better time to begin planning your healthy vacation than right now. For more information about the island of Madeira and its capital city of Funchal, visit VisitMadeira.pt. To learn more about Hotel Galomar and the Galo Resort, visit GaloResort.com.