The Madeira Optics Museum - also known as Museu de Óptica da Madeira - is a specialized museum located in Funchal, Madeira Island that showcases a permanent collection of optics related devices. The museum has a small antique shop at the entrance, where the visitor may by optics related devices.
A dream of two collectors – a father and a son – comes to life.
In the 1960’s, the passion for engineering and history lead one person, Rui Aguilar, to start acquiring optical devices. Initially, without a defined purpose, the collection kept growing.
Forty years later, a massive 2000 piece optical device collection was stored in a garage. The interest in the collection passed on to his son, Sergio Aguilar, who spent his time rediscovering these antiques from old storage boxes.
With objects ranging from the 17th Century until late 20th Century, every optical device had some sort of significance in the collection. It became more than obvious that the collection had to be shared.
When the idea of the museum popped up in 2014, there was an unstoppable effort of cataloging and organizing the collection, as well as a considerable increase in the amount of objects that were added.
The collection includes:
Telescopes (about 50), with emphasis on:
- One of the oldest (18th Century) metal mirror Newtonian telescope
- The biggest (14 inch handmade dobsonian)
- A 14″ Meade Schmidt-Cassegrain, the most advanced in Madeira Island.
Binoculars (over 400), most notably:
- Galilean binoculars
- Keplerian with erecting lenses
- Prismatic with “roof” prisms
- Prismatic with “porro” prisms
Film cameras and projectors (around 150)
- 35mm, 16mm, 9.5mm, Super8 and 8mm formats
Photographic cameras (about 650), notably:
- Plate cameras from the end of the XIX century.
- Twin Lens Reflex (TLR) Cameras such as Rolleiflex, Yashica and Minolta
- Single Lens Reflex (SLR) Cameras such as Nikon, Canon, Pentax
- Folding Cameras
- Instant cameras (from first to last)
- Box Cameras
- Rangefinder cameras such as Leica
- Micro cameras (HIT, Arrow, Mycro and similar)
- “System” cameras such as Hasselblad, Mamiya and Fuji.
Medical related optical devices like
Biology area optical devices like binocular and monocular microscopes and accessories
- Antique and modern monocular microscopes
- Antique and modern binocular (mono and stereo) microscopes
- Preparations and other accessories
- Night vision goggles
- Heavy duty rangefinders and periscopes from armored vehicles
- Aiming scopes
- Dumpy levels
The Madeira Optics Museum is located in Funchal, just 5 minutes from the City Hall.
Young (10-17 years inc.): 3€
Crianças (up to 9 years inc.): Free
Weekdays: 10:00-12:30, 13:30-17:30
Sundays and Public Holidays: Call to Schedule
Rua das Pretas, 51
00 351 961822358
00 351 291220694