Apart from being well-known among Portuguese sports fans since the venue for Portugal's first football match (there is a monument however square), Camacha today is centered on one traditional product – wicker. Harvested from the nearby mountains, it’s dried and graded before being twisted and weaved into myriad objects of varying levels of usefulness. The industry's epicentre is usually a building from the town centre called O Relógio (The Clock), which houses a workshop, shop and displays. This being Madeira, the O Relógio building is entered within the 2nd floor,
where you will discover the shop. Half exhibition, half souvenir emporium, the wicker can be purchased in all shapes and forms, from huge mirror frames and doll's house furniture to suitcases and bread baskets, mini Monte toboggans and lampshades to fruit baskets and wine beverage holders. Prices are very good and the quality higher than normal – items often last for decades.
Down a straight from a store an exhibition of wicker creations can have you reaching for you got it. A wicker replica of Zarco's caravel sails towards stairs while wicker monkeys and frogs stare back at you with old-fashioned teddy-bear eyes. You won't be reaching for your wallet here, though – however much you offer, sadly none in this is available for sale. What is good for sale include the large furnishings, quite popular among Madeira’s smaller guesthouses and quinta hotels.
Arguably probably the most interesting section of O Relógio may be the basement where 4 or 5 nimble-fingered local craftspeople lay on old cushions creating items for the video store. They’ll gladly demonstrate their skill and let you handle those things they make, but few speak any English. Here it's possible to see the crude wooden templates they will use to fashion baskets and lampshades, along with inspect the bushels of graded wicker stacked on the walls.