The day was Thursday, 3 May 2007, the penultimate day of the McCann family's trip to Praia da Luz in Portugal. The mother and father—Kate and Gerry McCann—were typical, affluent, white, middle-class Brits, and they had brought their three children so that they could enjoy their time in the sun-soaked sands of the southern Portuguese coast.
And while it was the penultimate day of the trip, it would be the final day that any of the McCann family saw Madeline, the eldest child, ever again.
May 3rd began like any other day of the family's trip. The McCann's spent their time indulging in the region's local offerings to tourists, a common sight in Luz, which has been dubbed "Little Britain" due to its magnetic pull and eager accommodation towards British holidaymakers.
The children spent the morning at the resort's Kids' Club before the family spent lunch by the pool. This was where Kate McCann took the last known photograph of her daughter.
By the time the evening rolled in, Kate and Gerry put their three children to sleep in their holiday apartment, located at 5A Rua Dr. Agostinho da Silva. The couple then headed to a local Tapas restaurant, leaving the three children behind. The 5A building was roughly 160ft away from the restaurant, but visibility only allowed for a view of the roof of the building, and none of the exit and entry points. Similarly, the route to and fro the restaurant and 5A was actually 295ft in walking distance due to obstructions and a lack of direct access.
The McCann's and their friends did the same thing the previous three nights, and every 30 minutes members of the group would momentarily leave the restaurant to check on their children. Gerry first checked on the McCann children at roughly 21:05, where they were found sleeping soundly. Gerry reported seeing nothing to arouse suspicion, other than that he noticed the door to the children's bedroom was wide open when he remembered leaving it barely ajar. Regardless of this, Gerry returned the door to its original position before heading back to the tapas restaurant.
After a friend named Matthew Oldfield offered to check on the McCann's children for them, he noticed that the door to their bedroom was open. However, he did not adequately look far enough into the room to discern whether Madeleine was there.
The final check occurred at around 22:20, where Kate entered the children's room and saw that while her blanket and stuffed animal Cuddle Cat were resting in her bed, Madeleine was gone.