The hiking is the main offer of Madeira, has 2500 kilometres of footpaths and levied.
Madeira Is a complex island by his intricate relief, with strong contrasts between the coast south, warmer and populated, the north, acantilada, green and humid and the interior dominated by a macizo central mountainous with ceiling in the beak Ruivo with his 1.861 metres of altitude and by a wide plateau.
The hiking is the main offer of the island. Maderira Has 2.500 kilometres desenderos and levied. The levied are an interminable network of channels to transport water that visit the practical whole of the island.
In general the itineraries are very marked. The levied do not present difficulty any of orientation put that it only consists in following the channel of water, for the rest of footpaths many of them are marked with the corresponding signals of PR.
To realise the levied is indispensable to carry a torch and a chubasquero or some waterproof piece. Also in some of them it is necessary extremar the precauciones put that possess steps very aerial without protection.
The group of excursions that propose you here are the most spectacular of all the island.
|Portugal||10||115 Km.||2265 m.||2265 m.||Easy|
|2265 m.||2265 m.||Easy|
1. Caldeirao Green
The way of levied that it carries us until the Green Boiler, PR 9, can consider like one of the most spectacular of the island. The orientation and the big quantity of water do that always luzca a vegetation exuberante.
This route is esculpida in the rock largely of his route and cross several tunnels and waterfalls to arrive the end of the route. In winter, the way is used to to be humid and will be very likely that wet us. In all the footpath there are protective fences for the most aerial zones that they are quite a lot although they do not present any difficulty.
It is necessary a torch to cross the four tunnels that will find us. With the torch will be able to see where step, avoid puddles and not forgetting light up the ceiling to avoid hits in the head in the lowest steps.
The start of the footpath finds in the Centre Hípico of Beak give Pedras. To arrive to this point it is necessary to direct until the population of Santana and there take the road that goes up to Round. Some metres before the barrier that allows to close the road of promotion to the Beak give Pedras, will see a detour to our right that is the entrance to the hípica where will be able to leave the car. This detour is indicated also with a signal to Queimadas.
From the parking already see the start of the way in which there is an informative signpost. We leave backwards the typical houses of Santana and go on down a wide way with the Levied do Caldeirao that already will accompany us in all the route. This start of the route does not present any difficulty. We cross a small brook by a bridge and after a walk of 30 minutes and 2,5 Km arrive to Queimadas. A lot of senderistas initiate the route from this point to the that accesses by a track empedrada.
We happen beside two houses with the ceiling of straw and a poster indicates us that they are missing us 6,2 Km for our destination.
The way keeps on being wide, until little by little it begins to tighten and in occasions only have the wall of the levied to follow advancing.
During all the way will have to our left the levied with big walls and vegetation and to our right in occasions will have precipicios of more 100 metres of fall.
We will be able to enjoy in this first part of the way of some terrific seen on the coast north and some that another aldea at the end of the valley. We will happen beside some waterfalls and in some occasion the way leaves the levied during some metres for sortear steps narrower.
From this point almost all the way is ensured with a fence.
We arrive to a first very short tunnel but dark and some minutes later arrive to the second much longer tunnel, just after happening the detour to Ilha that goes out to our right. To few metres happen the third tunnel that is stretches is very low and much longer that the previous. In half of the route, this tunnel has a window that will allow us a break. More forward we happen the fourth tunnel.
After this tunnel have a waterfall that if it has rained will have to sortear place that falls just on the levied.
Some 15 minutes more forward will arrive to the detour that indicates the rise to the Caldeirao Green in 100 metres. The levied continues to the Caldeirao do inferno but we leave this detour to our right and go up the footpath until finding us with the big waterfall of the Caldeirao Green.
From the Caldeirao Green and following the levied do Caldeirao, in some 2 hours and with a desnivel of 110 metres of rise and 110 metres of descent, can arrive until the Caldeirao do inferno. This footpath is one of the more fascinantes of Madeira. It is difficult to understand as it could install this inventive system of channels in a mountainous place of so difficult access. Waterfalls, tunnels, cannons and an enormous boiler are the appeals of this vertiginous route. If you decide to realise this footpath will have to add him 4 hours more to this trek, two of gone and two of turn.
The return realises by the same footpath.
Profile of the stage: Beak give Pedras (930 m) – Bridge on the river (2 km, 25 min) – Queimadas (2,50 km, 30 min) – First waterfall (3,15 km, 1h ) – Second waterfall (6 km, 1:25 h) – Tunnels (7 km, 1:40 h) – Caldeirao Green (8,5 km, 2:15 h).
2. Peninsula of Sao Lourenço
This route passes in the oriental extreme of the island. His spectacular seen on the coast with the distinct tonalities of the cliffs and the blue of the sea turn it into a very attractive route. During the winter this dry zone covers of green increased the contrast of colours.
The start finds at the end of the road that goes out when it finishes the highway in the frank zone of Caniçal, in the parking of The Baia d'Open to 80 metres on the level of the mar. From this point begins the senda marked like PR8.
The way descends some metres and crosses a wooden runway. We begin to plan and arrive until an oriel with impressive seen on the cliffs (800 m, 15 min, 80m). From here also it exists the possibility to go down to a small cala of stones.
The way begins to rise and continues by a crest. The most exposed parts are protected by a fence. In this point arrive to a second oriel, from here will find us with the narrowest zone of the peninsula of hardly a pair of metres and with cliffs to both sides (2 km, 30 min, 130 m).
We follow advancing and approach to the House do Sardinhas, a centre of the ministry of Environment surrounded of palmeras. From here, it begins the circular stretch that begin by the left.
When we arrive to the height of the house take a detour to the left to rise to the Beak do Furado (3,45 km, 1 h, 70 m). After a brief ascensión arrive to a double summit (3,90 km, 1:10 h, 200 m). From the second, a bit higher, have the best seen of the rest of the peninsula and of the island of Carry Saint.
We descend by the same way and follow the way circulate until finding the footpath by the have come (4,90 km, 1:20 h, 75 m) and will be in that it carry us again to the point of start (8 km, 2:15 h, 80m).
Profile of the stage: Baia d'Open (80 m) – Oriel (800 m, 15 min, 80m) – Ismo of the peninsula (2 km, 30 min, 130 m) - Detour Hammer do Furado (3,45 km, 1 h, 70 m) - Beak do Furado (3,90 km, 1:10 h, 200 m) - End footpath circulate home Sardinha (4,90 km, 1:20 h, 75 m) - Baia d'Open (8 km, 2:15 h, 80m).
3. Mouth do Bluff - Espigao Amarelo
This way links the locations of Machico and Carry give Cruz. In his more spectacular stretch the footpath passes by a cliff with inmejorables seen on the coast north of the island.
To arrive to the point of start of the senda take the R109 from Caniçal direction Funchal. Happened the ancient tunnel of Caniçal take the first set off for the right that rises slowly by the high neighbourhoods of Machico. Before arriving to a curve closed to the left at the end of the valley, leave the car. The footpath begins to few metres of the Bar Or Cake, just in some stairs that seems that they head to the nearest houses. We are situated to 180 metres on the level of the mar.
We take these stairs happening between the houses until they turn into a small footpath that begins to rise softly until crossing us with the Levied of Caniçal (0,300 km, 10 min, 195 m). We cross the levied and follow rising until arriving to the Mouth do Bluff (2 km, 35 min, 30 m). In this point change to the slope north and the way follows already in height between the vegetation until arriving to the cliff. The way esculpido in the rock arrives to a stretch in which a metallic wire ensures us the step. In this point if it has rained will fall a small waterfall.
Finally we will arrive to the salient Espigao Lovedthe (5 km, 1:20 h, 385 m) marked with a stone of measurement from where have magnificas seen on the coast north and the peninsula of Sao Lourenço.
From here we can return by the same footpath or follow until Carry give Cruz. If we choose this last option will have to take into account the return until the starting point. It is necessary to stand out that the most spectacular way of this route is until the Espigao Amarelo.
It exists another option of point of start for this route. Justo happened the tunnel of Caniçal can leave the car and go on down the levied until the way that rises to Mouth do Bluff. With this option have to add some 45 minutes of gone and 45 minutes of turn to the trek.
Profile of the stage: Incio of the footpath (180 m) – Levied of Caniçal (0,300 km, 10 min, 195 m) – Mouth do Bluff (2 km, 35 min, 30 m) - Espigao Amarelo (5 km, 1:20 h, 385 m).
4. Levied Nova
The Levied Nova directs from the sea until the interior. It is a Levied with stretches very aerial that presents some seen to the valley in which it is situated Ponta do Sol. The footpath goes through one of the most attractive points of Madeira, a waterfall with a very spectacular fall.
To arrive to the point of start direct us from Funchal to Ponta do Sol. In the roundabout of the entrance to Ponta do Sol take the detour to Paul gives Serra and from here follow the indications to the Levied Nova.
We can leave the car in the road and descending a small stretch of stairs will not situate in the levied.
All the route will do it visiting this levied by his wall of concrete that is the sufficiently wide as to walk on him.
The way is not apt for people that suffer of vértigo put that in some stretches go through zones with falls of more than 200 metres and the levied in any moment is protected by fences, therefore it is necessary extremar the precaución.
Sometime the walls of the way are covered of hiedra, and if it has rained will not save us of a good shower.
After three kilometres of trek and 50 minutes arrive to a tunnel of some 200 metres of length. Justo after happening the tunnel will see a fantastic waterfall that has opened a groove in the rock. The levied continues on its way going through behind the waterfall.
To the 5 kilometres and 1:15 h. Roughly we arrive to the birth of the Levied Nova.
The turn realises by l same way. It exists the possibility to return by the Levied do Moinho that passes parallel to the Levied Nova but more near of the river but in January of 2010 this levied was closed owing to desprendimientos.
Profile of the stage: Start levied Nova (400m) – Tunnel (3 km, 50 min, 400m) – Birth levied Nova (5 km, 1:15h, 400m).
5. 25 Fontes - Waterfall do Bluff
The levied of the 25 Fontes is one of the footpaths that all visitor of Madeira does not have to leave to realise. The way carries us through forests of Laurisilva until the birth of the levied, of return can approach us to the Waterfall of Bluff, an impressive fall of water.
The footpath begins in the parking of the Forest Place of Rabaçal that finds in the road ER 110, between Paul of Serra and Carry Moniz.
From the parking, situated to 1285 metres of altitude, descend by a track asphalted but enclosed to the traffic of particular vehicles until arriving to the forest place of Rabaçal (2 km, 30 min, 1160 m).
Following the indications of the PR 6, the footpath descends by a way empedrado, crosses the Levied of Bluff and follows descending by a staggered way until arriving to the levied of the 25 Fontis (3 km, 40 min, 950 m).
From this point our way follows parallel to the levied by a comfortable way. In the narrowest places the levied is protected by a fence.
After 3,50 km of trek arrive to the throat of the Ribeira Grandand that cross by a bridge (3,50 km, 45 min, 950 m) and go back to take the levied by some stairs. From here the way tightens a lot and in occasions the vegetation forms tunnels.
We leave a footpath that goes down leftwards and continue always by the levied until arriving to the 25 fuentes (4,5 km, 1:15 h, 970 m). In the wall empinada cover of ferns glide the 25 sources.
If we continue 10 minutes more by the levied will arrive to an exceptional place: the valley of the Ribeira two Cedars (5 km, 1:30h, 950 m). It is worthwhile to approach until this rincón little transitado to contemplate his beauty.
We return by the same way until finding us the detour to the Waterfall do Bluff (7,5 km, 1:45 h, 1150 m) that in 10 minutes will carry us until this wonderful place, in that we will be able to contemplate a fall of water of more than 200 metres (8,5 km, 2 h, 1150 m).
Afterwards we return until the forest place (10 Km, 2:30 h, 1160 m) and by the road asphalted again until the parking (12 km, 3 h, 1285 m). If you are tired, this last stretch can realise with some services of bus.
Profile of the stage: Parking of the Forest Place of Rabaçal (1285 m) - forest Place of Rabaçal (2 km, 30 min, 1160 m) - Levied of the 25 Fontes (3 km, 40 min, 950 m) - Throat of the Ribeira Big (3,50 km, 45 min, 950 m) - 25 sources (4,5 km, 1:15 h, 970 m) - Valley of the Ribeira two Cedars (5 km, 1:30h, 950 m) - Detour Cracked do Bluff (7,5 km, 1:45 h, 1150 m) – Waterfall do Bluff (8,5 km, 2 h, 1150 m) - forest Place of Rabaçal (10 Km, 2:30 h, 1160 m) - Parking of the Forest Place of Rabaçal (12 km, 3 h, 1285 m).
6. Way of the Coast of Sao Jorge
The ancient way of coast of Sao Jorge passes esculpido in the cliff was by where in the past arrived to the neighbouring village of Santana. The ancient jetty challenges the gravity on the swell of the mar.
This walk of hardly 3 kilometres in total is worth it to contemplate the cliffs of the coast north and the seen of the neighbouring island.
To arrive to the point of start have to follow the road ER 101 between Santana and Sao Jorge and take the detour to the swimming pool indicated with a yellow poster by a track without exit. At the end we will find a parking and to the left the footpath empedrado that we have to take and that will carry us in some 20 minutes to the ancient jetty.
Profile of the stage: Parking swimming pool (20 m) – Jetty (1,5 km, 20 min, 70 m) - Parking swimming pool (3 km, 40 min, 20 m).
7. Ribeiro Frio - Portela
This route is all a classical of the levied of Madeira since in her will be able to enjoy of a leafy vegetation of a mountainous forest subtropical, special fascination causes the humid environment of almost all the year.
It is necessary to inform well before approaching until Ribeiro Frio to realise this levied, since it carries in works of restoration some time. So the best is to approach to the tourist office of Funchal and inform of the state of the levied before going to Ribeiro Frio.
Ribeiro Frio Finds in the road ER 103 that joins Funchal and Santana.
In Ribeiro Frio look for the indications of PR 10 and cross a brook by means of a bridge. We go on down the wide way until finding us with the Levied do Furado adentrándonos in a humid forest of laurisilva allowing us enjoy of seen on the mountains.
To the cape of an hour and some 4 kilometres of trek cross the Ribeira of Pozo do Bozerro through a bridge. The way is full of waterfalls and some more aerial zones in where we will have to do balances on the wall of the levied of hardly 30 centimetres.
We will arrive to the tunnel of the Cabeço Furado, from here a series of short tunnels esculpidos in the rock cross in our way.
Arrived to the Forest House of Lamaceiros, a recreational area, from where abandon the levied and begin to go down by a wide way in direction to Portela. It suffices with following the indications until arriving to this population.
From here we have two possibilities. Go back by the same way or take some public transport that give us back to Funchal.
Profile of the stage: Ribeiro Frio (860 m) – Lamacieros (11 km, 2:45 h, 780 m) – Portela (17 km, , 3:30 h, 600 m)
8. The balcony of Ribeiro Frio
This excursion, very short, is worth it since it carries us to one of the looked more known of the island of Madeira and is that from this oriel can contemplate a spectacular sight on the three higher beaks of the macizo central.
In way begins in Ribeiro Frio (ER 103), in the road that joins Funchal and Santana.
In Ribeiro Frio underneath of the criadero of truchas and some 30 metres after the restaurant Ribeiro Frio goes out a leftwards indicated way with a signal of PR 11 (Balcoes).
The way adentra in a dense forest following the channel of water until arriving to a bar with beautiful seen on the valley, arrive to a bifurcation and divert us to the right following the indications until arriving to the oriel of Balcoes.
Profile of the stage: Ribeiro frio (860 m) – Balcoes (1,5 km, 20 min, 850 m) - Ribeiro frio (3 km, 40 min, 860 m).
9. Beak Ruivo
The highest beak of Madeira, the Beak Ruivo, is an affordable promotion to all the world put that a comfortable way empedrado converts the footpath in a pleasant walk of roughly an hour of length with a scarce desnivel of hardly 300 metres.
To arrive to the starting point will have to direct us to the population of Santana from Funchal, once happened the gasolinera of Repsol have to follow the indication “Hammer Ruivo” that indicates leftwards. Past Beak give Pedras will find the barrier that closes the access to the road of Achada do Teixeira opened of 7 of the morning to 7 of the afternoon. To the few kilometres will arrive to the parking of Achada do Teixeira situated to 1.592 metres of altitude on the level of the mar.
We begin the ascensión from the parking of Achada do Teixeira taking the indications of the PR 1.2. Thirty minutes after the start begins the way empedrado. We go enjoying of some wonderful seen on the Beak Arieiro and to our back the coast north until the Peninsula of Sao Lourenço.
From the second shelter already divisamos the Beak Ruivo, follow rising until going through a third shelter.
We follow rising by the way of scalar until achieving the geodesic point of the Beak Ruivo with some magnificas seen on all the island. We are situated to 1862 metres of altitude, the highest point of all the island of Madeira.
Profile of the stage: Achada do Teixeira (1592 m) - Beak Ruivo (4 km, 1 h, 1862 m) - Achada do Teixeira (8 km, 1:45 h, 1592 m)
10. Beak Arieiro - Beak Ruivo
One of the routes of mountain more thrilling of Madeira. This way joins the three higher beaks of the island. It is very recommended to realise this very early route since usually from the midday these summits cover of clouds.
The footpath begins in the same parking of the Beak Arieiro situated to 1.818 metres of altitude. Leaving the restaurant to our right, go up until the geodesic point of the beak.
Some 15 minutes later arrive to the Oriel of Minho of Blanket from where have esplendidas seen on the Valley of the Ribeira gives Faja gives Nogueira.
By a way ensured by a metallic wire go down until the Tunnel of the Hammer Cat. Tunnel of some 50 metres of length generally very humid.
After the tunnel the way forks. We take the footpath of the right.
The way empinado begins after the poster “Fonte”, during half hour until the slope This of the Beak give Torres. We descend of the Beak give Towers until arriving to a second tunnel. To the exit of the tunnel go to the right.
After a promotion of another half hour find the way that goes up of the shelter from Achada do Teixeira and to the cape of two minutes arrive to the shelter of the Beak Ruivo.
It begins the promotion to the Beak Ruivo. To the cape of five minutes go on down the left and in five minutes more will be in the highest beak of the island of Madeira: The Beak Ruivo situated to 1.862 metres on the level of the mar.
The return re realises by the same footpath.
Profile of the stage: Beak do Arieiro (1810 m) – Tunel Beak do Cat (3 km, 0:45 h, 1600 m) – Beak Ruivo (10 km, 2:45 h, 1862 m) - Tunel Beak do Cat (17 km, 4 h, 1600 m) - Beak do Arieiro (20 km, 5 h, 1810 m).
11. Avistamiento Of dolphins
For the avistamiento of dolphins in Madeira, went to Funchal, to the Port, near of the ropeway of Funchal, there is a commercial centre in which there is a company that does the avistamientos that seemed us serious and interesting.
The company of flame “broken two cetáceos” and is situated in Marina Chopping – Commercial Centre Infante, in the Avenue Arriaga, 75 venue 230 of Funchal, telephone 00351291280600, and whose price is of 45€ the avistamiento from the launch and 20€ more if you decide to throw you to the water, to see them more than near.
"Broken two Cetáceos" is a company headed to the observation of dolphins and whales in Madeira. His clients are always accompanied by a team of marine biologists. Before each trip there is a brief introduction, very interesting of how achieve that the launch ensure the avistamiento. They explained us that they have some people in the coast in the high parts where have put of observation from earth that guide them to the animals, to the groups of dolphins, and warn to the launches to go to the precise place where find the dolphins or whales, with which the sight is ensured, in fact say you that if no the avistas give you another trip.
Once you go up you in the launch, very very instrumented and especially very comfortable, although we recommend to carry clothes of coat like a cortaviento for the return because they go to all brown and the wind of the atlantic does not forgive.
Also it is possible to swim with the dolphins, in fact we test it, throw you to the water, and goring of a rope with the hand to the boat, that reduces the speed, with a team of glasses and tube, enter the head in the water and see them there same, to two or three metres of distance. It incomodo Of the situation is that your go in search of the dolphins, they do not come to you, they are swimming around the boat, around the boat, and your being inside the water taken to a rope with the hand see them more near. It is a beautiful experience, but more beautiful serious be stopped with the boat and that the dolphins came to swim with you, think that this is possible in Hurgada in Egypt, although I think that is very difficult, the dolphins are animal free and wild that fly inside the water.
The avistamiento is fantastic, saw them there at the side ours, swimming at the side of the launch, by the sides, jumping in groups the, flying, and seeing like his bodies transparentan underneath of the water of the mar.
puden Observe some small species like the dolphin marked of the Atlantic (Stenella frontalis) or the common dolphin (Delphinus delphis) and species of big size, like the rorcual common (Balaenoptera physalus) and the cachalote (Physeter macrocephalus). In addition to these mammals, that with regularity can see to the marine turtles like the Caretta caretta.
We saw bandadas of common dolphins and a solitary marine turtle swimming by there, that seemed that it was of pasero. They said us that surely it had absent-minded by there, because as in Madeira there are not beaches the turtles can go to desovar there, and therefore surely venia of the neighbouring Island.
After the avistamiento, to the return, carry you to see from the launch, a part of the coast that has the highest cliff of all Europe, better said the second, of 580 metres of height, calls the cliff Guirao.
In the Peninsula of Saint Lorenzo can visit The Museum of the Whale, situated in the location of Caniçal, this institution that devotes to the history of the whale, the hunting and his activities conexas, and is also an engine for the development of studies of the cetáceos of the archipelago of Madeira.
The avistamiento of dolphins and whales in Madeira is an activity that does not have to leave to do if it is there, to part to do his magnificas excursions by “the levied”.