Madeira offers a huge variety for the walker, with paths following the Levada irrigation channels right to the most hidden and magnificent spots on the island.
There are many walks, of varying degrees of difficulty. Just choose the one best suited to you and your party. Easy Levada walks take you through woodland, along river banks and past tiny villages. Scenic Levada walks, as their name suggests, provides some breathtaking views as you amble along sea cliffs or through the wine growing regions. For the more seasoned walker, the Challenging Levada walks rewards your hard work with beautiful vegetation, mountains and enchanting waterfalls.
Some of the walks can be done on your own, but we strongly recommend hiring a mountain guide or going on an organized walk for the more difficult ones. We would also recommend that you wear walking boots if possible, otherwise choose your most comfortable walking shoes with thick soles.
Levada dos Tornos – Easy
5 km - approx 1.5 hours
Stroll through the woodlands above Funchal following the levada which forms the lower section of the water distribution of South East Madeira. Along this walk, you will see a combination of old and new woodland, interspersed with villages and a country mansion. Halfway through the walk you will pass by a Tea House, where you can stop for some refreshment.
Levada do Norte - Scenic
6 km - approx. 2 hours
All year round this is a wonderful walk on the sunny south coast of the Island, starting in Quinta Grande and going along the high seacliffs of Cabo Girão.
In early autumn, grapes are harvested from here to make some of Madeira’s best wines. The small farms en route are also dedicated to the cultivation of sugar cane and cherries. Although classed as an easy walk there are some narrow paths throughout and we would recommend this for sure-footed walkers with a head for heights.
Rabaçal to Risco 25 Fontes - Challenging
11km – approx. 4 hours
Rabaçal is an enchanting fairyland of singing water falls. Starting at the Rabaçal guesthouse, walk through the forest to the Risco waterfall from there descend to the Levada of 25 Fontes. Walk along the path until you reach the cliff from which 25 natural springs cascade down into the small lake.
The area is surrounded by ferns and in the afternoon when the sun shines on the sides, the metal in the rocks looks like the walls are glowing. A spectacular view!