One of the most beautiful settings for a half day levada walk in Madeira island takes place in the surroundings of Porto da Cruz village on the North-East part of the island.
It is the kind of rambling for leisure that is suitable for everybody who wishes to experience a short journey for the pleasure of obtaining magnificent views throughout our amazing landscape in Referta area.
Walking through the levada, one shall have close contact with the slopes of land where our farmers have lifted the famous terraces to cultivate their crops such as vineyards, sugarcane plantations, etc. One shall realise how hard it can become to carry the farmers products in this steep landscape. Fortunate
ly, the irrigaton channels built around Madeira bring the precious water needed to make the plants grow.
Along the levada, there is some panoramic views of the highest peaks inland and the Eagle’s Rock cliff, which stands impressively by the edge of the Atlantic Ocean, situated next to the enchanting village of Porto da Cruz.
Referta levada walk is considered an easy rambling with an average duration of approximately two hours and a distance of six kilometers.
Madeira Happy Tours arranges this excursion with official qualified guides four times per week.
Be welcome to have a taste of Madeira’s nature.
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Madeira Happy Tours offers the most extensive programme of excursions and levada walks in Madeira island to holiday makers that wish to discover our wonderful paradise with the best local guides that there is available in your own native language.
For the ones of you with a more adventurous spirit, we have at your disposal on Wednesdays a combination of a full day jeep expedition together with a levada walk in the East part of Madeira island. So, you are more than welcome to join us in the ultimate Combo Expedition that shall drive you in a Land Rover tour plus an interesting rambling through a levada walk.
You shall encounter the genuine Madeira people and the breathtaking landscape in a different perspective by Land Rover and explore the Laurissilva forest in the Eastern side.
Later on, when walking through the levada shall give you the chance to experience the rough terraces where our farmers grow their various crops.
It is a great way to have a leisure journey and admire the natural wonders of Madeira island.
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The most famous mountain walk in Madeira island – Pico do Arieiro – Pico Ruivo – is temporarily unavailable at the moment and because of this fact, Madeira Happy Tours would like to present an alternative for our guests, who still wish a rambling walk with stunning landscapes and exceptional sights overlooking the Atlantic Ocean.
This traditional footpath invite us to go back in time, reminding us when people and goods were carried through the sea connecting the several small harbours that exist throughout the island even before the roads infrastructure were built.
Roughly one hundred years ago, the farmers carved a footpath along the North coast which was the only route they had to transport their products into a little “hand crafted” harbour in Ponta de São Jorge.
Our rambling journey begins at Ribeiro Fundo, walking through Madeira’s well known Laurissilva indigenous forest towards the habitat of exotic plants along the coastal strip of land.
After descending three hundred meters, one arrives at a hidden spot reachable only on foot, so called Lapa Negra. This remote viewpoint allows you to observe magnificent views overlooking Porto Moniz on the far West side of the island. We continue our walk on one of Madeira’s oldest footpath leading to Curral da Rocha, with a succession of ups and downhills along the cliff edge of Farrobo and the light house of São Jorge.
We will walk down to the seafront at Callhau de São Jorge, where there is a small beach and a swimming complex situated at the river mouth, providing superb views of the surrounding landscapes. In the case that you wish, it will be possible to swim or just admire the picture around you.
After the refreshing break, we continue the walk towards Santana village, which is our final destination.
Sure that you will enjoy this leisure excursion mountain walk with Madeira Happy Tours.
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An amazing island like Madeira which lies at the top of a massive mountain that rises approximately six kilometres (3.7 miles) from the sea bed of the Atlantic Ocean on the Tore underwater mountain range is not only known by its majestic landscape above the sea level.
One of the various reasons why Madeira island is most sought by holiday makers is obviously the vast Atlantic Ocean surrounding us and its abundance of wild sea life.
The sea has always played a vital roll into our lifes! Whether one is a local fisherman that earns their living based in what the sea has to offer or just a local person that enjoys living with the sea all times at sight. This is the exact atraction, feeling and appealing valid for our visitors a bit from all over the world, in particular from Europe, which do not take for granted their presence near to the sea. Therefore, many seek the ultimate challenge of a trip in the Atlantic Ocean.
Because we are aware of the importance given to the huge Atlantic Ocean by our guests. We have the pleasure to announce that Madeira Happy Tours has established some alliances of cooperation with the leading companies for sailing trips in Madeira archipelago.
For Madeira catamaran trips, we work in association with “Sea the best” and “Sea pleasure” catamarans.
There is daily trips available twice per day at your disposal and in the summer months (July until September) it is possible to embark in a romantic Sunset trip.
While on board, one has the opportunity to witness cetaceans, such as turtles, dolphins, whales, etc.
In the remote case that you are unable to see wild sea life during your sea trip, you may take an offer of a second journey free of charge for you.
Cruising in our catamarans will make you feel very comfortable and safe throughout your memorable experience in the company of our friendly crew.
To your complete peace of mind, we provide the following facilities on board: toilets, bar, snacks, sandwiches, audio system, snorkelling equipment and do not forget your camera, towel, swimwear, sunscreen and windbreaker. The seating area is under shade cover by 82% so perfect to have a pleasant half day out in the sea.
If you choose the morning shift for your adventure, we shall provide a transfer free of charge one way from Praia Formosa, past the Lido area all the way to the marina for you.
Feel welcome to join us to test your sailing skills. Take the helm and trim the sails.
Looking forward to see you in Madeira island Happy Tours.
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Discover the evergreen luxurious vegetation in Rabaçal valley, located on the highlands of the central ridge of mountains crossing Madeira island from the far West to the further
East side. It is situated within the Natural Park of Madeira on the Northwestern part of the island.
We explore the unspoilt treasure of our native Laurissilva forest where one shall find abundance of mosses, lichens and ferns.
Along the levada walk there will be some impressive cascading waterfalls to admire.
It is part of the enchantment that makes Rabaçal – 25 Fontes, the most famous levada walk in Madeira island.
You may find this magnificent walk available every day of the week, except on Mondays in Madeira Happy Tours.
Feel more than welcome to contact us for arrangements regarding your leisure walks during your holidays in Madeira island.
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The East side of Madeira island is an excellent introduction to the island’s diverse array of landscapes; from coastal resorts full of activity and the majestic green highlands, to the stark landscape unable to produce fruits or vegetation. However, this does not mean there is nothing to see in this wonderful part of the island! On the contrary…
Our journey starts to drive towards Camacha village, up the hills of Funchal city and on the way there is some aromatic stands of Eucalyptus and Pines. The terraces are thickly planted with fruits and vegetables.
When you are near to Camacha village, you shall notice small white willow bushes growing along side the road. Camacha is very well known for the wicker trade and many families in this region earn their living planting these trees.
In the municipal square there is a plaque stating that the first football match on Portuguese soil took place in Camacha in the year 1875. On the South side of the square next to the most famous building in the village so called Café Relógio there is a sightseeing point allowing terrific views overlooking forests and terraced fields with the sea at the far distance.
From Camacha, one shall lead you high into the mountains to reach our second break of the day!
In Pico do Arieiro, our third highest mountain at 1818 meters (5965 feet), the landscape offers dramatic changes of scenery to our guests. One is able to see huge areas of landscape left clear by the lack of trees.
The views of its volcanic mountains surrounding us are one of the most impressive ones in the island. Specially, the ravines, streaked at odd angles by green heathers and though grasses. A ridge of barren mountains forced up out of the earth by volcanic explosions and carved intro strange serrated shapes by nature.
We continue our driving back to Poiso into a steep descent to the farming hamlet of Ribeiro Frio, where the luxurious indigenous forest Laurissilva is a trademark of Northern Madeira. Observant explorers may have the opportunity to see Mahoganies, Laurel-trees, Geramiums, Foxgloves and Ferns.
Across the road is a state-owned Trout Hatchery, where fish of all sizes mill about in troughs.
Take your time for a coffee break or experience a short a short walk along the Levadas before one continues the route towards Santana village.
Back to the road, the temperature warms slightly as the road descends towards sea level. Contless small terraces is luscious shades of green line up the road. The crops in this area are much more diverse than those grown in the South side of the island. One is able to see sugar-cane, medlars, papayas, mangoes, passion-fruit, etc.
Just a few kilometers away, passing São Roque do Faial, the landscape is dominated by the massive hill known as “Eagle Rock” (Penha D’Aguia) that lies between Faial and Porto da Cruz. It is a stunning location above sea level. We make a break in a viewpoint just above Faial to admire the wonderful views down over “Eagle Rock’s” and the dragon’s tail of Ponta de São Lourenço peninsula far beyond.
Santana is set among some of the most beautiful and unspoilt countryside in Madeira. It has become a highlight on all of our mini-bus-party itineraries, due to its unique architectural peculiarity; some old fashioned cottages (palheiros) with a single style without parallel in the area. These houses of Santana with their pointed gables and thatched roofs reaching nearly to the ground are still possible to find inhabited. Nonetheless, many have been converted into storehouses.
Usually, our lunch break is done in Santana and our guests have approximately one hour thirty minutes to choose whatever they wish to eat. It is entirely up to you to decide if you would like to have something to eat or not.
After lunch time, one shall follow the road to Portela belvedere to admire the fabulous views overlooking the Northeast coast and the villages of Porto da Cruz and Faial. You shall notice a drop in the temperature as soon as you step out of the mini bus and by then you will understand why the traditional woolen hat with earmuffs (barrete de lã) is still so popular among the locals. From Portela, the road continues Eastwards to the valley of Machico and we drive you past a rugged landscape where volcanic boulders striped with coloured lava poke through dry, scrubby grass. Shortly, the land narrows to a jagged line of cliffs. We arrive in Ponta de São Lourenço, Madeira’s most Easterly point.
Once this peninsula was covered in thick indigenous forest, but, that was all chopped down so that the area could be used as pasture land for goats. Nowdays, it is a nature reserve. Although it looks starkly barren for most of the year, in early Spring you will find this harsh, bare region covered in a fine mist of flowers.
We retrace our route back towards Machico town for the last break of our journey. It is the second biggest town in Madeira island, the oldest setlement from the discovery of the island.
In recent years, Machico has developed into a bustling city with new tourism hotels built, new restaurants, bars and stylish buildings. There is a beautiful promenade by the sea, which embraces the new marina and the man made sand beach until the other end of the bay.
Enjoy it before we return to Funchal city!
We really hope to see you in Madeira Happy Tours to join us for the best of the East tour.
Thank you very much.
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A journey into the heart of Madeira island that definitely helps you to understand the facts within the formation and the process attached to become the wonderful archipelago where you shall spend your holidays among us.
Madeira Happy Tours offers the possibility to visit the São Vicente caves and the Volcanism Center on a daily basis in our Go North island tour.
Madeira was discovered in the 15th. century, however, it has waited for more than 4,5 milion years to be baptized. A very long time, that began when different volcanic phenomena started to mold the relief of what is today the current shape of one of the most beautiful islands in the whole world.
The Volcanism Centre shall take you through a journey of “Volcanoes, dragons of the Earth” and the “Origins of Madeira” exhibitions to discover the island in its childhood and find out how it has grown up to become what is today.
Created by the Nature 890 thousand years ago, the São Vicente Caves are without doubt, the richest geological discovery in Madeira islands and are considered by many to be the island’s true cradle.
It is an opportunity, for you to embark for an adventure that shall allow you to follow the trails in which the incandescent lava opened up tunnels milions of years ago and see some fauna that has probably never seen the light of the day.
It will be a unique experience that shall help you to become profoundly acquainted about Madeira island in the company of official guides.
Be welcome to joins us for a memorable experience.
Thank you very much for your time.
Marco FerreiraRead more...
If you would ask me to suggest to you my favourite levada walk in Madeira island, i would certainly indicate to all of you, Queimadas – Caldeirão Verde for several reasons!
It is the type of walk which offers a fairly moderate footpath surrounded by the dense and luxurious ever green Laurel woods of the island. To add more ingredients to the fascination of this wonderful walk there are also some views overlooking the Atlantic Ocean in certain parts of the levada walk and you shall walk through different shades of green colours.
First, let me give you some insight facts about this gorgeous hymn of our indigenous forest.
This levada walk was built in the eighteenth century and it is now days part of our rich heritage left by our ancestors.
It is considered a high altitude walk which has its starting point at the Queimadas Forestry Park (890 meters) and it is located in the municipality of Santana. At the end, where Caldeirão Verde stands, you have reached an altitude of 980 meters above the sea level.
The duration of the walk is roughly four hours to cover the twelve kilometers to the return of the starting point.
The meeting spot where our guides gather our guests to start the levada walk, seems like a fairy tale place, with an original thatched house of Santana still standing among the impressive centenary trees and some beautiful flowers. There is also a stream of water and some ducks to provide the perfect atmosphere for the rest of the day.
When one leaves Queimadas, it is possible to admire the cylindrical forms of the Japanese Cypress, which stands on the right-hand side of the irrigation channel. Along the way, there are also the reddish leafy European Leech and Madeira Cedar with its hanging branches.
Further along at a distance, one can see a tiny plateau dotted with some houses and barns standing amidst the cultivated terraces. This flat remote land amongst the rocky peaks and the river in the valley is so called Achadas do Marques. For many years it has been part of the parish of São Jorge. Now days, it belongs to the new parish so called Ilha and enjoys the status of a protected landscape within the Natural Park of Madeira.
One may have also the privilege to observe the flying experience of the Laurel Pigeon en route to the Caldeirão Verde.
Altogether, there is a succession of four hand carved tunnels and waterfalls, therefore, proper attention should be given when you cross the tunnels and it is adviseable to wear adequate foot wear.
Managing to go through the last tunnel, one shall be less than one kilometer away from the Caldeirão Verde. By this time, one went through spectacular cliff edges, virgin forests, breathtaking views overloking the landscape and the Atlantic Ocean.
However, in my opinion the highest reward for all of our efforts is the Caldeirão Verde lake with its one hundred meters high waterfall. I am sure that you will love it as much as i do.
There will be some spare time to eat your pack lunch and admire the surroundings before we return through the same route. On the way back, you shall notice details which were hidden from your first passage and your perspective shall become different by then.
Thank you very much for your time.
P.S.- Be kind to consult the following web site to see photographs of this spectacular rambling walk.Read more...
Madeira Happy Tours does not only provides …”the best value for money tours and levada walks”… in Madeira island to occupy your leisure spare time during the day, but, also gives the chance to our guests to enjoy the traditional evening meal known as “espetada” with the local dancers of the “bailinho da Madeira” and the world famous “fado” music in one of the best restaurants of Funchal city.
The evening meal consists of a three course dinner with wine and coffee. Besides the beef on the skewer, there is two different alternatives for our guests who do not wish to eat beef. You may choose between chicken or cod fish.
Be kind to reserve one evening of your holidays to join us and experience this memorable event that is held every night, except on Wednesdays.
We shall pick up our guests at 19:30 in the evening and return at approximately 23:00 to your accommodations.
On the way to the hotels, we shall make a break in the panorama viewpoint to see the reason why Funchal by night is so renowned world wide for the fireworks of New Year’s Eve.
That is an other good reason to return once more to Madeira island.
Thank you for your time. I hope that you enjoy it.
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The intriguing Nuns Valley is the only half day tour which is available twice per day with Madeira Happy Tours.
There is a departure in the morning at 09:00 with the return at approximately 12:00 and the second time during the day has the departure at 14:00 with the return at roughly 17:00.
It is a short half day excursion that makes the first break in the viewpoint so called Pico dos Barcelos at 355 meters above the sea level. The panorama overlooking Funchal’s capital is marvellous for photographers. You are able to have a glance from the mountains surrounding the amphitheatre of Funchal with its impressive outskirts forming a cascade of houses and buildings that descend into the cosmopolitan city of Funchal. One is able to see at a distance the Desertas islands in the horizon and on your right hand-side at a far distance the mighty Cabo Girão. There is so much to admire from this spot that one could spend hours and hours looking into the details of the general picture.
However, our island tour must continue to the next highlight, which shall show you the majestic scenery overlooking the Nuns Valley.
In order to reach the edge of the viewpoint so called Eira do Serrado, which stands at 1095 meters of altitude, there is a smooth footpath that one shall follow to be presented with breathtaking views over what seems to be the crater of a volcano in Madeira island. It is the sort of landscape that makes us feel tiny human beings among the power of the nature.
From the top of Eira do Serrado, it will be the time to drive you to the bottom of the most isolated village in the island. – Curral das Freiras.
The old twisted road to the Nuns Valley is now permanently closed to the traffic, therefore, the only way to descend into the village is to drive through the tunnel built recently which connects the village to the outside world.
Once one arrives to the center of the little village, you may visit the church and its surroundings. Afterwards, if you are willing, seek a coffee break and try the delicious specialities of chestnuts available in the snak-bars around the center. Relax and admire the marvellous landscape embracing the valley before we return to the civilization of Funchal city.
I really hope that you enjoy it as much as i did to write it.
Marco FerreiraRead more...
0 Comments | Posted by marco in Cruise Ship Passengers, jeep safari madeira, Madeira catamaran, Madeira Island, Madeira Island Levada Walks, Madeira Island Tours, Uncategorized, Walking Holidays, Walking in Madeira
One of the most beautiful settings for a half day levada walk in Madeira island takes place in the surroundings of Porto da Cruz village on the North-East part of the island. It is the kind of rambling for leisure that is suitable for everybody who wishes to experience a short journey for the pleasure […]
Madeira Happy Tours offers the most extensive programme of excursions and levada walks in Madeira island to holiday makers that wish to discover our wonderful paradise with the best local guides that there is available in your own native language. For the ones of you with a more adventurous spirit, we have at your disposal […]
The most famous mountain walk in Madeira island – Pico do Arieiro – Pico Ruivo – is temporarily unavailable at the moment and because of this fact, Madeira Happy Tours would like to present an alternative for our guests, who still wish a rambling walk with stunning landscapes and exceptional sights overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. […]
An amazing island like Madeira which lies at the top of a massive mountain that rises approximately six kilometres (3.7 miles) from the sea bed of the Atlantic Ocean on the Tore underwater mountain range is not only known by its majestic landscape above the sea level. One of the various reasons why Madeira island […]
Discover the evergreen luxurious vegetation in Rabaçal valley, located on the highlands of the central ridge of mountains crossing Madeira island from the far West to the further East side. It is situated within the Natural Park of Madeira on the Northwestern part of the island. We explore the unspoilt treasure of our native Laurissilva […]
The East side of Madeira island is an excellent introduction to the island’s diverse array of landscapes; from coastal resorts full of activity and the majestic green highlands, to the stark landscape unable to produce fruits or vegetation. However, this does not mean there is nothing to see in this wonderful part of the island! […]
A journey into the heart of Madeira island that definitely helps you to understand the facts within the formation and the process attached to become the wonderful archipelago where you shall spend your holidays among us. Madeira Happy Tours offers the possibility to visit the São Vicente caves and the Volcanism Center on a daily […]
If you would ask me to suggest to you my favourite levada walk in Madeira island, i would certainly indicate to all of you, Queimadas – Caldeirão Verde for several reasons! It is the type of walk which offers a fairly moderate footpath surrounded by the dense and luxurious ever green Laurel woods of the […]
Madeira Happy Tours does not only provides …”the best value for money tours and levada walks”… in Madeira island to occupy your leisure spare time during the day, but, also gives the chance to our guests to enjoy the traditional evening meal known as “espetada” with the local dancers of the “bailinho da Madeira” and […]
The intriguing Nuns Valley is the only half day tour which is available twice per day with Madeira Happy Tours. There is a departure in the morning at 09:00 with the return at approximately 12:00 and the second time during the day has the departure at 14:00 with the return at roughly 17:00. It is […]