Start: Machico End: Santana
Today you travel to Madeira. A taxi will pick you up and take you to the first hotel of this programme, located in Machico. If you arrive early, you’ll have a chance to relax by the swimming pool, walk along the beach or wander around the typical Portuguese town of Machico.
Madeira’s famous levadas are narrow water channels, and the island proudly boasts more than 1400 km of them. A short morning transfer has been organized for you, to Maroços. From there you will follow your first levada back to Machico. The views of the bay and Machico from up high are second to none!
Challenge: 4,5 hrs, 15km, 150m ascent, 400m descent
The São Lourenço Peninsula is a must-see in Madeira. With its volcanic origin made mainly of basalt, it is said to be the driest point on the island and you will notice that as you begin to walk toward this magical space, a protected Partial Natural Reserve. A transfer will be arranged for this morning and you will return by public bus in the afternoon, unless you have arranged a taxi transfer on your own.
Challenge: 3 hrs, 7km, 350m ascent/ descent
Today’s route is a bit demanding but well worth it, if you take into account the amazing views you’ll have of the northern coastline. A taxi will take you to the start of the walk, between Machico and Caniçal. You begin by following the Levada do Caniçal, mainly flat. Next you do a more challenging section: first on dirt tracks out to the ocean, then on a lovely path along the coast. The Boca do Risco vista point is a good spot for a picnic, before continuing along the Vereda de Larano, a beautiful path cut into the cliffs, to reach Porto da Cruz. A taxi will pick-you up there and take you to your next accommodation, in Santana. You’ll soon discover that Quinta do Furao the ideal place to forget about everything.
Challenge: 5,5-6 hrs, 15km, 400m ascent, 750m descent
Morning transfer to Ribeiro Frio, where the Levada do Furado walk begins. From the very beginning, you will feel like you are walking in a fairy-tale woodland: Madeira’s laurel forest, a UNESCO heritage site. The route is mainly flat along the levada, but you gain altitude gradually (path later protected by a handrail), allowing for majestic views of the coast and the laurel forest covering Madeira’s canyons and hills. Once in Portela, you can either take a taxi (not included) or continue on a cobbled (at times, slippery) path to Porto da Cruz. Once more, a taxi will take you to Santana after the walk
Challenge: 5 + 2 hrs, 16 km, 370m ascent, 875m descent
The Parque Florestal das Queimadas will be the starting point for today’s route, and the taxi will drop you there in the morning. First stop: a cosy bar inside a typical Madeiran house! You’ll follow the Levada do Caldeirão Verde to reach the waterfall, then retrace your steps and make a detour to the village of Ilha, where the taxi will pick you up in the afternoon. Remember to bring a torch and water-proofs on this walk! Though you will be walking along cliffs, the path is protected by handrails.
Challenge: 5 hrs, 13km, 70m ascent, 600m descent
For the last route, you will walk part of the Caminho Real which, with a total distance of 182 km, completely circles the island of Madeira, linking the major harbours and villages. Starting in Santana, today you’ll walk through a series of ruins, landscapes, villages and traditions to each Arco de São Jorge. A taxi will take you back to your hotel in Santana.
Challenge: 6-6,5 hrs, 13 km, 550m ascent, 900m descent
Your arrangement comes to the end today after breakfast. A transfer back to the airport is included, so remember to provide all you flight details in advance.
All accommodations have been carefully selected for their location, atmosphere and/or unique services. All rooms are en-suite.
You can find a list of the standard hotels for this trip below. If a hotel is fully booked, then we will book a similar one for you and inform you about the alternative booked.
Extra nights: You can book additional night(s) at any accommodation along the way.
This hotel is located by the bay beach in Machico. Guests have free access to the swimming pool and the hotel also offers diving and wellness services for guests. Visitors can enjoy the hotel’s sea-view restaurant and bar. All rooms have a free wifi connection and satellite TV.
This charming hotel is located on Madeira’s north coast, 2 km from the village centre of Santana. With views to the coast and island’s central mountains, this hotel is the perfect retreat for hikers. They grow their own vegetables and produce their own wine, which makes its local with an eye to international cuisine. This charming place also has an indoor/ outdoor swimming pool, wellness services, a winery and bakery, etc.
Starting on any day of the week, throughout the year. In summer, warm temperatures can make the routes seem more difficult.
If you fear hights this trip is NOT RECOMMENDED.
Convenient airport: Funchal (FNC)
GPS tracks available