25 BEST WATERFALLS IN MADEIRA – Madeira waterfalls guide
Madeira, the Portuguese island in the Atlantic Ocean, is an amazing lush and tropical island. It has countless beautiful waterfalls to explore, some during hikes and others can be easily spotted along the road. Because we have lived for 7 months on Madeira Island, we could explore many of the amazing waterfalls in Madeira. In this blog post I will give an in depth description about the best 25 waterfalls in Madeira, how to get there, what to expect and much more! Take into account that some waterfalls in Madeira only can be reached during a hike, but others can be easily spotted along the road or after a short hike. So choose wisely, and if you only have a short time to explore Madeira Island, go for the easy to reach waterfalls.
Best Madeira waterfall tours
If you want to explore some of the best waterfalls in Madeira, then it is highly recommended to book a guided tour. Visiting most of the waterfalls in Madeira includes a hike. To some of few kilometres, to others just a few hundred meters. If you book a guided waterfall tour then you can’t get lost, and your guide can tell you many things about the flora and fauna along the way. All of these tours include air conditioned transport with hotel pick up and drop off, certified guides and sometimes also lunch. You can reserve now and pay later, with cancellation up to 24 hours in advance to receive a full refund.
- Book here your guided walk along Levada Caldeirão Verde including transportation. This is one of the most popular levada walks in Madeira as you will see many waterfalls along the way, such as the famous Caldeirao Verde waterfall.
- Book here your guided Levada das 25 Fontes walk. Another famous levada walk in Madeira leading you to the beautiful Risco waterfall and 25 Fontes waterfall. A must do!
- Book here your guided Levada dos Cedros hike. The lesser known Levada dos Cedros brings you to a beautful waterfall at the end of the trail. A must do if you like the more hidden gems.
- Book here your guided Levada do Moinho to Levada Nova hike including transport. The unique waterfall pours down a cliffs over the levada path. Be prepared to get a little wet!
- Book here your private guided Levada dos Tornos hike. North Madeira is super lush and the Levada brings you along a scenic path to some beautiful waterfalls.
- Book here your private guided Levada do Alecrim hike including transport. This levada walk is perfect for families and during the summer months you can even swim in the natural pool of the waterfall!
- Book here your private guided Lagoa do Vento hike including transport. The beautiful, tall waterfall of Lagoa do Vento is a must visit. You can even swim in the natural pool for a refreshing dip after the hike down.
Best season to explore the waterfalls in Madeira
Because Madeira doesn’t have rainfall all year round, you can expect the waterfalls during European summer months to be little or dried up. When the first showers of rain appear in September, the waterfalls in Madeira start to get more power. Depending on the amount of rainfall, you can expect the waterfalls in Madeira to be at its best in the winter months, from November up to March.
Where to stay in Madeira
There are several towns in Madeira that are great to stay while exploring the island. Funchal is the capital town of the island with the most restaurants around. It has a charming old town and all sorts of facilities you might look for such as a boulevard, shopping centre, cafe’s and nightlife. It is a great place to base yourself with plenty of culture and beautiful old buildings and charming streets to explore. There are also a few beaches in Funchal to enjoy the ocean. However these beaches are from pebble stones.
→ Check out this great tool to compare prices on hotels around the world and book your favorite hotel!
We have stayed in The Vine hotel and Okulus villa which are both beautiful locations. The Vine has the comforts of a hotel including breakfast and is located right in the city centre. Okulus villa is located in the Old Town with the most amazing ocean and city view.
→ Book your stay at Okulus villa here
→ Book your stay at The Vine hotel here
If you want to be based near a sandy beach in Madeira, then Calheta is a great place. While Funchal is more to the east of the island located, Calheta is more to the west of the island located. So eventually you can also stay a few days in both towns depending the total length of your stay in Madeira. Calheta has an atmospheric marine with restaurants offering great spots to watch the sunset and enjoy a meal.
We have stayed a few weeks at Calheta Boutique Houses during our 7 months living in Madeira. Highly recommend these private villa’s as you have all the amenities you have at home as well. The modern design and amazing ocean views makes it a perfect vacation home.
→ Book your stay at Calheta Boutique Houses here
Small villages in nature
If you want to experience really small towns to stay in Madeira, then check out the accommodations in Seixal, Porto da Cruz, Sao Vicente or Ribeiro Frio. Take into account that there will be less restaurants around but you will be completely immersed in the local life and nature.
→ Check here the available accommodations in Seixal, Porto da Cruz, Sao Vicente or Ribeiro Frio
General travel must haves for Madeira
Before we dive into the best waterfalls in Madeira, let’s check a few things to make your travels in Madeira easy and safe.
Have you thought about how to get around in Madeira? A car is the easiest way to drive around the island.
- Book your rental car here and compare the providers to get the best deal.
- Book your scooter or motorbike here to get around in Madeira. Most of the scooters you can drive with driving license (A1/A2/A) from 18 years old, or from 25 years old with a car (B) license. The motorbikes have a minimum age of 20 or 21 with A (moto) license.
Do you prefer a private driver for the day and the freedom to create your own itinerary?
Did you already book your accommodation?
- Check out this great tool to compare prices of hotels on different platforms from around the world and book your favorite hotel
Are you insured during your travels?
- Buy your travel insurance here. Safetywing not only includes coverage for travel delay, lost checked luggage, emergency response, natural disasters and personal liability. But also covers all your medical expenses for hospitalisation.
25 BEST WATERFALLS IN MADEIRA
Rocha do Navio waterfall
Rocha do Navio waterfall can be found in Santana along the dramatic ocean cliffs of Northern Madeira. The piece of land where the waterfall falls onto is called a Fajã. A Fajã is a piece of flat, fertile land which is created by flowing lava and is located at the bottom of a cliff in between the cliff and ocean. You can see this waterfall without descending down onto Fajã Rocha do Navio from the Quinta do Furão hotel. But you can also take the cable car down and explore the Nature Reserve and waterfall of Fajã Rocha do Navio.
Rocha do Navio waterfall seen from an aerial view
How to get to Rocha do Navio waterfall
The waterfall can be seen from the viewpoint at Quinta do Furão hotel which you can also visit as non guest. Just type in the name of the hotel on Google Maps, park and follow the signs towards the viewpoint. From here, you’ll have an amazing view over the dramatic cliffs and Rocha do Navio waterfall. To see the waterfall from the bottom, take a cable car down to Fajã Rocha do Navio and explore the nature reserve, the towering cliffs and its pebble beach.
Quinta do Furão hotel where the viewpoint is
Levada Castelejo waterfall
At the startof Levada Castelejo in Porto da Cruz you will see this beautiful waterfall on the opposite of the valley. On a clear day, you can see the peaks of Ariero and Ruivo pointing above the waterfall in the backdrop, giving a fantastic picturesque view. Although you can not come close to this waterfall, it is a wonderful view at the start of this levada walk where you walk along a cliffside path .
How to get to Levada Castelejo waterfall
Levada Castelejo is located in Porto da Cruz on the north side of Madeira Island. It’s easy to find on Google Maps and when you get closer to the start of the trail you will see Levada Castelejo signposted. You can park you car right at the start of the trailhead. First you have to walk around the corner of the levada along the farm lands. As soon as you have the famous rock of Porto da Cruz, Penha de Água, in your back, you will see the waterfall on your right hand across the valley.
Salto do Patagarro waterfall
Salto do Patagarro waterfall is definitely our top 3, if not our favorite waterfall in Madeira! This beautiful 3 tier waterfall is tucked away far in the Ribeira de Santa Luzia valley. It is quite challenging to get to the bottom of the waterfall. But if you are an experienced hiker and you love waterfalls, this is a must do! You basically walk through a dry river bed in the first part, but later along the hike you have to cross a smaller river a few times. So be prepared to get wet feet or jump if you can. It is very important to only do this hike when it hasn’t been raining for a few days and with good weather conditions during the day. Otherwise the river might be too strong and in worst case scenario you might get in trouble. The total distance is 9 kilometres of this hike, but take into account that you have to climb boulders and cross rivers. Depending on your speed it will take you around 4 – 5 hours in total.
Salto do Patagarro is certainly one of our most favorite waterfalls in Madeira.
How to get to Salto do Patagarro waterfall
Salto do Patagarro waterfall is located in the Ribeira de Santa Luzia valley and is only a short drive from Funchal. We went with our rental car which is most convenient so you can park at the start of the trail. We drove to the small village Corujeira to the Caminho da Levada dos Tornos and parked the car next to the houses. The levada starts directly at the back of the houses and in only ten minutes or less you will get to the first waterfall, Pisão. After Pisão waterfall you have to keep following the trail until you come along a powerplant station. Then you will see some huge concrete piles that prevent mud floods. From this point the hike towards Salto do Patagarro waterfall really starts. Follow the riverbed deeper into the valley for about 4 kilometres. You will have to walk over the boulders sometimes and in between the huge concrete piles. At some parts you even have to cross the river. Keep follow the river upstream until you see Salto do Patagarro.
The Pisão waterfall can be found in the Ribeira de Santa Luzia valley near Funchal. The hike is part of Levada dos Tornos and you can easily get to Pisao waterfall when you start the walk in Corujeira. From there it’s only a 5 – 10 min walk until you get to the bridge where you cross the levada. Here you’ll have a beautiful view on Pisao waterfall. You can combine Pisao waterfall together with Salto do Patagarro waterfall as it part of the same hike. So if you’re in for a waterfall adventure in Madeira, plan this route!
Risco waterfall is one of the beautiful waterfalls you can see along the Levada das 25 Fontes hike. This high waterfall is best to visit in rainy season, as during the summer months it will only be a little stream of water dripping down along the rocks. Risco is without a doubt one of the most famous waterfalls in Madeira.
On the first picture you see Risco waterfall in summer season when it’s almost dried up.
On the second picture you can see Risco waterfall after some heavy rainfall.
Risco waterfall is about 100 meters high and is actually part of a group of different water streams. If you have a drone or stand a bit further away from the viewpoint, you can see the other waterfall in the distance above Risco. This waterfall is part of the Lagoa do Vento hike, which you also can include during the Levada das 25 Fontes hike if you want to.
Risco waterfall is one of the most famous waterfalls in Madeira
In rainy season there is even another waterfall trickle flowing down onto the path towards Risco waterfall. You will have to cover your valuable stuff when walking underneath but you won’t get soaked.
How to get to Risco waterfall
To get to the viewing platform of Risco waterfall it will take you about 2,8 kilometre from the start of Levada das 25 Fontes. It is well signed when you reach the intersection the you have to keep right to get to Risco waterfall. If you want to hike to 25 Fontes, go back to the intersection after you’ve seen Risco waterfall and continue the well signed levada walk.
Here you can read our in depth guide about the Levada das 25 Fontes hike
25 Fontes waterall
The 25 Fontes waterfall is the final point of Levada das 25 Fontes. Before you get to this spot, you have passed Risco waterfall. Depending on the season that you do this levada walk, you can either see the waterfall in full power, or only a little water trickle flowing down along the rock wall. We have visited the 25 Fontes in August and December which resulted in two complete different experiences. You can see the difference in our pictures below.
On the first picture you can see 25 Fontes in summer season when it’s mostly dry.
The second picture if from 25 Fontes after a few heavy days of rain when it was super powerful.
25 Fontes waterfall is together with Risco some of the most famous waterfalls in Madeira
In the summer months you can safely take a dip in the ice cold waters of the natural pool. But during the winter months this is definitely not recommend as its way too cold and the small pool changes in a wild stream. The hike towards the 25 Fontes is beautiful and one of the most popular levada walks on Madeira Island. You will pass a few other waterfalls, such as Risco waterfall, but also some other. Combined with a beautiful walk in the forest along the levada, it is a wonderful, refreshing hike in nature.
The hike towards 25 Fontes waterfall is beautiful. You’ll walk in the forest along the levada and will see other waterfalls along the way
How to get to the 25 Fontes waterfall
To get to the 25 Fontes waterfall you will have to hike for 5 kilometres one way. The parking lot of the 25 Fontes levada is well signposted as it’s one of the most popular hikes on Madeira Island. The paths are well maintained and clearly marked. There is only about 300 meters of incline on the stairs, which is not a big deal but you will feel it.
Here you can read our in depth guide about 25 Fontes waterall
Parking area and start of the Levada das 25 Fontes towards 25 Fontes & Risco waterfall
Garganta Funda waterfall
The Garganta Funda waterfall is one of the few waterfalls on Madeira island located on the west coast. During the summer season you can expect the waterfall to be dry. However, it is still a beautiful viewpoint with 180 degree views on the ocean. But after some rainfall it is absolutely worth it to explore this 140 meters high waterfall as it’s a very unique one. The kettle shaped rock around the waterfall is fascinating and reminded us of the Caldeirao Verde waterfall. Both have a waterfall flowing down in a gorge with lots of green vines and moss attached to the rock walls. But Garganta Funda has one more great feature which is the stunning views on the Atlantic Ocean.
Garganta Funda waterfall is a unique kettle shaped rock
How to get to Garganta Funda waterfall
Also known as Miradouro Garganta Funda, you can easily find this spot on Google Maps. Once you get closer to the spot, you can see Miradouro Garganta Funda signposted. There is a small parking lot right before the short hike towards the viewpoint starts. It’s only about 10 minutes walking until you reach the viewpoint on the waterfall. If you explore the area a bit further, you can see the Ponta do Pargo cliff with 180 degrees view on the Atlantic Ocean. This offers some great photo opportunities!
Here you can read our in depth guide about Garganta Funda waterfall
If you face the ocean at Garganta Funda waterfall you will see another beautiful viewpoint
Poço das Pulgas waterfall
The Poço das Pulgas waterfall is one of the most hidden waterfalls in Madeira. It has a beautiful blue natural pool and is surrounded by enchanting greens. The hike to Poço das Pulgas waterfall in Ponta Delgada is an 8 kilometre off the beaten path loop. You are completely immersed in Madeira’s jungle on the north coast and will pass along several waterfalls and streams surrounded by lush greens. This hike is quite technical and challenging, so I would only advice it if you have experience with hiking. But it’s absolutely worth it to see the Poço das Pulgas waterfall and have lunch or just some rest before you make your way back to the parking lot.
How to get to Poço das Pulgas waterfall
Poco das Pulgas is located in Ponta Delgada, on the beautiful green north coast of Madeira. The hike starts at the Parque das Merendas picnic area which offers free toilets, waste bins, a bbq area and seats. There is enough parking space here and its right around the corner of the trail. On maps.me you can easily see how the trail goes, but it’s also clearly marked along the way. If you follow Estrada das Fontes (Cova do Bardo) you will first have a bit of incline on a paved road along some mountain bungalows before you enter the forest where the forest trail starts. From this part there are signs along the way, and you can always follow maps.me which shows the exact route on the map as well. The Poço das Pulgas waterfall hike is also a geocaching spot, so if you’re into that you’ll love exploring the geocache along this trail!
Here you can read our in depth guide about Poço das Pulgas waterfall
The hike towards Poço das Pulgas waterfall is quite adventurous, but very rewarding!
Rabo de Burro waterfall
Another waterfall you can see along the 8 kilometre Poço das Pulgas waterfall hike is Rabo de Burro waterfall. This is actually the first main point of interest on this hike and you will definitely want to check out it out. The beautiful straight stream of water surrounded by ferns made us feel far away from civilisation. It might be even the prettiest waterfall of this hike, but that’s our opinion! There are many interesting angles to capture this beautiful waterfall from. There is also an old tree branch laying in front of the waterfall which creates a beautiful leading line if we’re talking about composition for photos. It’s the perfect place to relax for a bit before you make your way further into the hike towards Poço das Pulgas waterfall.
Here you can read our in depth guide about Poço das Pulgas waterfall
Véu da Noiva waterfall
The Véu da Noiva waterfall viewpoint is an incredible spot on the north coast of Madeira. Located in between Seixal and São Vicente, you can’t miss this place when exploring Madeira’s north west coast. This beautiful waterfall, also known as the Bride’s Veil, has a height of about 30 meters and runs down the cliffs straight into the Atlantic Ocean. The impressive coastline and beautiful waterfall are an incredible sight and totally worth the stop in you’re exploring the Seixal area.
How to get to the Véu da Noiva waterfall
The Véu da Noiva waterfall viewpoint is located along the road and easy to reach with the car. It’s a 40 km drive from Funchal and you can easily combine the waterfall viewpoint with a visit to Seixal Beach, the Seixal Natural Pools or Porto Moniz. There is a parking lot for a few cars with a tourist shop next to it. The accessibility to the viewpoint is even wheelchair friendly with a ramp to the viewing platform.
Here you can read our in depth guide about Véu da Noiva waterfall viewpoint
São Vicente waterfall road
When you’re exploring the north coast of Madeira near São Vicente and you’re on the way to Seixal, you will pass this waterfall along the road. It is definitely worth a stop to admire this beauty from closer up. There is a small parking lot along the road, so it’s easy to pull over and watch safely. Snap a picture and breath in the ocean breeze as the Atlantic Ocean is right on the other side of the road. This waterfall is also used for abseiling, so if you’re up to that, contact the many companies on Madeira Island that offer canyoneering trips!
Lagoa Dona Beja waterfall
The Lagoa Dona Beja waterfall is a pretty but small waterfall. You can see this waterfall along the Levada do Alecrim hike, also known as ‘Lakes of Madeira Island’. During the hike you will have outstanding views over the Rabaçal valley and Ribeira da Janela (Janela Creek). You’ll feel immersed in nature while walking in the characteristic greens of the Laurel Forest. The Levada do Alecrim hike is about 7 kilometres long out and back and a great little adventure for young and old.
How to get to Lagoa Dona Beja waterfall
The starting point of Levada do Alecrim is at the same parking spot of the popular Levada das 25 Fontes hike. Don’t get confused and follow the crowds down the paved road into the valley, because that is the trail towards 25 Fontes. The Levada do Alecrim hike starts on the right side of the parking lot. You have to go sideways from the paved road and turn into a small trail which goes into the bushes. It is signposted so keep an eye on the wooden signs. Fun thing to know is that the Levada do Alecrim actually goes above the 25 Fontes waterfall! So at one point you can stand on top of the Risco waterfall with amazing views over the valley!
Here you can read our in depth guide about Levada do Alecrim
Lagoa do Vento waterfall
The Lagoa do Vento waterfall is a beautiful and tall waterfall located in the Rabaçal valley. The walk down towards the pool and waterfall is a beautiful combination of forest trail and along the levada. It is only a 3.3 kilometres hike so if you’re looking for a longer walk you can combine Levada do Alecrim to your itinerary. That will only give you a little detour of about 1 kilometres and is definitely worth it to combine if you want to see both. Once arrived at the bottom of Lagoa do Vento you can take a dip in the ice cold lagoon. Keep in mind that this waterfall will be small during the summer months but much more powerful after some rainy weeks. The area around Lagoa do Vento is a perfect place for a lunch stop with lots of rocks to sit on. Great hike for young and old with only about 300 meters of incline.
How to get to the Lagoa do Vento waterfall
The start of the hike to Lagoa do Vento waterfall is the same as some other popular levada walks. The trailhead shares the same parking lot as the very popular Levada das 25 Fontes and Levada do Alecrim. So it can be busy, especially later in the morning. The Lagoa do Vento trail doesn’t start down the main driveway like Levada das 25 Fontes, but veers into the small forest trail on the right at the lower end of the parking lot. This trail goes above the 25 Fontes waterfall hike so don’t get confused and follow the crowd down the paved road.
Cascata dos Anjos waterfall
Have you ever seen a waterfall on a public road? If you havent, Madeira is the place where you can see this! The dos Anjos waterfall is located in Ponta do Sol along the old coastal road and you can drive underneath it! Only if the waterfall isn’t too powerful you can also stand underneath it like a natural shower. But after heavy rain this is absolutely not recommended. The Cascata dos Anjos falls along the cliff down onto the road so if you drive underneath it with your car you can have a free washing. But always be careful, especially after heavy rain. Then rocks can also fall down.
The Cascata dos Anjos waterfall is a great spot to stop for a moment as it’s also along the ocean with wonderful views.
How to get to Cascata dos Anjos
The dos Anjos waterfall is located on the ER101. It’s very easy to find when you type in Cascata dos Anjos on Google Maps.
Fajã da Nogueira waterfall
Tucked away deep into Parque Natural do Ribeiro Frio you can find a beautiful but short hiking trail which leads you through the forest and along this waterfall that pours out of the mountain. It is a short but sweet hike and the waterfall is a great stop for a break or photo stop.
How to get to the Fajã da Nogueira waterfall
The trail starts at the Central Eléctrica da Fajã da Nogueira where also the Levada da Serra do Faial starts. But here you follow the loop trail that crosses Ribeira da Fajã da Nogueira and gets back to the parking lot at the Central Eléctrica da Fajã da Nogueira. My advice is to use maps.me as you can see the dotted line on the map so you won’t get lost.
Levada dos Cedros waterfall
The Levada dos Cedros waterfall is the final point of this levada walk. This stunning forest walk which is pretty much flat all the time, ends by a few stunning waterfalls after 6 kilometres. You can do this hike out and back the same route, or add another part to Fanal forest to it. The Levada dos Cedros is definitely a hike for young and old and offers stunning viewpoints, jungle bridges and waterfalls along the way. At the end of Levada dos Cedros you will find a few waterfalls with the last one as biggest surprise. This stunning multi-tiered waterfall is a feast for the eye and a perfect place to have a lunch break to prepare for the way back to the parking lot. In total the Levada dos Cedros takes 12 kilometeres out and back.
How to get to Levada dos Cedros waterfall
The Levada dos Cedros trail begins at the Regional Highway E.R. 209 on the Paul da Serra plateau close to the well-known area of Fanal forest. You can park your car on the side of the road at one of the parking lots. Make sure to have made the decision beforehand which route you are going to take. Because you can either do the circular route via Fanal with lots of stairs, or go out and back on the same route via the Levada dos Cedros. Out and back is 12 kilometres in total. If you have access to two vehicles, you can park one at the end of the walk to make the return journey a bit quicker. Otherwise you have to walk along the road back to the car for some kilometres. But you can also call a local taxi agency or try hitchhiking back to your car!
Here you can read our in depth guide about Levada dos Cedros waterfall
Levada do Rei waterfall
The Levada do Rei waterfall is not some of the best or biggest waterfalls in Madeira. But if you plan to do this levada walk, then you can’t miss these waterfalls along the way! However, if you’re onto a real exploration, then you can find a bigger waterfall at the source of Levada do Rei. You can either explore this waterfall from above when hiking up the mountain. Or, if you want to get wet, from inside the canyon if you keep following the river. Levada do Rei is a beautiful lush trail located in Santana in the north of Madeira follows the Ribeiro Bonito stream through Madeira’s Laurissilva forest. The smaller waterfalls are easy to find, but the bigger one takes some effort at the end of the levada trail. You can either wade further along the river to find this bigger waterfall in the canyon, or hike up the mountain to see it from the top.
How to get to Levada do Rei
The startpoint of Levada do Rei is located in Santana, the northern part of Madeira. From Funchal, it takes about 55 minutes driving over a 50 kilometers distance. There is a cafe called ‘Quinta Levada do Rei’ at the trailhead where you can park, have a coffee or lunch and go to the toilet before or after the hike. It takes about 9.7 kilometres of hiking in total because it is an out and back trail. One way will only take you about 4.5 kilometres.
Here you can read our in depth guide about Levada do Rei waterfall
Caldeirão Verde waterfall
The Levada Caldeirão Verde waterfall hike is one of the most popular and beautiful levada walks on Madeira Island. What makes this hike so unique are the many waterfalls you will see along the way. But the highlight is of course the Caldeirão Verde waterfall, also known as the green cauldron. It got this name because of its beautiful green canyon where the 100 meters high Caldeirão Verde waterfall gushes down own along intense green rocks. Especially after rainy days the waterfalls will be super powerful. This also results in some waterfalls that will fall onto the hiking path. So be prepared with a rain jacket! You’ll also have to pass a few tunnels so bring a flashlight or headlamp. The total distance of this flat levada walk is 12 kilometres out and back. Completely surrounded by lush green jungle, the Levada Caldeirão Verde really makes you feel far sway from civilisation.
How to get to the Caldeirão Verde waterfall
The Levada do Caldeirão Verde hike begins in Queimadas Forest Park which is located along the north coast of Madeira in Santana. From Funchal it will take you about 45 minutes to get to the parking lot of the Caldeirão Verde hike. Once arrived at the parking lot you will see a gate. There you’ll have to get a parking ticket from the machine and pay 1 euro parking per hour or 3 euros for the maximum stay. Before the trailhead of Levada do Caldeirão Verde starts, you’ll see a cafe with picnic area. Here you can grab a coffee or snack before or after the hike. Until the Caldeirão Verde waterfall it will take you about 6,5 kilometres one way. But there is another waterfall if you continue this hike!
Here you can read our in depth guide about Levada Caldeirão Verde
The first waterfall you will see along the Caldeirão Verde hike
The last stop of the trail which goes further after the Caldeirão Verde waterfall is the Inferno waterfall. This is another waterfall in a green cauldron, but you can see many other waterfalls along the way. The Inferno waterfall actually only flows after heavy rainfall. So if you’re in Madeira during the summer season, don’t expect to find a flowing waterfall at the end of the walk. If you’re only up for a big waterfall, then you can better wait for a big heavy rainfall to see the Inferno waterfall in full power.
This is the last waterfall you will see before you get to the actual Inferno waterfall. Because Inferno waterfall was dry when we got there, I didn’t take a picture of it.
How to get to the Inferno waterfall
The Inferno waterfall is a few kilometres after the Caldeirão Verde waterfall. So you just have to continue the levada path until you get to the end of the canyon. The whole trail is well signposted so you can’t get lost.
Faja do Rodrigues waterfall
The Faja do Rodrigues waterfalls are only visible at the end of this lush levada walk. So if you just want a quick visit to a waterfall, Faja do Rodrigues is not your pick. But for a beautiful levada walk which will give you the feeling as if you’re in the jungle, this is the one! The first three kilometres of the levada take you through the lush forest and a long tunnel.
After about the first three kilometers into the trail and closely towards the end of the canyon, you will reach the first waterfalls. From behind the safety railing of the levada you can look down into the canyon to spot two stunning waterfalls. The main waterfall consists of two streams that come together and pours down into a small crystal clear pool below. At the end of the levada you can see another small waterfall which is the end of the 4 kilometre trail. Here you are in the canyon of this levada with a beautiful small waterfall to enjoy. You can explore around in this canyon, but the rocks might be slippery, so be careful! Out and back the trail is 8 kilometres without any inline.
How to get to Faja do Rodrigues waterfall
The Levada Faja do Rodrigues starts at Ginjas which is located in São Vicente on the northern part of the island. From Funchal it will take you about 35 minutes to get there. Along the way you’ll drive through the beautiful Ribeira Brava valley. The address of the levada is Caminho Velho das Ginjas in São Vicente. But you can also find the starting point by putting in the name of the levada in Google Maps. There is no public bus going directly to the beginning of the levada so you will definitely need a rental car. At the trailhead is enough parking space and you’ll quickly see the first signs directing you to the start of the trailhead. You’ll know soon enough where the official levada starts when you see the white information board that can be found at every official levada.
Here you can read our in depth guide about Faja do Rodrigues waterfall
Agua D’Alto waterfall
The Agua D’Alto waterfall is a beautiful and tall waterfall on the North coast of Madeira. It’s one of the infamous waterfalls in Madeira which I honestly don’t really understand. The trail was not very well maintained when we hiked to Agua D’Alto waterfall with grass and vines growing over the levada path. But it’s just a short walk to the bottom of the waterfall, so absolutely worth it. You will see that at some points the levada path is very narrow with pieces that have been broken off. So always walk with care. It only takes about 10 – 15 minutes to reach the waterfall which is perfectly tucked away into a small canyon surrounded by lush greens. The Agua d’Alto waterfall is 150 meters highand falls perfectly as athin veil into a shallow pool. The form of the waterfall reminds me of a bridal veil which is funnily enough the name of another waterfall in Madeira! The Veu da Noiva waterfall, also known as Bridal Veil in Seixal.
How to get to Agua D’Alto waterfall
The Agua d’Alto waterfall is located in Faial, in the north of Madeira. From Funchal it will take you about 40 minutes of driving. It can be hard at first to find the road where you have to get up although the waterfall is marked on Google Maps. The road you need to take up is opposite of the CAM do Lombo Galego 1A bus stop. You can choose to park you car somewhere closely to this road, or drive all the way up to the parking lot from where the levada starts. Make sure to drive carefully up and down this steep road!
If you arrive at the concrete parking lot near the house, you’ll see an incredible view over Faial towards the ocean. From this spot you have to take the stairs up along the house which leads you to the levada. You can already see the waterfall, so just follow the levada until you get closer to the waterfall.
Here you can read our in depth guide about Agua D’Alto waterfall
Levada Nova waterfall
The Levada Nova waterfall can be seen on the Levada do Moinho to Levada Nova hike. This is one of the most unique waterfalls in Madeira because it pours over the hiking path. Therefore it’s a quite adventurous trail. But you won’t get too wet, so don’t worry about your clothes or backpack. The cave passage is very fun and adventurous to pass, but mind your head! The rocks are not giving in when you bump your head..
From the tunnel you will have the best view on the waterfall and canyon which is also the best photo spot. If you want to take a break, this is a great spot to eat a snack. The sound of the waterfall is very relaxing.
How to get to Levada Nova waterfall
The starting point of the Levada do Moinho to Levada Nova hike is in Ponta do Sol on the south coast of the island. The official address of the Levada do Moinho is Casa Carreira 24, Ponta do Sol. The trail starts next to the white church named “Igreja da Lombada da Ponta do Sol”. There are enough parking spots available at the church or further down the straat. No public transport is going to the start of this trail. So you either have to go by your own rental car or with a taxi. The closest Rodoeste bus stop is “Ponta Do Sol Rotunda”, from which it takes another 30 – 45 minutes to reach the levada trail.
Here you can read our in depth guide about Levada Moinho to Levada Nova
Along thePR17 Caminho do Pináculo e Folhadal you can find many different waterfalls. This 18 kilometre hike is not for the unexperienced hikers. But you can of course shorten the hike and return the same route when you’ve seen enough from the trail. Most of the waterfalls can be seen along the trail, but some are tucked away and only can be spotted when you go a bit off the trail. This is not an encouragement to go off trail without a plan, because the waterfalls are pointed out on maps.me for example and you can see the dotted line leading you to some of the waterfalls.
How to get to PR17 Caminho do Pináculo e Folhadal waterfalls
The hike begins directly from Encumeada Viewpoint (Miradouro da Encumeada) and is easy to find on Google Maps. This viewpoint has a souvenir shop, cafe, and parking lot. Perfect for a cup of coffee before or after the hike. To follow the trail, you can either use maps.me or the Madeira hiking app.
Lombo do Mouro waterfalls
These waterfalls can be easily seen from the ER110 road but you can also pass them during the PR 17 Levada walk. If you’re short in time it is worth a quick stop along the road. But make sure to park your car somewhere safe. The viewpoint on the waterfalls is a little after Miradouro Lombo do Mouro.
Levada dos Tornos waterfall
The Levada dos Tornos hike is a beautiful and diverse walk through the UNESCO Laurissilva Forest. Along the way you’ll see a great mixture of several waterfalls and viewpoints. The 13 kilometre point to point route leads you through the beautiful valley of Boaventura with a varied scenery along the way. The waterfalls you will see along Levada dos Tornos are maybe not the biggest, but they are definitely worth a stop and picture.
How to get to Levada dos Tornos
Levada dos Tornos is a long levada that leads through a huge part of Madeira Island. But this part of Levada dos Tornos with the most waterfalls is located in the valley of Boaventura. From Funchal it will take you about 45 minutes to get there. The trailhead can be found at the end of the road in the valley of Boaventura. Here you can park your car on the side of the road and you will see Levada dos Tornos signposted.
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I hope you enjoyed this blog post about the best waterfalls in Madeira.
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