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Day 3 Option 2 - Levada do Caniçal to Porto da Cruz

Randonnée · Portugal
Ce contenu est proposé par
Macs Adventure Partenaire certifié  Explorers Choice 
  • Crédit photo : Suzel Gary, Macs Adventure
m 400 300 200 100 -100 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 km

The wide Machico valley and its green terraces give way to a magnificent panorama on the highest point of the track. Thereafter, the trail unfolds on the cliff side, dug in the rocks. The final descent connects the rural part of Porto da Cruz to the village on the shore.

This is an option to start Day 3 walk in Machico town center. The trail reaches the standard walk starting point, at km 3.18.

Distance 15,6 km
5:30 h.
425 m
425 m
420 m
2 m
If you choose to walk to the start of the levada (OPTION 2), you will face a steep climb initially, rewarded with glorious views back over Machico at Pico do Facho viewpoint. Once on the levada (OPTION 1), you will have a pleasant stroll along the water channel before cutting off to climb up to Boca do Risco. Here, the North coast will open out in front of you, and you will work your way along the cliff paths and down to the charming village of Porto da Cruz.

Note de l'auteur

The south and the north coasts reveal their distinctive features all along the way. Steepness, erosion, land use, vegetation and even the ocean are different. The coastal trail used to be the main route for the inhabitants of this area, namely for wine transport on people’s back. Nowadays it offers fine views to the ocean and São Lourenço Peninsula already visited on Day 2.

Allow some time to discover Porto da Cruz.

Image de profil de Laura Paterson
Laura Paterson
Mise à jour: 19.01.2022
Niveau physique
Point le plus élevé
420 m
Point le plus bas
2 m

Consignes de sécurité

  •  When path is narrow, walk carefully on the trail, not on the vegetation. 
  •  In case of landslides, do not proceed if there is any hazard.

Conseils et recommandations supplémentaires

Points of Interest 

  • Porto da Cruz – a relaxed and charming village that produces an excellent dry red wine "Seco Americano" and agricultural rum, the latest being the main ingredient of the famous poncha.
  • Sugar cane mill is open for visits (usually closed on sundays). Engenhos do Norte
  • Time permitting it is possible to enjoy the swimming pools by Porto da Cruz sea front. Alagoa beach near the sugar cane mill might be an alternative (do not enter the water on the sea front on the swimming pool side as it is dangerous regardless of sea conditions). Bathing complex
  • Santana is a beautiful village on the north coast, famous for its small triangular houses built of natural stone and thatched with straw. Near Santana townhall, you can visit some of these colourful fairy tale houses hosting small shops. Santana houses


  • Machico is well served with banks, supermarkets, numerous bars and restaurants, a pharmacy and a bus station 
  • Bars, restaurants and shops in the village of Porto da Cruz.

Food & Drink 

Nothing en route. Picnic and water required. 


OPTION 2 - Machico seafront (5 m)
Coordonnées :
32.717038, -16.764370
32°43'01.3"N 16°45'51.7"W
28S 334644 3621294


Porto da Cruz


You will be picked up from your hotel at 9:00 am

OPTION 1 starts at km 3.18.

For OPTION 2, start on the seafront, near the small fort and the playground. 

 0.00 km – Standing with the fort behind you, and facing the sea, TURN LEFT and head along the seafront. 

 0.16 km – AHEAD over the wooden footbridge, and along past the beach. 

 0.30 km – TURN LEFT before the marina, crossing the road and taking the flight of steps on the other side in VEREDA DA TRINCHEIRA. BEAR LEFT to follow the laneway VEREDA DA TRINCHEIRA A. 

 0.52 km – TURN LEFT at the top of the steps, and up the road. AHEAD at the cross road with the viewpoint on the left. Follow the road uphill and watch for a flight of stairs on the right-hand side, just before the school building 

 0.99 km – TURN RIGHT at the sign for PICO DO FACHO. Follow the path up the steep slope, passing first between two electric poles, until you reach the tarmac road. 

NOTE: the path is not very distinct and is very steep in places.

1.61 km – TURN RIGHT when you reach the tarmac road and work your way up and round to the top of the hill of Pico do Facho, beside the radio mast. Here you can enjoy wonderful views over the town and over to the airport. When ready, return the way you came until you are back at the top of the grassy path you climbed. 

 2.16 km – AHEAD down the tarmac road for 1 km. 

 3.18 km – AHEAD, and ACROSS the road you will see the entrance to Levada do Caniçal, next to a small white house. For orientation, the road tunnel is on your right. You will follow the levada for 3.3 km, which should take about 45 minutes. The turn off to Boca do Risco is not obvious and is easily missed. 

NOTE: This is the START point if you have chosen OPTION 1

After enjoying the views, follow the path, which runs upstream alongside an irrigation channel (levada).

3.45km – AHEAD near the houses. 

5.01 km – TURN LEFT, after crossing the road and down the slope to join the levada again.  

Be careful now as you will only be on the levada for another 1.5 km. Watch for some structures build next to the levada, on the left-hand side, where a way crosses the channel diagonally. Look carefully for the sign VEREDA DA BOCA DO RISCO high up to your right. 

6.52 km – BEAR RIGHT up the rocky path, following the sign for Boca do Risco. Keep on the main trail uphill. 

Just before reaching the pass, there is a small junction providing access to Boca do Risco viewpoint (an ideal place for a picnic). TURN LEFT on the little trail passing a shelter dug in the rock and climb to the viewpoint. Return the same way to the pass where a wooden sign indicates LARANO. 

8.00 km – TURN LEFT downhill when facing the ocean. Now on the North Coast, follow the narrow path that you can see cutting into the cliffs ahead. Take care and use the grab-rails where available. You will follow this narrow path for about 4.5 km. 

Initially bordered by vegetation, the path then enters a section with fine views of the ocean and São Lourenço peninsula. After a sharp bend on the left, the trail enters a forest of eucalyptus trees and soon the village of Porto da Cruz is visible at the bottom of the Penha d’Águia distinctive hill. 

AHEAD when the way becomes wider. 

12.65 km – AHEAD near the house down on the concrete road past the cable car. Watch out for some steps on both sides of the road in a bend on the right-hand side. Signposts indicate trail running tracks. 

13.01 km – TURN LEFT down the stone stairs in the middle of the terraces. TURN RIGHT on the minor levada and after a few steps BEAR LEFT down the steps near the house.  

13.12 km – TURN RIGHT on the small levada and follow the channel until a small junction with trail running signs. BEAR LEFT down the concrete ramp slope and down the steps to the tarmac road. 

13.60 km – TURN LEFT down the road and continue on the tarmac road heading to Porto da Cruz, past the signs indicating CAMINHO DA CHÃ and CAMINHO DO BOQUEIRÃO.

14.20 km – TURN RIGHT where the road sweeps round the left near the letter boxes, DOWN the concrete way of CAMINHO DO BARREIRO. AHEAD near the houses on the concrete footbridge and along the minor levada.  

NOTE: this path is very narrow in some sections. 

14.60 km – DOWN the paved steps and AHEAD, across the road and down the steps again. 

14.70 km – ACROSS the bridge PONTE DA MAIA and along the sea shore, heading to the village. 

AHEAD at the end of the rough way, across the open gate, and on the paved road. 

15.46 km – TURN LEFT on the playground and climb the steps up the front entrance to the church of Porto da Cruz, where your transfer will collect you at 5:00 pm and take you to your hotel in Santana


Toutes les notes sur les zones naturelles

S'y rendre

Transfer to Machico town centre in the morning and transfer from Porto da Cruz at the end of the day.


32.717038, -16.764370
32°43'01.3"N 16°45'51.7"W
28S 334644 3621294
Y aller en train, en voiture ou en vélo


  • Raingear.  
  • Walking boots. 

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Photos de la communauté

15,6 km
5:30 h.
Dénivelé positif
425 m
Dénivelé négatif
425 m
Point le plus élevé
420 m
Point le plus bas
2 m


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