Levada do Percurso do Lagoa do VentoLevadas Walks 

Levada do Percurso do Lagoa do Vento

The Levada do Percurso da Lagoa do Vento is a mesmerizing journey that takes you deep into the heart of Madeira’s natural beauty. This trail, while relatively lesser-known compared to other levadas, offers an intimate encounter with the island’s lush landscapes, culminating in the stunning spectacle of the Lagoa do Vento waterfall. Here’s a deeper dive into what this magical path holds for those who seek its wonders.

About Levada do Percurso do Lagoa do Vento

The Trail

The trail to Lagoa do Vento is a back-and-forth hike that starts at the Rabaçal shelter. From there, you’ll descend into the valley, following the levada through a landscape that’s rich in endemic flora and fauna, providing a perfect showcase of Madeira’s biodiversity. The path is well-maintained but can be narrow in places, so caution is advised, especially in wet conditions.

Distance: 6,4 KM (2x 3,2 KM)

Duration: 2h30min – 3h

Difficulty: Experienced

Land: Irregular

Gps file: Clique Here for levada gps


  • Distance and Difficulty: The hike is considered moderate in difficulty. The round trip can take approximately 3 to 4 hours, covering a distance of about 7 kilometers (4.3 miles). It’s manageable for hikers with a moderate level of fitness.
  • Scenery: The route offers breathtaking views of the valley, with dense laurel forest enveloping you as you make your way towards the waterfall. The sound of water is a constant companion, enhancing the tranquil atmosphere of the hike.
  • Lagoa do Vento Waterfall: The highlight of the trail is the Lagoa do Vento waterfall, a majestic natural feature where water cascades into a serene pool below. The sight and sound of the waterfall create a truly magical ambiance, inviting hikers to pause and immerse themselves in the natural beauty.

Planning Your Visit

  • Best Time to Go: Spring and early summer are particularly magical times to visit, as the water levels are higher, making the waterfall even more spectacular. However, the trail is beautiful year-round, thanks to Madeira’s mild climate.
  • What to Bring: Ensure you have sturdy walking shoes, as the path can be slippery. A water bottle, snacks, and a camera are must-haves. Given Madeira’s changeable weather, a waterproof jacket is also advisable.
  • Safety Tips: Stay on the marked paths to ensure your safety, especially near the waterfall, where the ground can be wet and slippery.
Levada do Percurso do Lagoa do Vento
Levada do Percurso do Lagoa do Vento 2

Responsible Hiking

As with all nature trails, it’s crucial to respect the environment. Stick to the paths, take all your rubbish with you, and leave the natural landscape as you found it to preserve its beauty for future visitors.

The Levada do Percurso da Lagoa do Vento offers an escape into the tranquility of nature, a chance to disconnect from the hustle and bustle of everyday life, and a moment to connect with the earth’s timeless beauty. Whether you’re a seasoned hiker or someone looking to explore Madeira’s natural landscapes, this trail promises an unforgettable adventure.

Levada do Percurso do Lagoa do Vento – Trail Details

  • Location: Situated in the Rabaçal area, in the western part of Madeira, this trail is part of the island’s extensive network of levadas.
  • Distance and Duration: The hike to Lagoa do Vento and back can vary in length, typically ranging from 6 to 10 kilometers (about 3.7 to 6.2 miles) round trip, depending on the starting point. It generally takes around 2 to 4 hours to complete, accounting for time spent enjoying the lake and waterfall.
  • Difficulty: This trail is considered moderate in difficulty. It involves some uneven terrain and can be quite steep in places, requiring a reasonable level of fitness. The path can be narrow and slippery, especially near the waterfall, so caution is advised.

What Makes It Special

  • The Waterfall and Lake: The highlight of this trail is undoubtedly the Lagoa do Vento and its waterfall. The sight of water cascading into the lake against a backdrop of lush greenery is truly spectacular.
  • Flora and Fauna: The route passes through areas rich in endemic species, offering a close look at Madeira’s diverse plant life and the chance to spot various bird species.
  • Scenic Views: Along the way, hikers are treated to stunning views of the valley below, with the landscape characterized by its verdant forests and rugged terrain.

Levada do Percurso do Lagoa do Vento – Preparation Tips

  • Wear appropriate footwear: Hiking boots or shoes with good grip are essential, as the trail can be rocky and slippery.
  • Bring water and snacks: There are no facilities along the trail, so it’s important to carry enough water and some energy-boosting snacks.
  • Weather considerations: The weather in Madeira can change quickly. Bring a waterproof jacket and dress in layers to adjust to changing conditions.
  • Camera: The scenic beauty of this hike is not to be missed, so bring along a camera or smartphone to capture the moments.

Best Time to Visit

The Levada do Percurso do Lagoa do Vento is beautiful year-round, but the best time to visit is in the spring or early summer when the waterfall is most likely to be at its fullest. However, Madeira’s temperate climate makes this hike a wonderful choice in any season, with different times of the year offering varying perspectives of the island’s natural beauty.

This trail is a perfect choice for those looking to immerse themselves in Madeira’s breathtaking landscapes while enjoying a moderately challenging hike. It’s a journey that rewards every step with natural wonders and provides a serene space to connect with the essence of the island.

Key Details:

  • Type: Vereda (Footpath)
  • Difficulty: Experienced
  • Terrain: Irregular
  • Route: Round trip
  • Distance: 6.4 km (2x 3.2 km)
  • Duration: Approximately 2h30min – 3h

Getting There:

Due to the closure of the Regional Road (E.R.105) between Encumeada and Rabaçal, it’s recommended to access the trail via the VR1 towards Ribeira Brava, then via the Expressway (VE3) towards Ponta do Sol and Calheta. Upon reaching Arco da Calheta, follow the signage to Rabaçal, where the trail starts.

Points of Interest:

The trail is one of the less chosen paths by first-time visitors to Rabaçal, offering a parallel journey to the Levada do Risco without the accompanying watercourse. It’s not officially recommended due to its demanding physical requirements, making it suitable only for experienced hikers. The path, mostly clear due to frequent use, may have sections obscured by foliage or minor landslides. Hikers will cross small streams from major channels like Ribeira Grande and Ribeira do Alecrim, requiring extra caution.

Vegetation along the route includes heather and patches of Laurisilva forest. A fork in the path offers a choice between continuing towards the lagoon on the left and ascending to Levada do Alecrim on the right, with the latter not recommended due to its additional physical demands.

Safety and Preparation:

  • Ensure physical readiness and appropriate footwear for irregular, often slippery and muddy conditions.
  • Follow the provided GPS track without venturing off the identified trail to avoid risks from natural phenomena.
  • Observe general safety norms and specific recommendations for this trail, including ensuring you have the necessary physical conditions and appropriate equipment.


Reaching the tranquil Lagoa do Vento, hikers are rewarded with stunning natural scenes. The waters beyond the lagoon feed the Risco waterfall. Caution is advised due to the lack of barriers and slippery conditions. The return journey is made along the same path, with the option to use local transportation provided by the Calheta Municipality for the descent from Rabaçal.

This challenging yet rewarding hike is a testament to the adventurous spirit, offering an intimate experience with Madeira’s natural beauty, away from the more frequented paths.

More info: CM Calheta

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