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Saturday, June 11, 2016

Levada Walk Ribeiro Frio to Portela 2016, 7 June

Caught the 1000 hrs nr 56 bus from Funchal ( near cable car) to Ribeira Frio to walk along the Levada do Furado to Portela Rothers walk nr 19. The bus was so full that we were concerned that there would not be a place for us - the guide indeed says that this is a classic Levada Walk which is on almost every walking group's itinerary!

The bus dropped us of at Ribeiro Frio at 1040 hrs a few meters away from the large sign pointing the way to the start of the walk to Portela

Unlike most walks, this is almost all the way slightly downhill following the flow of the Levada, so one does not have to be very fit in order to enjoy it.

The walk starts at the source of the Levada
Just below the waterfall the Levada traps the water and chanals it eastwards
The walk is in some places very wide
And other places very narrow

We had expected better views, we seem to have misread the local weather forecasts!
Here another Levada brings more water
The junction of the Levadas can be seen on the map under the red circle. The other Levada provides a way to return to Ribeiro Frio
Whilst having a lunchbreak here, several almost tame chaffinches gathered around waiting for crumbs - one even took a crumb out of my hand - hovering in front of my hand.
A slight deviation where the Levada crossed a stream


A lot of work went into cutting this cleft/ tunnel for the Levada



Our trail leaves the Levada (Red Circle on map)
And goes fairly steeply down to Portela

Finally we see Eagle Rock - in better visibility we would have had views along this coast much earlier on the walk

Arrived in Portela at 1430 hrs.

An enterprising Taxi driver suggested he take us to Funchal for €6 pp if he could find 4 other passengers - this was a good deal as we would have had to wait a while for a bus and it did not take long to find the other passengers.


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