Praia Formosa to Camara de Lobo


Praia Formosa to Camara de Lobos is one of the easiest walks on Madeira Island. It is ideal for taking a stroll alongside the ocean and getting lost in deep thoughts. 

Facts | Location | Highlights | Description of the Walk | GPS | Detailed Map

facts & Live Weather of Praia Formosa to Camara de Lobos

São Martinho, Funchal, Portugal

> Duration: 45 minutes one way
> Length: 2.80 km (5,6 km if you go back)
> Suitable for people with acrophobia: Absolutely Yes
> Best-Time-To-Walk: All day
> Accessible with Public Transport: Yes
> Secured: Fully Secured
> Refreshment stops available: Yes
> Loop trail: Yes
> Family Friendly: Yes

Location Of Praia Formosa To Camara De Lobos

Tip:  This map will automatically show you the best route from your current location to the start of the trail.

Highlights Of Praia Formosa To Camara De Lobos

Description of the Walk Praia Formosa To Camara De Lobos

We from Madeira-Portugal-Guide are all for safety. That is why we recommend to never walk any of the Levadas alone. Some of them can be dangerous and involve passing high altitude areas. Falling off a steep slope or cliff, can lead to severe injuries or worse. If, for whatever reason, you decide to go alone, let someone know which Levada you will hike and report back to them, once you have safely returned.

All information on this page is made to the best of our knowledge, belief and care. A guarantee for the correctness can not be given, a liability due to the contents is therefore excluded. The use of the information is at your own risk. For accidents, which might be due to our information, is not liable. Mountain hiking, mountaineering and rock climbing are potentially dangerous activities. Each hiker must decide for himself whether the goal he aspires to corresponds to his mountaineering abilities. He has to inform himself before the tour about the current weather conditions and the degree of difficulty of the tour and decide for himself whether this tour meets his abilities. The suggestions on this page do not mean that the destination is easily accessible, unforeseen weather events can make the most harmless way impassable! This applies to every altitude. Meanwhile, the track or parts of this track can be locked.

About Câmara de Lobos & Praia Formosa

Câmara de Lobos – Winston Churchills Favourite Town

The town of Camara de Lobos is one of the oldest settlements on Madeira. The discoverer of the island, Joâo Gonçalves Zarco, selected this bay as his supply port and residence in the year 1420. The name of the town stems from the monk seals (=Lobos) that used to live on the surrounding cliffs in large numbers. Unfortunately these animals were nearly hunted to extinction. Today only a few survivors can be found on a nearby island.

 Camara de Lobos is famous for its adorable little port that is filled with a vast number of colorful fishing boats. The heydays of the fishing industry, however, have long passed, a result of overfishing and, believe it or not, dynamite fishing. A few active fishermen remain, the majority of which, go out into the high seas on their rusty little boats to catch the famous degen fish (=Espada). Interesting fact: These wonderful creatures lurk 2000 meters under the sea.

In the 1950s the town was frequently visited by Winston Churchill. The former prime minister of the UK fell in love with Madeira and spent the majority of his summers in Camara de Lobos. Pictures exist, which show him painting the landscape and the colorful boats in the bay. The famous Englishmen created most of his drawings from a nice lookout. Today this place is often referred to as the “Churchill Viewpoint”.

The town itself, with its lovely town center and the beautiful chapel, is definitely worth checking out.

Praia Formosa

The longest beach on Madeira is Praia Formosa. Like most of the coasts on the island it is made up of black sand and black rocks. You will also find some bars and restaurants where you can chill and have a good time.

How to get there

The walk starts at the Western-most point of Funchal. The easiest way to get there is by car. Go to the Location section and let Google Maps show you the optimal route from your current position. 

As an alternative you could also hike to the starting point “Praia Formosa” from the center of Funchal. Walk alongside the “Strada Monumental” until you reach a roundabout with a big angel statue in the center. The statue is a monument dedicated to all the fallen angels (=workers that died during the construction of the various Levadas). From there it is 5 more minutes to the beach. 

You can also take the public transport line XX to XX-Station, which stops at the above mentioned monument. Follow this link to see the official schedule of all public bus lines on Madeira.

Important to know

This walk is one of the easiest to hike. You can take a stroll in the town center of Câmara de Lobos and have lunch there. After that you could head back to Funchal by foot or via public bus. The station is easy to find and almost every bus stops in Funchal.


While following the Levada you will pass some remote areas where you will not be able to access the internet. I recommend to you, to save this guide as a PDF on your mobile device.  To do that, click on the Printer-Button in the share-section and save this page as a PDF file. This will allow you to access the trail description without the need for a stable internet connection.

The Walk

Parking lot of Praia Formosa with cars

Our walk starts at the parking lot of Praia Formosa, which is also where the bus stops. From here head towards the sea.

Beach of Praia Formosa with stone sand

Soon you will arrive at the beach. Head right on the board walk, passing 3 different bars and restaurants along the way.

Beginning of the Walk from Praia Formosa to Camara de Lobos

At the end of the board walk you will have to follow the way on the left alongside the beach. 

Nice walk at the Praia Formosa beach heading towards Camara de Lobos

As you can see in the picture below the path is easy to follow.

Broken part of the Walk to Camara de Lobos

Soon after you will reach a broken part of the walkway. The reasons why they don’t fix it, are unbeknownst to me. Don’t let it confuse you, just keep on walking straight.

Famous Hotel on the right side of the walk to Camara de Lobos

You will pass the hotel Orca Praia, which has been built into the side of the cliff.

Passing the Energy Gas Station of Madeira on the walk to Camara de Lobos

A few moments after you have passed the hotel, you will see the gas plant of Madeira. Admittedly this is the least beautiful part of our walk, so just keep looking at the sea :-D.

Heading up to the last part of the walk to Camara de Lobos

You will hit a ramp. Follow it up to the street. 

Signs of a man shwoing the way to Camara de Lobos

The little white men on the floor indicate the path you have to follow. 

First view of Camara de Lobos in the back coming from Praia Formosa

A couple of minutes later, you will see Câmara de Lobos in the distance. 

Getting Closer to Camara de Lobos

Keep following the way until you arrive at the edge of the town. 

First clear view to the bay of Camara de Lobos

Soon after you will get to a street you have to follow.

First view of the famous colored boots of Camara de Lobos

Stay left until you arrive at this stairway. The end of the stairs also signify the end of our tour.

If you still have time I recommend checking out the little chapel, the lighthouse and the city center. You can also enjoy a nice lunch and/or a drink at one of the restaurants located at the port and take in the sea view. Also worth seeing is Winston Churchill’s Viewpoint, which is located on the Eastern part of the bay. Do whatever fancies you the most :-D.

After you are done either go back to Praia Formosa or take the bus to Funchal.

Detailed map Praia Formosa To Camara De Lobos

Tip: This map can also display the elevation of the route. To use this feature press play. Then go to the top right corner, click on menu and select “Hills”.

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