PR 1 Vereda do Areeiro closed 16 to 20 May 2016

Vereda do Pico Ruivo

The Regional Directorate of Forestry and Nature Conservation reports that the pedestrian route PR 1 Vereda do Areeiro (Pico Areeiro – Pico Ruivo) will be closed from 16 to 20 May, due to maintenance work.

The closure occurs after the 3.6 km from Pico do Areeiro, at 2 km from the Pico Ruivo and 4.8 km from Achada do Teixeira.

Self Guided walks

Madeira is well known for its walking facilities, and we noticed that more and more visitors to Madeira are walking on their own by using various information they find in books. Unfortunately, books are published in large quantities and are not regular updated with changes due to landslides and maintenance issues. Secondly, these books are translated from 1 standard language. This is causing serious problems on Madeira. Continue reading “Self Guided walks”

Walking trails are still magical

Travel Article: After the floods: Madeira’s hotels and walking trails are still magical (Mail Online)

Madeira’s levadas have long been considered one of the world’s great walking pleasures. Covering more than 1,200 miles, these narrow waterways link the wetter north to the dry south, every yard mirrored by shaded paths. The big relief to me was that most of these routes remained intact.

My best guess is that around 10 per cent of paths are affected by fires. As for those dreadful February storms, Andrew Zino, who runs walks company Nature Meetings, told me: ‘Forget storm damage. Madeira hass made an amazing recovery.’

Traditional Trails

Saturday: Traditional Trails (Full Day)

Nature Meetings invites you to step back in time, when people and goods were transported by sea from the several small harbors around the island, before the existing road infrastructure.

Approximately 100 years ago, the farmers created a footpath along the North coast that was the only way for them to transport their local products to a small “handcrafted” harbor at Ponta de São Jorge (Ponta do Clérigo).

Our journey starts at “Ribeiro Funda” (469m), walking from Madeira’s famous Laurissilva Forest to the habitat of exotic plants along the coast.

After descending 300 meters, we arrive at Madeira’s hidden spot, the secret viewpoint of: Lapa Negra (reachable only on foot).

Continue reading “Traditional Trails”

Tips against heat exhaustion

It is easy to assume that exposure to excessive heat is a common problem here on Madeira. Cases of severe sunburn and/or heat exhaustion are not uncommon. Here are some tips you should consider to avoid the problems.

Food and Water

Maintaining your energy levels and avoiding dehydration or electrolyte depletion are crucial.

Walking

In high temperatures, do the minimum of walk that is necessary. Try to keep out of the sun during the hottest part of the day. Take regular breaks.

Protection

Use high protection skin creams on all exposed areas not forgetting under your chin, your lips and the tops of your ears. Do not forget to include sunglasses that block out both UVA and UVB and insect repellent to ward of those pesky midges.

Clothing

Developments in fabric technology mean that there is clothing readily available that is breathable and will wick away moisture so that sweat evaporates more quickly.

Wear loose, lightweight, light colored clothing. Consider tops with long sleeves that can be rolled up and down.

Hats are also really important in the sun. Try to wear a hat made of a breathable fabric or one that has mesh vents. It is also worthwhile considering a hat that provides additional cover for the back of your neck and/or a visor.

Adjust your clothing as conditions change throughout the day – do not struggle uphill wearing waterproof clothing when that shower has stopped.

Backpacks or Rucksacks

It may seem obvious but carefully check the amount of gear that you are taking – take the minimum without compromising your safety.

Madeira is back to normal

The torrential rain on Madeira caused floods and mudslides on several locations on the Island on the 20th of February. However with the impressive effort from the entire Madeirense population and international help, Madeira returned to be again an attractive travel destination.

The airport, that was not affected except it was closed on the day of the floods, is fully operational and all the main roads are now open to the public. Unfortunately there are still some locations that are isolated (Tabua, Serra da Agua and Encumeada), therefore we advice everyone to make first inquiries before traveling towards these areas.

Many footpaths on Madeira had problems with fallen trees and landslides; however the majority of these walks are now repaired and accessible to the public.

Nature Meetings daily walking program is now fully operational, with the exception of the full day walk on Sunday: “Slopes and Valleys of Calheta” and Wednesday: “Laurisilva Landscapes”. The Full day walk on Sunday has been removed from our program and we only offer our half day Levada walk: “Amazing Vistas”. The full day Levada walk on Wednesday is replaced with a Laurisilva Levada walk from Santo da Serra to Portela (this is temporarily, as the original walk from Ribeiro Frio to Portela should be open in May 2010).

We advice all walkers on Madeira prepare themselves for the walk they intent to do, as there can be obstacles on the walking paths, and be aware that it can be slippery as it requires some time to dry out.

In particular, it is crucial that people don’t do a Levada walk on their own!! There might be unexpected situations that can result in a premature end of your holiday her on Madeira. Therefore we (including the authorities on Madeira) strongly suggest to make use of the services of a walk guide through the various qualified walking organization.