Not all Mondays are tedious

Going to Laurisilva forest, take two 😉 This time we actually made it!

The gang (Nika, Lara, Audrius and myself) got back together in the early hours of the morning when we caught a bus from our town to Funchal. There we hopped on another bus to Ribeiro Frio. A 45 minute ride took us up the mountains where we finally arrived at one of the many parts of the Laurisilva forest, which is a UNESCO world heritage sight.


This particular place has two hiking trails, a 1.5 km trail that ends with a spectacular view point and a 11 km one that has countless waterfalls, while both of the trails are escorted by Levadas.


Fun fact: “Levada” is a Portuguese word derived from the word “levar” – which means to carry and is roughly translated as “carriageway”, but more correctly defined as mini-canal.

Firstly we embarked on the short trail as it was recommended by our local friends and we were glad we did so. There were many twists and turns, stone laid pathways and at the end of the trail we were greeted by an amazing open space with a seemingly endless view of the forests and mountains of Madeira and of course the Atlantic sea.


Not only that but we got to see many different species of birds that were clearly used to tourists coming into their kingdom. They gladly took advantage of our irresponsible behaviour – feeding them with crumbs.


Fast forward 2 hours, we were on our way down the long trail. Unfortunately we didn’t finish it because after two days of non stop walking plus very little sleep we were all in dire need of rest. So we sat our behinds down on some rocks in and had a little picnic. Good company and good food always brings a smile on a persons face and that’s exactly how it was for us. After we have nourished our bodies, we packed up all of our belongings and went back to the starting point to await a bus. At 6 pm the bus arrived and took us back to sea level, to our home for the next few months – the fishing town of Câmara de Lobos.

Erika Horvat
Volunteer at Teatro Metaphora – Associação de Amigos das Artes
European Voluntary Service – Erasmus+
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