Madeira’s Peaks


Portugal – PICO RUIVO Located in the parish of Santana and with a height of 1862 metres, Pico Ruivo is Madeira’s highest point and the 3rd highest in Portugal. Access to Pico Ruivo is available via the Pico Ruivo track (PR1.2 – Achada do Teixeira – Pico Ruivo). Next to the Pico Ruivo shelter, there is also access to 3 other tracks that lead to di erent points of the island: The Pico Arieiro track (PR1), the Encumeada track (PR1.3) and the Ilha track (PR1.1). At Achada do Teixeira, visitors can also admire the “Standing Man”, an interesting basaltic rock formation. During the climb, walkers are often surrounded by clouds, above which an unforgettable sunrise awaits. PICO CASTELO This peak is located 437 metres above sea level and provides an exceptional view of Porto Santo.

This is also the location of a small fortress built in the sixteenth century to counter the frequent invasions of French and Algerian pirates. The peak was formed by an old volcanic chimney. PICO DO ARIEIRO Visit Pico Arieiro and experience one of the island’s most spectacular walking tracks and the second highest peak on Madeira. Pico Arieiro is located at 1818 metres above sea level and o ers a fantastic view over the island’s central massif. It is accessible by car and is the beginning of one of the most spectacular walking tracks in the region, leading towards the highest point of the archipelago, Pico Ruivo, with an altitude of 1862 metres (PR1 – Vereda do Arieiro: Pico do Arieiro – Pico Ruivo). This area is known as a nesting site for the endemic species Zino’s petrel (Pterodroma madeira), considered the most threatened marine bird in Europe.

Located in the municipality of Funchal, from here it is possible to see other localities of the island, such as Curral das Freiras, Ponta de São Lourenço and, weather permitting, the island of Porto Santo in the distance. This is also the location of the Madeira Freira Centre. PICO ANA FERREIRA Located in the southwest of the island of Porto Santo, this elevation reaches an altitude of 278 metres. The irregular prismatic columns of this peak were formed by the slow cooling of magma that had built up deep within the volcanic conduit and are known locally as ‘the Piano’. The summit hosts the Pedreira lookout from which the Islet of Fora, Pico do Facho and Pico Castelo can be admired. PICO DO VEADO With 49 metres of altitude, Pico do Veado is the highest point on Selvagem Pequena, located on the north coast of the island.

An active lighthouse and a surveillance station of the Savage Islands Nature Reserve are installed here to support technicians from the Institute of Forests and Nature Conservation (IFCN). PICO BRANCO At 450 metres height, Pico Branco or ‘White Peak’, the second highest peak on the island of Porto Santo, owes its name to the existence of a column of white stone and the many white lichen called urzela (Roccella Sp.) which grow there and which were exported from Porto Santo for the production of paints and other related specialist products. Here visitors will nd the emblematic Pico Branco and Terra Chã Trail (PS PR1), one of the island’s most spectacular, which starts on the E.R. 111 – Porto Santo highway and ends in the area of Terra Chã after a 2.7 km-long track with superb views over the north-facing cli s. Due to the existence of several endemic oral species such as the Urtica portosanctana, Erisimum arbuscula and others, the area around Pico Branco and Terra Chã is a designated part of the Natura 2000 network, managed under the auspices of the Habitats Directive.