• Levada da Rocha Vermelha

  • 1

Levada da Rocha Vermelha

  • Itinerary
  • Malhada - Rabaçal - Ribeiro da Água do Vimeiro
  • Start
  • Malhada
  • End
  • Malhada




  • Typology
  • Difficulty
  • Terrain
  • Direction
  • Distance
  • 18,8 KM (2x 9,4 KM)
  • Time
  • 5h – 6h

3D Route

Source: Google Earth

How to get here

With Funchal as reference:

  • Take the Via Rápida (VR1) towards Ribeira Brava;
  • In Ribeira Brava, follow the Via Expresso (VE3) towards Ponta do Sol and Calheta;
  • Once you arrive in the village of Calheta, at the roundabout take the 1st exit towards the Estrada Regional (E.R. 222);
  • At the crossing with E.R. 222, follow the signs saying “Central Hidroelétrica”, going through Malhada;
  • The route is located on the left.


Points of Interest

Levada da Rocha Vermelha (Levada of the red rock) is also part of the Rabaçal Levada network and one of the most well-known ways to get there is precisely the left turn close to the end of Levada das 25 fontes.

However, given the popularity of the second and to provide a broader understanding of the pathways in Calheta, we propose a separate route of the same difficulty level.

As the data sheet indicates, this walk is advisable only to experienced hikers with good physical preparation.

Having the Hydroelectric power station as reference, go up the road in Malhada and at the fork more or less at the half way point take the left until you get to the Levadeiros House. All you need to do is follow the Levada. For this walk, you must be prepared to cross a spectacular tunnel, dug out as a means of transporting water from one side to the other.

1,7km in total, you should take you time and ponder the fact that this passageway was excavated, in the majority, by hand.

The stairs you find at the entrance of the tunnel lead you to the “Garagem” (garage) that in turn leads you Levada das 25 fontes. 

Once on the other side of the tunnel you’ll carry on out in the open, although there is an exposed area that requires caution as there are no safety barriers and there is a risk of vertigo.

Despite these precautions (that you should keep throughout), it is a very attractive walk, inserted in the heart of dense, green valleys giving you a privileged viewpoint. 

During your walk you’ll cross Ribeira dos Cedros, which acts as the division of two bordering Municipalities (Porto Moniz and Calheta) and a tunnel to the right that gives you the possibility of joining Levada do Seixal. Continue to the left keeping with Levada da Rocha Vermelha.

We would like to point out that we do not have any GPS records of Levada do Seixal, the GPS provided is solely based on Levada da Rocha Vermelha.

On this walk it is possible you’ll come in direct contact with a few waterfalls that flow from local streams and their tributaries. Mainly used by "levadeiros", responsible for maintaining and monitoring of good water operation, these areas require the utmost care as they are slippery and do not have any kind of protection.

Between landscapes and monumental trees of the laurel forest, you’ll come across a staircase with more than two hundred steps, flanked by the levada that accompanies the significant descent. The energy of the water is evident making this a spectacular spot.

Beware that at the top of these stairs the ground can be quite slippery. . The origin of the levada is ahead and it is not advisable to carry on as the path is in decay.


Because this walk possesses technical and physical particularities, to ensure your safety please make sure you meet the requirements. Consult the fact sheet and the safety chapter below.

In addition to the safety guide the Municipality of Calheta prepared specifically for you, which you may find here, please note these more specific recommendations:

- Consult the datasheet and chapter on safety;

- On this walk you will cross various waterfalls, take care and do not rush. Wear a waterproof jacket and proceed cautiously;

- As this walk is not included on the government’s recommended walks list, it is not as well protected as its neighbouring levadas. This walk should only be done with due discernment, precaution and experience.




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