In Madeira, you don’t need to go far to find hiking trails wherever you are. Even from the capital city of Funchal, you can find hiking trails that start down in the city or a little up in the hills of Funchal.

Levada dos Tornos is a local hike in Funchal that takes you through the mountains all the way to the Monte area which overlooks the city of Funchal.

Since Levada do Bom Sucesso (another local hike that takes you up to Monte) has been closed since November 2022, Levada dos Tornos is your best option for a local hike near Funchal.

We didn’t know about this one before doing a bit of research and looking at the maps to see which levadas connect to Monte. After a bit of digging and looking around, Levada dos Tornos popped up and we gave it a try.

This specific levada trail is a really easy and relaxing walk that offers plenty of views overlooking Funchal and the ocean. There are a few cafes along the way that are worth stopping at as well.

It’s the perfect levada if you’re looking to explore a little outside of Funchal and enjoy some amazing views along the way.

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Things to know about Levada dos Tornos to Monte

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This hike is perfect if you don’t want to drive around Madeira or even take a bus that far. You can easily go by taxi or Bolt and get to the trailhead in under 10 minutes.

You can use this point on Google Maps here for the trailhead of Levada dos Tornos.

There are actually quite a few buses that go to the trailhead from downtown as well but if you’re 2-3 people it will cost the same amount to take a Bolt or Taxi (which is around €7). From the bus stop, it’s only a few minutes to get to the start of the hike. 

One thing that’s really fun about this levada is that along the “hike”, you’ll run into a few cute cafes!

We highly recommend stopping at Jasmin Tea House right at the beginning of the trail and then Land Food & Coffee in Monte at the end of Levada dos Tornos! 

Like most levada trails on the island, this walk is relatively flat! It’s a very safe hike with lots of room to walk and no crazy cliffs. This truly is a walk/hike that anyone can do!

You can see the trail trail map for Levada dos Tornos here.

This levada starts above Funchal and makes its way to Monte right above Funchal. If you follow the trail map and start from this starting point then you should easily find your way. Once you’re on the trail you follow it all the way to Monte!

Note: Don’t get it confused with the other hike that has the exact same name which is located on the other side of the island! 

Practical information about Levada dos Tornos to Monte trail

Distance: 7.4 km return / 4.6 miles one way
Elevation: Roughly 150 m / 492 ft. elevation gain
Type: One-way trail
Length: 2.5-3.5 hours total (taking your time and enjoying the views) add an extra hour for a tea and coffee stop along the way though!
Difficulty: Moderate (the hike is quite flat with a bit of elevation near the end)
Rating: 4/5 

Click here to see a map of the beginning of the Levada dos Tornos to Monte trail

Here’s a picture of the beginning of the Levada dos Tornos trail:

Starting the hike near the Jasmin Tea House

It’s not every day that you start a hike at a tea house, right? The Jasmin Tea House isn’t the exact starting point of the Levada dos Tornos trail but it’s close enough.

You can either get dropped off at the tea house or from the starting point which is a 5-minute walk from the tea house. 

We don’t usually start our hike with a break because we like to work for the food or snacks that usually come after the hike but the Jasmin Tea House was too good to pass up.

It’s run and owned by a British/Portuguese couple and they’re the sweetest. Enjoy a nice cup of tea and British scones before you start the journey to Monte!

It’s a really nice place to sit back and enjoy the sunshine before starting the walk. It must be quite popular among British people as it was absolutely packed with British hikers while we were there.

We didn’t try any of the dishes (just their scones) but we’re guessing they make some pretty delicious food.

OBS: Jasmin Tea House is open Tuesday through Sunday but closed on Mondays. If you’re hiking on a Monday, you can stop by Hortênsia Gardens Tea House instead!

Hiking through the trees along the Levada dos Tornos

Enough about the food – let’s get back to hiking! (There’s more food along the way anyways).

We originally wanted to do the Levada do Bom Sucesso (a hike from Funchal to Monte) again but, unfortunately, that one is getting more and more dangerous due to erosion.

To our luck though, we ended up finding Levada dos Tornos instead and we’d say this one is now the best option for a hike that brings you to Monte. 

As you start along the levada trail you’ll mostly be covered by the trees with small pockets of sunshine around certain bends and turns on the trail.

It really feels like a nice local hike because you don’t run into too many people on the trail. It’s definitely not that known, that’s for sure (in comparison to say Pico do Arieiro or Levada das 25 Fontes).

You’ll pass by quite a few country houses with their backyards right next to the levada! If the owners are out, they’re usually always smiling and ready to greet you with a “Bom dia” (good morning) or “Boa tarde” (good afternoon)!

The levada sort of goes parallel with one of the roads that go towards Monte. The beauty is that even though you’re so close to houses and villages you don’t even feel it while you’re walking along Dos Tornos Levada.

At times, it really feels like you’re deep in nature until you glimpse over to your left and see Funchal way down in the distance.

If you are familiar with other levadas such as Levada do Caldeirao Verde or Levada do Alecrim, this one is a lot more open and closer to civilization (which makes sense since it’s right above Funchal).

It’s still a very good way to get out in nature without going too far out of the city. Great for a half-day trip! 

Continuing on the levada to the village of Curral dos Romeiros

This levada walk is very straightforward and you shouldn’t have any problems with following the trail. If, at some point, you’re not next to the Levada dos Tornos you know you’ve gone off track!

There are a few spots where you have to walk under a little bridge or walk across the main road but it’s only ever for a few meters before you’re back on the levada trail. 

You’ll pass by houses, water reservoirs, restaurants, and even a few resort hotels. You’ll be able to see the famous Palheiro Golf for a bit and, as we mentioned before, Funchal will be visible for most of the hike. 

At some point, you will pass by the Curral dos Romeiros. It’s a small tiny little town where the Levada dos Tornos kind of splits with Levada do Bom Sucesso. There are plenty of signs pointing you in the direction of the trail. 

If it gets a little confusing you can always look back on this trail map for Levada dos Tornos to Monte to see exactly where to go. The details on the trail map are very easy to follow. 

The village is really small and there really is only one way to go so you should be ok. Once you get through the village it’s the final stretch of the hike on the end part of Levada do Bom Sucesso.

The last stretch from Curral dos Romeiros to the Monte 

The last stretch is actually a part of Levada do Bom Sucesso (the hike we mentioned earlier). Don’t worry though, this part of the levada is safe and easy to walk on.

You will actually walk by the area where the trail is closed off and see the note signed by the government asking you not to go there.

There will be a T in the road. To the left is back to Funchal where the trail is closed. To the right is where you’ll go to hike up the last stretch to Monte.

This is probably the hardest part of the hike because it’s the only section that isn’t flat.

First, you’ll hike down for a few minutes and if you look up you should be able to see the Teleferico Jardim Botanico (cable car) that goes up to Monte! At that point, you know you’re not that far.

Once you complete the small downhill bit, there’s one final uphill until you get to Monte. 

There’s a bridge that you cross and one last hill to the top of Monte. Once you get to Monte there are a few fantastic cafes and restaurants waiting for you.

Enjoy the view from Monte and Land Food & Coffee

Inside Land Food & Coffee shop in Funchal.
Inside Land Food & Coffee in Monte

This ending point up in Monte at Land Food & Coffee is the same ending point as if you were to hike from Funchal along the Levada do Bom Sucesso.

The only difference is the Levada dos Tornos trail is safe and currently open.

Once you’re up in Monte we recommend Land Food & Coffee (because it is SO good) but there are a few other cafes and restaurants you can sit down and kick your feet up at as well! 

We tend to get their coffee and one of the daily cakes or banana bread with passionfruit when we go there. Land Food & Coffee roasts their own beans and their coffee is really tasty.

If you’re not into coffee they also have a delicious menu of fresh meals! And did we mention their cakes?

Make sure to try to get a spot by the window with a view overlooking Funchal. You can even sit outside on a clear day.

Unfortunately, every time we’ve been up there it’s been pouring rain. Hopefully, you’re lucky to go on a clear day. Then you’ll really get an awesome view overlooking Funchal. 

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Back down from Monte to Funchal

There are a few ways to get back down to Funchal. If you are up for more exercise, you can start walking down from Land Food & Coffee.

Let us warn you though… it is very steep and it’s not that fun of a walk.

You’re mostly walking on narrow roads and asphalt. We’ve done it before but it’s not the best option. Especially not in the rain since it gets quite slippery on the steep roads.

The cheapest option is ordering a Bolt (similar to Uber but cheaper and better in Madeira) from Monte down to Funchal. It’s going to save your knees from the pain of walking down that crazy hill. A Bolt should cost around €6-7.

The last option is a little more expensive but it’s quite the experience – and that is to take the cable car.

The cable costs €12.5 per person one way (or €18 return).

It’s a 3250-meter-long cable car that takes you from Monte all the way down to downtown Funchal. It’s more expensive than a Bolt but it is a scenic way to see Funchal from above.

Also, to briefly clarify, there are two cable cars in Funchal. There is the one you saw right before you finished the hike that goes from the Jardim Botanico.

The other one (Teleférico do Funchal) is right above Land Food & Coffee which will take you to the heart of Old Town Funchal.

What to bring on the Levada dos Tornos trail

Like most levada trails on the island they can get quite muddy so make sure you’re fine getting your shoes a little dirty.

It’s not a long trail but it can start by being sunny and by the time you get up to Monte it can be raining. So prepare for all weather conditions.

The hike isn’t challenging as such but it’s always nice to bring some snacks.

Of course, there’s the Jasmin Tea House at the beginning and then Land Food & Coffee at the end of the hike. So if you don’t want to, you don’t need to bring much. But bring some water for sure!

You can check the weather for the Monte area here. This will also help give you an idea of what to wear and pack. Other than that, it’s a really chill and straightforward hike that we hope you’ll enjoy!

Packing list for Levada dos Tornos:

  • Water! We always fill up our LifeStraw bottles before hikes and even during them when we can. If you ask nicely the staff will fill it up for you at Jasmin Tea House.
  • Sunscreen is highly recommended when hiking in Madeira. There are definitely sections along this levada where you’re exposed to the sun!
  • A power bank is always nice to bring. You never know when exactly you’ll need it but it’s so nice to have.
  • If you have weak knees, you might want to bring hiking poles! There isn’t a lot of elevation but they are nice to have for support.
  • A rain jacket in case it starts raining during the hike.

You can check out this great list of hiking gear to get some more inspiration!

Related post: 12 of the Best Hikes to Do in Madeira

Before you hike Levada dos Tornos

Check the weather

No matter where you hike on the island, you should always check the weather before you go. Madeira has a micro-climate so the weather is always changing everywhere around the island.

You can check the weather for Monte here. This will give you a good idea of the weather in the area.

We’d recommend going on a nice sunny day. Levada trails in general are much more enjoyable when it’s not wet and muddy.

This levada trail is also quite open so you can get rained on quite a bit if it’s coming down hard.

Wear hiking shoes

We recommend hiking shoes for most hikes and levada trails in Madeira. This one in particular is probably good to do if you have trail runners but we wore our hiking boots and it was perfect. 

We take our Columbia’s everywhere even if it’s just a levada walk. It just makes it easier on the soles of your feet for the sections that aren’t that smooth! And they protect Dom’s ankles since he always tend to roll them…

Here’s the Columbia hiking shoes that Jo has!

Check the bus schedule 

If you’re planning to take public transport it’s not a bad idea to check the bus schedule. There are three different bus companies in Funchal, so it can be a bit of a challenge to navigate between the three.

Bus 47 from the company Horários do Funchal should go there. You can check out the timetable on their website here. Alternatively, you can also check Google Maps for advice.

The stop you’re aiming for is called “Palheiro Ferreiro APS D, São Gonçalo”.

The bus stops very close to the trailhead. When you get off the bus it’s only a short walk to the start of Levada dos Tornos to Monte.

Download the trail map 

We usually download the trail map on our phone or take a picture of it so we have an idea of where to go in case we get lost.

Thankfully it’s quite hard to get lost on trails in Madeira, especially on popular levada trails like this one.

We either use Alltrails or MapyCZ to help guide us during our hikes.  You can find the information for Levada dos Tornos to Monte on Alltrails here. Or you can find it on MapyCZ here as well.

Hiking Tip: Look up the trail on AllTrails before starting your hike 🗺️. You can find important trail information such as recent wildlife sights and trail closures. Check out the free version here or get a 7-day free trial of AllTrails+ here.

How to get to the Levada dos Tornos trailhead

Levada dos Tornos is super easy to get to from Funchal and that’s why we love it!

From the starting point we recommend, there isn’t a clear trail marker, but if you know where to go, it’s not that hard to find the trailhead.

If you follow our map on Mapy.Cz you will find it easily. 

It’s nice that you don’t need a car or anything to get to the trailhead. It’s a short bus or taxi drive from Funchal and then you’re out in nature ready to do the hike.

Bus from Funchal to Levada dos Tornos

The bus stop near the trailhead for Levada dos Tornos

We briefly went over this above, but you can take the bus from Funchal to “Palheiro Ferreiro APS D, São Gonçalo”.

We recommend you check Google Maps for directions as there are multiple buses that go there and the schedule changes depending on what day of the week you go.

Since the hike starts at one point and ends at a different point you won’t be taking a bus back from the same spot.

Instead, you’ll be going back to Funchal from Monte. From there you can take the cable car down or go by Bolt (taxi).

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Best time to hike Levada dos Tornos

There’s no bad time to hike Levada dos Tornos (as long as it’s not pouring rain)!

Honestly, if you’re looking for a relaxing and easy hike to do on a weekday or weekend and do something close to Funchal then this one is perfect.

This hike is beautiful, not too busy, and offers great views of Funchal from above.

If you go in the afternoon you can stop for tea at Jasmin Tea House and later make a stop at Land Food & Coffee. The only thing you’ll have to check is that the weather up in Monte is good and not raining. 

Other related questions about Levada dos Tornos to Monte

How high is Monte in Funchal?

Monte is 1025m (3363 feet) above sea level and overlooks the city of Funchal in Madeira. From the top of Monte, you can see Funchal and the surrounding area.

On a clear sunny day, you can see far into the distance!

How do you get to Monte in Funchal?

The easiest way to get up to Monte is to take the cable car up from downtown Funchal which costs €12.5 one way and €18 return. Another option is to take a Bolt (taxi) which costs about €6-7 one way. 

There is also the possibility to hike from Funchal along the Levada do Bom Sucesso (currently closed) or the Levada dos Tornos all the way up to Monte.

Is Levada dos Tornos an easy hike?

Levada dos Tornos is a very easy and safe levada hike in Madeira. There is plenty of room along the levada trail.

This is a very family-friendly hike to do in Madeira and the hike itself would be rated as moderate in difficulty. 

Recap of hiking Levada dos Tornos to Monte 

If you want to explore the outdoors close to Funchal then this hike is perfect. It’s a nice easy levada walk that takes you along the “mountains” above Funchal to Monte.

You get some great views along the way and where you get to see Funchal from above which is really cool. 

Then you end up in Monte which is a popular area because of the gardens, the good cafes, and the famous toboggan rides!

For now, until Levada do Bom Sucesso opens up again, this is the best hike to do in Monte.

In the future hopefully, Bom Sucesso will re-open but for now, Levada dos Tornos is your best option to get up to Monte if you want to hike there!

We hope you enjoy this relaxing levada walk and enjoy the views at the end. If you have any questions about the trail or Madeira leave a comment below!

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