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Ultimate Guide To Achadas Da Cruz: Cable Car, Village, Hikes


Modified: December 28, 2023

by Danielle Stein



Achadas da Cruz is a charming village located on Madeira Island, one of the most beautiful destinations in Portugal. Nestled between towering cliffs and the Atlantic Ocean, this idyllic village offers breathtaking views, thrilling adventures, and a taste of authentic Madeiran culture. Whether you are a nature lover, an adventure seeker, or simply looking for a serene and picturesque getaway, Achadas da Cruz has something for everyone.


This ultimate guide will take you through the must-see attractions and activities in Achadas da Cruz, ensuring that you make the most of your visit to this hidden gem. From the exhilarating cable car ride that transports you to the coastal beauty, to the fascinating hiking trails that showcase the natural wonders of the area, Achadas da Cruz promises an unforgettable experience.


As you explore the village, you will be captivated by its traditional charm, with its cobbled streets, whitewashed houses adorned with colorful flowers, and the warm welcome of the friendly locals. Sample the delicious local cuisine, discover hidden viewpoints, and embrace the tranquility of the surroundings.


Whether you are looking for a romantic getaway, an outdoor adventure, or simply a break from the hustle and bustle of daily life, Achadas da Cruz offers a unique and enchanting experience. So pack your bags, put on your walking shoes, and get ready to embark on a memorable journey through the breathtaking landscapes of Achadas da Cruz.


Overview of Achadas da Cruz

Achadas da Cruz is a picturesque village situated on Madeira’s north coast, in the municipality of Seixal. Surrounded by towering cliffs and offering stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean, this hidden gem is a haven for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts.


The village is most renowned for its iconic cable car, which provides a thrilling and scenic ride from the cliffs down to the small harbor below. The cable car journey is an exhilarating experience, offering panoramic vistas of the rugged coastline, the deep blue waters, and the lush green landscapes of Madeira.


In addition to the cable car, Achadas da Cruz offers a myriad of attractions and activities for visitors to enjoy. The village itself exudes an old-world charm, with its charming houses adorned with flowers, traditional cobblestone streets, and a peaceful atmosphere that invites relaxation.


The natural beauty of Achadas da Cruz is simply stunning. The towering cliffs that surround the village create a dramatic backdrop, while the crystal-clear waters of the Atlantic Ocean provide a refreshing escape. The rocky coastline is dotted with hidden caves and coves waiting to be explored, and the vibrant marine life makes it a popular destination for snorkeling and diving enthusiasts.


For those who love hiking and exploring the great outdoors, Achadas da Cruz offers an extensive network of trails, showcasing the diverse flora and fauna of the region. From leisurely coastal walks to more challenging mountain trails, there is a hiking route to suit every level of fitness and interest.


As a small fishing community, Achadas da Cruz offers a glimpse into the traditional way of life on Madeira Island. Visitors can witness the daily activities of the local fishermen, feel the warmth of the community, and taste the delicious seafood that is freshly caught and prepared.


With its stunning natural landscapes, rich cultural heritage, and warm hospitality, Achadas da Cruz is a destination that will leave a lasting impression on every visitor. Whether you are seeking relaxation, adventure, or a chance to connect with nature, this charming village is the perfect place to unwind and immerse yourself in the beauty of Madeira Island.


Cable Car Experience

The cable car experience in Achadas da Cruz is a highlight of any visit to this beautiful village. The cable car provides a thrilling and scenic ride that takes you from the cliffs down to the small harbor below, offering panoramic views of the stunning coastline along the way.


The journey begins at the top of the cliffs, where you board the cable car and prepare for an exciting descent. As you glide through the air, you can admire the breathtaking vistas of the Atlantic Ocean stretching out before you. The sparkling blue waters, rugged cliffs, and lush green landscapes create a mesmerizing backdrop that is sure to leave you in awe.


During the cable car ride, you will have the opportunity to spot fascinating marine life, including dolphins and sea turtles, as they swim in the crystal-clear waters below. The sheer height and beauty of the cliffs will give you a unique perspective on the natural wonders of Madeira Island.


Once you reach the bottom, you can explore the small harbor and take a leisurely stroll along the rocky beach. The calm and peaceful atmosphere of the harbor is a stark contrast to the exhilarating cable car ride, providing a serene place to relax and soak in the beauty of the surroundings.


If you’re feeling adventurous, you can also book a boat tour from the harbor to explore the caves and grottoes that dot the coastline. These boat tours offer a thrilling experience as you navigate through narrow passages and discover hidden treasures along the way.


Whether you choose to ride the cable car for the breathtaking views, the thrill of the ride, or to access the other attractions in Achadas da Cruz, the experience is one that you won’t soon forget. It is a perfect way to immerse yourself in the natural beauty of Madeira Island and create lasting memories of your visit to this enchanting village.


Exploring the Village

Exploring the village of Achadas da Cruz is like stepping into a postcard-perfect scene. The charming village is a delightful blend of traditional architecture, picturesque streets, and warm-hearted locals, offering a truly authentic Madeiran experience.


As you wander through the village, you will be enchanted by the whitewashed houses adorned with colorful flowers. The cobblestone streets add to the charm, inviting you to take a leisurely stroll and soak in the peaceful ambiance. Don’t forget to stop by the local shops, where you can find unique handicrafts, souvenirs, and traditional Madeiran products.


One of the highlights of exploring Achadas da Cruz is interacting with the friendly locals. The warm hospitality of the villagers is sure to make you feel welcome, and they are always happy to share stories and insights about their village. Take some time to engage in conversation, learn about the local traditions, and perhaps even participate in a community event or festival if you’re lucky.


For those interested in the local history and culture, a visit to the village’s small museum is a must. The museum offers a glimpse into the past, showcasing artifacts and exhibits that tell the story of Achadas da Cruz and its people. It’s a great opportunity to learn about the traditions, livelihoods, and heritage of this charming community.


Achadas da Cruz is also home to a beautiful church, which serves as a cultural and spiritual hub for the villagers. The church’s intricate architecture and peaceful ambiance make it a perfect spot for reflection and tranquility. Make sure to visit during a mass or religious celebration, if possible, to experience the vibrant atmosphere and witness the deep-rooted faith of the locals.


As you explore the village, be sure to keep an eye out for hidden viewpoints that offer breathtaking vistas of the surrounding landscapes. These viewpoints provide the perfect backdrop for capturing memorable photographs and experiencing the natural beauty of Achadas da Cruz.


Exploring the village of Achadas da Cruz is a delightful journey into the heart and soul of Madeira Island. Whether you’re immersing yourself in the traditional architecture, engaging with the locals, or uncovering the hidden gems, the village offers a truly authentic and enriching experience that will leave you with cherished memories.


Hiking Trails in Achadas da Cruz

Achadas da Cruz is a paradise for hikers, offering a variety of breathtaking trails that showcase the natural beauty of Madeira Island. Whether you’re an experienced hiker or a casual nature enthusiast, there is a hiking trail in Achadas da Cruz to suit every level of fitness and interest.


One of the most popular trails in Achadas da Cruz is the Ribeira da Janela Trail. This scenic coastal path takes you along the rugged cliffs, offering stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean. You’ll witness the power of the crashing waves and the beauty of the surrounding landscapes as you make your way along the trail. It’s a relatively easy hike that rewards you with spectacular vistas at every turn.


If you’re up for a more challenging adventure, the Levada do Moinho Trail is a must-try. This trail takes you along a levada, which is a traditional irrigation channel, offering breathtaking views of the lush green vegetation and cascading waterfalls. The trail winds through the dense forest, providing a refreshing escape from the heat. Be prepared for some steep sections and uneven terrain, but the panoramic views and the sense of accomplishment make it all worthwhile.


For those who prefer a leisurely stroll through nature, the Achadas da Cruz to Seixal Promenade is the perfect choice. This easy and picturesque trail takes you from Achadas da Cruz to the neighboring village of Seixal, offering stunning views of the coastline along the way. You can enjoy the gentle breeze, listen to the sounds of nature, and stop at viewpoints to take in the breathtaking landscapes. It’s a great option for families or anyone looking for a peaceful and scenic walk.


No matter which trail you choose, it’s essential to be well-prepared before embarking on your hiking adventure. Make sure to wear comfortable and sturdy footwear, bring plenty of water and snacks, and be aware of the weather conditions. It’s also a good idea to bring a map or hire a local guide to ensure you stay on the right path and make the most of your hiking experience.


Exploring the hiking trails in Achadas da Cruz allows you to connect with nature, breathe in the fresh air, and immerse yourself in the stunning landscapes of Madeira Island. Whether you’re seeking breathtaking views, a sense of adventure, or a chance to unwind amidst nature’s beauty, the hiking trails in Achadas da Cruz deliver an unforgettable experience.


Points of Interest in Achadas da Cruz

Achadas da Cruz is not only known for its natural beauty but also for its rich cultural heritage and unique attractions. While exploring this charming village, make sure to visit these points of interest to enhance your experience:


Cable Car Station: The starting point of your cable car ride, the station offers stunning panoramic views of the dramatic cliffs and the Atlantic Ocean. Take in the breathtaking scenery before embarking on your thrilling descent.


Achadas da Cruz Harbor: Located at the bottom of the cable car ride, the small harbor is a peaceful and picturesque spot. Stroll along the rocky beach, watch fishermen unload their daily catch, or take a boat tour to explore the nearby caves and hidden coves.


Achadas da Cruz Museum: Discover the fascinating history and culture of Achadas da Cruz at the village’s museum. The exhibits showcase traditional artifacts, photographs, and stories that provide insights into the daily life and customs of the local community.


Church of Achadas da Cruz: Immerse yourself in the spiritual and cultural heart of the village by visiting the local church. Marvel at the intricate architecture and tranquil ambiance, and witness the devotion of the villagers during mass or religious celebrations.


Viewpoints: Achadas da Cruz is blessed with numerous viewpoints that offer striking panoramas of the surrounding landscapes. Be sure to seek out spots like Miradouro da Ribeira da Janela and Miradouro do Porto do Boque, where you can capture breathtaking views of the cliffs, ocean, and neighboring villages.


Seixal: While not strictly within Achadas da Cruz, the neighboring village of Seixal is worth a visit. Known for its stunning natural pools formed by volcanic rock formations, it offers a unique swimming experience. Take a dip in the crystal-clear waters and admire the beauty of these natural pools.


Traditional Restaurants: Indulge in the flavors of Madeiran cuisine at the local restaurants in Achadas da Cruz. Taste fresh seafood delicacies, such as Espada (black scabbardfish) or lapas (limpets), and savor traditional dishes like Espetada (grilled meat skewers) or Bolo do Caco (traditional Madeiran bread). These dining experiences will give you a true taste of the local gastronomy.


Exploring these points of interest in Achadas da Cruz will enrich your understanding of the village’s history, culture, and natural wonders. Don’t miss the opportunity to immerse yourself in the beauty and charm of this hidden gem on Madeira Island.


Local Cuisine and Restaurants

Achadas da Cruz offers a delectable culinary experience, showcasing the flavors and ingredients that define Madeiran cuisine. Whether you’re a seafood lover or prefer meat dishes, there are plenty of local restaurants in Achadas da Cruz that will satisfy your taste buds.


One of the highlights of the local cuisine is the abundance of fresh seafood. Being a coastal village, Achadas da Cruz is known for its delicious seafood dishes, such as Espada (black scabbardfish) and lapas (limpets). These delicacies are typically grilled or pan-fried and feature a unique and distinct taste that reflects the fresh catch of the day.


While in Achadas da Cruz, don’t miss the opportunity to try the traditional Espetada. This dish consists of skewered chunks of marinated beef grilled over an open flame, usually using bay laurel sticks. The meat is tender and flavorful, and it is often served with bolo do caco, a traditional Madeiran bread made with sweet potato.


If you’re looking for a more casual dining experience, be sure to try the local snack called “Brisa Marítima.” This crispy pastry is filled with tuna, onion, and tomato, providing a flavorful combination that’s perfect for a quick bite.


For those with a sweet tooth, don’t miss the opportunity to try traditional Madeiran desserts. Bolo de mel is a rich and moist honey cake that is often enjoyed with a glass of Madeira wine. Queijada is another popular sweet treat, made with fresh cheese, eggs, sugar, and cinnamon.


When it comes to dining options, Achadas da Cruz is home to a variety of restaurants that cater to different tastes and preferences. From cozy family-run establishments to trendy eateries, you’ll find a range of options to suit your culinary desires.


Some recommended restaurants in Achadas da Cruz include “O Ribeirinho,” famous for its fresh seafood and stunning ocean views, and “Adega do Sérgio,” a traditional restaurant known for its traditional Madeiran dishes and warm hospitality.


Exploring the local cuisine and dining scene in Achadas da Cruz is a delight for food enthusiasts. With its fresh and flavorful ingredients, unique dishes, and a blend of traditional and modern flavors, you’re sure to have a memorable culinary experience in this charming village.


Accommodation Options in Achadas da Cruz

Achadas da Cruz offers a range of accommodation options that cater to different preferences and budgets. Whether you’re looking for a luxurious getaway or a cozy guesthouse experience, there are choices available to suit every type of traveler.


One popular option for accommodation in Achadas da Cruz is the charming guesthouses and bed and breakfast establishments. These smaller, family-run accommodations provide a cozy and intimate atmosphere, with personalized service and a chance to connect with the locals. Many of these guesthouses offer comfortable rooms, delicious homemade breakfasts, and stunning views of the surrounding countryside.


If you’re seeking a more upscale experience, there are also luxury hotels and resorts available in and around Achadas da Cruz. These accommodations boast modern amenities, elegant rooms or villas, spa facilities, and panoramic views of the ocean or the lush landscapes. They provide a luxurious retreat for those looking to indulge in comfort and relaxation during their stay.


For travelers on a budget, there are also budget-friendly options such as hostels and self-catering apartments in Achadas da Cruz. These accommodations provide affordable rates without compromising on comfort. Hostels offer shared dormitories or private rooms along with communal spaces to socialize with other travelers, while self-catering apartments provide the freedom to cook your meals and explore the local food markets.


When choosing your accommodation in Achadas da Cruz, consider the location and proximity to the attractions you wish to visit. Some accommodations offer easy access to hiking trails, the cable car station, or the beach, ensuring convenience and saving you travel time.


It’s always a good idea to read reviews and check the facilities and services offered by different accommodations before making a decision. This will help you find the perfect place to stay that meets your needs and preferences.


Whether you prefer a cozy guesthouse, a luxury resort, or a budget-friendly option, Achadas da Cruz has a variety of accommodation choices to make your stay comfortable and memorable. Take your time to find the perfect place to relax, unwind, and immerse yourself in the beauty of this enchanting village on Madeira Island.


Tips for Visiting Achadas da Cruz

Visiting Achadas da Cruz is a wonderful experience that allows you to immerse yourself in the natural beauty and charm of Madeira Island. To make the most of your visit, here are some helpful tips to keep in mind:


1. Plan your visit in advance: Research the best time to visit Achadas da Cruz based on your preferences and interests. Consider the weather, local events, and the activities you wish to participate in, such as hiking or boat tours.


2. Dress appropriately: The weather in Achadas da Cruz can be changeable, so it’s advisable to dress in layers and wear comfortable walking shoes. Be prepared for both sunny and cooler conditions, especially if you plan to explore the hiking trails.


3. Be mindful of the cable car schedule: The cable car operates on a set schedule, so make sure to check the timings in advance and plan your visit accordingly. It’s recommended to arrive early to avoid long queues, especially during peak tourist seasons.


4. Carry essentials for hiking: If you plan to hike in Achadas da Cruz, be prepared with essentials such as sunscreen, a hat, insect repellent, a sturdy backpack, snacks, plenty of water, and of course, a map or a guidebook with detailed trail information.


5. Respect the environment: Achadas da Cruz is a pristine natural area, so it’s important to be respectful of the environment. Follow designated trails, dispose of your waste properly, and avoid damaging or disturbing the flora and fauna.


6. Embrace the local culture: Take the time to learn about the local customs and traditions of Achadas da Cruz. Interact with the friendly locals, taste the traditional cuisine, and participate in any cultural events or festivals happening during your visit.


7. Capture the beauty: Achadas da Cruz offers countless photo opportunities, so don’t forget to bring your camera or smartphone to capture the stunning landscapes. From the cliffside viewpoints to the picturesque village streets, there are endless photo-worthy moments.


8. Sample the local cuisine: Don’t leave Achadas da Cruz without trying the delicious local cuisine. Indulge in fresh seafood, traditional dishes, and the famous Madeiran wines. Venture into local restaurants and cafes to savor the authentic flavors of the region.


9. Be flexible and embrace the slower pace: Achadas da Cruz is known for its relaxed and laid-back vibe. Embrace the slower pace, take your time to soak in the beauty of the surroundings, and enjoy the tranquility of this charming village.


10. Leave no trace: Finally, it’s important to leave Achadas da Cruz as you found it. Respect the environment and the local community by taking your trash with you and avoiding any actions that may harm the natural surroundings or disrupt the peaceful atmosphere.


With these tips in mind, you’re ready to embark on a memorable journey to Achadas da Cruz. Immerse yourself in the beauty of this enchanting village, connect with nature, and create lasting memories of your visit to Madeira Island.



Achadas da Cruz is an idyllic village that offers a perfect blend of natural beauty, cultural heritage, and warm hospitality. Nestled between dramatic cliffs and the Atlantic Ocean, this hidden gem on Madeira Island captivates visitors with its breathtaking vistas, exhilarating adventures, and an authentic taste of Madeiran life.


From the thrilling cable car ride that provides panoramic views of the coastal beauty, to the picturesque village streets adorned with flowers, Achadas da Cruz creates a captivating atmosphere that invites exploration and relaxation. Hiking enthusiasts can revel in the diverse trails that showcase the abundant flora and fauna of the region, while food lovers can indulge in the delightful flavors of Madeiran cuisine at the local restaurants.


With its charming guesthouses, luxury hotels, and budget-friendly options, there is an accommodation choice for every traveler’s preference. As you immerse yourself in the beauty of Achadas da Cruz, be sure to engage with the friendly locals, who will welcome you with open arms and share their stories and traditions.


Whether you seek tranquility, adventure, or a chance to reconnect with nature, Achadas da Cruz will exceed your expectations. As you explore the village and its surroundings, make sure to capture the stunning landscapes and savor the unique experiences that this enchanting destination has to offer.


In conclusion, Achadas da Cruz is a true gem on Madeira Island. Its natural beauty, rich cultural heritage, and warm hospitality make it an unforgettable destination for any traveler. So pack your bags, leave behind the hustle and bustle of everyday life, and immerse yourself in the captivating beauty of Achadas da Cruz.