Levada do Caldeirão Verde, Madeira, Portugal

Upstream, Downstream

duck pond
House of Burns
Candelabra Tree
bis bis
House of Burns II
kingdom of lichens
Ephemeral Cascade
Dug Passage
soaked ferns
Taken Away
The Gorge
double tunnel
Entrance to the Cauldron
The Top of the Mist
kingdom of moss
another tunnel
Valley to the North
canyon II
It is just one of over a hundred prodigious canal systems that Madeirans built to irrigate crops. Its verdant, steep and dramatic scenery makes visitors to the island flow continuously along the Levada of Caldeirão Verde.

It appears like a Madeiran fairy tale, the starting point of the walk.

The radiance of the great star reveals it, as it penetrates the mantle of clouds that embraces the north and west. west of the island.

Mist comes, mist goes, the elongated lake is defined in the heart of Parque Florestal das Queimadas.

The ducks that splash in it furrow the dark water, surrounded by a contorted fence made of old branches.

Entrance to Parque Florestal das Queimadas

The park is forested. Everything about it is organic, verdant, natural. And, like most of Madeira, almost tropical. Hyperbole and lush ferns shine.

A little above, around, the trees and shrubs that make up the endemic vegetation of the Laurisilva, the heathers, foliage and perennials, Madeira cedars, the Tis, ancient examples of whitewood and mountain uveira, compete for the light. , Piornos, Sanguinhos and Leitugas.

They are lined with moss and lichens that the constant humidity keeps soaked and dripping.

Distinct from this almost-Atlantic jungle, two or three buildings, one of them overlooking, with a look that borders on the surreal.

It is known that, sooner or later, whoever lands discovering Madeira, marvels at the typical thatched roof houses, preserved and improved, in Santana.

And the House of Enchantment of Queimadas

For, in Queimadas, worthy of so many or more postcards, he points to the heavens an improvised version, if he is the victim of an insensitive, exaggerated comparison.

The A-shaped roof and striped front seem to emulate Tyrolean alpine architecture.

But snowfalls are rare in Madeira.

When they are given, they cover the supreme heights of the Picos das Torres (1853m), Ruivo (1861m), Arieiro (1818m) and related heights.

In its precocious eccentricity, the Casa das Queimadas was created to shelter walkers who, in the first quarter of the 1877th century, the international notoriety of Jardim do Atlântico Island, attracted to the forest, the centuries-old trail and levada (work from 1904-XNUMX ) that revealed the mysterious Caldeirão Verde to them.

Not only.

Two other chosen hikes passed through Queimadas, Caldeirão do Inferno and Pico das Pedras.

The house was part of a network of hostel buildings, planned from 1877 and, at least until 1904, distributed among the places that visitors preferred to explore.

Adjusted to reality, at 990 meters of altitude, rain instead of snow, it was the peculiar style of the houses in Santana that gave rise to that of Queimadas.

More relaxed and cozy, taking into account the care needed for people who stayed there anxiously and returned tired.

As the execution of this network, the completion of the headquarters of Queimadas, took a while.

For more than three decades, authorities maintained an elementary version of the shelter.

From the Simple Shelter to the Madeiran Mansion that Dazzles

With the end of the 2nd World War – Portugal and Madeira on the sidelines of the tragedy – the authorities confirmed the opportunity for Europeans to travel again in evasion mode.

Madeira has regained its status as an idolized Atlantic Eden. From the middle of the XNUMXth century, Casa das Queimadas was equipped to match.

At a time when the protection of the Laurissilva trees was about to take effect, the two floors of the house received floors and furniture carved in Madeira wood, in tilde and vinhático. The trees that would come to oxygenate us.

What is there today respects the initial decoration. A solid table covered in delicate Madeira linen.

In line with the island's intimate relationship with investors from Her Majesty's land, the crockery and other utensils were English relics, imported for the English – among others – to see.

Visitors and hikers will have shared this table time and time again. On the most wintery and humid nights, the unavoidable ponchas still warmed the atmosphere around the heat of the large fireplace.

On a summer day, with the sun rising over the horizon and losing its shyness, we expected to return still warm from the walk. We inaugurated it as soon as wandering around the thatched house stopped holding us back.

Levada do Caldeirão Verde Outside

Centuries after its construction, we are ready to follow in the footsteps of outsiders.

We leave the glimpse of the house to an arboreal tunnel composed of the tops, branches and assorted trunks, which culminate in the rough solidity of some wood cedars, one of them, with the unusual shape of a half menorah.

The same mist that trapped us upon arrival ascends the north-facing slopes, caresses and irrigates the vegetation.

Above all, the soaked lichens and Spanish beard that hang and drip onto a humus that is sometimes saturated, sometimes eroded by the blizzards and furrowed by intertwined roots.

Against the direction of the levada, the cold water and, we assume, that a few trout travel, we soon find ourselves at the base of cliffs so covered with ferns and mosses that they show no sign of rock.

The water goes down, fast, in the direction of Faial. We went up, but little, on the still distant Caldeirão.

The disguised zigzag of the levada takes us inside the abrupt cuts of the mountain.

Exposes ridges and valleys of the North and the rare settlements who ventured into them, trapped between the slopes and the ocean.

At intervals, the slope narrows in such a way that the trail loses its place.

We advanced along the very edge that supports the flow, under branches that the wind and gravity made to incline or almost topple over the path.

A preliminary waterfall eternalizes a true fall, divided between two smooth slides over the polished grain of the slope.

A view opens onto a new forested valley, massaged by the morning mist. Soon, we resumed the grip, against natural walls, wrapped in more moss.

The levada meanders at the base of large carved rocks.

After an enormous vertical fetal wall, it rounds out and adjusts to the horseshoe of Caldeirinha.

The Tunnels Dug into the Hillside That the Forest Takes Over

Shortly afterwards, we come across another of the four tunnels that make the levada and trail possible, all excavated using the pickaxe and auxiliaries.

Once again, the raw material is rock, volcanic and dark. The look of the entrance to the new underground section differs little or nothing from the forest.

An integral painting of moss and lichens makes the perforated wall vegetal.

As expected, the interior remains in darkness.

Ceiling height is uneven. Even with frontals, for a good part of the crossing, we are forced to lower our heads.

This is how we remain, when a ray of light intensifies and breaks the penumbra.

Out of nowhere, the tunnel surprises us with a double opening onto the forested cliff.

Back outside, we regain the view of the island's highest cliffs.

We can make out the furrow on the side of an opposite levada. Would it be a distant stretch of Caldeirão Verde?

Would it be another?

With so much meandering, by that time, we were confused.

We progress to a shaded passage, conquered to a concave section of the deepest and most dramatic ravine of the route.

The same simple steel cable fence that has long demarcated the trail and supported walkers, mitigates the vertigo of the cliff on the right.

When we leave it behind, we are rewarded with open and distant views of the São Jorge valley.

We hear the murmur of water and the communicative sounds of birds that have a habitat in this abrupt interior of Madeira.

The coo of distant wood pigeons.

The chirping of finches and friendly bisbis, these, endemic to the island of Madeira, used to approaching walkers, waiting for their sweet offerings.

Arriving at a too unstable Caldeirão Verde

After six kilometers of exercise, conversation and wonder, we are on the verge of the rounded cliff from which the Caldeirão Verde waterfall, which lends its name to the levada, falls from almost a hundred meters high.

Hidden at the top of the deep slope, it is supplied by a river that also has the same name, one of the many that the almost resident mist and the northern rains make run down the island, and against the waves of the Atlantic.

Rain often punishes Madeira with harmful intensity. It causes floods and landslides that generate lasting instabilities.

Caldeirão Verde and its waterfall were going through one of those periods. Lately, the river was dragging rocks that crashed into the lagoon below.

The probability of tragedy had made the authorities prohibit access to its surroundings. Unwilling to challenge norms and destiny, we conform. As do other hikers.

We sat down on one of the large pebbles rounded and polished by the erosive course of the stream.

We take sandwiches out of our backpacks, which we devour in three times.

Enough for the bisbis to detect the treat and settle around.

We had completed the 6.5 km of the Levada. The return ones were missing.

In the sense of flowing water.

Ribeiro Frio Forest Park, Madeira

Ribeiro Frio Acima, on the Path of Balcões

This region of the high interior of Madeira has been in charge of repopulating the island's rainbow trout for a long time. Among the various trails and levadas that converge in its nurseries, the Parque Florestal Ribeiro Frio hides grandiose panoramas over Pico Arieiro, Pico Ruivo and the Ribeira da Metade valley that extends to the north coast.
Pico do Arieiro - Pico Ruivo, Madeira, Portugal

Pico Arieiro to Pico Ruivo, Above a Sea of ​​Clouds

The journey begins with a resplendent dawn at 1818 m, high above the sea of ​​clouds that snuggles the Atlantic. This is followed by a winding, ups and downs walk that ends on the lush insular summit of Pico Ruivo, 1861 meters away.
Paul do Mar a Ponta do Pargo a Achadas da Cruz, Madeira, Portugal

Discovering the Madeira Finisterre

Curve after curve, tunnel after tunnel, we arrive at the sunny and festive south of Paul do Mar. We get goosebumps with the descent to the vertiginous retreat of Achadas da Cruz. We ascend again and marvel at the final cape of Ponta do Pargo. All this, in the western reaches of Madeira.
Funchal, Madeira

Portal to a Nearly Tropical Portugal

Madeira is located less than 1000km north of the Tropic of Cancer. And the luxuriant exuberance that earned it the nickname of the garden island of the Atlantic can be seen in every corner of its steep capital.
Ponta de Sao Lourenco, Madeira, Portugal

The Eastern, Somehow Extraterrestrial Madeira Tip

Unusual, with ocher tones and raw earth, Ponta de São Lourenço is often the first sight of Madeira. When we walk through it, we are fascinated, above all, with what the most tropical of the Portuguese islands is not.
Seixal, Madeira, Portugal

The Island of Madeira at the Heart

Visitors to Madeira are enchanted by its almost tropical drama. In this case, the author must confess that it was the destination of his first three plane trips. That he has a friend from there, who made him be a bit from there. From the Madeira facing the endless North. From the fearless and welcoming Seixal.
São Jorge, Azores

From Fajã to Fajã

In the Azores, strips of habitable land at the foot of large cliffs abound. No other island has as many fajãs as the more than 70 in the slender and elevated São Jorge. It was in them that the jorgenses settled. Their busy Atlantic lives rest on them.
Aldeia da Cuada, Flores Island, Azores

The Azorean Eden Betrayed by the Other Side of the Sea

Cuada was founded, it is estimated that in 1676, next to the west threshold of Flores. In the XNUMXth century, its residents joined the great Azorean stampede to the Americas. They left behind a village as stunning as the island and the Azores.
Ponta Delgada, São Miguel (Azores), Azores

The Great Azorean City

During the XNUMXth and XNUMXth centuries, Ponta Delgada became the most populous city and the economic and administrative capital of the Azores. There we find the history and modernism of the archipelago hand in hand.
Angra do Heroismo, Terceira (Azores), Azores

Heroina do Mar, from Noble People, Brave and Immortal City

Angra do Heroísmo is much more than the historic capital of the Azores, Terceira Island and, on two occasions, Portugal. 1500km from the mainland, it gained a leading role in Portuguese nationality and independence that few other cities can boast.
Pico Island, Azores

The Island East of the Pico Mountain

As a rule, whoever arrives at Pico disembarks on its western side, with the volcano (2351m) blocking the view on the opposite side. Behind Pico Mountain, there is a whole long and dazzling “east” of the island that takes time to unravel.
Vale das Furnas, São Miguel (Azores)

The Azorean Heat of Vale das Furnas

We were surprised, on the biggest island of the Azores, with a caldera cut by small farms, massive and deep to the point of sheltering two volcanoes, a huge lagoon and almost two thousand people from São Miguel. Few places in the archipelago are, at the same time, as grand and welcoming as the green and steaming Vale das Furnas.
Castro Laboreiro, Portugal  

From Castro de Laboreiro to Raia da Serra Peneda - Gerês

We arrived at (i) the eminence of Galicia, at an altitude of 1000m and even more. Castro Laboreiro and the surrounding villages stand out against the granite monumentality of the mountains and the Planalto da Peneda and Laboreiro. As do its resilient people who, sometimes handed over to Brandas and sometimes to Inverneiras, still call these stunning places home.
Terceira Island, Azores

Terceira Island: Journey through a Unique Archipelago of the Azores

It was called the Island of Jesus Christ and has radiated, for a long time, the cult of the Holy Spirit. It houses Angra do Heroísmo, the oldest and most splendid city in the archipelago. These are just two examples. The attributes that make Terceira island unique are endless.
Flores Island, Azores

The Atlantic ends of the Azores and Portugal

Where, to the west, even on the map the Americas appear remote, the Ilha das Flores is home to the ultimate Azorean idyllic-dramatic domain and almost four thousand Florians surrendered to the dazzling end-of-the-world that welcomed them.
São Miguel (Azores), Azores

São Miguel Island: Stunning Azores, By Nature

An immaculate biosphere that the Earth's entrails mold and soften is displayed, in São Miguel, in a panoramic format. São Miguel is the largest of the Portuguese islands. And it is a work of art of Nature and Man in the middle of the North Atlantic planted.
Pico Island, Azores

Pico Island: the Azores Volcano with the Atlantic at its Feet

By a mere volcanic whim, the youngest Azorean patch projects itself into the rock and lava apogee of Portuguese territory. The island of Pico is home to its highest and sharpest mountain. But not only. It is a testament to the resilience and ingenuity of the Azoreans who tamed this stunning island and surrounding ocean.
Santa Maria, Azores

Santa Maria: the Azores Mother Island

It was the first in the archipelago to emerge from the bottom of the sea, the first to be discovered, the first and only to receive Cristovão Colombo and a Concorde. These are some of the attributes that make Santa Maria special. When we visit it, we find many more.
Sistelo, Peneda-Gerês, Portugal

From the "Little Portuguese Tibet" to the Corn Presidia

We leave the cliffs of Srª da Peneda, heading for Arcos de ValdeVez and the villages that an erroneous imaginary dubbed Little Portuguese Tibet. From these terraced villages, we pass by others famous for guarding, as golden and sacred treasures, the ears they harvest. Whimsical, the route reveals the resplendent nature and green fertility of these lands in Peneda-Gerês.
Campos do GerêsTerras de Bouro, Portugal

Through the Campos do Gerês and the Terras de Bouro

We continue on a long, zigzag tour through the domains of Peneda-Gerês and Bouro, inside and outside our only National Park. In this one of the most worshiped areas in the north of Portugal.
Jabula Beach, Kwazulu Natal, South Africa
Saint Lucia, South Africa

An Africa as Wild as Zulu

On the eminence of the coast of Mozambique, the province of KwaZulu-Natal is home to an unexpected South Africa. Deserted beaches full of dunes, vast estuarine swamps and hills covered with fog fill this wild land also bathed by the Indian Ocean. It is shared by the subjects of the always proud Zulu nation and one of the most prolific and diverse fauna on the African continent.
Aurora lights up the Pisang Valley, Nepal.
Annapurna (circuit)
Annapurna Circuit: 3rd- Upper Banana, Nepal

An Unexpected Snowy Aurora

At the first glimmers of light, the sight of the white mantle that had covered the village during the night dazzles us. With one of the toughest walks on the Annapurna Circuit ahead of us, we postponed the match as much as possible. Annoyed, we left Upper Pisang towards Escort when the last snow faded.
Alaskan Lumberjack Show Competition, Ketchikan, Alaska, USA
Architecture & Design
Ketchikan, Alaska

Here begins Alaska

The reality goes unnoticed in most of the world, but there are two Alaskas. In urban terms, the state is inaugurated in the south of its hidden frying pan handle, a strip of land separated from the contiguous USA along the west coast of Canada. Ketchikan, is the southernmost of Alaskan cities, its Rain Capital and the Salmon Capital of the World.
Full Dog Mushing
Seward, Alaska

The Alaskan Dog Mushing Summer

It's almost 30 degrees and the glaciers are melting. In Alaska, entrepreneurs have little time to get rich. Until the end of August, dog mushing cannot stop.
Big Freedia and bouncer, Fried Chicken Festival, New Orleans
Ceremonies and Festivities
New Orleans, Louisiana, United States

Big Freedia: in Bounce Mode

New Orleans is the birthplace of jazz and jazz sounds and resonates in its streets. As expected, in such a creative city, new styles and irreverent acts emerge. Visiting the Big Easy, we ventured out to discover Bounce hip hop.
Luderitz, Namibia
Lüderitz, Namibia

Wilkommen in Africa

Chancellor Bismarck has always disdained overseas possessions. Against his will and all odds, in the middle of the Race for Africa, merchant Adolf Lüderitz forced Germany to take over an inhospitable corner of the continent. The homonymous city prospered and preserves one of the most eccentric heritages of the Germanic empire.
Obese resident of Tupola Tapaau, a small island in Western Samoa.
Tonga, Western Samoa, Polynesia

XXL Pacific

For centuries, the natives of the Polynesian islands subsisted on land and sea. Until the intrusion of colonial powers and the subsequent introduction of fatty pieces of meat, fast food and sugary drinks have spawned a plague of diabetes and obesity. Today, while much of Tonga's national GDP, Western Samoa and neighbors is wasted on these “western poisons”, fishermen barely manage to sell their fish.
Sculptural Garden, Edward James, Xilitla, Huasteca Potosina, San Luis Potosi, Mexico, Cobra dos Pecados
Xilitla, San Luis Potosí, Mexico

Edward James' Mexican Delirium

In the rainforest of Xilitla, the restless mind of poet Edward James has twinned an eccentric home garden. Today, Xilitla is lauded as an Eden of the Surreal.
4th of July Fireworks-Seward, Alaska, United States
Seward, Alaska

The Longest 4th of July

The independence of the United States is celebrated, in Seward, Alaska, in a modest way. Even so, the 4th of July and its celebration seem to have no end.
M:S Viking Tor Ferry-Wrapped Passenger, Aurlandfjord, Norway
Flam a Balestrand, Norway

Where the Mountains Give In to the Fjords

The final station of the Flam Railway marks the end of the dizzying railway descent from the highlands of Hallingskarvet to the plains of Flam. In this town too small for its fame, we leave the train and sail down the Aurland fjord towards the prodigious Balestrand.
View from John Ford Point, Monument Valley, Nacao Navajo, United States
Monument Valley, USA

Indians or Cowboys?

Iconic Western filmmakers like John Ford immortalized what is the largest Indian territory in the United States. Today, in the Navajo Nation, the Navajo also live in the shoes of their old enemies.
sunlight photography, sun, lights
Got2Globe Photo Portfolio
Natural Light (Part 2)

One Sun, So Many Lights

Most travel photos are taken in sunlight. Sunlight and weather form a capricious interaction. Learn how to predict, detect and use at its best.
Balestrand townhouse, Norway
Balestrand, Norway

Balestrand: A Life Among the Fjords

Villages on the slopes of the gorges of Norway are common. Balestrand is at the entrance to three. Its settings stand out in such a way that they have attracted famous painters and continue to seduce intrigued travelers.
At the end of the afternoon
Ilha de Mozambique, Mozambique  

The Island of Ali Musa Bin Bique. Pardon... of Mozambique

With the arrival of Vasco da Gama in the extreme south-east of Africa, the Portuguese took over an island that had previously been ruled by an Arab emir, who ended up misrepresenting the name. The emir lost his territory and office. Mozambique - the molded name - remains on the resplendent island where it all began and also baptized the nation that Portuguese colonization ended up forming.
Reindeer Racing, Kings Cup, Inari, Finland
Winter White
Inari, Finland

The Wackiest Race on the Top of the World

Finland's Lapps have been competing in the tow of their reindeer for centuries. In the final of the Kings Cup - Porokuninkuusajot - , they face each other at great speed, well above the Arctic Circle and well below zero.
Couple visiting Mikhaylovskoe, village where writer Alexander Pushkin had a home
Saint Petersburg e Mikhaylovkoe, Russia

The Writer Who Succumbed to His Own Plot

Alexander Pushkin is hailed by many as the greatest Russian poet and the founder of modern Russian literature. But Pushkin also dictated an almost tragicomic epilogue to his prolific life.
Jeep crosses Damaraland, Namibia
Damaraland, Namíbia

Namibia On the Rocks

Hundreds of kilometers north of Swakopmund, many more of Swakopmund's iconic dunes Sossuvlei, Damaraland is home to deserts interspersed with hills of reddish rock, the highest mountain and ancient rock art of the young nation. the settlers South Africans they named this region after the Damara, one of the Namibian ethnic groups. Only these and other inhabitants prove that it remains on Earth.
Sheki, Autumn in the Caucasus, Azerbaijan, Autumn Homes
Sheki, Azerbaijan

autumn in the caucasus

Lost among the snowy mountains that separate Europe from Asia, Sheki is one of Azerbaijan's most iconic towns. Its largely silky history includes periods of great harshness. When we visited it, autumn pastels added color to a peculiar post-Soviet and Muslim life.
Incandescent Mouth, Big Island Hawaii, Volcanoes National Park, Lava Rivers
Natural Parks
Big Island, Hawaii

Searching for Rivers of Lava

There are five volcanoes that make the big island of Hawaii grow day by day. Kilauea, the most active on Earth, is constantly releasing lava. Despite this, we live a kind of epic to envision it.
Miyajima Island, Shinto and Buddhism, Japan, Gateway to a Holy Island
UNESCO World Heritage
Miyajima, Japan

Shintoism and Buddhism with the Tide

Visitors to the Tori of Itsukushima admire one of the three most revered scenery in Japan. On the island of Miyajima, Japanese religiosity blends with Nature and is renewed with the flow of the Seto Inland Sea.
aggie gray, Samoa, South Pacific, Marlon Brando Fale
Apia, Western Samoa

The Host of the South Pacific

She sold burguês to GI's in World War II and opened a hotel that hosted Marlon Brando and Gary Cooper. Aggie Gray passed away in 2. Her legacy lives on in the South Pacific.
Viti Levu, Fiji Islands, South Pacific, coral reef
Viti levu, Fiji

Islands on the edge of Islands

A substantial part of Fiji preserves the agricultural expansions of the British colonial era. In the north and off the large island of Viti Levu, we also came across plantations that have only been named for a long time.
gaudy courtship
Suzdal, Russia

Thousand Years of Old Fashioned Russia

It was a lavish capital when Moscow was just a rural hamlet. Along the way, it lost political relevance but accumulated the largest concentration of churches, monasteries and convents in the country of the tsars. Today, beneath its countless domes, Suzdal is as orthodox as it is monumental.
The Toy Train story
On Rails
Siliguri a Darjeeling, India

The Himalayan Toy Train Still Running

Neither the steep slope of some stretches nor the modernity stop it. From Siliguri, in the tropical foothills of the great Asian mountain range, the Darjeeling, with its peaks in sight, the most famous of the Indian Toy Trains has ensured for 117 years, day after day, an arduous dream journey. Traveling through the area, we climb aboard and let ourselves be enchanted.
Magome to Tsumago, Nakasendo, Path medieval Japan
Magome-Tsumago, Japan

Magome to Tsumago: The Overcrowded Path to the Medieval Japan

In 1603, the Tokugawa shogun dictated the renovation of an ancient road system. Today, the most famous stretch of the road that linked Edo to Kyoto is covered by a mob eager to escape.
Casario, uptown, Fianarantsoa, ​​Madagascar
Daily life
Fianarantsoa, Madagascar

The Malagasy City of Good Education

Fianarantsoa was founded in 1831 by Ranavalona Iª, a queen of the then predominant Merina ethnic group. Ranavalona Iª was seen by European contemporaries as isolationist, tyrant and cruel. The monarch's reputation aside, when we enter it, its old southern capital remains as the academic, intellectual and religious center of Madagascar.
Meares glacier
Prince William Sound, Alaska

Journey through a Glacial Alaska

Nestled against the Chugach Mountains, Prince William Sound is home to some of Alaska's stunning scenery. Neither powerful earthquakes nor a devastating oil spill affected its natural splendor.
The Sounds, Fiordland National Park, New Zealand
Scenic Flights
Fiordland, New Zealand

The Fjords of the Antipodes

A geological quirk made the Fiordland region the rawest and most imposing in New Zealand. Year after year, many thousands of visitors worship the sub-domain slashed between Te Anau and Milford Sound.