Sunny North

levadeiro/ June 17, 2007/ Driving, Hotels, Island, Levadas, Life, Madeira, People, Reviews, Things To Do, Tips, Travel, Uncategorized

Last week both my wife and I went for holidays “abroad”. Actually it was not abroad … we went to the North of the Madeira Island, Ponta Delgada and Boaventura. But for those who live on Madeira will agree with me that the North of the island has different scenery … and it is as if you are on another island. Green mountain cliffs and rocky edge, a display that is interrupted by small villages and with the vast Atlantic Ocean guarding the coastline. Another beautiful side that the island proudly bears.

Although we stayed for just three days/two nights we have had the opportunity to relax to the max and enjoy quality time, thanks to the location, environment, people (locals) and, last but not least, the sunny weather that took place during our stay.

I will limit myself to mention the highlights of our visit to the North of the island:

Casa da Capelinha
Casa da Capelinha - view from apartmentWe stayed at Casa da Capelinha (Ponta Delgada) which took about 40 minutes drive to reach. Self –catering apartment’s complex that lies in the coastal part of the picturesque town of Ponta Delgada. Adjacent to the property and part of the complex is the newly restored Chapel of Reis Magos (The Three Kings), a small chapel (build in the 16th century) with a large historical interest.

From our apartment we enjoyed each day (and also evenings) of the magnificent view and the sounds of the Ocean echoing against the mountain coast. Even though we only stayed for two nights we find it a very nice place to stay.

For more information you can visit their website:
www.casadacapelinha.com

ER 101
Between Ponta Delgada and Boa Ventura is a small part of the ER 101 ring that curls like an elegant snake the island. This particular part between the two villages not only offers fantastic views from the coastline, but it also can give you a thrill as driver (and passenger also). This is one of the last (typical) road section that was the usual connection between the villages in the North coast …. narrow tunnels and two-ways road. The thrill increases when you notice that also (big) buses are common to encounter on your way.

Most people will think the most awful scenarios will take place in such an occasion, but this is truly not the case. Local drivers are most patient and helpful … they will manage their vehicles in such a way that you easily can pass through … or they will give indications, as most of them know these roads. The important thing is not to panic, be patient and take your time. Remember that buses and lorries often “meet” each other on that same road and … they manage to pass without problems.

L&L Casa de Chá and Moinho a Água
Sign Moinho a Agua We visited the village São Jorge, that is just 8 km away from Santana. There we followed the sign “Moinho e Serragem a Água” (Water mill) road next to the Farmácia and 600m we stopped at the local Tea House “L&L Casa de Chá”, which is also a Bar/Restaurant. The owners are very friendly, speak both Portuguese and English and, if you do not mind, they will join your table to have a chat and answer any question of the area. They have a large terrace with a beautiful view that overlooks São Jorge.

The Tea House is an excellent stop for those who are planning to do the splendid walk Levada do Rei (Kings Levada), of which the start is another 2km up the road.

L&L Tea House is located at Sítio Lombo do Cunha (Tel: +351 291 576 604)

Another stop that is worth to do is the Moinho a Água where the old caretaker of the water mill will explain (and show) how, who, why and when.