Best Sunrise Spots in Madeira

Best Sunrise Spots in Madeira

Best Sunrise Spots in Madeira

Oct 20, 2020
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As one of the most gorgeous islands in the world, Madeira has some of the most incredible sunset and sunrise spots.

Here, we selected some of the best places to watch the sunrise that totally will be worth the early awakening!

Some of the places are easy to find and others are more hidden at the end of little paths, but all reveal sensational views of lush vegetation, small villages nestled in the heart of the mountains, and cliff views. 

Plan your trip to Madeira as well as your tours and activities and discover the most beautiful places in Madeira.

1. Pico Ruivo

Best sunrise spots in Madeira- Pico Ruivo- Diogo Pereira

(Photo: Diogo Pereira)

Closer to the sky would be a perfect description of this beautiful place.

We are above the clouds and seeing the sunrise between the clouds, with those wonderful colors, gives us a breathtaking feeling. Sunrise is a highlight of Pico Ruivo, we can see the green mountains appearing between them, like a display of splendor and magic.

In addition to we have this breathtaking landscape: Paul da Serra, Pico do Areeiro, Curral das Freiras, Santo da Serra and Ponta de São Lourenço

Shades of red and purple shred the blue sky and reflect on the clouds down us. 

Enjoying the golden hour at the Pico Ruivo summit is one of the must-do activities on Madeira Island.

Tips:

If you are a hiking lover go from Pico Ruivo to Achada do Teixeira and watch the sunrise from there, this place is also one of the most popular places for sunrise. The parking lot of Achada do Teixeira is just 2.5-kilometers from the summit of Pico Ruivo so you can reach the summit in 30-45 minutes quite easily.

Or if you want to start the day very early and enjoy it in the mountains with a panoramic view and beautiful surroundings, try the hike from Pico Ruivo until Pico do Areeiro.

2. Machico - Pico do Facho

 best spots to watch the sunrise- Machico- sai de baixo alto astral

(Photo: Facebook- Sai de baixo Alto Astral)

Nestled between the parishes of Machico and Caniçal, this viewpoint is a hotspot and a must-see point for anyone exploring the southeast coast of Madeira.

The Pico do Facho viewpoint is located at an altitude of 330 meters, offering magnificent and unique views of the Machico valley, the Mountain Massif, the airport, it overlooks the stunning Ponta de São Lourenço with its natural colors of profound beauty and Porto Santo.

There is a beautiful panorama that allows you to have a privileged location to observe the sunrise that starts shining from the east side of Madeira. It is worth contemplating the landscape, which changes between picturesque buildings in the valleys and hills of Madeira, with the frank beauty of nature, bathed by a crystal clear ocean that delights those who seek it.

Tips:

There are a fireplace and some free access benches and tables, making it possible to enjoy the wonderful views in a peaceful and relaxed way with some hot coffee and snacks.

Pico do Facho - Caniçal- You can try to do a Levada walk near to this place route, it has a little bit of everything: from being taken to the sea and back to the mountain for a truly rich and unique experience, through extraordinary paths that surprise us every kilometer.


3. Faial - Guindaste and Fortim viewpoint

Best sunrise spots in Madeira- Guindaste viewpoint in Faial

(Photo: Cristophe Afonso: Guindaste viewpoint)

Located 20 minutes from "Cabanas Viewpoint '', drive to Guindaste Viewpoint, is also one of the best viewpoints in Madeira on the north side of Madeira. It offers exceptional views of the cliffs that flow into the sea from Faial to Ponta de São Lourenço, some people say it is tailor-made for “sunrise hunters”. The sun starts rising between the clouds on your east side and glows up the sea, the mountains, and all surroundings with orange and yellow colors. From here you can see up to Sao Lourenço point and on clear days, up to the island of Porto Santo.

(Fortim viewpoint)
Fortim viewpoint is in Faial, very near to Guindaste, and is today also a very popular viewpoint, as it offers a beautiful view due to its higher location. Although Faial was first spotted in the 1500s, the fortlet of Faial wasn’t built until much later, in the 18th century, as a lookout point against frequent invading ships.

Tips:

If it’s summer it is also possible to swim in the seawater pool located below this exceptional viewpoint.

Do not miss a visit to Porto da Cruz and its sublime beach and famous old sugar cane factory.

4. Bica da cana - Paul da Serra

best spots to watch the sunrise- Bica da cana sunset viewpoint in Paúl da Serra(Photo: Journey Era)

Bica da Cana viewpoint is located in Canhas parish village of Ponta do Sol. Bica da Cana viewpoint it's an underrated but amazing viewpoint with views of Pico Ruivo, as well as good visibility all the way to Pico Arieiro. This is a great sunrise spot due to its height of 1,560m above sea-level, from where you can enjoy a mystical atmosphere as the sea of clouds roll over the mountains below. Despite the mountains surrounding the ''sea of clouds'' are the focal point and slowly pours down into the lower valleys towards the east, creating an incredible waterfall of clouds. The sun finally crept over the peaks in the distance and began to light up the scene.

Tips:

For this viewpoint, it is a great idea to arrive forty minutes before the scheduled sunrise.

You can go home or if you are feeling adventurous, you could head off on the Bica da Cana Pinaculo hike, which is a short and sharp 4.5km return trip and it takes you to several waterfalls. It is highly recommended pairing the hike with the viewpoint as it is quite short and gives you some new perspectives of the landscape.

5. Pico - Porto da Cruz

Best Sunrise spots in Madeira- Porto da CruzThe Fortim do Pico Viewpoint, is not just an odd point of contemplation, it is also a historic point in the parish of Porto da Cruz. At you can admire the beauty of a golden rising sun coming through the mountain valley that runs up to the sky, discovering the cliffs by the sea and the emblematic Penha d 'Águia, 590 meters high.

Tips:

On Alagoa beach, between sunbathing and surfing lessons, one day is well spent, but it is still worth saving a few hours to visit the Companhia de Engenhos do Norte, one of the main living testimonies of the glorious past of sugar cane production on the island and go back to the beginning of the 20th century, and taste the traditional Madeira drink, the Poncha, made from cane spirit.

6. Achadas Gramacho viewpoint - Arco de São Jorge 

Best Sunrise spots in Madeira- Achada do Gramacho- santana

(Photo: Hotel Quinta do Furão)

To access this viewpoint, you must first enter Quinta do Furão, whose balcony offers excellent sea views. 

When you find this hidden place you will have the opportunity to have a breathtaking view of the north coast, from here you can also see the Viúva Islet, part of Rocha do Navio Nature Reserve until the Ponta de São Lourenço far away in the background.

An excellent place to have breakfast, with privileged views of the sunrise. 

7. Encumeada viewpoint

Best Sunrise spots in Madeira- Encumeada- Duarte Coelho

(Photo: Duarte Coelho)

The viewpoint of Encumeada is at the top of the parish of Serra d'Água, between two of the deepest valleys of the island, the Ribeira Brava (south coast) and São Vicente (on the north coast). It is located at 1007 m altitude, as you should know as always, sunrise and sunsets in Encumeada are something else and will take your photos to the next level.

While you are going up the roads offer superb landscapes over the north and south coasts of the island. 

Tips: 

The best way to drive through Encumeada is to go to Ribeira brava, take the road to Sao Vicente and turn left where it’s written: Encumeada.

8. Pico do Areeiro

Best Sunrise spots in Madeira- alex_lauterbach Pico arieiro

(Photo:Alex Lauterbach)

The day starts from the top of the island, bringing light up to all the island from one of the highest peaks. Pico do Arieiro is the third highest peak on Madeira Island and is one of the most popular sunrise spots, this is definitely one of the favorite spots for everyone.

The same summit looks different every time, but if you check the weather on a good clear day it would be intensely orange, the clouds would be thin and they quickly disappear over the horizon, letting us see the layers of the view and the surrounding mountains. 

Tips: 

The glow will begin well before the official sunrise time, you should be there at least 1h before the time on the internet.

After the sunrise you can explore a little bit the place, you can adventure to Ninho da Manta to check out the Balcony, which is quite similar in shape to the viewpoint at Vereda dos Balcões.

You can also see the sunrise at Miradouro Juncal, which is just next to the parking and offers a great panorama view at sunrise.

We have two amazing suggestions for watching the sunrise at this location.

We have a private jeep tour that will take you to a secluded area, so you can enjoy a magnificent view away from the crowds.

There is also the bus tour option that will take you directly to the peak, where you will get a 360º of the Island while watching the colours change on the horizon.

9. Caniçal - Ponta de são Lourenço 

best spots to watch the sunrise- caniçal-Nelma Viana

(Photo: Nelma Vieira)

Known for its beautiful colours and rock formations, this volcanic peninsula is one of the oldest parts of our island, and it's where the sun rises at this place intensely because it appears on the northeast side of the Island so you can find incredible views and take perfect sunrise photographs!

If you go early in the morning to watch the sunrise, usually you are all alone with nature, the blue sea, the incredible views and the waves crashing on the cliffs.

Tips:

If you have time, do one of the best walks in Madeira, Ponta São Lourenço walk.

It’s an ideal spot to shoot the moon and milky way.

Another good option is to go swimming at Prainha beach. 

10. Ribeira da Janela beach

best spots to watch the sunrise- ribeira da janela- Imgur(Photo: Imgur)

This place is an epic coastal spot with some truly remarkable rock formations located in a small village on the north coast of the island with great views of its valley and sea.

Ribeira da Janela is a perfect spot for sunrise while observing thousands of swallows as they circle the peculiarly shaped rocks receiving a golden glow from the sun. Here, you may find tranquillity, the sound of the waves, the multiple shades of green of the mountains, and the brightness of the sea, which intensifies as the sun rises.

Tips:

You will find a little staircase and tunnel through to the beach from the backside but it leads to the exact same spot as you would find by simply walking along the river to the coast. I can only imagine it is for days when the tide is high and the swell is rough. Once you are here do not miss ''Véu da Noiva'' Viewpoint and Porto Moniz swimming pools.

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