Holidays are made to relax, take a break and discover new places. Are you ready to leave your smartphone aside to swim in natural pools, walk under waterfalls, sip a delicious cocktail while admiring a sunset and share unforgettable moments with your family and friends? Yet, you will need your phone and have spare memory because your Instagram account will explode with your photos of the best instagrammable spots in Madeira.
Miradouro das Neves
Miradouros das Neves is the best viewpoint to have a 360-degree view of Funchal. Located on the road to the airport, it offers an exceptional view over the bay of Funchal.
This is the perfect place to watch fireworks on New Year’s Eve. Did you know that Madeira was ranked as Best New Year’s Eve destination in Europe? There are a thousand reasons to fall in love with this exceptional destination.
This miradouro is located 10 minutes by car Funchal’s city centre (Sao Gonçalo) and 30 minutes by public transport (from the “Téléférico Termino” stop).
Ponta de São Lourenço
Little by little this place located in the extreme Northeast of the island has become one of the best instagrammable spots of Madeira. The easiest way to get there is to drive to the car park located at “Ponta de Sao Lourenço”. You can just take a selfie in front of this spectacular panorama or walk 40 minutes to “Casa do Sardinha” one of the best places in the world for lunch.
Stairs to Heaven
Pico do Arieiro
It is one of the symbols of Madeira Island. Pico do Arierio is the 3rd largest peak in Portugal. It is well known to instagrammers for those “stairs to heaven” which seem to lead you, beyond the clouds, to heaven.
Located in the northeast of the main island, 40 minutes by car from Funchal, the Santana houses are one of the most instagrammable spots in Madeira. These traditional houses are now managed by the municipality of Santana. Entrance is free and inside you can discover and buy local products and traditional Santana crafts. The houses are open daily from 10 am – 6 pm.
Ilheus da Ribeira da Janela
Ribeira da Janela
You are a short drive from the natural pools of Porto Moniz and suddenly you feel like you are in Iceland. Black basalt rocks emerge from the sea and point to the sky. Located in the Northwest of the island, Ilheus da Ribeira da Janela is a must stop after visiting Porto Moniz.
On the way, be sure to stop at Seixal and take photos of the beach which has been listed as one of the best beaches in Madeira.
All of these Instagrammable places are located within minutes of each other.
Porto Moniz Natural Pools
On the photo, your back is turned and we can picture you facing the ocean, looking pensive and mysterious. As you face us, we see you all smiles, enjoying the natural pools of Porto Moniz.
Considered one of the most instagrammable places in Madeira, the Porto Moniz pools are located in the Northwest of the island, a 50-minute drive from Funchal, the capital.
Câmara De Lobos
Less hidden than the Miradouro dos Balcoes, Cabo Girao is one of Madeira’s must-see. Nestled on the highest promontory in Europe, it offers breathtaking views of the ocean and Madeira. Located 20 minutes by car from Funchal, Cabo Girao is one of the best instagrammable spots in Madeira. With its completely transparent glass platform you will have the impression of being suspended in the air. Discover this amazing and free place and blow up your Instagram account by sharing the most amazing places in this dazzling destination.
Cascata dos Anjos
Ponta do Sol
Also known as “Cascata dos Anjos” this incredible waterfall is located in Ponta de Sol in the south of the island, 30 minutes from the capital Funchal.
Enter “Praia dos Anjos – Ponta do Sol” in your gps and take the road ER101. After a dark tunnel, an incredible natural waterfall will spray your car (and you if you are in a convertible or have your sunroof open).
This natural carwash is hidden and is one of the best instagrammable spots of Madeira, an island full of surprises.
The Cristo Rei (located in Garaujo a 20-minute drive from Funchal) is an instagrammable spot perfect to sow doubt among your followers. Are you in Rio, in Lisbon? It is difficult for them to locate this place as it is still little known to travellers who visit Madeira.
Fanal’s centenary and twisted laurels are one of Madeira’s new instagram spots. Still little known to travellers, Fanal is a very old forest of laurels such as could be found throughout the island in ancient times.
Located on a plateau, this place takes a very mystical outlook and highly Instagrammable when the mist arises. Fanal is located 1 hour by car from Funchal. A little further, you will also find the natural pools of Porto Moniz and the beach of Seixal classified among the most beautiful beaches of Madeira.
Ponta do Pargo Lighthouse
Ponta do Pargo
Located in the far west of Madeira, Ponta do Pargo and its pretty lighthouse, looks like the bow of a cruise ship. Descend a few metres below the lighthouse and let yourself be overwhelmed by the immensity of the ocean. From this exceptional viewpoint, you see the north coast and the south coast of Madeira.
Need a break? The “O fio” café offers drinks and snacks, as well as homemade cakes. It faces the miradouro do Fio which offers views of the ocean and the Ponta do Pargo lighthouse. Ponta do Pargo is located 50 minutes from Funchal and only 10 minutes from Achadas da Cruz, ranked among the best instagrammable spots of Madeira.
It is probably the most instagrammable place in Madeira. Funchal’s “lavradores” farmers market is a treasure, an ali-baba cave for Instagrammers. Exotic fruits, smiling traditional merchants, amazing fish. There are more colours in this market than on a rainbow.
Located in the heart of Funchal, do not miss visiting this Farmer Market as well known for the produce sold there as for its architecture and its sublime azulejos (typical Portuguese tiles) depicting regional themes. The market is open daily from 8 am to 7 pm.
Curral das Freiras
Just a 20 -minute drive from Funchal, you will come across Curral das Freiras, a village whose name means “Nun’s valley” in Portuguese. To enjoy a breathtaking view of this village, park at the Miradouro “Eira do Serrado” ranked among the best viewpoints in Madeira. It is possible to get there by car from Funchal but also by bus (line no 81- stop “Entrada Eira Serrado”).
Nowadays, a road joins Funchal to the village, but Curral das Freiras was for centuries totally isolated from the rest of the island and was inhabited only by nomadic shepherds or slaves who took refuge in this secret place, difficult to access from the city. Little by little they built houses and settled there permanently. A short and easy hike of a few kilometres will take you to this exceptional place.
Jardim do Mar
Imagine a dream location, facing the ocean, covered in banana trees, mango trees and tropical fruit trees. Everything grows beautifully here and that is why this corner of paradise is called “Jardim do mar”, the garden of the sea.
Located in the south-east of the island, Jardim do mar is only a few minutes’ drive from the beaches of Calheta classified among the best beaches in Madeira.
Take a walk along the coastal path and discover Paul do Mar in the distance. The two fishing villages are, at low tide, connected to each other. Don’t miss getting lost in the alleys of Jardim do Mar. For a smoothie of fresh mangoes grown on site, for its breath-taking views or just to cuddle the owner’s dog, stop by the Maktub Guesthouse and have a drink among the lush decor. It is run by a lovely family who also runs the Paul do Mar fish restaurant “Maktub”, a must see for sunsets.
Monte Palace Tropical Garden
Awarded as one of the best places in Europe to propose marriage, Monte Palace Garden is also one of the best Instagrammable spots in Madeira.
This exceptional garden, built on several levels, offers you a wide variety of exotic flowers and trees, endemic or from all over the world, as well as artistic installations made to measure for this exceptional place. A museum of African statues and an incredible museum of minerals complete the offer of this peaceful and incredibly photogenic place.
Madalena do Mar
Ponta do Sol
Madalena do Mar is truly a hidden gem in Madeira. This amazing colourful little village is located between Ponta do Sol and the golden sandy beaches of Calheta.
Benefiting from a beautiful pebble beach, Madalena do Mar will especially dazzle you for the charming colourful fishermen houses and the richness and beauty of the plants; the inhabitants of this small community have literally transformed their paths into tropical gardens. The people of Madalena do Mar will be proud and honoured to see you photographing their lovingly tended plants and they will welcome you with open arms. In the background, a banana plantation overlooks Madalena do Mar, a unique place in the world. A small bar with grocery store awaits you for a sunset drink with the locals.
Teleférico nas Achadas da Cruz
Achadas da Cruz
Located in the Northeast of the island, 1 hour from Funchal and only a few minutes from the natural pools of Porto Moniz, do not miss taking the cable car from Achadas Da Cruz, the steepest cable car in Europe. It descends nearly 500 metres in less than 5 minutes. To recover from your emotions, you can enjoy beautiful coastal walks in this little corner of paradise. Allow 6 euros (round trip) for the cable-car.
You can park in the parking lot of the “Miradouro do Teleférico das Achadas da Cruz”, the cable car is right there. Are you ready for a ride with a difference?
Visiting Madeira without going up to Monte and discovering the “Monte Sledge” is a bit like going to Paris without visiting Montmartre.
You can reach this exceptional place by buying your tickets online (or on site) for the cable car which will take you to the heights of Madeira. Walk to the building of the “Carreiros do Monte” association located in front of the “Monte Church Sanctuary” and become part of this incredible tradition that you will only see in Madeira.
The means of transport for your descent is rather unusual to say the least, as it is made of basketwork. Jump on a wicker basket and go down the streets of Madeira pushed and guided by two men wearing uniforms and straw hats. That’s a really quick way to reach Funchal from Monte (10 min to do 2km). A photographer will immortalize this moment half way down and you will be able to see your photo on arrival as you do in amusement parks.
It is said that the wealthy families who lived on the heights of Funchal in Monte, were the first to use this means of transport to reach the city centre from their hill. With the increase in tourism, this means of transport has further developed. It is a slow and sustainable means of transport as it offers labour to the local population and the baskets are made with eucalyptus wood from Monte and wicker from the Valley of the Nuns, a village located in the heart of the mountains. And it is great fun!
Faja dos Padres
It is one of Madeira’s secret places and one of the best instagrammable spots for influencers looking for places that are unique in the world.
The fajas are the result of a rock slide from the cliff. When they crash into each other, they form long and thin strips of stone and earth, perfect for farming or lounging, real little corners of paradise.
With a production of seasonal and local fruits and vegetables, a restaurant that cultivates produce harvested only 30 metres from your plate, a beautiful little almost private beach, the teams in charge of this exceptional place do everything to offer you memories for a lifetime.
This place can be visited every day from 10 am till 7 pm and is accessible thanks to a cable-car which goes down the side of the cliff. It has been modernized recently and believe us (we took the old one in 2013) that makes all the difference. You can come here to explore the gardens, have a drink or eat in the restaurant.
The beachfront restaurant offers the rich flavours of Madeiran cuisine. You can even sleep on site. Nowhere is more connected to nature and the ocean and 8 accommodations await you in this little corner of paradise.
Faja dos Padres is located 15 minutes from Funchal.
This miradouro, ranked among the best viewpoints in Madeira, is as incredible as it is hidden. Located 50 minutes by car from Funchal, you will discover this Miradouro by entering the “Parque Natural do Ribeiro Frio”. You will have to park on the roadside and follow the indication towards “Central Faja da Nogueira” to reach this exceptional site classified as one of the best instagrammable spots in Madeira.
Allow a 30-minute walk (1 hour round trip) from the car park. Open your eyes wide, wait for the right moment, and take the perfect photo of this unique place in the world.
With its breathtaking views over Funchal, the Botanical Garden is one of Madeira’s best instagrammable spots. Previously, it used to belong to the Reid’s, the richest family on the island; William Reid was both founder and owner of the Reid’s Palace, the most beautiful 5- star hotel on the island.
The garden is now open to the public who can enjoy exotic plants, tropical and endemic as well as exceptional succulents and more than 300 exotic birds. All of this will add colour to your Instagram posts.
To be able to visit most of the places mentioned you need to Rent a Car, we recommend you to do it here: