Enjoy a rewarding hike, cool-down with a swim and admire arresting views at Madeira’s easternmost point. Sao Lourenco Point can be a narrow peninsula distinguished by its intriguing volcanic rock formations, which were carved in the centuries through the sea and wind. Stretching approximately 5.6 miles (9 kilometers) long and 1.2 miles (2 kilometers) wide, this unusual desert-like landscape
was classified being a nature reserve to guard its unique plants and creatures. Look to the peninsula’s old lighthouse, perched by using an islet that projects to the sea. Originally constructed from the late nineteenth century, this lighthouse has been said to be the oldest in Madeira. Accessible only by boat, the lighthouse has operated automatically ever since the 1980s. Today, it’s powered by solar powered energy.
Follow the trail curving round the peninsula and trace a path upwards to some scenic lookout point. This 4.3-mile (7-kilometer) trail begins in the parking lot and takes between two or three hours to hike. One in the most popular times during the day to hike along this trail is throughout the late afternoon, when you are able watch the shades of the sunset illuminating the peninsula’s multi-toned rock formations.
As you hike on the trail, hunt for some in the area’s distinctive animals and plants. You’ll see wispy everlastings, spiky cardoons and extremely colorful ice plants. You might spot birds flying overhead or, if you’re lucky, endangered Mediterranean monk seals swimming over coast.
When you make it to the peak in the trail, set aside a second to appreciate the gorgeous views in the island and sea. Look south to find out the rocky and barren-looking Ilhas Desertas (Deserted Islands). To the north, you’ll be able to view Porto Santo Island. This island contains unspoiled beaches, whitewashed villas and volcanic peaks.
Prainha, the island’s only natural black-sand beach, is located the base from the cliff. Popular with locals and tourists, this small beach enjoys its excellent swimming conditions. Sao Lourenco Point is available by bus from Caniçal. Parking can be obtained on-site along with the trail cost nothing to enjoy every time of day.