5 Steepest Cable Car in Madeira Island: A Breathtaking Adventure

Madeira Island, with its stunning natural beauty and mountainous terrain, is home to some of the steepest and most thrilling cable cars in the world. These are not just modes of transportation but rather experiences that offer visitors the opportunity to witness spectacular landscapes and explore remote and otherwise inaccessible locations. From the towering cliffs of Rocha do Navio to the serenity of Fajã dos Padres and the majesty of Monte, each cable car offers a unique and exciting perspective of the island, combining adventure, history, and natural beauty.

In this article, we will explore the five steepest cable cars in Madeira, delving into the history, breathtaking landscapes, and unforgettable experiences that each provides to visitors. Get ready for an exciting journey through the skies of Madeira, where each steepest cable car tells a unique story and reveals the hidden treasures of this charming island.

5 Steepest Cable Car in Madeira Island

  • Rocha do Navio

steepest cable car

The Rocha do Navio Cable Car, situated on the picturesque island of Madeira, is an engineering marvel that offers visitors a unique and stunning experience. Located on the northern coast of the island, in the town of Santana, this Steepest Cable Car is not just a mode of transportation but a window to the natural beauty of the region.

Unique Features: The cable car connects the top of the cliff to the Rocha do Navio Natural Reserve, a protected area that houses a diversity of endemic flora and fauna. With a steep descent, the cable car provides an exhilarating journey over a sheer cliff, offering panoramic views that are simply breathtaking.

Panoramic Views: During the descent, passengers are treated to a spectacular view of the vast Atlantic Ocean and the imposing cliffs. Also, the contrast between the deep blue of the sea and the vibrant green of the vegetation creates a scene straight out of a postcard. It’s a perfect opportunity for photographers and nature lovers to capture memorable images.

History and Curiosities: The history of the Rocha do Navio Cable Car is as fascinating as the journey itself. The name “Rocha do Navio” dates back to the 19th century when a Dutch shipwrecked in the area. The cable car was built to facilitate farmer’s access to their lands in the fajã, a small plain by the sea, which was previously reached only by steep and dangerous trails. Today, besides serving the locals, it has become a tourist attraction that draws visitors from around the world eager to experience its wonders.

  •  Achadas da Cruz

The Achadas da Cruz Cable Car is an unforgettable experience. Situated in the municipality of Porto Moniz, this cable car is not just a mode of transportation but a mobile viewpoint offering spectacular views of the northern coast of the island.

Amidst Mountains and Lush Landscapes: Nestled amidst green mountains and lush landscapes, the Achadas da Cruz Cable Car connects the village to the serene Fajã da Quebrada Nova. The journey descends the steep slope, revealing an unparalleled coastal landscape where the clear and vibrant sea meets the rugged green hills that define the scenery.

Nature Views and Deep Valleys: As it glides down the slope, passengers are treated to breathtaking views of Madeira’s wild nature. The route offers a panoramic view of deep valleys, lush flora, and the vast Atlantic stretching as far as the eye can see.

Attractions Insights: More than just a tourist attraction, the cable car is a vital tool for local farmers, facilitating the transportation of crops and access to agricultural properties. In Fajã da Quebrada Nova, visitors can find cultivated land, mainly vineyards and locally consumed vegetables, highlighting the area’s high agricultural productivity.

  • Garajau Cristo Rei

The Garajau – Cristo Rei Cable Car is one of the crown jewels of Madeira’s tourist attractions. This cable car is not just a mode of transportation but a link connecting the majestic statue of Christ the King to the Ponta do Garajau beach, offering visitors a unique experience and unforgettable views.

Panoramic Views: During the Ascent as passengers ascend in the cable car, they are treated to panoramic views of the dramatic cliffs along the coast. The contrast between the deep blue of the sea and the vibrant green of the vegetation is a sight that captures the essence of Madeira.

Cultural and Touristic Importance: The Garajau – Cristo Rei Cable Car is not just a tourist attraction; It is a cultural landmark that celebrates the history and faith of the region. The statue of Christ the King inaugurated before the famous Brazilian replica, is a point of historical interest and a symbol of faith for many.

  • Fajã dos Padres

Fajã dos Padres is a hidden retreat on the south coast of Madeira Island, a place where nature reveals itself in its purest and untouched form. Accessible only by a cable car descending a cliff of over 300 meters, this piece of paradise offers an escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

Unique Natural Beauty: Descending via the cable car, visitors immediately become captivated by the stunning views of the turquoise sea stretching to the horizon and the imposing cliffs embracing the coast. Fajã dos Padres boasts unique natural beauty, featuring a pebble beach and a seaside that invite relaxation and contemplation.

Activities and Points of Interest: In addition to the cable car experience, Fajã dos Padres offers a variety of activities. Visitors can enjoy the beach, explore the rich biodiversity of the area, or savour locally grown organic products. The seaside restaurant is a highlight, serving delicious dishes that incorporate the fresh flavours of Madeiran cuisine (have a look at what to eat in Madeira island).

  • Monte

6. Funchal-Monte Cable Car

6. Funchal-Monte Cable Car

The Monte Cable Car is one of the most emblematic experiences in Madeira Island, connecting the vibrant city of Funchal to the serene and picturesque Monte. Also, this aerial journey offers passengers a unique perspective of the city, unfolding into a natural amphitheatre of colours and shapes, with the blue of the ocean and the green of the mountains as a backdrop.

Panoramic Views: During the approximately 15-minute journey, the cable car ascends gently, providing breathtaking panoramic views. Passengers can admire the contrast between urban architecture and the lushness of green areas as they rise above rooftops and gardens to reach the tranquil heights of Monte.

Attractions at the Top of Monte: At the top, visitors are greeted by the Monte Palace Tropical Garden, an oasis of exotic flora and artwork. This garden is an invitation to explore winding paths and collections of tiles that tell stories of Portuguese history.


As we bid farewell to the breathtaking views and thrilling journeys aboard the steepest cable car of Madeira Island, it becomes evident that these structures are not just modes of transportation but rather gateways to discovery and adventure. From the dizzying cliffs of Rocha do Navio to the serene landscapes of Fajã dos Padres, each cable car offers a unique experience, connecting visitors with the rich history, natural diversity, and untamed beauty of the island.

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