What to do / see


Its construction was determined by the governor Duarte Sodré Pereira to defend that anchorage.

The defense of the Island has always been a constant concern, both on the part of the kings, and of the island’s granaries. Thus it was necessary to defend the coast before the enemies.

In 1815 there are references to a small triangular fort next to the embouchure of the river, and another called Fort Sá Sebastião, which were both ruined by the alluvium of 1803 and there were no traces left. Another fort is the Sento Bento Fort, which at that time was ruined. In 1916 works were advanced for its recovery and beautification of the Forte da Ribeira Brava. Nowadays perfectly adapted to the visual context of the village, the fort serves as Information Desk.

Current Information Desk Open from Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. and from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturdays from 9:30 p.m. to 5 p.m.


Located next to the Fort, we find the Municipal Market. Ribeira Brava has been a very commercial place since very early, where there were exchanges and sales of products from the neighboring areas.

Here we can find, in addition to the regional handicrafts, the fresh foodstuffs resulting from agricultural and regional fishing activities.


Go up Visconde street we find the Mother Church. Having the oracle to S Benedict, the Church is endowed with a portal of three Gothic archivolts, endowed with historical capitals, practically unparalleled on the island. Its construction dates back to the 16th century, being modified through the centuries until it reaches the current building.

Inside, the church has three main altars: the main altar and two other sides. The main chapel is called by a magnificent altarpiece of gilded and polychrome carving of the end of the century. XVII, attributed to the workshop of Manuel Pereira de Almeida, also responsible for the other two altars.

You will also find in the interesting set of images a monumental image of Our Lady of the Rosary, of Flemish production, perhaps of the workshops of Antwerp, dating to about 1520. The matrix still has a magnificent board attributed to the Flemish painter, Francisco Henriques, representing Our Lady. S.º Bento and S.º Bernardo.

In its interior we can find Manueline works like the capitals, the pulpit of the Matrix and the baptismal font (offer of D. Manuel I).


The processional cross, dating from 1584 is attributed to Marcos Agostinho being one of the great pieces, among others attributed to the same author that can be seen in this small nucleus.

In a collection of 66 pieces, there are silver candlesticks, crowns, sticks, galleries, chalices, chaldeirinhas and other silver materials dated from the 18th century. XVI, XVII.


Next to the Church we can find the old dwelling of the founder of the Municipality, the Viscount of Ribeira Brava, Francisco Correia Heredia.

The City Hall has a magnificent garden, with innumerable natural species of flora and fauna. It is an ideal place for a small walk accompanied by the beauty of nature.


Going up Rua do Visconde and along Rua de S.º Francisco you will find the old chapel and solar of S.º José. The building of the current Ethnographic Museum of Madeira was the home of Captain Luís Gonçalves da Silva.

Years later the old manor was converted into an industrial unit, with a sugar cane mill, animal traction mill, and a distillation still (some of these elements are still visible inside the museum). The mill underwent several improvements in the 60’s, namely the use of hydropower.

In 1983, the Regional Government decided to install the ethnographic museum of Madeira in this place. Nowadays already restructured it is the stage of several temporary and permanent expositions with themes related to Madeiran culture.


After the Tunnel Entrance to the Finished Falls the visit of the nucleus, it is time to return. At this point enjoy the landscape of the promenade next to the flow of the river, not forgetting to observe the old bridge.

Arriving at the seaside promenade, head towards the lighthouse where you can see the magnificent view of the sea and the village.


Across the tunnel you will find the falls where you can see once again the magnificent landscapes of Madeira. Due to the difficult orography of Madeira, early the sea became the way used to transport the genera produced in the countryside to Funchal including products from the north of the island. The Ribeira Brava was at the same time a place of passage for those who crossed the island by the coast, from those who went south to the North, and still from those who came here by boat and followed the rest on foot. Thus the port became the focal point of this communication.




Situated between a valley, the brave river, it has a magnificent belvedere, from where you can observe from the extension of the whole village, as well as the coast to the West and East, obtaining from this place magnificent landscapes.


This place offers magnificent landscapes on the green hills, only dotted by some dwellings, on the pointed mountains that dominate the valley and on a great extension until the sea, with Ribeira Brava in the background.


The Miradouro of Pousada dos Vinháticos, in Serra de Água, Ribeira Brava, is situated high in the mountains of Madeira, with panoramic views of the island and access to famous walks.


Viewpoint located on a high point of the island, offering excellent panoramic views of the south and north of the island.

Situated at 1007 m altitude, this viewpoint offers a beautiful landscape on the north and south coasts of the island and the valleys of Ribeira Brava and São Vicente.

The Boca da Encumeada viewpoint rises to a height of 1007 m, at the crest of the mountain range that crosses the interior of Madeira, from where glimpses of the deep valleys of Ribeira Brava (south coast) and of São Vicente (north coast) ).


Rustic and cozy, known for its ponchã, the famous and traditional drink of Serra de Água, made from cane brandy, orange juice and honey, with a family atmosphere and a rustic decoration.



Inhabited and cultivated since the beginning of the settlement of the Island of Madeira, the history of the Fajã dos Padres follows the history of the island itself, with numerous records and references to owners, agricultural crops and the inhabitants of the place, XV.

The name of the fajã is due to the fact that it belonged to the priests of the Society of Jesus for more than 150 years. In their passage through the Fajã dos Padres, the Jesuits left notorious landmarks, undoubtedly highlighting the introduction of Malvasia wine, a wine whose reputation surpassed the borders of Portugal, and reached as far as England or the United States and even Russia.

Despite the isolation of the place, about 50 people lived in Fajã, among settlers and Jesuits, distributed by a group of about 10 houses. In addition to the tassel of the lands, it is believed that the place will have served then as a summer resort for the friars.

Today it is possible to relive some of this past heritage by visiting some of these small restored houses, sampling the delicious Malvasia wine on a visit to the old wine cellar, or walking the ancient stone paths among the farms.


The Calhau da Lapa is a small oasis in the Parish of Campanário, which enjoys tranquility and crystal clear waters for a dip in the Atlantic. There are some support houses and a set of caves excavated in layers of pyroclastic, which are noted among basaltic rocks.

A small landing, with many different versions over the years, has been resisting the destruction imposed by the force of the sea since 1909. Towards the west, near the coast is the islet of the Campanario, which, with its peculiar bell-shaped shape Name to the parish. To complete the attractions of this beautiful place, a grandiose waterfall, about 90 meters, ends near the mouth of Ribeira da Lapa.

If you like sea and tranquility, you have a fabulous opportunity to spend a few days in Calhau da Lapa on the Steeple because the Associação Desportiva do Campanário has been equipping since 2005 the 2 houses under its management, placing these available to the population in general.