Once synonymous with chain hotels, blue rinses and golf courses, Madeira is experiencing a renaissance among the adventurers of the world, who adore its verdant scenery and dramatic landscapes. And only 45 minutes from downtown Funchal (but worlds away from bingo and set menus), Casas da Levada is a brilliant base for getting your boots muddy along the island’s best hikes. Then, as the sun sets, you get to retire to a peaceful bolthole, snuggled amongst apple orchards, for home-cooked dinners by a log fire.
- A stunning natural setting, with several levada walks starting close by
- Cool architecture and thoughtful modern design blended with charming rustic touches (think tree-trunk side tables and knitted Madeiran quilts)
- The gardens and the gorgeous shared infinity pool, which gazes out to sea
- A variety of house sizes, from bijou nests for 2-4 to group houses for up to 10
- Incredibly good value!
- No restaurant, and local eateries are 2km away (a short drive or 30-min walk)
- Supermarkets are 20 minutes away. There is a small honesty shop in reception but you'll need to stock up on groceries on your way here
- While near beautiful sea cliffs, swimmable beaches are a 20-minute drive away
- Casa da Vaca is traditionally Madeiran rather than modern in design (though we found it charming)
Best time to go
Our top tips
- Rural Houses
- 6 casas for 2-10
- Self-catering; restaurants 2km
- All ages welcome
- Open all year
- Outdoor Pool
- Spa Treatments
- Beach Nearby
- Pet Friendly
- Disabled Access
- Car essential
- Restaurants Nearby
- Air Conditioning
- Guest Lounge
- Daily Maid Service
- Towels & Bedlinen
Casas da Levada’s 6 houses are lovingly crafted with respect for nature. Handmade birch furniture rests on cool concrete floors, warmed with bright splashes of Madeiran colour and unique framed artwork (much of it by family and friends). The houses are stark yet supremely cheerful.
Each is different in size and layout, with 1-4 bedrooms, but all are welcoming with their own distinct appeal. We stayed in Casa da Cascata (which was our favourite): an open-plan studio for 2, with a grassy terrace on the roof and a tiny wood-burning stove. All houses have heaters, dehumidifiers, and either a fireplace or wood burner.
All of the smaller houses can accommodate a baby cot or extra bed, and the larger houses can be connected to welcome groups of up to 10. Casa dos Pereiros is split into 2 halves; T1, sleeping 2-4, and T2, sleeping 4-6.
Bathrooms have lovely poured concrete squared sinks, but in keeping with the eco theme, all except Vaca have showers rather than baths, and toiletries are provided.
We loved our bijou kitchen, with its sweet touches (fresh-cut herbs in a jar, hand-knitted coasters), a Nespresso machine and a couple of high-quality pans. Whilst basic, it was perfect for preparing light meals (pasta, salads); the larger houses have more comprehensive kitchens for more complex catering.
Ingredients for a simple but satisfying country breakfast will be placed in your fridge upon check-in (and replaced on request) for you to cook at your lazy leisure. Expect delicious smoked bacon, homemade quince jam, and fresh eggs from the clucking hens in the garden.
For other meals, there are a few simple restaurants in nearby Ponta do Pargo - O Farolim (2km / 4 mins drive or 30 mins walk) is particularly recommended. For self-catering, we'd advise doing a supermarket shop on the way here. Reception has a small honesty grocery shop with pasta, rice, olive oil, canned products, preserves, wine, beer, soft drinks, etc, but bigger stores are a 20+ minute drive away.
- Coffee / tea making
- Hob or stove
- There are several levada walks and hikes less than 5 minutes from the casitas, and multitudes more a short drive away. A levada is a long channel specific to Madeira, historically used to irrigate and bring domestic water to areas without running water. They often weave through stunning deserted woodlands or along coastal cliffs
- A mind-boggling array of excursions and activities can be arranged for you - everything from paragliding and windsurfing to canyoning and rock climbing
- Explore the nearby village of Ponta do Pargo, with its famous lighthouse perched precariously on dramatic chartreuse cliffs
- Take a scenic drive to the town of Porto Moniz (30 minutes) for a dip in its natural volcanic-rock swimming pools
- Day-trip to picture-perfect Funchal, which has a colourful port and cobble-stoned Old Town
Activities on site or nearby include:
Casas da Levada is brilliant for active, outdoorsy families. There's soft grass to play on, orchards to explore, and the friendly farm animals (chickens, sheep and rabbits) are always happy to say hello. There's a kids pool and the nearby town of Calheta (20 minutes’ drive) has a sheltered, sandy beach.
Babies (0-1 years), Toddlers (1-4 years), Children (4-12 years)
Family friendly accommodation:
Casa da Horta, Casa da Vaca and Casa da Cascata can all accommodate a baby cot or extra bed for families of 3. Casa dos Pereiros T1 can accommodate up to 4, Casa dos Pereiros T2 can accommodate up to 6 (T1 and T2 can be linked together to take up to 10 adults), and the large Casa do Pastor can accommodate up to 10.
Kids Activities on site:
- Farm animals
- Kids pool
- Games room
- Books and toys
Families Should Know:
The infinity pool and kids pool are both unfenced and unsupervised, and staircases have open sides
- Airport: 1 hour 10 minutes' drive (Funchal)
- Hospital: 20 minutes' drive
- Shop: 5 minutes' drive
Casas da Levada is set on a gently sloping hill outside the village of Ponta do Pargo in Madeira’s westernmost corner, with sweeping sea views. It's just over an hour's drive from Funchal Airport.
Funchal (68km) has scheduled, budget and charter flights from airports across the UK and Europe. Click on the links below for a list.
You'll need to hire a car to get here and travel around during your stay as public transport is very limited.
Detailed directions will be sent to you when you book through i-escape.com.
More on getting to Madeira and getting around
- Funchal 68.0 km FUN
- Beach 13.0 km
- Shops 2.0 km
- Restaurant 2.0 km