Curral Das Freiras

« a small village in the Nun's Valley in Madeira »

Curral das Freiras is one of the few villages located in the heart of Madeira Island along with Serra de Agua. Situated in a volcanic cirque and nestled in the middle of the impressive mountains, we can only advise you to take a walk around the village to enjoy the magnificent panorama. The small freguesia is located in the "valley of the nuns".

The village of Curral das Freiras - Madeira
« Le village de Curral das Freiras »

We will regret (or not) the numerous buses of tourists who come to amass in the various very...touristy shops. Curral das Freiras is a real tourist nest because of its proximity to the capital Funchal, but also because of its natural charm, in the middle of imposing mountains. The speciality of the village is chestnut liqueur. You'll have to escape this tourist cluster and climb up the mountain to discover one of the most beautiful views Madeira has to offer: the Eira do Serrado Belvedere (Miradouro).

History of the village

Curral das Freiras means "Sisters' Farm". The creation of the village dates back to the age of piracy. In 1566, the island was attacked by the French pirate Bertrand de Montluc who landed in Funchal. The story goes that the nuns of the convent of Santa Clara took refuge on the island, in the heart of a valley that was difficult for the pirates to reach: the now named Valley of the Nuns, sometimes translated as Valley of the Sisters. As such, the church of Our Lady of Deliverance is the unique historical heritage of the Valley of the Nuns.
The miradouro of Eira do Serrado

Climb up to the Pico do Serrado to discover the famous Valley of the Nuns and the small village of Curras das Freiras. The Eira do Serrado viewpoint is simply one of the most beautiful on the island. Located at 1095 metres above sea level, it can be reached from the mountainous Estrada da Eira do Serrado road or from the village of Curras das Freiras.

The Nuns' Valley, from Miroudaro Eira do Serrado
« La vallée des Nonnes, depuis le Miroudaro Eira do Serrado »

From this viewpoint you can see the different mountains of the island: chao dos terreiros, pico da cruz, pico de serradinho, pico Grande (1654 m), pico da Geada. Below the pico do Serrado runs the "ribeira das socorridos": river of the survivors. The island's first settlers found refuge in the river's gorges during the island's great fires (which began to clear the land in the 1430s). You can see that this river cuts the village in two parts.

What to do in Curral das Freiras?

Many tourists are disappointed by the welcome they receive in this dizzying and original place. Many shops and traders are waiting for you to discover the local speciality: the chestnut in various forms (liqueur, cakes...). In November, the chestnut festival takes place to promote this local speciality.

Interior of the church of Our Lady of Deliverance - Curral das Freiras Madeira
« Intérieur de l'église Notre Dame de la Délivrance »

As for visits, the village church of Notre Dame de la Délivrance is not without interest. We will turn especially to the viewpoints and the famous Belvedere of the Pico do Serrado. For the activities, we will turn to the walk with several paths of hike with, inevitably of the unevenness considering the place. You can also try swimming in the river or canyoning.

How to get to the village?

To get to Curral das Freiras by car, you have to take the E.R. 107 from Funchal and go through a long tunnel that goes under the mountain: the VE6. It takes about 15 to 20 minutes to get there. You can also avoid going through the tunnel by taking the old mountain road, but it's longer... and also more vertiginous!

Curral das Freiras mountain road - Nonnes valley
« La route qui mène à Curral das Freiras... vertigineuse ! »

Buses also serve this part of the island: you will have to take the 81 line which goes through the same tunnel. It takes about 25 to 45 minutes depending on your point of departure. Route 81 starts near the port of Funchal, close to the cable car that leads to the Monte district. The bus takes you to Curral das Freiras and then through the village to the small neighbourhood of Lombo Chao, located west of Pico do Serrado.

Carte interactive de Curral Das Freiras

Légende de la carte :

Eglises et Chapelles


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