guide to visit
This is one of the most ancient localities in the Madeira Island, created on the sequence of the Funchal and Machico villages, after the death of Henry the Navigator in 1460.
Ribeira Brava is also located in an important accessibility spot, linking by land to the North of the Island through the lovely Água and Encumeada Mountains, from where one has wonderful panoramas. A small harbour was soon built in order to ease the transportation of goods to Funchal by boat.
The toponym derivates from an untamed (“brava”) small river (“ribeira”) that has been wisely adapted for the irrigation of the surrounding agricultural camps, part of the famous “Levadas” net, that supplies the Island of water even in the most recondite places, and is nowadays the best way to get to know the magical inner of the Island.
Ribeira Brava is proud of its interesting heritage and traditions, with monuments such as the lovely Mother Church, the São Bento Fort, the Town Hall Building (an ancient manor house dated from the 18th / 19th centuries, with a beautiful Garden), the Conceição, Apresentação and Our Lady of Grace Chapels, as well as interesting Museums such as the Ethnographic Madeira Museum, situated in an ancient Franciscan Convent and a Religious Art Museum.
The Ribeira Brava region is also famous for its other very typical Madeira feature: its traditional Handicraft, with old knowledge and techniques, producing various works of regional embroidery, wood and tapestry.
Every July the village is filled with colour, fun and devotion in the São Pedro Celebrations, where all the folklore, gastronomy, party, dance and amusement attract many visitors.
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