The black sands of Seixal, Madeira

seixal village

After not discovering a sand beach at Prainhas, we headed west across the island to Seixal to see what it was like.  It is a really small town just before you get to Porto Moniz and I’m pretty sure there’s only one road that leads DOWN! It isn’t well signposted (No surprise for Madeira) but you can see it from the main road.

Divided by a river, the population of the town is a whopping 600 people! See what I mean when I said it was small.


Seixal Beach

Steep valley

The beach sits at the bottom of a steep valley where houses and vines perch atop small ridges, many of which are empty or abandoned.


Praia de Laje beach

The beach is actually really nice but because we visited in winter AND when it was raining, the photos don’t do it justice.

We decided to take Max the dog (our neighbour’s dog) and he had a great time running up and down the beach. There were quite a few other dogs in the vicinity and all were friendly.

The surf club next to the beach offers paddle board lessons in the summer and this calm beach would be perfect to learn on.


The black sand beach


The beach at Seixal.


The harbour wall that protects the beach


There are two waterfalls visible from the beach.  The first is on the beach and you can walk underneath it. It’s located at the far end.

The more famous waterfall pours down the mountain face opposite the beach and you can see the Bridal Veil (Véu de noiva) flowing into the ocean.


The bridal veil waterfall that tumbles into the ocean


The waterfall on the beach

natural swimming pools

On the other side of the harbour is a natural swimming pool.  Despite being winter it is a lush turquoise colour and in the summer months it must be fantastic.

The pools are protected by rocks which locals fish from and you can hear the Atlantic waves battering them! The pools are a haven of tranquility and calm in comparison to that sea lol.



We stopped off at the cafe and ordered water, mixed salad and chips. The portions are very generous and the prices pretty low. The food was lovely and far outweighed our expectations.

The cafe owner was lovely and even brought Max a bowl of water 🙂

The dock house

Talk about being in ‘the midst of it’, this little 19th century house situated bang in the middle of the dock is a residential house up for letting.

Once a warehouse for wine casks it could only be reached by a narrow and wooden bridge.



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