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Ribeira Brava - A Short Introduction

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Located on the sunny southern coast at the foot of a dramatic gorge and only 20 minutes drive from Funchal you will find Ribeira Brava. This village with a bustling seafront promenade, numerous shops and restaurants is perfect for a one day stop. Ribeira Brava is one of the first parishes of Madeira and became an important staging post on the trade route during the 15th Centuary.

The village prospered in the cultivation of sugar which at the time was the islands primary crop. The proceeds of the flourishing sugar trade was used to help build the surprisingly grand parish church found here in Ribeira Brava called the Igreja do São Bento.

You may find the town hall a little further on set in beautiful gardens and jacaranda trees. This was built in 1765 and was once the home of a wealthy sugar merchant.

The Ethnographical Museum is found a few minutes walk from the Largo das Herédias, this museum was once a rum distillery which later became a water-powered sugar cane and cereal mill. In 1996 it became a museum which is dedicated to local crafts which give an insight to do the development of the fishing and weaving trades. On the main road you may find the João Carlos Abreu Collection which is museum where you may find a wonderful collection of model horses.

Ribeira Brava is said to have gotten its name from the wild river that used to flow here and which comes still comes alive after some heavy rains.

One of the main highlights in Ribeira Brava is it´s annual music festival which takes place in October and the Festa de São Pedro at the end of June.










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