Above The Clouds – Pico Do Arieiro, Madeira

Updated: 13 Sep 2023


During a recent visit to the beautiful island of Madeira, one of my main priorities was to visit Pico do Arieiro, Madeira to be above the clouds and experience this true wonderment of nature.


At 1,818 m high (5,964.6 feet), Pico do Arieiro is third highest peak on the Portuguese island and autonomous region of Madeira. Situated within the mountainous interior of the island roughly halfway between the northern and southern coasts.


Above The Clouds – Pico Do Arieiro, Madeira


With views of Pico Ruivo, the highest peak on Madeira, this vantage point is as scenic as they come. It is a photographers paradise!


The best part about Pico do Arieiro is how it can often be just above the clouds due to its height of 1818m above sea level. This means you enjoy a mystical atmosphere as the sea of clouds rolls by over the mountains below.


Above The Clouds – Pico Do Arieiro, Madeira


Despite the giant peaks in the backdrop, it’s what is right in front of you that becomes the focal point. If you have the right conditions, a sea of clouds will fill the valley below.


Above the clouds – Views from Pico do Arieiro, Madeira


“It’s beyond magical and something so unique to witness”


The elegant white mass of clouds slowly pours down into the lower valleys, creating an incredible waterfall of clouds. It’s beyond magical and something so unique to witness. I found myself taking in the landscape and thinking to myself, where else in the world could you see something just like this?


Above The Clouds – Pico Do Arieiro, Madeira


I spent several worthwhile hours on the mountain with my camera in hand, just mesmerised by the ever changing vistas. I constantly thought how wonderful the natural world can be, whilst having the extended opportunity to experience this wonderment of nature.


I have experienced this phenomena previously in other parts of the world, but not for this length of time. Even as I descended down the mountain, I was continuously photographing the vistas which became apparent.


So what causes this phenomena to occur?


 As air heated at the surface is lifted, it cools and water vapour condenses to produce the cloud. Throughout the day, if conditions allow, these can grow in height and size and can eventually form into low-level clouds: stratus, cumulus and stratocumulus. They typically form at 500 to 3000 m altitude and have limited vertical development.


Should you ever visit the island of Madeira, it is certainly a worthwhile experience visiting Pico do Arieiro and witnessing this wonderment of nature.




Category: Adventure, Articles, Digital Photography, Exploration, International Travel, Landscape photography, Learn Digital Photography, marketing, Mastering Your Photography, Natural World, Natural World Photography, nature, online, Outdoor Photography, photo, Photography, Publication, Travel, website / Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


Sign Up To Our Newsletter

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.