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Cabo Girão
View from Cabo Girão
Madeira, Portugal
 
Earth's Natural Wonders in Africa
 
Height of Cabo Girão: 1,902 feet (590 meters)
Rock type: volcanic
 
 
 
Cabo Girão[1]
   

 

 

Cabo Girão is a steep sea cliff located in the southern part of the Atlantic Portuguese Madeira Islands.
Cabo Girao, Maderia, Portugal

The terraced fields lying beneath the cliff used to be only accessible by boat. In August 2003, a cable car was installed on the slope of the cliff so farmers can reach these low-lying fields.

Cabo Girão is a popular lookout point as well as a starting point for hikers. Above the cliffs stand a communications tower and the parish of Quinta Grande. The road linking Calheta and Funchal runs 1 km north.

Looking down from the world's second highest sea cliff, Cabo Girao, Maderia, Portugal [1] The length of the cliff reaches from approximately 1 km south of Campanário to the west of the urban sprawl of Câmara de Lobos
Situated less than 2 km from the town of Câmara de Lobos, it rises from 560 to 589 meters above sea level. Many brochures tell that it is the second steepest cliff in Europe, but at least two European cliffs (Preikestolen with 604 m and Slieve League with 601 m) are higher.[2]


The Portuguese poet Luis Vaz de Camões once called the island of Madeira "the end of the world." Stand at the vertical rock face called Cabo Girão on the main island's southern coast and you begin to understand why. Taller than any sea cliff in Europe, this is also the second highest in the world, the cape dives nearly a half mile down to the Atlantic ocean, but does not stop there. As the exposed upper reaches of an enormous oceanic volcano, this land mass's steep flanks are surrounded by such deep waters that sperm whale are often sighted offshore. Atop these majestic cliffs, one can gaze to the horizon over the Atlantic to follow the bending corridor of the Earth.

While standing at the top provides the bird's-eye perspective, a position within its great shadow on the sea provides an entirely different one. Sporting a headdress of eucalyptus and fern-like mimosa trees, the black chunk of basalt is necklaced in white ribbons of falling water which irrigate a forest of colorful mosses, lichens, and cliff-loving plants called stonecrop. To really appreciate the enormity of these cliffs, hop on a boat for a perfect view of the cape.[3]

 

 

 

FerdinandoBarros
August 31, 2008

 

The World Wonders .Com-visit 1,000 world wonders at www.theworldwonders.com

 

 
 
African
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28 finalists-7 winners will be announced in 2011

 

References
 
1. Flickr-Cabo Girão-Creative Commons Attribution License-retrieved 6/27/2009
2. Wikipedia-Cabo Girão, Madeira, Portugal-retrieved 6/27/2009
3. 1,001 Natural Wonders You Must See Before You Die 2005-p. 493- Michael Bright-retrieved 6/22/2009
 Wikipedia  text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

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