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Ilha de São Miguel Travel Guide: 214 reviews and 827 photos

The Green Island

São Miguel, with 747km2 and 137.699 inhabitants (data from 2011), is the largest Island of the Azores.
The process of populating of the Island was initiated in 1444 by peoples from Mainland Portugal and some from various European countries, especially France.
In 1522, an earthquake destroyed Vila Franca do Campo, and Ponta Delgada became the new capital.
After the autonomy, São Miguel is the principal political and administrative centre of Region and seat of the Regional government.

Due to its volcanic origin, the Island presents wonderful landscapes. Lagoa das Sete Cidades, a protected landscape and one of the seven natural wonders of Portugal, is situated at the west side of the island in Sete Cidades. When going down to this caldeira, one can see Lagoa de Santiago on your left side.
In the middle of the island there is Lagoa do Fogo, probably the most interesting landscape in the Azores.
Going from the city of Ribeira Grande to this lake, you must stop at Caldeira Velha.
Furnas is a picturesque village in a valley, well-known by the lake, geisers and botanic garden. Close to here, you reach Ribeira Quente, a typical fishing village with an amazing bay beach.

At Nordeste municipality, we find the highest mountain of the island - Pico da Vara - 1103m, which is also a nature reserve. In this municipality, enjoy the nature through the tourist viewing points such as Salto da Farinha, Ponta do Sossego and Ponta da Madrugada. The latter is popular among locals for sunrise during the Summer. If you want to feel the nature, go to Tronqueira by off-road vehicle. At Achada parish you must visit the beautiful waterfall and the Natural Park of Ribeira dos Caldeirões around it.
If you are looking for personalized tours, don't hesitate to contact Festitour, a great company offering an excellent service.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:The volcanic landscape
  • Cons:The volcanic origin
  • Intro Updated Jun 2, 2014
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