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What Are the Best Places to See in Sao Miguel?

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What Are the Best Places to See in Sao Miguel?

Sao Miguel is the largest and most populous island of Portugal’s Azores archipelago, and it’s one of the best places to visit in the country. The island offers beautiful landscapes, an interesting cultural heritage, delicious regional cuisine, and some of the best beaches in the Azores. With so much to see and do, it can be difficult to decide which places are the best to visit when visiting Sao Miguel. To help narrow down your choices, here’s a list of the best places to visit in Sao Miguel and why they’re so great:

1. Ponta Delgada

Ponta Delgada is the capital and largest city of Sao Miguel, and it’s where you’ll find the majority of the island’s attractions and activities. A heaving metropolis full of narrow winding streets and quaint alleyways, Ponta Delgada is the perfect place to explore the history and culture of Sao Miguel. You can find several churches, museums, and monuments dating from the 15th century, as well as wonderful cafés and bars, providing ideal locations to relax after your sightseeing adventures.

2. Furnas Valley

The Furnas Valley is located on the slopes of an extinct volcano, about 20 miles from Ponta Delgada. It’s a stunning place full of lush green vegetation, bubbling hot springs, and hot lava fields. The valley is home to the Furnas Thermal Park, which boasts several hot tubs fed by the thermal waters, as well as a beautiful lake surrounded by palm trees and stunning landscape. The park is a popular spot for relaxation and rejuvenation, making it an ideal spot for a day trip from Ponta Delgada.

3. Lagoa do Fogo

Lagoa do Fogo is a stunning lake surrounded by beautiful hills and towering cliffs. It was created from the eruptions of a volcano, and it’s one of the best places to appreciate the stunning landscapes of Sao Miguel. Lagoa do Fogo is popular with hikers, swimmers, and fishermen alike due to its location in a nature reserve and its unparalleled beauty.

4. Nordeste

Nordeste is a small town on the east coast of Sao Miguel, renowned for its dramatic cliffs overlooking the ocean. This small fishing village has a laid back atmosphere that makes it particularly appealing to visitors looking to escape the hustle and bustle of Ponta Delgada. The village also offers some wonderful seafood restaurants and beautiful terraced gardens too.

5. Sete Cidades

Sete Cidades is a twin crater lake situated on the western part of Sao Miguel. It’s one of Portugal’s most famous landmarks due to its remarkable beauty; the lake is surrounded by lush green vegetation and hills, making it a popular spot for hikes, picnics, and scenic drives. You can also take a tour around the lake on board a traditional fishing boat known as “traques” or take one of the many boat trips that offer views of both crater lakes. Overall, Sao Miguel has so much to offer both visitors and locals alike. There are plenty of sights of historical interest such as Ponta Delgada, historical spots such as Furnas Valley, and natural wonders like Lagoa do Fogo and Sete Cidades. No matter what your interests are, you’re sure to find something that appeals to you on this beautiful Portuguese island. If you’re interested in learning more about Sao Miguel make sure to check out MyAzoresVacation for more information about things to do in this superb place.

An Insider’s Guide to Sao Miguel Island

Sao Miguel Island is the largest of the Azorean islands, an archipelago that belongs to Portugal. This beautiful island is famous for its lush green landscapes, volcanic craters, hot springs, and beautiful coastlines. Here is all you need to know to explore the best places to visit and experience the best things that Sao Miguel island has to offer.

Local Attractions

There are plenty of popular tourist attractions on Sao Miguel Island. One of the most famous places to see is Sete Cidades, a twin lake formed in the crater of an extinct volcano. This is a perfect spot for hiking, biking, and enjoying the panoramic views. It is worth exploring the cliffside viewpoints, the local fishing villages, and the surrounding forests.

Another attraction on the island is Furnas, a geothermal valley with natural hot springs and thermal pools that serve as a popular spa destination. Visitors can experience the historical thermal hot-water baths, hydrotherapy, and enjoy the relaxation of the Dona Beija hot springs.

The island’s capital, Ponta Delgada, is also worth visiting. Its historic center features stunning churches, squares, and narrow streets dating back to the 16th century. Some of the popular attractions to visit in Ponta Delgada are the Carlos Machado Museum, the Jardim Botânico José do Canto, and the Forte de Sao Brás.

Dining Spots

Sao Miguel offers a full range of restaurants, from fine dining to casual eateries. The island is famous for seafood, one of the most traditional dishes being caldeirada, a fish stew consisting of several types of fish with vegetables and potatoes.

One of the famous seafood restaurants on the island is O Bar Caloura in the south of Sao Miguel. It has an exceptional seafood menu and a superb location with views over the ocean, making it a great spot for a romantic dinner.

Another well-known restaurant is Tony’s Restaurant in Furnas, serving traditional Azorean cuisine. The food is cooked in the hot springs as they use the heat from the thermal springs beneath the restaurant to prepare the dishes.

Cultural Experiences

The Azorean culture is an essential part of the island’s history, and visitors can get a glimpse by visiting some of the local museums and festivals.

The Carlos Machado Museum in Ponta Delgada is one of the island’s important institutions that showcase Azorean art and history from the prehistoric era, the Portuguese discovery, and the island’s modern-day development.

One of the most significant cultural festivals on the island is the Holy Ghost festival (Festa do Divino Espirito Santo), held during the summer months. It features parades, music, and traditional food.

Local History

Sao Miguel’s unique history dates back to the discovery of the island by the Portuguese in the 15th century. The original settlers were from mainland Portugal and were followed by later migrations from the Azores and the Madeira Islands.

One of the best-preserved structures of the island’s early history is the Capelas Museum house. It is a great starting point to learn about the island’s architecture, and you can see other traditional houses in the museum’s garden.

Off-the-Beaten-Path Suggestions

Apart from the major tourist attractions, Sao Miguel has plenty of off-the-beaten-path destinations worth exploring. One such place is Pico do Ferro, a viewpoint in the village of Faial da Terra that offers a breathtaking view of the cascading waterfall of Salto do Prego.

Another hidden gem on the island is the Caloura Islet, a small pristine island located off the coast of Lagoa. Visitors can take a boat ride to the island, enjoy snorkeling, and take in the fantastic views.

In conclusion, Sao Miguel Island is a perfect destination for those who want to experience the best that the Azores have to offer. Its stunning natural landscapes, unique culture and history, and gastronomic delights make it a must-see travel destination.

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What Are the Best Places to See in Sao Miguel?

Experience Adventure Like Never Before: Book Your Tour Today!