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Amazing São Miguel Island Views In The Azores


Modified: December 27, 2023

by Nadine Wagoner



Welcome to São Miguel Island, the largest and most enchanting island in the Azores archipelago. Located in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, this gem offers an array of captivating views that will leave you in awe. From stunning coastal vistas to majestic volcanic landscapes, São Miguel is a paradise for nature lovers and adventure seekers.


As you explore the island, you will be mesmerized by the diversity of its landscapes. From dramatic cliffs plunging into the ocean to lush green valleys and picturesque lakes, São Miguel is a haven of natural beauty. The island boasts a unique blend of tropical and European charm, making it a truly unforgettable destination.


Whether you prefer leisurely walks along the coastline or hiking up to the highest peaks, São Miguel has something for everyone. The island’s abundant natural beauty offers countless opportunities for stunning views and unforgettable experiences.


In this article, we will take you on a journey to discover the amazing São Miguel Island views. From coastal panoramas and volcanic formations to charming villages and serene lakes, you will be captivated by the island’s breathtaking scenery. So, grab your camera and get ready to immerse yourself in the wonders of São Miguel.


Overview of São Miguel Island

São Miguel Island, also known as “The Green Island,” is located in the eastern group of the stunning Azores archipelago in Portugal. It is the largest and most populated island in the Azores, offering a perfect mix of natural beauty and rich culture. The island is known for its lush, green landscapes, picturesque villages, and breathtaking views that attract visitors from all over the world.


With a diverse range of attractions, São Miguel appeals to nature enthusiasts, adventure seekers, and those seeking relaxation. The island boasts an impressive coastline with rugged cliffs, pristine beaches, and secluded coves. Inland, you’ll find rolling hills, volcanic peaks, and tranquil lakes nestled within lush forests.


One of the highlights of São Miguel Island is its volcanic origins. The island is home to several volcanic craters, hot springs, and geothermal areas that make it a unique destination. The Furnas Valley, for example, is famous for its bubbling hot springs, steam vents, and mud pots. Visitors can witness the incredible power of nature as they explore these volcanic formations.


Aside from its natural wonders, São Miguel Island also boasts charming towns and villages that provide a glimpse into the Azorean way of life. Ponta Delgada, the island’s capital, is a vibrant city with a historic center, beautiful churches, and lively markets. Other picturesque villages, such as Furnas and Sete Cidades, offer tranquility and breathtaking views.


With its mild climate and scenic landscapes, São Miguel Island is also a paradise for outdoor activities. From hiking and biking to swimming and surfing, there are endless opportunities to explore the island’s natural beauty and enjoy thrilling adventures.


As you venture further into the island, you’ll find yourself surrounded by stunning panoramic views that showcase São Miguel’s unique blend of ocean, mountains, and greenery. Whether you’re standing on a rugged coastal cliff, peering into a volcanic crater, or admiring the vibrant colors of a lake, each view is sure to leave a lasting impression.


In the following sections, we will delve deeper into the fantastic views that São Miguel Island has to offer. Get ready to be amazed by the island’s coastal beauty, volcanic landscapes, charming villages, and other scenic highlights.


Stunning Coastal Views

São Miguel Island is blessed with a coastline that boasts some of the most stunning views in the Azores. As you drive along the coastal roads or hike along the cliffside trails, you’ll be treated to breathtaking vistas of the deep blue Atlantic Ocean meeting the rugged cliffs.


One of the most iconic coastal views on the island can be found at Ponta da Ferraria. This unique spot offers a dramatic view of cliffs towering over the ocean, with waves crashing against the rocks below. The natural rock formation known as “The Needle” adds an element of intrigue to the already mesmerizing scenery.


For a different perspective, head to Ponta do Cintrão, located on the northeastern coast of the island. From here, you can marvel at the panoramic view of swirling ocean currents, created by the meeting of various ocean currents. The display of the untamed power of the sea against the backdrop of rugged cliffs is truly awe-inspiring.


If you prefer a more tranquil coastal experience, visit the picturesque fishing village of Mosteiros. This charming village is known for its natural swimming pools formed by volcanic rocks. Immerse yourself in crystal-clear waters while enjoying the view of towering cliffs against the horizon.


Another exceptional coastal viewpoint can be found at Salto do Cavalo, near the town of Faial da Terra. This vantage point offers a magnificent sight of cliffs plunging into the ocean, with waterfalls cascading down their faces. It’s a view that perfectly captures the raw beauty of São Miguel’s coastal landscapes.


Furthermore, the coastal views are not limited to land. São Miguel Island offers various boat tours and excursions that allow you to appreciate the island’s beauty from a different perspective. Sail along the coast and witness the towering cliffs, hidden coves, and secluded beaches that can only be accessed by sea.


Whether you’re gazing out from a dramatic cliffside or cruising along the coast, the stunning coastal views of São Miguel Island will undoubtedly leave you in awe. The combination of dramatic cliffs, crashing waves, and endless horizons creates an unforgettable experience and provides the perfect backdrop for your Azorean adventure.


Majestic Volcanic Landscapes

São Miguel Island is a testament to the power and beauty of volcanic activity. The island’s volcanic landscapes offer a mesmerizing blend of rugged terrain, striking rock formations, and geothermal wonders.


One of the most iconic volcanic landscapes on the island is the Sete Cidades Crater. This massive volcanic caldera is home to twin lakes, known as the Blue Lake and the Green Lake, which are separated by a narrow strip of land. The contrasting colors of the lakes against the backdrop of the surrounding mountains create a breathtaking view that is sure to leave you in awe.


Another must-see volcanic attraction is the Furnas Valley, a geothermal wonderland nestled in the heart of São Miguel Island. The valley is dotted with fumaroles, hot springs, and boiling mud pots, producing an otherworldly landscape. The sight of steam rising from the ground and the scent of sulfur in the air add to the unique experience of exploring this volcanic wonder.


For a more adventurous encounter with volcanic landscapes, hike up to the summit of Pico da Vara, the highest point on the island. As you ascend, you’ll be treated to panoramic views of the surrounding volcanic terrain, with layers of lush greenery and jagged rock formations stretching as far as the eye can see.


But the volcanic landscapes of São Miguel Island aren’t just limited to these popular attractions. As you explore the island, you’ll come across volcanic craters, lava fields, and lava tubes that showcase the island’s volcanic heritage. The Capelinhos Volcano on the neighboring island of Faial is also worth a visit, offering a glimpse into the devastating power of a volcanic eruption.


In addition to the visual splendor, São Miguel’s volcanic landscapes also provide unique opportunities for relaxation and rejuvenation. The island is dotted with natural hot springs and thermal baths where you can soak in mineral-rich waters while taking in the surrounding volcanic scenery.


Whether you’re exploring the crater lakes, wandering through lava fields, or immersing yourself in natural hot springs, the majestic volcanic landscapes of São Miguel Island are sure to captivate your imagination and leave you with memories that will last a lifetime.


Lush Greenery and Scenic Countryside

São Miguel Island is renowned for its lush green landscapes and picturesque countryside. The island’s fertile soil and moderate climate provide the perfect conditions for a vibrant and diverse ecosystem.


As you explore the countryside, you’ll be greeted by rolling hills, emerald-green pastures, and neatly arranged fields adorned with vibrant flowers. The Azorean countryside is a patchwork of colors, with vibrant hydrangeas, wildflowers, and blooming azaleas adding bursts of color to the landscape.


One of the iconic views in the countryside is the famous Green Valey, located near the village of Ribeira Grande. This stunning valley is surrounded by verdant hills and offers panoramic views of the lush green scenery. As you meander through the meadows and farmlands, you’ll be captivated by the tranquility and beauty of São Miguel’s countryside.


The island is also dotted with charming farming villages where time seems to stand still. Each village exudes a unique charm, with traditional stone houses, cobblestone streets, and colorful gardens. The village of Nordeste, nestled in the northeastern part of the island, is particularly known for its picturesque countryside views. With its well-preserved architecture and sweeping vistas, it feels like stepping into a postcard.


For a closer experience with nature, head to the lush forests and botanical gardens that are scattered across the island. Terra Nostra Park, located in the Furnas Valley, is a prime example. This enchanting botanical garden is home to a wide variety of trees, plants, and flowers, creating a serene and picturesque environment.


Additionally, the island boasts an extensive network of walking trails that will lead you through enchanting woodlands, verdant valleys, and hidden waterfalls. Whether you’re taking a leisurely stroll or embarking on a challenging hike, the views of the countryside will surely leave you breathless.


From the vibrant green pastures to the scenic countryside vistas, São Miguel Island offers a tranquil escape to embrace nature’s beauty. The island’s lush greenery and picturesque countryside make it a haven for those seeking serenity, rejuvenation, and a deep connection with the natural world.


Charming Traditional Villages

São Miguel Island is not just a haven for stunning natural landscapes, but also home to charming traditional villages that exude timeless beauty and rustic charm. These villages offer a glimpse into the rich cultural heritage and traditional way of life in the Azores.


Ponta Delgada, the capital of São Miguel, is a vibrant city with a historic center rich in architectural beauty. Wander through the narrow cobblestone streets and admire the beautifully preserved buildings adorned with intricate azulejo tiles. The city’s main square, Praça Gonçalo Velho, is lined with charming cafes and shops, making it the perfect place to soak in the atmosphere of the island.


Another must-visit village on the island is Furnas, situated in the Furnas Valley. This charming village is famous for its natural geothermal activity, but it also offers a glimpse into the traditional rural lifestyle of São Miguel. Explore the flower-lined streets, visit the local market, and indulge in a traditional “Cozido das Furnas” meal, which is cooked underground using the natural heat of the volcanic springs.


If you’re looking for a coastal village experience, head to Ribeira Grande. This picturesque town is known for its beautifully preserved architecture, with grand manor houses and churches that showcase the island’s colonial past. Stroll along the riverfront promenade and admire the colorful facades of the buildings as you immerse yourself in the laid-back atmosphere of this charming village.


For a more remote and traditional feel, visit the village of Nordeste. Located in the northeastern part of the island, Nordeste is known for its stunning natural landscapes and breathtaking ocean views. Here, you can wander through the quiet streets, visit the picturesque church, and enjoy the tranquility of this hidden gem.


Each village on São Miguel Island has its own unique charm and character, offering visitors an opportunity to step back in time and experience the traditional way of life in the Azores. The warm hospitality of the locals, the well-preserved architecture, and the peaceful atmosphere make these villages a perfect escape from the hustle and bustle of modern life.


Whether you’re exploring the historic streets of Ponta Delgada, enjoying the geothermal wonders of Furnas, or embracing the rural charm of Nordeste, the traditional villages of São Miguel Island are sure to leave a lasting impression and provide a truly authentic Azorean experience.


Picturesque Lakes and Crater Viewpoints

São Miguel Island is a treasure trove of stunning lakes and mesmerizing crater viewpoints. These natural wonders offer breathtaking panoramas and the opportunity to immerse yourself in the beauty of the island’s volcanic landscapes.


Sete Cidades is a must-visit destination for anyone seeking picturesque lakes and breathtaking crater viewpoints. This volcanic crater is home to two stunning lakes, known as the Blue Lake (Lagoa Azul) and the Green Lake (Lagoa Verde). The dual-colored lakes, surrounded by lush greenery and steep cliffs, create a postcard-worthy view that will leave you in awe. For the best vantage point, head to Vista do Rei, a viewpoint that offers a panoramic view of the lakes and surrounding landscape.


Another picturesque lake on the island is Lagoa do Fogo, located in the center of São Miguel. Tucked away amidst mountains and dense vegetation, this crater lake presents a tranquil and serene setting. As you hike down to the lake or admire it from the viewpoints along the rim, you’ll be treated to breathtaking vistas of the sparkling azure waters against the verdant backdrop.


São Miguel Island also boasts lesser-known crater viewpoints that offer unique perspectives of the island’s volcanic landscapes. The Caldeira Velha viewpoint, for example, offers a breathtaking view of a volcanic crater with dense vegetation and hot springs. The picturesque Miradouro da Boca do Inferno, located in the northeastern part of the island, provides a panoramic view of sheer cliffs, rugged coastline, and crashing waves.


Aside from the famous lakes and viewpoints, São Miguel Island is dotted with smaller yet equally enchanting bodies of water. Ponds, known as “lagoons” in Portuguese, such as Lagoa das Furnas and Lagoa do Congro, are nestled within the island’s verdant landscapes, offering peaceful and idyllic scenes.


Whether you’re admiring the hues of the Sete Cidades lakes, gazing at the crystal-clear waters of Lagoa do Fogo, or discovering hidden crater viewpoints, São Miguel Island’s picturesque lakes and crater viewpoints provide a sensory feast for nature lovers. Immerse yourself in the beauty of these natural wonders and savor the tranquility of these enchanting landscapes.


Breathtaking Waterfalls

São Miguel Island is home to a collection of breathtaking waterfalls that cascade down lush green cliffs, adding a touch of enchantment to the natural beauty of the island. These mesmerizing waterfalls offer a serene and captivating experience for visitors.


One of the most famous waterfalls on São Miguel is Salto do Prego, located in the village of Faial da Terra. This stunning waterfall drops from a height of approximately 20 meters into a natural swimming hole, surrounded by verdant vegetation. The hike to reach Salto do Prego takes you through picturesque landscapes, making the journey as rewarding as the destination itself.


Another notable waterfall is Caldeira Velha, located in Ribeira Grande. This geothermal area not only boasts warm thermal pools but also features a stunning waterfall that cascades down moss-covered cliffs. The natural beauty of Caldeira Velha, with its lush ferns and vibrant foliage, creates a truly magical atmosphere.


For those looking for a more adventurous experience, Ribeira Quente offers the spectacular waterfall of Salto do Cagarrão. This majestic waterfall, surrounded by rugged cliffs and dense vegetation, can be reached through a thrilling hike that rewards you with a spectacular view. The sound of cascading water and the mist that fills the air make for a truly immersive nature experience.


In addition to these well-known waterfalls, São Miguel Island is home to numerous hidden gems waiting to be discovered. As you explore the island’s trails and remote areas, you may stumble upon cascades nestled within secluded valleys or tucked away behind dense forests. These hidden waterfalls offer a sense of tranquility and provide a perfect escape from the outside world.


Whether you’re seeking adventure, relaxation, or simply a connection with nature, the breathtaking waterfalls of São Miguel Island will mesmerize you with their beauty. The sight of water tumbling down, surrounded by lush greenery and the sound of its gentle roar, creates a sense of harmony and awe-inspiring wonder.


Beautiful Botanical Gardens and Parks

São Miguel Island is home to an array of beautiful botanical gardens and parks that showcase the island’s diverse flora and offer a tranquil escape into nature. These well-maintained green spaces are a paradise for plant enthusiasts, nature lovers, and those seeking a serene environment.


Terra Nostra Park, located in the Furnas Valley, is one of the most famous botanical gardens on the island. This enchanting park is home to a vast collection of plant species from around the world, including towering trees, vibrant flowers, and lush ferns. As you wander through the park’s pathways, you’ll discover hidden lakes, bubbling hot springs, and even a natural thermal pool where you can relax and soak in the mineral-rich waters.


Another notable botanical garden is the Jardim José do Canto, situated in the city of Ponta Delgada. This historic garden features an impressive collection of exotic plants and trees, some of which are rare and endangered species. The garden’s romantic atmosphere, with its winding paths and secret gardens, creates a serene and picturesque setting for a leisurely stroll.


Pico do Refúgio Botanical Garden, located near the village of Achada, is a hidden oasis that offers breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside. This garden showcases a variety of endemic and exotic plants, and its terraced layout provides a sense of tranquility and harmony with nature. Take a moment to relax on one of the garden’s benches while enjoying the panoramic vistas of the rolling hills and distant coastline.


In addition to these botanical gardens, São Miguel Island is dotted with beautifully maintained public parks that offer a peaceful escape. Parque Atlântico, located in Ponta Delgada, features manicured lawns, colorful flowerbeds, and shaded areas where you can find respite from the sun. Parque Terra Nostra, in Furnas, offers a combination of natural beauty and recreational facilities, including walking trails, picnic areas, and even an outdoor thermal pool fed by hot springs.


Exploring the botanical gardens and parks of São Miguel Island allows you to connect with the island’s rich flora and experience the calming effects of being surrounded by nature. Whether you’re admiring rare plants, enjoying a leisurely walk, or simply finding a quiet spot to rest, these green spaces provide a blissful escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.


Spectacular Sunset Spots

São Miguel Island is blessed with breathtaking landscapes that provide the perfect backdrop for stunning sunsets. Whether you’re standing on a rugged coastline or perched atop a volcanic crater, there are numerous spots on the island to witness the majesty of the setting sun.


Ponta da Ferraria, located on the western coast of the island, is a popular spot to enjoy mesmerizing sunsets. This cliffside location offers panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean, with the setting sun casting a golden glow over the crashing waves. The combination of the dramatic cliffs and the fiery sky creates a truly magical scene.


For a unique sunset experience, head to the viewpoint at Miradouro da Grota do Inferno. Located near the village of Nordeste, this vantage point offers a picturesque view of the rugged cliffs and the vastness of the ocean. As the sun dips below the horizon, you’ll witness a breathtaking display of colors, ranging from warm oranges to soft pinks, transforming the sky into a canvas of beauty.


If you’re in the mood for a romantic sunset setting, visit the village of Mosteiros on the western coast. This charming fishing village is known for its secluded coves and natural swimming pools. Find a spot on the black volcanic beach, with the ocean stretching before you, and watch as the sun paints the sky with vibrant hues, creating a truly romantic ambiance.


For a different perspective, make your way to Lagoa do Fogo, a stunning crater lake in the center of the island. Hike up to the viewpoint as the sun begins to set, and witness the colors reflecting off the tranquil waters of the lake. The symphony of colors, combined with the serenity of the lake, creates an unforgettable sunset experience.


Whether you’re on a cliffside, at a viewpoint, or by the lakeshore, the sunsets on São Miguel Island will leave you in awe. The island’s diverse landscapes, from rugged cliffs to serene lakes, offer a multitude of choices to witness these stunning natural spectacles. Grab your camera, sit back, and let the beauty of the sunset unfold before your eyes.


Unique Viewpoints and Lookout Spots

São Miguel Island is dotted with unique viewpoints and lookout spots that offer panoramic vistas of the island’s stunning landscapes. From dramatic coastal cliffs to volcanic craters and serene valleys, these viewpoints provide an opportunity to take in the awe-inspiring beauty of São Miguel from above.


One of the most iconic viewpoints on the island is Miradouro da Vista do Rei, located near the village of Sete Cidades. From this elevated spot, you can take in the breathtaking vista of the Sete Cidades twin lakes, nestled within a volcanic crater. The panoramic view of the lakes, surrounded by lush greenery and towering cliffs, is a sight to behold.


Head to Miradouro da Boca do Inferno in the northeastern part of the island for a captivating view of rugged cliffs and crashing waves. Perched on the edge of a cliff, this viewpoint allows you to witness the raw power of the ocean as it collides with the rocky coastline.


For a unique perspective, visit the Miradouro da Ponta do Sossego, located near the village of Nordeste. This viewpoint offers a stunning view of the northeastern coastline, with its rugged cliffs, lush fields, and the endless expanse of the Atlantic Ocean. It’s a perfect spot to capture the untamed beauty of the island.


If you’re looking for a panoramic view of the Furnas Valley, head to Pico do Ferro viewpoint. From this vantage point, you can gaze down upon the picturesque valley with its lush vegetation, volcanic fumaroles, and the tranquil Furnas Lake. It’s a stunning place to witness the harmony between the natural and the man-made elements of the landscape.


For a different perspective, visit Ponta do Cintrão, situated on the northeastern coast of the island. This viewpoint offers a mesmerizing view of swirling ocean currents, created by the meeting of various ocean currents. The display of the untamed power of the sea against the backdrop of rugged cliffs is truly awe-inspiring.


Whether you’re standing on a cliffside overlooking a volcanic crater, peering down at lush valleys, or gazing out at the endless expanse of the ocean, São Miguel Island’s unique viewpoints and lookout spots will leave you in awe of the remarkable beauty of nature. These elevated vistas offer a chance to appreciate the island’s diverse landscapes and the sheer magnificence of São Miguel’s natural wonders.



São Miguel Island in the Azores is a destination that truly captivates the senses, offering a wealth of stunning views that will leave you breathless. From the dramatic coastal cliffs to the majestic volcanic landscapes, the island is a paradise for nature lovers and those seeking awe-inspiring vistas.


Whether you find yourself gazing out at the infinite expanse of the Atlantic Ocean or standing in awe of the island’s volcanic craters and lakes, São Miguel’s natural beauty is unparalleled. The lush greenery and scenic countryside transport you to a world of tranquility and serenity, while the charming traditional villages provide a glimpse into the authentic Azorean way of life.


As you explore São Miguel Island, you’ll encounter breathtaking waterfalls cascading down moss-covered cliffs, witness vibrant sunsets painting the sky with a myriad of colors, and discover unique viewpoints that offer panoramic vistas of the island’s diverse landscapes.


With its botanical gardens, parks, and natural hot springs, São Miguel Island also provides opportunities for rejuvenation and relaxation, surrounded by the beauty of nature. The island’s unique blend of European and tropical charm makes every view a delight for the senses.


Whether you’re hiking along dramatic coastal trails, exploring volcanic craters, or simply basking in the tranquility of a picturesque village, São Miguel Island’s views will leave an indelible mark on your memory.


So, pack your camera, lace up your hiking boots, and get ready to immerse yourself in the wonders of São Miguel Island. From the stunning coastal vistas and majestic volcanic landscapes to the charming traditional villages and enchanting sunsets, this island will take your breath away at every turn.


Discover the beauty of São Miguel, and let its remarkable views create lifelong memories of an unforgettable Azorean adventure.