the best landscapes of a green road trip in sao miguel azores
Last month, I traveled to my country but to an amazing place I've never been before. This place has always been on my bucket list and finally it was time to visit São Miguel, also known as The Green Island, in the Azores. The island will make you fall in love about its green landscapes and some of them are even almost impossible to find due to the density of nature, so the best advice I can give to anyone thinking of visiting this wonder is that you rent a car.
I took a 4 day trip, with my boyfriend and my brother, we rented a car and spent the days on the road discovering some of the most beautiful places I've ever been. São Miguel is a volcanic island and the only smoke you will see it's not from factories and pollution, but an effect due to the mix of geothermic activity, completely natural. Other things you'll see are beautiful views, black sand beaches, picnic areas at every turn and cows feeding their babies. If you are a nature lover like me, you will want to stop at each lake, enjoy each landscape and explore each waterfall, but remember that there is so much to see and you don't want to miss a thing.
Start the day early and visit Lagoa das Empadadas (Empadadas lagoon). Then stop at the Miradouro Boca do Inferno (Hell's Mouth View) and admire the beautiful Lagoa Sete Cidades (Seven Cities lagoon), Lagoa do Canário (Canary Lagoon) and Lagoa Rasa (Rasa Lagoon).
Continue along the road and stop at the Vista do Rei (King's View), explore the ruins of the hotel Monte Palace (climb all the stairs of the hotel for a breathtaking view). Drive towards Mosteiros, dive in the natural sea pools or continue driving to Ferraria, where you will find a thermal SPA to enjoy the rest of your afternoon.
Go to Ribeira Grande in the morning, explore the waterfalls in Salto do Cabrito and the nature walks. Continue to drive towards Caldeira Velha (the Old Boiler), where you will find amazing natural pools (volcanic water) and incredible peace, entrance fee is 3€/person.
Head on to Lagoa do Fogo (Lagoon of fire), a beautiful clean blue water with birds flying over and flowers coloring the surrounding mountains. Finish your day in Lagoa do Congro (Conger Lagoon), a 15 min walk that is worth to admire the quietness below.
Spend your morning admiring the beautiful nature in Ribeira dos Caldeirões Natural Park and have a picnic there. In the afternoon, explore the northeast of the island, go to the Arnel lighthouse and photograph the beautiful ocean in Ponta do Sossego Viewing Point.
For the perfect end of the day, visit the Gorreana tea factory, feel the different aromas, enjoy the flavour and watch the wonderful shades of the sunset.
Finish your trip by spending the last day inside a volcano, go to Furnas and observe the boiling water inside the soil and the natural fumaroles in the hills (the smell is horrible, but it's worth it), entrance fee is 0,50€/person + car park.
Spend your afternoon in Terra Nostra Park, you will find natural volcanic water jacuzzi, a huge brown water pool and amazing nature walks to explore, entrance fee is 7€/person.
Finish your day visiting the Pineapple greenhouse at the farm of Augusto Arruda, entrance is free.
I didn't do a where to eat guide, because we took picnic whenever possible, taking more advantage of time. But I can definitely recommend you a place where we went for lunch: Rotas. It's a lovely vegetarian/vegan restaurant, located in the center of Ponta Delgada and even my brother (who is a meat lover) said it was the best meal ever! For the nightlife, I recommend you go to Portas do Mar, where you will find great bars, game rooms and clubs. If you have time, don't forget to stop by the market in Ponta Delgada, with fresh and delicious products.
What is your favourite green land?
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