Azores - São Miguel Island
São Miguel, the largest island in the Azores archipelago, is 62 km long and 15.8 km wide. With about 137,856 inhabitants (2011 data), São Miguel forms the Eastern Group of the archipelago together with the island of Santa Maria. Known as the green island, its landscape is characterised by extensive meadows and forested patches in the river valleys, which are often difficult to access.
On the island you can enjoy unique landscapes when hiking or even when horseback or bicycle riding, among many other activities. Discovering the wonders of the underground world of the island is possible by scheduling a visit to Gruta do Carvão. Scuba-diving and whale watching are some of the sea activities available.
There are many religious festivals and traditions celebrated throughout the year on the island of São Miguel. The secular Feast of Senhor Santo Cristo dos Milagres (Holy Christ of Miracles), which brings hundreds of visitors every year, venerates the image of Christ. The Holy Spirit Festival represents an Azorean religious tradition that is shared by all the islands, and extends from May to September.
São Miguel is also an island well known for its famous Cozido das Furnas, for the tea produced in the Gorreana and Porto Formoso plantations, the only ones in Europe for industrial purposes, and which look as green waves rolling down to the sea.
For more information: www.visitazores.com