São Miguel island in the Azores never stopped to amaze us with the diversity of its landscapes.
Of course the best way to discover it is by walking! It climbs, it hurts, it’s long but what’s sure, is that you won’t regret it!
Here is a top 5 of our favorite hikes on São Miguel.
Just near by the the famous “Vista do Rei” hike which allows you to discover Sete Cidades, hides an amazing trail deserted hikers: “Serra Devassa”.
Located on the south of Sete Cidades, you will find on this itinerary few lakes : Lagoa das Éguas, Lagoa Rasa and Lagoa do Carvão.
Nestled among the hills and lagoons, these lakes have an even more mysterious charm than their neighbors.
Even the driving rain did not discouraged us, at the opposite it gave even more charm to the place.
Duration : 2h
Length : 5km
Difficulty : 1/5
2 – Grená Pico do Ferro
The walk begins at the Miradouro Pico do Ferro, perfect spot to have a breathtaking view of the Furnas lake.
You start by crossing a beautiful meadow, it’s flat, let’s move fast !
Then the descent to the lake beggins, in the forest you will see many curiosities : art works that fit the place but especially ruins of the Grená property, a former manor, which is currently belong to the regional government of the Azores.
Arriving to the Furnas lake, you will discover the famous fumaroles, where the traditional Portuguese stew is cooked by the internal heat of the Furnas volcano.
Duration : 3h
Difficulty : 3/5
Between clay road, pastures, forests and large spaces: this hike gives to see! A true pilgrimage for the spirit.
You will follow for a long time a small stream, in the heart of the forest; photographers expect to take full advantage of it!
Approaching the Lagoa, you will cross an open area where hundreds of seagulls have taken up residence. Be careful in nesting season (April-May) they can be very aggressive …
Once you reach the top, we wish you to have a good weather. Few minutes after we arrived on the lake, a haze out of nowhere showed up, almost mystical … too bad for us!
Just in case you want to try your luck again without having to do this hike again, there are points of views accesible by car to see the lake.
Duration : 3h
Difficulty : 1/5
4 – Faial Da terra
An other beautiful walk in the forest, as Indiana Jones you will cross bridges and steep paths of all kinds. You might also meet some hens and chickens who will follow you on the trail …
Main attraction of this hike is of course its waterfall “Salto de prego”. With it’s crystalline water, it is the ideal place for lunch break (or a swim, but once again it’s april and this one is not hot).
This hike ends with a descent through a small village that could be abandoned with beautiful paved roads that wave in the valley to Faial da Terra.
Duration : 2 h
Length : 4,5 km
Difficulty : 4/5
I would definitely rank this hike in the difficult ones.
Just so that you know where you’re going, you won’t stop climbing for almost 4 km, for the good reason that it is the highest point of São Miguel (1103 m).
Of course it’s worth it, you will first cross a forest of cryptomers, so mystical that it’s like to be in Lord of the Rings. Then you will arrive to a more open area with panoramic view on the coast, but that, is before actually climbing!
On your way you will see the place where an Air France flight (Paris-NYC) crashed in 1949.
At the top, you can simply observe the whole island! (if the weather is clear, fingers crossed!)
Duration : 3 h
Length : 7 km
Difficulty : 5/5
Here was our Top 5 , so now let’s go!
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