Portugal / Azzorre

Ponta Delgada, Azores

Language Portugues
Local Time
Currency Euro (EUR)
Weather

Ponta Delgada, located on the island of Sao Miguel, is the regional capital of the archipelago of the Azores Islands, a group of 9 islands in the Atlantic Ocean approximately 1300 km west of the Portuguese coast.

The capital is located in the southern part of Sao Miguel and is an introduction to these lands of astonishing wonder.

The meteorological variability is an everyday thing due to the presence of the Atlantic anticyclone, while the positive aspects of the same characterize both the mild climate and the very luxuriant flora of the islands which allows agriculture to be the second source of income after the tourism.

The mild climate leads to not too cold winters and very pleasant summers because they are not too hot.

Lovers of unspoiled nature will find in these places invaluable wonders and the possibility of undertaking a large number of outdoor activities, whether on land or on the sea. Furthermore, especially in summer, the coasts of the various islands are lapped by colonies of whales, which until recently were one of the favorite prey of local fishermen, cachalots and dolphins.

What to see & what to do

Park & Landmarks

Caldeira Velha

On the north coast of Sao Miguel, not far from Ribeira Grande, there is another spa town that is undoubtedly worth a visit: Caldeira Velha. Characterized by two peaks of hot bathing water at about 37 °. The origin of these thermal waters is located higher than the pools and can be reached thanks to local guides. The surrounding area can be visited paying close attention as geothermal activity is always very busy.

Furnas

For lovers of spa tourism, Furnas is the flagship of the tourist resorts of the Azores. About an hour's drive from Ponta Delgado, the Lagoa das Furnas and the dozens of sulphurous shower heads are the main attractions of this town with a much quieter and more relaxed atmosphere than the capital. The Parque Terra Nostra is a spa open to all that houses a wonderful outdoor pool while the Poca da Dona Beija, another park, consists of 5 outdoor thermal pools whose water temperature ranges from 25 ° to 39 ° Another popular activity is trekking along the shores of the lake.

Gruta de Carvao

On the northwestern outskirts of Ponta Delgada is one of the most beautiful natural wonders on the island. Deep underground, some 1650 meters long, the Gruta de Carvao is available for a geological excursion through thousands of years of volcanic activity. Only the first 250 meters are accessible to the public and accompanied by guides but there will be the opportunity to observe lava bridges and thousands of stalactites. A work of nature absolutely not to be missed.

Sete Cidades

About half an hour by car from the tourist port of Ponta Delgado we can find an unmissable stop during a stay in the Azores, the crater of Sete Cidades, inside which flows a fantastic volcanic lake, Lagoa do Canario. The peculiarity of the lake is the color of the water which varies from green to blue. The main activity and which has been enjoying great success in recent years is the use of kayaks to navigate the calm waters of the lake which, among other things, is surrounded by woods of rare beauty where more and more people venture to experience nature. It is recommended to stop along the road at one of the viewpoints available to observe the area from enviable points.

History & Culture

Convent and Chapel of Nossa Senora da Esperanca

The convent and chapel of Nossa Senhora da Esperanca are probably the most visited cultural attraction in Ponta Delgada. Completed in 1541, they have always been the home of the nuns of the order of San Francesco ever since. The interior is a veritable mine of religious art, from the azulejos made by Antonio de Oliveira Bernardes to the gilded wooden altar. The main attraction, however, is the statue representing the Ecce Homo, revered by the locals since the sixteenth century when it was brought to the island.

Promenade and Historic District

The historic district of Ponta Delgada is undoubtedly a pleasant discovery once you step off the cruise ship. The city's waterfront promenade begins at the western end, where the imposing Fort de Sao Bras built in the sixteenth century stands, a fortress that is now used by the Portuguese Navy and contains the Azores Military Museum. Continuing along the seafront you will arrive at the 18th century city gates. From there the city center is a stone's throw away, ready to welcome you and let you taste some local delicacies or do some shopping in the many shops you will find.

Walking

Promenade and Historic District

The historic district of Ponta Delgada is undoubtedly a pleasant discovery once you step off the cruise ship. The city's waterfront promenade begins at the western end, where the imposing Fort de Sao Bras built in the sixteenth century stands, a fortress that is now used by the Portuguese Navy and contains the Azores Military Museum. Continuing along the seafront you will arrive at the 18th century city gates. From there the city center is a stone's throw away, ready to welcome you and let you taste some local delicacies or do some shopping in the many shops you will find.

Shopping

Promenade and Historic District

The historic district of Ponta Delgada is undoubtedly a pleasant discovery once you step off the cruise ship. The city's waterfront promenade begins at the western end, where the imposing Fort de Sao Bras built in the sixteenth century stands, a fortress that is now used by the Portuguese Navy and contains the Azores Military Museum. Continuing along the seafront you will arrive at the 18th century city gates. From there the city center is a stone's throw away, ready to welcome you and let you taste some local delicacies or do some shopping in the many shops you will find.

Food & Drink

Cozido das Furnas

The cozido das Furnas (or cozido) is by far the most famous archipelago typical dish, even if you eat only in a limited area of the island of São Miguel, the spa town of Furnas. It is a stew of meat and vegetables, whose ingredients are placed in a cast iron pot which is then taken to an area just outside the city center, to be later lowered into a pit covered with earth and left it there for at least six hours.

Uncategorized

Caldeira Velha

On the north coast of Sao Miguel, not far from Ribeira Grande, there is another spa town that is undoubtedly worth a visit: Caldeira Velha. Characterized by two peaks of hot bathing water at about 37 °. The origin of these thermal waters is located higher than the pools and can be reached thanks to local guides. The surrounding area can be visited paying close attention as geothermal activity is always very busy.

Furnas

For lovers of spa tourism, Furnas is the flagship of the tourist resorts of the Azores. About an hour's drive from Ponta Delgado, the Lagoa das Furnas and the dozens of sulphurous shower heads are the main attractions of this town with a much quieter and more relaxed atmosphere than the capital. The Parque Terra Nostra is a spa open to all that houses a wonderful outdoor pool while the Poca da Dona Beija, another park, consists of 5 outdoor thermal pools whose water temperature ranges from 25 ° to 39 ° Another popular activity is trekking along the shores of the lake.

Gruta de Carvao

On the northwestern outskirts of Ponta Delgada is one of the most beautiful natural wonders on the island. Deep underground, some 1650 meters long, the Gruta de Carvao is available for a geological excursion through thousands of years of volcanic activity. Only the first 250 meters are accessible to the public and accompanied by guides but there will be the opportunity to observe lava bridges and thousands of stalactites. A work of nature absolutely not to be missed.

Sete Cidades

About half an hour by car from the tourist port of Ponta Delgado we can find an unmissable stop during a stay in the Azores, the crater of Sete Cidades, inside which flows a fantastic volcanic lake, Lagoa do Canario. The peculiarity of the lake is the color of the water which varies from green to blue. The main activity and which has been enjoying great success in recent years is the use of kayaks to navigate the calm waters of the lake which, among other things, is surrounded by woods of rare beauty where more and more people venture to experience nature. It is recommended to stop along the road at one of the viewpoints available to observe the area from enviable points.

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Weather

Dry season

Dry season

From December to April, mostly sunny and fresh. The best period to sail in Caribbean. Having a flat territory and being exposed to the trade winds, Aruba is always windy and with comfortable temperatures.

87°F 70°F

Wet season

Wet season

From May to November, warmer season with more frequent rains. From July till September Hurricanes are not usually a problem for Aruba, which remain out of their track.

90°F 77°F

Good to know

 

  1. Clothing Casual summer wear can be worn during the day any time of the year; but be sure to bring a jacket or sweater for cooler evenings from December to March.
  2. Water Shoes Bring them if you go to swim or snorkel. Some of the water can be rocky after you walk from the beach.
  3. Sundries For convenience and cost concerns, bring your own everyday health and beauty products with you.
  4. Port Regulation Be aware that often in port it's forbidden to take off the ship fruits, vegetables and unsealed food items for local agricolture concern.
  5. Currency The official currency is the Mexican Peso, but the U.S. dollar is widely accepted throughout the island.
  6. Credit Card concern Pay attention using credit cards in Cozumel. Here several episodes of cloning happened. Use cash as much as possible.
  7. Time Zone EST (Eastern Standard Time) UTC/GMT -5 hours. No DST changes during the year. Make sure to keep the ship's time on your clock to come back board on time. Be aware of automatic changes of your smartphones.

Terminal

The port of Ponta Delgada is the largest of the Azores Islands and consists of two docks. Both can dock cruise ships. It has also happened in the past that a third cruise ship was docked in port and was anchored in the harbor and passengers were transported ashore. In the marina area there are 37 shops, restaurants and bars. Ferries that travel between the Azores islands also dock at the port.

Remind

 

 

Transport

On Sao Miguel Island it is very easy to get around by any means you want. You can take a rental car from any of the rentals scattered around the island. It is advisable to book in advance in the months of June, July and August given the abundant tourist turnout that arrives on the island. Alternatively there are three bus lines that cover the entire island and are probably the quickest and cheapest way to get around. Taxis are accessible but perhaps not the best choice.

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