This map of São Miguel is available at the airport and most tourist info points for free:
Places of interest, attractions and more:
The main attraction of this island is its sensational and particularly varied landscape, crossing several vegetation zones, always green and fertile. You will find blossoms at any time of the year. Furthermore waterfalls, lakes and ponds, heathland, jungle, Japanese Cedar forests, cliff coast, beaches, volcanic activity, marvelous botanic gardens and recreation parks, lots of picnic areas with stone barbecues, many of them with washrooms. The best way to discover this landscape is reaching a viewpoint or hiking trail by car, leave it behind and walk.
Bicycling is possible, but there are no signposted bike trails. If you like to ride on paved or dirt roads inclining to 20% or more, you will find a lot of agricultural roads starting closely to the Casa Sillanova. But you should watch out, because Azorean farmers are not used to meet bicycles on their way to milk the cows on the pasture. Hiking trails should, of course, always be off-limits to avoid washouts of the tediously located trails: intense rain in winter can cause occasional landslides.
In the capital Ponta Delgada you`ll find whale watching tours, but that should be seen as a sporting challenge, because you need a good deal of luck to see a big whale besides dolphins. The best chances are April and May. You will find them more frequently near the islands of Pico, Faial and São Jorge. There are also guided sightseeing tours for canyoning, scuba-diving and suchlike in Ponta Delgada, but the most beautiful spots of São Miguel are marked on the island`s map anyway.
Santa Bárbara beach near Ribeira Grande is a surfing paradise and you recently can see paragliders. There are two golf courts, Furnas and Pico da Pedra, a lot of lovely churches, original villages (especially in the northeast region), some museums, which mainly cover topics like immigration, hard life and emigration. Almost daily, from May up to September, there are concerts and »festas« all over the island.
Worth visiting is the (unfortunately overrun) tea plantation Gorreana, where tea is produced by machinery of the 19th century and the smaller, but beautiful plantation Porto Formoso.
Signposted trails with description in less than 45 minutes driving distance from the Casa Sillanova:
(click the numbers)
Quatro fábricas da Luz
Of course, there are even more tours on »Trails Azores«, which are located more western. They all can be reached by car within less than 90 minutes since the island`s overall length is only 65 km / 40 mi.
Moreover, especially in the northeast-region, there are several newly located hiking trails. Descriptions and maps are not available in the internet, but at the tourist information points in Nordeste or Ribeira dos Caldeirões (Achada).

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