Sightseeing in Ponta Delgada - what to see. Complete travel guide
The enchanting city of Ponta Delgada is an amazing resort and the capital of the Autonomous Region of the Azores. The city has many luxurious villas and beautiful churches that have been here since Ponta Delgada was a large and important port. Having arrived in Ponta Delgada, tourists usually enjoy swimming in thermal springs and visiting volcanic lakes, many of which are formed in the craters. Caldeirro Volcano, which has been extinct for many centuries, is one of the biggest points of interest in the area. Local volcanic lakes have water of different colors ranging from blue to emerald green. Needless to say, there are always many vacationers who come to see the lakes and relax at their shores.
A small village emerged on the site of the modern resort in 1449. Local people were mostly engaged in fishing. At that time, no one thought that the settlement would ever become the capital of the Azores. In 1546, a devastating earthquake happened in Sao Miguel. This disaster almost completely wiped the city off the face of the earth. This is how Ponta Delgada became the new capital of the island. The administration of Sao Miguel moved to the new location. As expected, Ponta Delgada started growing and developing rapidly. Its population was increasing fast too.
Do you like beach recreation? There are no coastal areas suitable for swimming and sunbathing in the city. For this purpose, many locals and guests of the city prefer to visit Sao Roque Beach that is located approximately four kilometers from Ponta Delgada. The water temperature is twenty-two degrees in summer, so it is comfortable to relax on Sao Roque during the entire tourist season. Sao Roque Beach is a picturesque coastal area covered with black volcanic sand. As rocks safely protect this beach on all sides, the sea is always calm here. There are no high waves at Sao Roque, and this is the reason why there are so many parents with small children here. Professional rescue teams stay on the beach until the evening.
Fans of diving and surfing also have a suitable beach in Ponta Delgada – Milicias Beach situated five kilometers from the city center. Just like other beaches in the region, Milicias is covered with black volcanic sand. This coastal area has a fairly developed beach infrastructure with rental offices offering the equipment for a range of water sports and activities. The sea is clean near Milicias, so your underwater adventures are sure to leave many pleasant memories. The sea is shallow near the coast, so this beach is also suitable for visitors with children. Parents can let their kids play near the coast and do not worry about their safety. Even though the sand is very soft and a beach towel is enough here, visitors can always rent sun loungers.
Besides beach recreation, Ponta Delgada can offer its guests to visit several amazing natural attractions such as the Gruta do Carvao Caves. This is the longest naturally formed volcanic tunnel on the island. The length of the Gruta do Carvao Caves is one thousand ninety hundred and twelve meters. A transitional section, the length of which is seven hundred meters, is located between the caves. Scientists performed many studies in the cave and agreed that the age of this formation is between five and twelve thousand years.
Initially, the length of Gruta do Carvao was more than five kilometers. Unfortunately, many tunnels were destroyed by rock slides, and so it is impossible to reach them anymore. Nowadays, many tourists visit Ponta Delgada every year, and the majority of them visits the caves to take a stroll in the stone corridors, see different types of lava, and take pictures with numerous stalactites that cover the entire ceiling of Gruta do Carvao. Visitors have one hour to explore the underground passages and look at the drawings left by previous visitors.
Not all countries in the world have direct flights to the capital of the Azores. If you cannot fly directly to Ponta Delgada, you need to take a connecting flight with a stop in a large European capital. Many tourists prefer to fly to Lisbon first. There is an international airport in Ponta Delgada. Upon landing, use the taxi or bus to get to the city center. Tourists are welcome to rent a car and explore the island independently. There are also special vehicles for tourists like panoramic buses and horse-driven carts. Special tourist trains offer excursions to the neighborhoods of Ponta Delgado.
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City tours, excursions and tickets in Ponta Delgada and surroundings
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