São Miguel, the largest island in the Azores archipelago, is known for its impressive volcanic landscapes and lush nature. However, besides its breathtaking mountains and lagoons, São Miguel also offers a diverse selection of enchanting beaches. In this article, we will present some of the best beaches on the island where you can relax, swim, and enjoy the Azorean sun. Get ready to discover true coastal treasures as you explore São Miguel.
Santa Bárbara Beach:
Located at the northernmost tip of São Miguel, Santa Bárbara Beach is known for its impressive cliffs and dark sands. Stretching for about 1 km, it is a spacious beach, perfect for leisurely walks along the coast. While the waters can be a bit rough, it is a great option for surfers and water sports enthusiasts.
Situated on the southern coast of São Miguel, Pópulo Beach is very popular among locals and tourists alike. It mainly features calm waters, making it an ideal spot for swimming and relaxation. Additionally, the beach offers amenities such as restaurants, cafes, and showers, ensuring the comfort of visitors. Take a refreshing dip or enjoy a picnic on the adjacent grassy area.
Praia dos Moinhos:
Located in the coastal village of Porto Formoso, Praia dos Moinhos is a small black sand beach surrounded by lush green cliffs. Despite its proximity to Santa Bárbara Beach (also on the northern coast), it is not a popular beach for waves, so if you are a surfer or a bodyboarder, it may not be the best choice. However, it is suitable for bathers seeking relaxation and contemplation of the landscape. Don’t forget to visit the nearby old windmills, which give the beach its name and add a special charm to the location, as well as take the opportunity to explore the various trails that are very close to this beautiful beach.
Praia de Água d’Alto:
Situated in the city of Vila Franca do Campo, Praia de Água d’Alto is a true gem you can find on the south coast of the island. With its extensive sandy beach and crystal-clear waters, it offers perfect conditions for sunbathing and refreshing swims. Additionally, the beach is close to the stunning Ilhéu de Vila Franca, a volcanic formation that creates a protected natural lagoon, perfect for snorkeling.
Praia da Ribeira Quente:
Surrounded by a picturesque fishing village, Praia da Ribeira Quente is a peaceful and welcoming beach. With its stunning landscape, clear waters, and dark sand, it offers a relaxing and authentic environment. In some areas, you may see the water bubbling due to volcanic activity.
Praia do Lombo Gordo:
Located in the picturesque village of Nordeste, Praia do Lombo Gordo is a secluded and tranquil beach, perfect for those seeking a more private atmosphere. With its sandy beach blending with larger sea-polished rocks, you’ll find calm waters and a stunning natural setting—it’s a true paradise getaway.
Praia dos Mosteiros:
Located in the charming village of Mosteiros, Praia dos Mosteiros is a black sand beach that offers breathtaking views of the ocean and the imposing rock formations emerging from the sea. It is a popular spot to admire the spectacular sunset while relaxing on the beach or strolling along the promenade.
The beaches of São Miguel Island are true paradisiacal retreats that deserve to be explored during your visit to the Azores. Whether you’re relaxing on a dark sand beach surrounded by lush cliffs, enjoying perfect waves for surfing, or diving into crystal-clear waters near volcanic formations, São Miguel offers a variety of coastal experiences. So, don’t forget to include time to enjoy these coastal treasures in your itinerary and appreciate the natural beauty that the island has to offer. If you’re looking for accommodation in São Miguel, rest assured that you can choose from 4 fantastic options. Click the link to discover our accommodations on São Miguel Island.