In the middle of the Atlantic lies a fairly unknown treasure: the Azores (Açores) archipelago. It is composed of nine volcanic islands, each with its own topography, traditions and traits. Climbing up the amongst the hilltops of São Miguel island, we were rewarded with a most breathtaking sight.
The extraordinary view here is of the Lagoa das Sete Cidades (lagoon of the seven cities) and in fact consists of a twin lake: one blue, one green. The colors arise from the different way each lake reflects the light. The lagoa forms part of the volcanic crater from the Sete Cidades Massif. You actually have to remind yourself that you’re standing in front of a volcanic crater because the land is so green and lush.
Overlooking the crater from this lookout point 251 m (823 ft) high, you can take in fresh air, smell the gorgeous blue, white and lilac hydrangeas (the flower of the Azores, which dots the islands and adds touches of color amongst the greenery) and even take a hike along the many trails. We had a lovely time walking along deserted trails with only nature and the clean Azorean air to keep us company.
We drove from the lookout point to the bottom, taking the bridge that crosses the two lakes (a cool experience in itself) and had lunch in a esplanada (outdoor eating area) by the water. We were practically the only ones there so it was very peaceful. I even dipped my fingertips in the water to test out the temperature.
Visiting the Lagoa das Sete Cidades was one of the best things we did in São Miguel and an experience we’ll never forget it. Put it on your bucket list!