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About Ponta Delgada
The charm of a fishing village meets the cosmopolitan air of a thriving city in Ponta Delgada. The capital of the Azores archipelago is on São Miguel island, home to history, sea views and Portuguese culture. Church-hop in the historic centre and see relics like the famous arched city gates, go underground in the coal caves or leave the city behind and take a trip to one of the many surrounding lakes or natural wonders a short drive away.
From a historic house right in the centre to a hostel next to a garden maze, there’s plenty of choice when you're picking a Ponta Delgada hostel. Prepare for a day walking the harbour and pick a hostel that serves up a free breakfast. Hostels in Ponta Delgada with free Wi-Fi mean you can stay connected to back home, and those with communal kitchens will make you feel at home on the island. You can save some euros for an evening beer and cook dinner for yourself.
Ponta Delgada is easy to explore thanks to its distinct neighbourhoods. São Sebastião is downtown and the most central. Head here to eat in local restaurants and catch the main sights. To the east is São Pedro, where you can wander from church to church and marvel at the historic architecture. São José is along the coast and was one of the earliest settlements on the island. It's packed with old buildings, so it's a good place to get a feel for the island's history.
Steeped in history, Ponta Delgada has a lot to explore. Tour the old town centre, where you can snap a picture of the clock tower or the Church of St. Sebastian. The Santuário de Senhor Santo Cristo dos Milagres is another must-see – once a convent, this religious building now houses art. Go underground and explore the 2km-long Gruta do Carvão cave and its volcanic formations. For something more tranquil, head out of the city to the twin lakes of Lagoa das Sete Cidades. In the evening, check out Portas do Mar marina for live music.
From Ponta Delgada Airport, you can be downtown within 10 minutes. There are no public transport options, so you'll need to take a taxi or rent a car. Once you're in town, there are easy-to-navigate bus routes. You can also use public transport to explore the rest of the island.