São Miguel is the largest of the islands in the Azores archipelago, covering in total 759 km2 (293 mi2). Known locally as Ilha Verde, The Green Island, it has a moderate coastal climate and is very humid and green with rolling hills and plains. Testament to its volcanic origins, there are hot springs scattered all over the island such as those at Furnas and Caldeira Velha.
Those looking to visit the volcanic and sandy beaches often come between June and October to enjoy the best of the weather when sailing, snorkeling and swimming.
Whale watching and swimming with dolphins tours operate out of Ponta Delgada. Hikers can follow short, marked hiking trails to explore the island, for example in and around the Sete Cidades caldera. São Miguel promotes sustainable tourism and in 2012, received the QualityCoast Gold Award.