Santa Maria is the southern most island of the Azores with the most hours of sunshine per year. Due to the vicinity of the gulf stream and its low profile, the island is unique in the archipelago, being less influenced by humidity and having a more Mediterranean climate. In summer it is generally dry and warm and in winter it is milder with less precipitation. Median temperatures oscillate between 14 °C and 22 °C.
Lushy, green hills with cow paddocks, vineyards, the small typical houses of Santa Maria and the natural forests and untouched nature give the island its lovely look. The coast line varies from cliffs to beautiful beaches. Since it is geologically the oldest island in the Azores, around 8 million years, one can find areas at the coast line with marine fossils and unique geological formations wich extend to the underwater landscape. The barely tapped infrastructure still offers adventures especially for individual travelers with high motivation and dedication to explore this beautiful piece on earth.
For individual travellers, families or groups, we are glad to help organizing a suitable accommodation in a private cottage, apartment or hotel, booking a rental car or help to find flights to Santa Maria.
Next to the main activities of water sports (especially diving) like stand-up-paddeling, kayaking or even canyoning, there are several things to do on Santa Maria.
The healthy, unpolluted air invites for extensive hiking tours around Pico Alto, along the shore line or into the canyons or along riverbeds.
Several rock pools and natural swimming pools (Anjos, São Lourenço, Maia) the long sandy beach at Praia Formosa or other places of interest like the old whaling station and the light house in Maia, the „red desert“ or the museum of local history offers great opportunities to combine diving, relaxing and sightseeing for the whole family.
There are several restaurants on the island, here and there directly close to the sea (Maia, São Lourenço and Praia) besides typical, local fish-dishes there are also hamburger bars and pizzerias.
In Vila do Porto there is a daily market with fresh fruits, vegetables meat and fish, and also local handicrafters.
The bigger supermarkets are also located in Vila do Port, but there are smaller shops („minimercados“) in all parishes.