The bus company UTC, besides offering a shuttle service between the airport and the city centre, also offers some tours around the island. I really don't know, personally, nothing about the quality of the service, but can be a option to take in mind.
A companhia de autocarros UTC, além de oferecer um serviço expresso entre o aeroporto e o centro da cidade, também oferece excursões em redor da ilha. Na verdade, pessoalmente, não sei nada acerca da qualidade do serviço, mas pode ser uma opção a ter em conta.
UTC - União de Transportes dos Carvalhos
Three bus companies operate in São Miguel Island linking all localities.
Caetano Raposo & Pereira (CRP) links Ponta Delgada to Ribeira Grande and operates in this municipality;
Varela operates from Ponta Delgada to the southeast villages of the Island, as far as Povoação;
Auto Viação Micaelense (AVM) operates in the municipality of Ponta Delgada linking almost all villages located at the West side of the Island.
Just to help you, I wrote some tips about some trips. Anyway, acced to the map and click on the desired location to look at he timetable.
I really don't know Gary Travassos, but this site can be very useful, especially if you need to make a tour in the Island. Please, ask other to compare fares!
In my opinion, €13 from the airport to a hotel in the city is expensive. You shouldn't pay more than €8.
I live in a village about 5km from the airport and the normal fare by taxi is €7-8.
If you don't like the idea of renting a car (like I don't because I just want really see the views without worrying), take a bus to some of the towns or negotiate with a taxi driver. For me my daily trips were much more cheaper this way when you calculate car rent, fuel and warranties together.
And you can combine like I did. I went to some town by bus and then negotiated a taxi trip to the nice place which were too far away to walk.
And I even got some extra on one of my trips; I wanted to go swimming and my taxi driver showed me the nice spot for that and even took some pictures while I was swimming :)
Sata airline operates between islands of Azores but also to Europe and to America. In Ponta Delgada you can find many travel agency where to book or you can do it online here.
This link of S. Miguel Transportes is all you need to get around Sao Miguel without renting a car!! And also the cheapest way to explore island and see the views without driving stress.
I saw all I wanted and if you want to see more without walking a little; go by bus to the town which is near and make deal with taxi there.
Operating companies are CRP, Varela and AVM.
There are not many, but you have an increasingly number of bicycle lanes springing up on Sao Miguel, mainly in the bigger towns and you can rent bicycles on the island and take some nice trips, especially around the scenic coastline.
Sao Miguel is not really a cyclists place yet, but it´s slowly moving in that direction and i think that is great.
Sao Miguel has an international airport just outside Ponta Delgada and you have flights to the other islands of the Azores just as you have flights to several other countries in Europe and North America.
It´s mainly the Azoran airline SATA and TAP air Portugal that flies there, but you do currently have airlines like Air Berlin and Finnair aswell as some charters coming there.
It´s a small but very pleasant airport with nice cafes, shops and free wifi there so i always find it a joy flying in and out of that little airport.
Vila Franca do Campo is connected to Ponta Delgada by Varela company. Besides the buses going to this city, lines 315 (a, b), also lines 318 (a, b), going to Povoação village, can be used.
Please, download files for complete timetable!
In my opinion, the best way to explore the Island is to rent a car. Anyway, if you don't like to drive and need a guide, I would recommend that you go with travel agencies. You can search on the internet for these agencies, but I strongly recommend Festitour Thematic Tours, due to the excellent service they offer and the possibility to personalize a tour just for you. Recently, I had opportunity to meet a couple of foreigners who travelled with António Cabral, the owner of the company, and they were more than impressed with the good quality service offered by this gentleman.
To visit these localities, you have to take the buses going to Mosteiros, line 206 and Sete Cidades, line 205.
Please, download files for a complete timetable!
To travel to Furnas from Ponta Delgada, you can travel by bus through the North of the Island, CRP company, line 110, or by the South side, using Varela company, line 318 going to Povoação village.
To view complete timetable, please download files.
This route is served by Auto Viação Micaelense Company, line 205. Returning back in the afternoon to Ponta Delgada and at the weekends, there is no direct bus linking Ponta Delgada. You have to reach Várzea village by line 207, and then take bus line 206 coming from Mosteiros village.
Besides the possibility to travel by ferryboat in summer, there is a boat all year round that can also transport passengers.
One way ticket is 21 EUR, while a round ticket is 35 EUR.
Only passengers with a valid trip insurance are allowed to travel.
Ponta Delgada - Santa Maria
Monday & Wednesday
18:00 - 24:00
Santa Maria - Ponta Delgada
Tuesday & Thursday
11:00 - 18:00
Transporte Marítimo Parece Machado, Lda.
Av. Hermano Feijó, 32 (harbour)
*Check timetable before departing!
Hiring a car is, in my opinion, the best choice in Sao miguel Island. You will be free to travel around.
When you get the car, you can note tha the car will have plenty of little scratches. I have been twice in Sao Miguel and I have never done something about this scratches - as normally you would do - in the car and nobody told me nothing about that when I leave the car at the airport, so, don't worry about those scratches :|