Travelling in São Miguel by public bus
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 the timetable.
Sao Miguel is connected to the world by air.
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.
- Business Travel
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.
- Road Trip
Hire a car
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 :|
Busses: S. Miguel Transport
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.
- Road Trip
- Budget Travel
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.
Sata –airline between islands
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.
- Road Trip
Negotiate a taxi trip
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 :)
- Jungle and Rain Forest
- National/State Park
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. They don't offer a personalized service.
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. De qualquer maneira, o serviço não é personalizado.
UTC - União de Transportes dos Carvalhos
Renting a taxi / Tour
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 and you are a group of 3-4 people. 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. Nowadays, a shutle service is available between the airport and the city for 5 EUR. Visit my page on Ponta Delgada transportation.
Renting a car
Se vem visitar a ilha por poucos dias, devia considerar a possibilidade de alugar um carro. Eis algumas agências de aluguer de viaturas.
If you are visiting the Island for just a few days, you should consider to rent a car. Here are some rent-a-car agencies:
Flor do Norte
Ferry connections in the Azores
In the high season, is possible to travel in the Azores by ferryboat, especially between the Eastern Group Islands, São Miguel and Santa Maria, and the Central Group ones. The connections are provided by the Atlanticoline company.
Besides this company, among Faial, Pico and São Jorge, Transmaçor operates boat connections all year round.
Na época alta é possível viajar nos Açores através de ferribote, principalmente entre as ilhas do Grupo Oriental, São Miguel e Santa Maria, e as do Grupo Central. As ligações são asseguradas pela companhia Atlanticoline.
Além desta companhia, entre as ilhas do triângulo (Faial, Pico e São Jorge), a Transmaçor faz a ligação marítima durante todo o ano.
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