Ribeira dos Caldeirões Natural Park

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Ribeira dos Caldeirões Natural Park: Our most recommended tours and activities

São Miguel East: Full-Day Van Tour with Lunch

1. São Miguel East: Full-Day Van Tour with Lunch

Explore the highlights of the western half of São Miguel island on a guided tour by van. Discover the hot springs at Furnas, the waterfall at Ribeira dos Caldeirões, as well as the remote rugged beauty of the Nordeste region. Enjoy the beautiful scenery along the northern coast of the island until you get to the Santa Iria Lookout, with a spectacular, ample view of the north coast in both directions, before continuing to Furnas. Find yourself in Furnas and admire a spectacular panoramic stop to gaze over the lake and town. Descend where you will be given the choice of visiting the geothermal fields and tasting the sparkling waters, or bathing in the hot springs, for an additional fee. Next, discover a traditional way of cooking as your lunch of cozido (stew) is pulled from the warm volcanic soil. In the afternoon, continue the journey eastward, with a stop at the charming waterfall of Ribeira dos Caldeirões.  Explore Nordeste, the most unexplored and rural part of the island. Visit two amazing lookouts over the high cliffs that characterize the East coast of São Miguel, before returning to Ponta Delgada.

Sao Miguel: Caldeiroes Canyoning Experience

2. Sao Miguel: Caldeiroes Canyoning Experience

After either gathering at the meeting point or being collected from your accommodation, you will make your way to Parque da Ribeira dos Caldeirões, located in the north-east part of the island. It takes around 45 minutes to drive from Ponta Delgada. The half-day tour takes approximately 3 hours. During this time you will have the possibility of doing rappels, jumps, slides and rock slides. The highest rappel will be 15 meters, with the highest jump being around 6 meters. There will be some time for the equipment distribution with the help of your guides, before you take a short hike in order to approach the stream followed by a security briefing. On average it is about a 20 to 35-minute hike, depending on the pace of the group. Throughout the full-day option you will stop for a picnic, later finishing the tour by returning back to town by car.

Sao Miguel: Ribeira dos Caldeiroes Canyoning Experience

3. Sao Miguel: Ribeira dos Caldeiroes Canyoning Experience

Discover the diverse green vegetation, clear and fresh waterfalls and old water mills on this adventurous canyoning tour through the forest. Unless you choose the option with pickup from Ponta Delgada, your adventure starts at Parque Natural da Ribeira dos Caldeirões, one of the most popular natural areas in the Nordeste region.  The activity starts with you picking up your safety equipment, followed by a short walk of about 20 minutes. Once at the entry point to the stream, listen to a safety briefing.  Along the route there will be vertical challenges at waterfalls, which you will combat with the technique of abseiling. The highest waterfall is 8 meters in height. In between there are short walking sections, as well as a more playful area with a slide and jump of about 5 meters.

Sao Miguel: Eastern Tour with Lunch

4. Sao Miguel: Eastern Tour with Lunch

Travel from Ponta Delgada to one of Sao Miguel’s northern coast’s highlights: The Ribeira dos Caldeirões natural park, where waterfalls and windmills nestle amongst the lush vegetation. From here, you’ll continue on to Nordeste village, known for its beautiful gardens and well-preserved streets. From here you’ll travel along the North-East side of the island, taking in the views over colorful gardens and the sea from Ponta do Arnel, Ponta do Sossego and Ponta da Madrugada. Your next stop will be Povoação Village, situated in the most South-Eastern part of the island. Povoação means settlement in Portuguese, and was where the first Portuguese navigators arrived on the island. A picnic for lunch will be served, before traveling along the Alameda de Plátanos Visconde Botelho, a large avenue surrounded by Plátanus trees. Off-roading over streams, you’ll drive to Salto do Cavolo to the Graminhais plateau for views of both Furnas and Povoação villages. From here you’ll return to Ponta Delgada along the North coast of the island.

Nordeste Tour from Ponta Delgada

5. Nordeste Tour from Ponta Delgada

Start the tour by leaving Ponta Delgada and traveling towards the north coast. Make the first stop at Ribeira dos Caldeirões in the municipality of Nordeste. See the beautiful waterfall, known as Véu da Noiva, and the surrounding watermills and gardens. Pass through picturesque villages as you travel on towards the wonderful viewpoints of Ponta do Sossego and Ponta da Madrugada, on the eastern tip of the island. View the beautiful lighthouse from the top of the cliff. Stop for lunch which will be served in the village of Povoação, the oldest settlement on the island. In the afternoon, relax near the sea or explore the historic center of Povoação. Return to Ponta Delgada along the south coast, passing by Furnas Lake and Vila Franca do Campo.

From Ponta Delgada: Azores Northeast Full-Day Tour

6. From Ponta Delgada: Azores Northeast Full-Day Tour

Traveling from Ponta Delgada towards Nordeste village, a circuit is made by the north coast of the island. Your first stop will be at Ribeira grande along with Ribeira dos Caldeirões and Natural Park. Here, you can visit a watermill, several waterfalls and a souvenir store. Continuing the tour, stop at the viewpoint Vista dos Barcos, where you can observe the most Eastern point of the island Ponta do Arnel, a lighthouse and small fishing port. Visit the viewpoint of Ponta do Sossego, a garden full of various flowers overlooking the sea and mountains. Next stop, Ponta da Madruga viewpoint, another location with a unique view of the island, where many people enjoy their summer dawns to watch the sun rise from the ocean. Continue through the south coast to Povoação village, first populated on the island by the year of 1432. Stop for lunch with a menu of your choice. After lunch, visit a garden and proceed to Ponta Delgada through the south coast, passing by Furnas and Vila Franca do Campo village and Lagoa city.

Ponta Delgada: Parque Natural da Ribeira dos Caldeirões Trip

7. Ponta Delgada: Parque Natural da Ribeira dos Caldeirões Trip

Enjoy an excursion to the Parque Natural da Ribeira dos Caldeirões, one of the most extraordinary national parks on São Miguel Island. Learn how to rappel, then spend your day climbing, sliding, and jumping off waterfalls into natural pools.  Drive 45 minutes from the city of Ponta Delgada and start your adventure when you arrive at the national park. Gather up your equipment and set off on a short walk to your first stop. Listen to important safety briefings teaching you how to rappel. Feel the thrill as you abseil down a cascading waterfall and jump into the flowing waters below. Continue downriver to a water slide and hold your breath as you jump from a height of 2 meters into a natural pool. Trek back along the forest path and delve into the valley to reach your second jumping point. Choose to freefall from 4 meters or leap from the lower height of 1.5 meters into the water. Save the best for last and end your adventure in style by jumping from the top of a waterfall at the height of 6 meters. Imagine the sensation in your stomach as the jungle scenery rushes past you.

São Miguel: Sete Cidades Buggy/UTV Tour

8. São Miguel: Sete Cidades Buggy/UTV Tour

Be the driver of a buggy/UTV and experience some of the beautiful landscapes of São Miguel Island. Head to the highest points of the mountains that surround Sete Cidades volcano. Go on and offroad and visit some of the trails that are part of the Azores Airlines Rallye. If the weather is good, you can count on awesome views of the lakes and the ocean. Learn more about the area with your expert guides who will provide brief explanations at each stop.

From Ponta Delgada: Nordeste Full Day Jeep Tour

9. From Ponta Delgada: Nordeste Full Day Jeep Tour

Be picked up in Ponta Delgada and head towards Nordeste for a full-day jeep tour of the region. Stop at Sallto do Cavalo viewing point. The lookout point provides views of the north-eastern side of the island, the Furnas Valley, and the coastline. After your stop at Sallto do Cavalo viewpoint, you’ll head to the Park of Ribeira dos Caldeirões. Located on the the slopes of Serra da Tronqueira, Park of Ribeira dos Caldeirões follows the Ribeira dos Caldeirões water stream. Here you’ll see an abundance of local flora, including ferns and cedar trees. Stop for lunch at a local restaurant located in a Nordeste village. After lunch, you’ll stop at Serra da Tronqueira, where you’ll have panoramic views of the island. Visit Povoação, which was the first populated village on the island. After your visit, stop at Vila Franca do Campo, which is known for its beach inlets.

Other Sightseeing Options in Ribeira dos Caldeirões Natural Park

Want to discover all there is to do in Ribeira dos Caldeirões Natural Park? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Ribeira dos Caldeirões Natural Park

Overall rating

4.9 / 5

based on 302 reviews

What an amazing experience! We did both the West and East tours. Our guide Fernando was just an awesome human being, great sense of humour and so passionate about the island. These amazing reviews are all legit, you won't regret this! Thank you Fernando!

The 3 hours were just full of fun and action! Especially the jumps, which initially took a lot of effort, gave us the most joy in the end! :) Top recommendation

This was a GREAT way to see Sao Miguel- Yugo was friendly, accommodating and an excellent source of information- I plan to return to the island after this tour

Guide was passionate, humorous and sincere which made all the difference. The weather did not cooperate, but he made the best of it.

This. Is. A. Must. Hugo was fantastic and helpful!