Vila Franca do Campo Nature & adventure

Our most recommended Vila Franca do Campo Nature & adventure

Azores: Whale Watching and Islet Boat Tour

1. Azores: Whale Watching and Islet Boat Tour

Begin the excursion with an introduction to cetaceans (whales and dolphins) and other marine species, their natural habitat, communication, migration, and behavioral patterns. After the briefing, board the designated boat and head out to sea. Approach the whales slowly and carefully as the naturalist guides and marine biologists on board provide commentary. Next, take a tour around the Princess Ring Islet of Vila Franca do Campo, for an up-close look at the volcano and resident wildlife. Light food is permitted on board, and a camera is essential to capture the wildlife you spot on the tour.

São Miguel East: Full-Day Van Tour with Lunch

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

Explore the highlights of the eastern 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.

Vila Franca Islet Off-coast Nature Reserve Tour

3. Vila Franca Islet Off-coast Nature Reserve Tour

The tour starts with a short briefing introducing to the volcanic islet’s geology, plant and animal species that can be found, the nature reserve’s rules, and safety. Everyone will follow the Guide and Skipper to their designated boat, for 10 minutes travelling by sea to the Islet. You will disembark at the islet’s harbor, for a hour-and-half tour to explore the volcanic marvel and its notorious features. The islet crater is rocky with endemic Azorean Heather, Firetree and other flora species making this a beautiful living habitat for wildlife, and often birds can be observed, such as Buzzards, Turnstones, Sanderlings, Little Egrets, Whimbrels, Canaries, Wagtails, and even Sally lightfoot crab colonies! It is life rich all year, especially in Autumn and Winter. Your guide will keep you informed on what you are observing and is available throughout your tour to provide answers to any specific questions - feel free to ask! At 16:15 it is time to be back to the Marina for check-out.

Azores: Vila Franca do Campo Islet Kayaking Experience

4. Azores: Vila Franca do Campo Islet Kayaking Experience

Paddle along the beautiful coastline of Vila Franca de Campo. Choose between the morning or afternoon tour and embark on a kayaking adventure suitable for families with children. The level is appropriate for beginners and experienced kayakers alike. Your professional instructor will make sure that everyone feels safe and comfortable. Get geared with the necessary equipment for your kayak tour. Then, receive a safety briefing from your instructor before heading out onto the waters. This tour takes you on a 4.5 kilometer stretch along the beautiful Vila Franca do Campo Islet. During the excursion, you may take a dip into the refreshing waters and try some snorkeling.

Whale and Dolphin Watching with Vila Franca Islet Visit

5. Whale and Dolphin Watching with Vila Franca Islet Visit

Take the opportunity to see some of the sea life found in the Azores including dolphins, whales, turtles and seabirds. Before the boat trip, listen to biologists explaining the safety measures aboard, the history of the area, the local wildlife and how to respect them. Then set off! After the 3-hour whale watching tour, stop in Vila Franco do Campo to enjoy lunch in a local restaurant. Following lunch, board a converted traditional fishing boat and head to Vila Franca do Campo islet, a volcanic crater off the coast that encloses a natural lagoon. Take one of the provided snorkels and diving masks and see the numerous protected fish species in this natural reserve. Following the tour, transfer back to Ponta Delgada by boat or van.

Full-Day Furnas Azores 4x4 Tour from Ponta Delgada

6. Full-Day Furnas Azores 4x4 Tour from Ponta Delgada

Travel from Ponta Delgada to Furnas Azores on a full-day 4x4 tour on the island of São Miguel. Furnas Azores has a history of volcanic activity that has left behind a legacy of particularly impressive natural geysers, hot springs, calderas, and fumaroles. Along the way, you will visit a number of locations with stunning landscapes and unique and intriguing features, such as Vila Franca do Campo, where you can see the famous islet, a tea factory, and views from various spots. Upon arriving at Furnas Azores, admire the lake and its geysers, which are surrounded by lush nature.

Sao Miguel: Vila Franca Do Campo Islet Scuba Diving

7. Sao Miguel: Vila Franca Do Campo Islet Scuba Diving

Kick off your scuba diving experience with a small introduction session during which you will learn all about diving equipment, techniques and underwater communication. Then head out to the sea by boat, allowing a supervised and relaxed way to experience diving.  Your dive will take place at the Natural Reserve of Vila Franca do Campo Islet, an island formed by a volcano crater. Explore an area close to wrecked cannons from the 16th century and see how nature incorporated them into marine life.

São Miguel: Furnas and Nordeste Full-Day Tour with Lunch

8. São Miguel: Furnas and Nordeste Full-Day Tour with Lunch

Starting through Ponta Delgada, along Avenida do Mar, following the beaches of Água D´Alto, until we reach the first capital of the island, Vila Franca do Campo, stopping at the viewpoint of Ilhéu de Vila Franca do Campo where we can see its incredible islet, the result of an underwater volcanic eruption and where the Red Bull Cliff Diving has been running for 3 years, now; After this short break, we will drive to the bucolic Lagoa das Furnas (Entry not included, available by choice or at customer’s expense), area where the famous “Cozido das Furnas” is cooked in volcanic soil for 6 hours, and here we can observe the removal of the pots from the volcanic ground by local restaurants. We will also visit the various fumaroles and boilers from that area; Back on the road and towards the parish of Furnas you can optionally relax in pools of hot springs, over 30 degrees, that spur incessantly from railway springs. This is an experience of thermal charisma, with the option of the client and alternative, between Poça da Dona Beija) and the pools of Parque Terra Nostra, where in addition to being able to swim, you can also visit its amazing Botanical Garden Terra Nostra Park, considered one of the best and largest in Europe. (Entry not included, available by choice or at customer’s expense); Lunch Break (Lunch included) After lunch, a pedestrian visit to the the center of the parish of Furnas; Driven north of the Island, next stop will be at the Ribeira dos Caldeirões Natural Park, one of the most visited areas in the Nordeste area, with its 5 Watermills and her amazing waterfall; The last stop of the day, will be the tea route, until the tea plantations and their factories. A view of the splendid bay, a magnificent garden and a smiling welcome for a tea tasting at the Gorreana Tea Factory or Porto Formoso Tea Factory.

São Miguel Island: Full Day All-in-One Tour

9. São Miguel Island: Full Day All-in-One Tour

This tour gives you the unique opportunity to get to know São Miguel island as much as possible during a short stay. The tour will start early going in direction to Vista do Rei where you can enjoy the view over the Sete Cidades Lakes. From there the tour will take you up into the mountains to enjoy the view over the gorgeous Lagoa do Fogo. Then you will venture back down the mountains for a visit to Caldeira Velha, a protected nature reserve, where you will have the option to enjoy a bath in the warm water from a waterfall. The journey will then take you to the viewpoint of Santa Iria where you can see the gorgeous northern coast. Following the coastal views, you will visit the Gorreana tea plantation and its factory, where you can taste two different kinds of tea: black and green. The tour will continue on where you will be able to enjoy the amazing view over Furnas’ valley, and a stop will be made at Pico de Ferro’s viewpoint. Arriving in Furnas Village you will see some volcanic phenomena, known as fumaroles. You will then be able to have some lunch and eat the delicious famous Cozido das Furnas (or Furnas Stew), a gastronomic dish of Azores. After lunch, a stop in the Furnas Lake to see how the famous stew is cooked, then take a walk near the beautiful lake. Returning to Ponta Delgada and passing by Vila Franca do Campo, the first capital of São Miguel, located in the south coast, a last stop will be made at Ermida da Nossa Senhora Paz to enjoy the view to the famous Ilheú da Vila Franca. The tour will finish at your hotel or at the harbor.

Azores Swim with Dolphins Atlantic Experience

10. Azores Swim with Dolphins Atlantic Experience

Enjoy a 2.5-hour tour to swim with bottlenose dolphins on this tour from Vila Franca do Campo. Meet your guide at the Vila Franca do Campo Marina for check-in and equipment setup. After a quick safety and responsible practices induction, board your high-speed boat and head out to sea. Your skipper will be on the lookout for dolphins throughout the journey. When the time comes, get ready to dive into the sea and wait for the friendly dolphins to approach you. On the second part of the tour, travel to one of the island's best snorkel locations. Snorkel in the crystal-clear waters and see an array of vibrant marine fauna and flora as you explore the seafloor before heading back to the marina.

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What people are saying about Vila Franca do Campo

What a great day. The east side of the island with all its thermal activity is fascinating. Lunch was a stew cooked in a thermal oven, hole in the ground. Our guide was very nice. When we arrived at the pickup he asked us if we had brought swimsuits and told us we would be disappointed if we couldn’t go in the thermal waters. He took us back to our hotel so we could pick up what we needed. I would highly recommend this tour and Pure Azores tour company.

It was amazing ! Our guide Joao was very knowledged, tell us about this magical island, great photographer too! The lunch was traditional meals and huge, had with green wine. The day went quite fast in a good way! beautiful scenery everywhere!

Jaoa was incredible. He has so much knowledge about everything Sao Miguel, from the history to the fauna and flora. I would highly recommend this tour for anyone who wants to learn and have a great time!!!

Great day out. Very friendly, informative guides. Brilliant spa facilities and amazing food. I would do this trip again

Excellent guide, could see dolphins closely and spermwhale from a distance