Santa Maria Travel Guide
Santa Maria © Azores Tourism/Via Oceanica
The island resort of Santa Maria, a fantastic holiday retreat, lies southwest of Sao Miguel, and features an airport that was a World War II American Air Force base which has now been appropriated as a civil airport. The main town on the island is Vila do Porto, which has only one hotel but several inns and private villas for rent. There are a few sandy golden beaches on the island, including Praia Formosa, and the scenic Maia and S. Lourenço Bays, which offer rocky cliffs and attractive vineyards. Pretty villages like Anjos and Santo Espirito are steeped in local history and culture, and the island has many colourful festivals throughout the summertime.