There is a wonderful place, in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, where you can admire amazing contrasts between the bright green earth and the deep blue of the ocean that meets the sky. Miradouro da Ponta do Sossego on São Miguel island is a natural treasure. And it turns into a very special location at sunrise.
It is a garden full of bizarre plants, a viewpoint with quite a panorama, a barbecue spot to share meals in the open air, and much more!
At this park, there are many things to do and see. But also all around you can find many great activities and landscapes, as it is located inside one of the wildest regions of the island – Nordeste.
In this post, we will tell you everything you need to know about Miradouro da Ponta do Sossego, one of the most beautiful viewpoints of the Azores archipelago.
What is Miradouro da Ponta do Sossego
Geology & Volcanology
Miradouro da Ponta do Sossego is inside the area of Nordeste’s volcanic complex. It holds the oldest volcanoes on the island, which formed with effusive and fissuring volcanic activity.
The extinct volcanic complex started forming about 4 million years ago. It is due to great eruptions that created a small island right where Nordeste is located nowadays.
The landscape that you can see nowadays around the volcanic complex lies around basaltic lava flows. They can reach more than 1 kilometer in thickness.
History & Geography
The viewpoint of Ponta do Sossego is not so old. But as you can read on a typical ceramic-designed sign, the park was inaugurated after the last amplification works in July of 1995. Dr. Eugenio Leal, who was the regional secretary for tourism and the environment at the time, introduced it.
Miradouro da Ponta do Sossego belongs to Nordeste, one of the 6 counties of São Miguel island. Nordeste is, as its name indicates, in the North Eastern part of the island. When you go from Nordeste to Povoação by the coastline, Ponta do Sossego is one of the first viewpoints you will see.
Fauna & Flora
In terms of fauna, at Miradouro da Ponta do Sossego, the animals you will most probably see are cats. Indeed, there are quite a lot of street cats on the islands. This is a well-known spot for stray cats as they can ask for food from tourists and locals who eat at the picnic area inside the park. Some associations pass by to give them proper food and water. They also to ensure that they are neutered to avoid more animals. Also, look for diverse birds around the park.
The beautiful and well-maintained garden at the viewpoint displays plenty of endemic vegetation typical of Macaronesia. In the summertime, the park gets full of the famous blue hydrangeas blooming everywhere.
What to do at Miradouro da Ponta do Sossego
See the sunrise
This viewpoint – in addition to the neighboring Ponta da Madrugada – is very popular to see the sunrise. Both locals and travelers rush to the East coast to observe this spectacular show of nature.
When the sun rises and fills the sky with incredible colors, it gets us every time! The sun burning like a huge flame above the ocean in its first minutes of the day is an iconic view everyone should see once.
Some people decide to sleep in their car at the parking lot for this special event. Others drive at 5 am to make sure they don’t miss it.
Have a barbecue meal
There is everything in place at Miradouro da Ponta do Sossego to have a delicious barbecue meal. Indeed, you will find grills, tables, benches, and in order to leave this wonderful place just as you found it: trashcans.
This is a good option to stop during a day of adventures on the east side of São Miguel island. There, you can share a meal with your fellow travelers, friends, or family. Remember to buy local products for the real experience.
Take a stroll in the garden
In addition to being a breathtaking viewpoint, Ponta do Sossego is also an extraordinary botanical garden. In fact, the gardened areas cover as much as 13,000 square meters. Walk down the diverse terraces located at different altitudes to explore it fully.
Did you know | The name 'Sossego' refers to the serenity of this beautiful place.
Nordeste is known to be one of the most flowery towns in all of Europe, and Ponta do Sossego is no different than the town. The gardens offer typical vegetation from Macaronesia, displaying some strange flowers and plants you never saw anywhere else in your life.
The park is very well preserved and you can often see gardeners working hard to make it look simply perfect. That is why this is one of the most beautiful viewpoints on the island. It is worth it to walk around and enjoy every corner of it, and not just get out of the car, take pictures and leave.
Admire the infinite ocean
In addition to a beautiful panorama of the green mountains of the greenest island of all, with its high cliffs falling down to the deep blue ocean, from Miradouro da Ponta do Sossego you can also see Fajã do Araújo. This is a tiny village on a natural volcanic platform by the ocean. You can also spot Praia do Lombo Gordo, a beautiful black-sand beach.
If you are lucky, maybe you can even spot dolphins or whales swimming by the east coast of São Miguel. Indeed, the Azores are known to be a paradise for many cetacean species. It is not rare to see them on a whale and dolphin watching tour. Take binoculars with you to have greater chances.
🐳 Recomended Tour Whale Watching from Ponta Delgada. See More!
Best time to visit Miradouro da Ponta do Sossego
The island of São Miguel is situated in the Eastern Group of the Archipelago. Here you will be able to notice the atypical characteristics of this climate resulting from several factors, which contribute to its plant exuberance and landscape value.
On average, temperatures vary between:
- 16 degrees in spring
- 21 degrees in summer
- 18 degrees in autumn
- and 14 degrees in winter.
Thus, if you want to enjoy all the splendor of this island (São Miguel) and this specific place, the best time to visit it will be between May and September when the probability of rain is lower.
On the other hand, if you want to make your trip in this time space, we advise you to organize and book your stay and flights as soon as possible – prices tend to go up a lot.
☁️ Might Interest You The Weather in the Azores in January The Weather in the Azores in February The Weather in the Azores in March The Weather in the Azores in April The Weather in the Azores in May
Best time of the day to go to Miradouro da Ponta do Sossego
The best time of the day to visit Ponta do Sossego viewpoint is definitely at sunrise. This is one of the best spots on São Miguel island to admire this spectacular natural phenomenon. Make sure you go on a clear sky day for the best colors.
You can also go to this viewpoint for lunch or dinnertime to make your own barbecue meal. All around the island you will find picnic areas. Ponta do Sossego is definitely a good one thanks to its amazing view, equipment and facilities, and the beautiful garden.
Plan your visit to Miradouro da Ponta do Sossego
How to get to Miradouro da Ponta do Sossego
When you go from Nordeste to Povoação along the east coast of São Miguel island, you fill find Miradouro da Ponta do Sossego on this main street – Nacional 1. It is only about 6 kilometers away from the town of Nordeste.
From the city of Ponta Delgada, it is quite a ride. However, we undoubtedly recommend it. Staying in Nordeste for 1 or 2 nights is a good idea to avoid driving too much and discover this amazing region of the island, so beautiful that locals call it ‘the tenth island of the Azores’.
What to bring
In order to walk around the park and see the beautiful views, you don’t particularly need anything special. However, a rainjacket is a good thing to take with you as the weather changes quickly. Tennis shoes are fine and of course, don’t forget your camera!
If you want to eat there, make sure to bring all condiments and utensils to grill and eat your barbecue food. A tablecloth is always something that locals bring to eat on the tables made of rock. Also check if you have everything for the fire.
Where to eat near Miradouro da Ponta do Sossego
If you need a place to eat near Miradouro da Ponta do Sossego, click here. In this link, you will find the Top 10 restaurants on Tripadvisor.
Where to Stay near Miradouro da Ponta do Sossego
To avoid driving one hour from Ponta Delgada during the night and make sure you arrive safely at this wonderful sunrise spot, it is preferable to sleep nearby. See the accommodation options in the ‘Where to stay near Miradouro da Ponta do Sossego’ section.
Make sure you arrive at least 15 minutes before sunrise time so that you have parking space and a good spot in the front row. During sunny days, the viewpoint can get crowded.
What to do around Miradouro da Ponta do Sossego
Explore the town of Nordeste
If paradise is a place on Earth, then Nordeste is the closest to what it might look like. It is one of the most flowery areas in Europe, filled with natural beauty and exuberant flora.
The gorgeousness of São Miguel’s nature is packed inside this region on the east end. From a park full of waterfalls to a viewpoint made to watch sunrises, there are many things to discover in Nordeste.
🚐 Recomended Tour Van Tour to Nordeste (full-day). Know More!
Visit Ribeira dos Caldeirões
Wander in a lush natural park displaying waterfalls of all shapes and sizes. A place where local traditions and nature make one.
Discover old material used in the everyday life of Azoreans from the former century as well as an abundant dreamy landscape.
🧭 Recomended Tour Canyoning Experience in Ribeira dos Caldeirões. Know More!
Swim at Praia do Lombo Gordo
This quiet wild beach near the viewpoint has beautiful volcanic sand and is surrounded by the typical Azorean high green cliffs. There, you can swim all year round as long as the sea conditions are good. In the summertime, there is a lifeguard to ensure safety.
There is a beautiful walk between bridges and vegetation from the parking lot to get to the beach. The best time to go there is in the morning, as after lunch the sun hides behind the cliffs. This is not a very popular beach so you will most probably get it for yourself or with a few people.
Hike to Pico da Vara
Pico da Vara is the highest point on São Miguel island, rising up to 1,103 meters above sea level. There are different hikes that lead to the top of the mountain, and they are all worth it.
From the top, you can enjoy the most complete view of the green island on a clear day. You will see almost all of São Miguel until the volcanic complex of Sete Cidades all the way west.
🥾 Recomended Tour Climb to the rooftop of São Miguel (Pico da Vara). Know More!
Nordeste Municipal Museum
If you want to dive deeper into this wonderful region, the municipal museum of Nordeste displays traditional objects of the daily life of locals back in the days when agriculture was everything for this little town.
Useful Tools and Apps
The weather in the Azores is quite unpredictable. For this reason, there is a very useful App that you can install on your mobile phone before visiting any of the 9 islands: Spotazores. Thanks to the cameras installed in many of the biggest points of tourist interest, you can see the weather in real time and decide where to go.
Cultural Agenda on The Island of São Miguel
The island of São Miguel has many cultural events to offer all year round. You can see the full list of events at the following link. Look at the Agenda!
How to Get to São Miguel Island
There are many routes to get to the island of São Miguel by plane. The main points of entry are via Lisbon, Porto (on the mainland) and Ponta Delgada (São Miguel island), but there are already many direct routes.
The best way to find a flight that works for you is to use a flight search engine like eDreams or Skyscanner. As you may already know, these sites allow you to compare prices and schedules of various airlines in one place.
Once you find a flight you like, all you need to do is book! And in a few hours, you’ll be on your way to one of the most beautiful archipelagos in the world.
We hope you now know everything about this place that is so famous among Azoreans and foreigners. In fact, you can see the viewpoint of Ponta do Sossego on many postcards.
There, you can take the perfect picture that best describes the essence of São Miguel island thanks to its typical landscapes of lush green mountains falling into the immense ocean.
Miradouro da Ponta do Sossego awaits! Pack your bags, get on the plane and come see this wonder of the green island.
Mendonça, L. (2017). Perguntas e Respostas sobre a História dos Açores. 2ª Edição, Letras Lavadas. Ponta Delgada
Forjaz, V., Ribeiro, L., Almeida, L., Pereira, N. e Rodrigues, J. (2019). Dos Vulcões dos Açores. 4ª Edição, Letras Lavadas. Ponta Delgada
Rodeia, C. e Rodrigues, J. A. (2013). Açores – ilhas de Sonho. (2013). Açores – ilhas de Sonho. 3ª Edição, Publiçor – Publicações e Publicidade, Lda. Ponta Delgada