A single volcano, set in a magnificent mountain range, provides the backbone to this pretty island. Particularly recommended for walking, much of the island can only be reached by foot. There is a wide range of trails that snake down the mountainside onto steep cliff paths, with the stunning panoramic views that drop to the coast. There is plenty of opportunities to explore the “fajãs”, which are eroded cliffs that have collapsed and been transformed into tropical fruit orchards, farmland and dairy pastures.
Area: 243,9 km2
Population: 8,998 inhabitants
Highlights: Pico da Esperança; Mirante; Topo Islet; Fajã dos Cubres; Fajã da Caldeira de Santo Cristo; Fajã dos Vimes; Santa Bárbara Church; Rosais Lighthouse; Velas Village;
Internationally famous, and with an insurmountable taste, the São Jorge cheese is probably the most well-known food of the Azores. The clams are another exclusive food wonder of São Jorge Island, and lagoon of Fajã do Santo Cristo is the only place in the Azores where they can be found. These savory clams stand out for their size, flavor, and meaty texture. In Fajã dos Vimes, one can enjoy coffee of intense flavor and aroma, made from locally collected grains. Just as the coffee, the cinnamon aguardiente a great complement to the island’s pastry, of which coscorões, rosquilhas, and curd cakes are a part of the traditional recipes. The espécie, a puffy, round treat with a mixture of sweetness and spice in its filling, is another typical pastry of the island.