This island is known for having a warmer and drier climate in comparison to the others due to its location further south on the archipelago. Because it doesn’t rain very often, the landscape takes on a yellowish tone, contrasting with the green existing in the other islands. It is known as "the sun island" or "the yellow island."
Formosa Beach – White sand beach with clear waters, ideal for all watersports lovers. This beach attracts countless surfers, sailors and windsurfers all year long.
São Lourenço Bay – Classified as a Natural Reserve since 1987, this bay combines one of the most captivating landscapes on the archipelago with an excellent bathing area, providing a unique experience to its visitors.
Pedreira do Campo – As the most ancient island of the Azores, Santa Maria has traces of fossils in its rocks that don’t exist in any other island of the archipelago. In Pedreira do Campo you can spot fossils of marine organisms in a basaltic quarry formed under the ocean.
Nossa Senhora dos Anjos Chapel – Probably the first house of worship built in the Azores. Christopher Columbus and his sailors stopped at this chapel on their return journey from the Americas.
Turnip Broth – This Santa Maria Island’s specialty combines a local dark colored turnip with pork, farmhouse bacon, the local sausage called chouriço and sweet potatoes. The broth is served on a plate with slices of bread, while the remaining ingredients are served on a separate tray in order to be shared.
Rockmelons – Grown on the island, Santa Maria Island’s rockmelons have a unique texture and aroma and have gained notoriety in recent years for its high quality.
Fruit liqueurs – Although the wine tradition has been abandoned in Santa Maria Island, the locals still continue to produce high quality fruit liqueurs.