The capital of the Azores on the island of São Miguel with its approximately 68,000 inhabitants seems rather quiet in February despite international airports and seaports. Unlike the Algarve, British tourists are not dominant here. But you meet more Germans here.
While strolling over the Praça Vasco da Gama and at the Cais Da Sardinha the first photo motives can be found. The Museu Militar dos Açores a few hundred metres further alongside the harbour basin at the Avenida Infante Dom Henrique is also worthwhile seeing.
Close in front of it, at the Campo de São Francisco, I am once again impressed by the artistic, typically Portuguese cobblestone patterns and the baroque splendor in the Igreja de São José right at the Campo de São Francisco. An attraction there is also a huge ironwood tree (Metrosideros excelsa or New Zealand Christmas Tree). The fertile volcanic soil as well as the evenly mild and humid climate in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean allow a diverse vegetation to thrive in the Azores, as this specimen also does.
During the walk through the oldtown, beside the cobblestone pavement, the facades, portals and windows playfully decorated with black lava stone fascinate me again and again, whereby the Igreja de São Sebastião and the Portas da Cidade in front of the Estátua de Gonçalo Velho Cabral stand out specially. After dusk, cleverly placed spotlights bathe the buildings in an atmospheric light, which leads me to photograph everything again after a portion of Sépia preta espaguete com frutos do mar.
In the evening, the city spreads a completely different atmosphere than during the day.