Where to eat on Sao Miguel – the south coast

Following on from our top tips on Where to eat in Ponta Delgada, if you’re exploring outside of the capital we have a handy series of guides on where to eat on Sao Miguel.

Here’s our guide on where to eat on the south coast…

 

#01 – One of our favourite towns on the south coast is Vila Franca do Campo. Founded in 15th Century, Vila was Sao Miguel’s original capital, until the great earthquake of 1522 devastated the town (Azorean priest and historian Gaspar Frutuoso wrote a contemporary account the tragic event is called ‘O romance de Vila Franca’).

Vila’s a small, friendly place with the Igreja Matriz de São Miguel Arcanjo at one end and Praia de Vinha d’Areia beach at the other. Probably my favourite place to eat is the  Restaurante Praia Cafe. It’s light, modern décor has a menu to match – location-wise, it overlooks Praia Vinha so it’s ideal if you’re spending the afternoon at the beach. It’s also a lovely spot if you’re staying in Vila in the evening:

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

#02 – I should also quickly mention Bar Vinha d’Areia  which is just next door – good for fresh lapas (limpets), shrimps, cold beers and marvellous sunsets:

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

#03 – Heading into the centre of Vila Franca, the Atlantico Restaurante is just beyond the marina, overlooking the boathouses and workshops at the southern end of town. Their menu’s for fish lovers – stick with the seasonal specials and you won’t be disappointed. If you’re reserving in advance, request a table on the roof terrace, overlooking the extinct ilheu de Vila Franca volcano just off shore:

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

#04 – Heading down to the marina, if you’re just looking for a quick bite to eat before heading to sea on a whale and dolphin watching trip, the Marina Bar serves freshly made sandwiches, soups, cakes and coffee all day long. They’re also handy for a take-away if you’re en-route to walk the Lagoa do Fogo trail:

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

#05 – Heading up the steps from the marina, lookout for the Do Morgado bakery where Sao Miguel’s most popular queijadas are made. Queijadas are a traditional Portuguese tartlet – the recipe varies from island to island, but one of my favourite variations are baked right here in Vila Franca. If you’re thinking of gifts for family and friends, a box of queijadas normally travels quite well. The distinctive green Do Morgado circular logo points the way to their café and bakery shop:

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

#06 – It’s short drive west along the coast road from Vila Franca to Casa do Abel in the town of Agua de Pau. You’re certainly in no danger of missing Casa do Abel – it’s conspicuous signage will make quite sure of that. Casa do Abel is beef all the way – a steakhouse that’s proved incredibly popular since opening it’s doors in 2017. It’s very much a family-affair, with owner Abel and his sons hands-on in the kitchen and front of house:

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

#07 – Before he began expanding his culinary empire, Abel’s main restaurant was Bar Caloura in the small fishing village of the same name.  It’s still a big favourite of ours – one of the island’s best, sea-to-table fish restaurants overlooking the small harbour in this peaceful fishing village. If you’re staying at Quinta do Mar during your holiday, you’ll definitely spend some memorable evenings at Bar Caloura:

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

#08 –Continuing west – as you pass through Lagoa along it’s long tree-lined main street, take a left down towards swimming pools on the coast and you’ll find O Capitao. One of the newer fish restaurants on the island (I think they’ve been open three years now ?), they have a great roof terrace and serve a mean fish stew:

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

#09 – Just beyond Lagoa’s small harbour is the Restaurante Ondas do Mar. It doesn’t quite have the seaview of Bar Caloura or O Capitao, but if you’re staying at the beautiful Casa da Rocha Quebrada or at Whites Villas it’s a great restaurant right on your doorstep:

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

#10 – One Sao Miguel’s most popular beaches is at Praia da Populo, and it’s most popular restaurant is the Sunset Beach. I haven’t eaten there in the evenings but if you’re spending a day at Populo, it’s an excellent option for lunch- especially if you have little one’s as you can walk in straight off the beach:

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

Where to eat on Sao Miguel - the south coast

 

 

Our ‘Where to eat’ guides are based on our first-hand experience of visiting the Azores and our love of great Portuguese cuisine:

Where to eat in Ponta Delgada

Where to eat on Sao Miguel – Sete Cidades and the west

Where to eat on Sao Miguel – the north coast

Where to eat on Sao Miguel – Furnas and the east

Where to eat on Sao Miguel – the south coast

Where to eat in Angra

Where to eat on Terceira

Where to eat in Lisbon

 

Archipelago Choice Azores specialists

We specialise in personalised holidays to the nine islands of the Azores. Our team of experienced specialists are ready to put together your personalised trip; just give them a call on 017687 75672.

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