Where to Eat: São Miguel, Portugal

By: Jesslyn Shields & Estrella Mora-Luna
JM Travel Photography / Shutterstock

São Miguel is full of amazing sights and activities that you cannot get anywhere else in the world and you’ll work up quite the appetite traversing the gorgeous landscapes and exploring all the treasures of land and sea. Fortunately, among all of these wonders, there is a whole new layer of discovery that you can enjoy even during your downtime: the cuisine of São Miguel. Sometimes hidden amid the wonders, and other times points of interests themselves, there are amazing eateries on the island of São Miguel that will make you feel like a pampered tourist or even a local. Just note: if something is put on the table that you did not ask for, it does not mean it is free! Let’s be honest though, it will probably be worth it! Below are some of the best restaurants and bars that will offer you a full delicious experience!


8. Casa Marisca

São Miguel is famous for its seafood, not only because the Portuguese have mastered the art of cooking from the sea, but because of the immense freshness of every catch! One of the best places to enjoy some of this traditional specialty is at “Casa Marsica” restaurant and pub, located in the city of Ponta Delgada. Not for the squeamish! Here you will get the full rustic experience of fresh seafood. Everything may be included from the tails to the head using old-fashioned pots and pans that have been cooking these dishes to perfection for many years. Come here to relax and immerse yourself in the Portuguese island culture and leave with a satisfied stomach and the experience of eating like a local.

7. Rotas da Ilha Verde

Calling all veggie lovers! This restaurant offers delicious original vegetarian dishes combined with excellent staff members and affordable prices. If you are looking for a place to relax and feel at home, make a reservation for Rotas da Ilha Verde and experience the quirkiness and warmth without waiting in line – this place is in high demand, and for a good reason! There are many innovative vegetarian dishes from salads to lasagnas that will have you engaged and enjoying every moment of your meal all the way into the delicious dessert. It’s open for both lunch and dinner, and you’ll get a little something different with each respective time of day. Although lunch tends to be more popular, why not try both!?

6. La Cantina

La Cantina is an Italian haven in the main city of São Miguel. The Italian cuisine meets the Portuguese sea on a lovely patio overlooking the port area. If you’re looking for something upscale and delectable outside of the traditional Portuguese seafood, this is the place to be! However, this doesn’t mean you have to compromise on your experience of amazing seafood. Ponta Delgada’s “La Cantina” offers a wide range of items from sushi to lasagna, all very well made and offered with exceptional service. Still, be sure to leave room for dessert! Whether it’s an excellent Tiramisu or delicious gelato, you will not regret finishing off your meal with some of the best desserts on the island!

5. Paladares Da Quinta

Paladares Da Quinta is a quaint restaurant located on a wooded farm in the city of Logoa. Not your average restaurant! The meals are nothing short of unique with authentic specialties beginning with fresh fish – something you simply cannot pass up while you’re on this island, no matter how averse to fish you might be! – and continue on into “Barrada style Piglet”, “Octopus” and “Codfish”. The majority of this regional cuisine is cooked in a wood-burning oven to match the rustic landscape of the area in which it is located. Stop in for a delicious Portuguese meal in a gem of the woods. There is no reason for you to leave here without being wonderfully satisfied!


4. Restaurante O Mariñeiro

This hot spot, conveniently located on the liveliest strip of the island’s main city of Ponta Delgada, offers bold flavors, delicious drinks, authentic Portuguese cuisine cooked to perfection, and friendly competent staff members. Here you’re sure to experience something delicious and full of flavor right down to the sangria (which is served with a scrumptiously surprising hint of cinnamon). Although this place is known for “excellence and sophistication” it is also the perfect place to just sit for some drinks, especially if you are getting ready to experience some nightlife. It’s located just moments down the strip from the hottest nightclub on the island! A perfect spot whether you are stopping in for an early evening drink or staying put for the whole deal.

3. Paraíso Do Milénio

Paraíso Do Milénio is the representative restaurant of the lovely city of Agua de Pau. The ideal traditional Portuguese cuisine on the menu makes it a great place to try something new with the guarantee that it will be of good taste! The portions are generous, and the contents are nothing short of delectable from the appetizers to the desserts. If you are hoping for something more familiar, the paradise of Parasio do Milenio also offers a select range of classic items as well. To top it all off the servers are informative, friendly, and well versed in English! As an added bonus, you can walk off your delightfully satiated state on the gorgeous boardwalk located just minutes away from the restaurant

2. Terra Nostra

Terra Nostra restaurant is not only a great place to eat but a beautiful place to get lost in the nature of the island. This restaurant is located in a garden, on the property of a chic and sophisticated hotel, all within the hot springs of the renowned city of Furnas! It is among the greatest tourist attractions and has even been quoted as home to “The Best of Azorean Cuisine”. The delicious dishes of Terra Nostra are served with an incredible class that’s expressed in the finest details of plating and expands across the entire restaurant. With a spacious dining area inside walls of full-length windows, overlooking the beautiful gardens of the Furnas, this is a place you will not want to miss!

1. A Colmeia

Enjoy a restaurant that characterizes the perfect balance between fantastic food, amazing ambiance, and great service. A Colmeia is best known for its class and gastronomy. The plates are delicately filled with bold Portuguese flavors which complement one another as if they were simply meant to be. The restaurant itself creates a sophisticated and unblemished atmosphere that fills the space with a warm and welcoming ambiance. Your dining experience will be taken to the next level when you explore the array of exceptional wines which will not only add to the perfection of your meal but also offer dynamic flavors that you can thoroughly enjoy even as an independent treat. What is even more impressive is that all this indulgence comes at a very reasonable price!