Beauties of Azores: enchanting Lagoa de Santiago on Sao Miguel
Hi there my Steemian friends and followers!
Welcome to my special weekly series called Beauties of Azores that was created by me to raise awareness of the extraordinary charm of a captivating Portuguese archipelago known as the Azores.
After showing you the magnificent volcanic lakes of Lagoa Azul and Lagoa Verde in some of the previous episodes of the series, I am going to take you to another beautiful lake that can be found in the Sete Cidades lake area - Lagoa de Santiago.
Unlike the two biggest lakes of the area Lagoa Azul and Lagoa Verde that have the same elevation as the town of Sete Cidades itself (259 m or 850 ft above the sea level), nearby Lagoa de Santiago is situated higher (at 334 m or almost 1,100 ft above the sea level) and it takes a pretty decent hike (or a short drive) to get there from the town.
There is a little parking lot right next to the viewpoint overlooking the lake from the edge of the volcanic crater and this is also were most people usually stop by to enjoy the views and take some nice landscape photos.
However, if you want, you can also get all the way down to the lake itself. There is a little inconspicuous path that starts right behind the wall of the viewpoint and it winds through the mysterious Macaronesian forest and lush vegetation surrounding the lake down to the bottom of the crater.
After some 20 minute descent, you will find yourself right on the shore of the lake. The water of Lagoa de Santiago is very clear with a greenish shade similar to that of Lagoa Verde. The deepest point of the lake is 29 m (95 ft) below the surface.
While the lookout spot up on the edge of the crater was quite busy when we were there, we didn´t meet a single person on our hike down to the lake (and on our way back up) so we could enjoy some nice peaceful moments down there. The Azores Islands are known for very windy weather but when you are sitting on the bottom of a massive volcano, not even the smallest leaves will move :)
I am really glad we decided to venture beyond the little wall of the viewpoint and go down through the pristine ancient forest to the lake surface. It was such a magical and somewhat spiritual place down there. I just wish we made it there a bit earlier as we soon found ourselves under the time pressure with the sun getting uncomfortably close to the horizon and a long hike back to our house ahead of us.
I hope you enjoyed this episode of my Beauties of Azores series that was dedicated to the enchanting volcanic lake known as Lagoa de Santiago that can be found in the northwestern part of the Sao Miguel Island. All of the photos featured in this post were taken by me.
If you want to learn more about this exquisite Portuguese archipelago and its charms, stay tuned for the next episodes of my Beauties of Azores series ;)
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