Vila Franca do Campo was the first capital City of São Miguel Island in 1444, where some of the most important battle events between Don Antonio I of Portugal and Philip II of Spain occurred. Nowadays, it is a big town with an interesting natural and architectural heritage such as, Matriz Church from the XV century, the chapel of Nossa Senhora da Paz, São Pedro Church from the XVIII century and also the town museum.
Vila Franca do Campo is also known for its famous pastry “Queijadas da Vila”, originally created in St. André Convent, which are still made according to a secret recipe preserved throughout the years.
Situated in front of the town’s coast, the Islet of Vila Franca do Campo is considered one of São Miguel’s main touristic attractions, especially during Red Bull Cliff Diving world championship event. Classified as a Natural Reserve since 1983, the number of visitors per day is limited and you can only visit it through special boat services departing from Vila Franca do Campo harbor during the summer months (June to September). The surroundings of the islet are covered by endemic vegetation and inside, you have a natural swimming pool with crystal clear water and a small beach, offering one of the best places to practice swimming and snorkeling.