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Azores Travel - São Miguel Island

São Miguel Island named for the Archangel Michael or, literally, Portuguese for Saint Michael), is also referred to locally as "The Green Island", is the largest and most populous island in the Portuguese archipelago of the Azores. The island covers 760 km2 (290 sq mi) and has around 140,000 inhabitants, with 45,000 of these people resident in the largest city in the archipelago: Ponta Delgada.

São Miguel is bisected by many faults from the northwest to southeast in the direction of the Terceira Rift, a triple junction of the Eurasian, African and North American tectonic plates. This system is best expressed in the western part of the island with extensive geological formations, such as the Mosteiros Graben (along the western flank of the Sete Cidades Massif), the Ribeira Grande Graben (along the northern flank of the Água de Pau Massif), and the many cones and fissural structures along the interior of the island.