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Ponta Delgada , as you will realize when you arrive to the island of São Miguel during your holiday to the Azores with MSC Cruises, the wind is always blowing and white clouds quickly alternate with brilliantly blue skies.
Ponta Delgada, the port city that welcomes MSC cruise ships, is unmistakable.
While still on board, you will be able to admire the imposing Forte de São Brás, dating to the 1300s, which overlooks the docks. Once disembarked, you will have the chance to get a closer look at it. The centre of Ponta Delgada boasts two must-see places of worship, the Church of Sao Jose and the cathedral Igreja Matriz de Sao Sebastiao (began during the Renaissance but with 18th century interiors), and a curious triple arch nearby called Portas da Cidade (1783). This gate is all that remains of the defensive wall that protected Ponta Delgada up to the early modern age.
The facades of the main buildings and the street furniture of the city centre have elaborate black and white decorations. The cobblestones in some of the squares, for example, trace elegant figures along your path. Other must-see places are the Museu Carlos Machado, housed in a former convent, and Convento da Esperança, a massive square tower four stories high that is in use to this day. Adjacent, stands the venerated Santuário do Senhor Santo Cristo dos Milagres.
During an MSC Grand Voyages cruise to Ponta Delgada, it is possible to go on an excursion to Vale das Furnas, about 50 km from the city. The green lake occupying part of this ancient caldera seems like a scene from a fairy tale, while the entire town of Furnas, where you will be able to visit an enchanting botanical garden, is surrounded by flowers.