Angra do Heroísmo
Classified by UNESCO as a World Heritage City, it is the historical capital of the Azores and home of the Diocese. For several centuries, Angra was a seaport on the sea routes between America and Europe. An important port on the "Carreira das Índias" scale, reflecting its historical past in its beautiful churches, its monasteries, its fortresses and Renaissance houses, with its graceful and flowery cast-iron balconies.
A city with excellent commerce, restaurants and bathing areas, it is the scene of the biggest profane festivals in the Azores, which take place in June - As Sanjoaninas. With a vast architectural heritage, there are obligatory visits such as "Sé Catedral" (of Filipino architecture, built over a Gothic church of the XV century), "Palácio dos Capitães Generais" (former Jesuit college, where in the XVIII century was adapted as residence of the General Captains), "Palácio Bettencourt", "Igreja do Colégio" (where Paulo da Gama, brother of the great Portuguese navigator Vasco da Gama who discovered the sea route to India, is buried), the majestic eighteenth-century "Igreja da Misericórdia", "Convento de São Francisco" (where Angra do Heroísmo Museum is), the 17th century Convent of San Gonçalo, "Pátio da Alfândega", the "Praça Velha", "Paços do Concelho" (City Hall), "Teatro Angrense", "Alto da Memória", "Jardim Duque de Bragança", "Castelo de São João Baptista" in Monte Brasil (Fortress built during the Spanish occupation) and "Castelinho de São Sebastião", among so many other points of interest in the city center due to the great influence of the nobility and rich merchants that lived in this beautiful city and towns nearby.