The nine mountainous islands of the Azores were long a haven for Atlantic traders and explorers sailing between the Old and New Worlds. On the green and fertile island of Sao Miguel, Ponta Delgada was once no more than a fishing village. 16th and 17th century economic growth saw the construction of lavish palaces and churches of the period, many still surviving. Not to be missed are the twin crater lakes of Sete Cidades, just a causeway apart, but the one blue, the other green.