The Azores Archipelago is composed of nine volcanic islands, located in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, approximately 1500 km from the European coast and 3900 km from the North American coast. The Archipelago extends along a South-East / North-West range.
São Miguel is the largest island of the Azores with 746.76 Km2. It has a length of 65 km by 14 km width..
São Miguel was formed by several volcanic eruptions that began in the Northeast (it was active during 4.2 and 0.25 million years ago). Then, Povoação area, forming the heart of the island. Then came the volcanic eruption of Furnas, 800,000 years ago (dormant volcano). The Lagoa do Fogo crater occurred 290000 years ago, called the North Island..
The Azores Archipelago is the westernmost border of the European Economic Community, and occupies an Exclusive Economic Area of approximately 940000 Km2. The population of the nine islands (Western Group: Flores and Corvo, Central Group: Terceira, Pico, Faial, São Jorge, Graciosa and the Eastern Group: São Miguel, Santa Maria), around 245,000 people, distributed irregularly through all the islands . The majority of the population resides in São Miguel with 136,102 people (Census 2010)..