The remote village of Porto Moniz on the north-eastern tip of the island has a history of whaling. Today it remains a picturesque fishing village which visitors are drawn to the experience the unique joys of bathing in the natural lava pools. Try to come here before 11am or after 3pm when you won't have to share the delights on offer here with hordes of coach parties.
The main reason people come here is to experience a dip in the natural rock pools, surrounded by stunning lava rock formations. The pools, joined together by a series of paths are the ideal spot for taking a dip in the clear, azure waters. The best place to do this is at the Piscinas Naturais do Porto Moniz, where for a €1.50 entrance fee (under 3's are free) you can take advantage of the changing rooms, lifeguards, chair and parasol hire and other facilities. The sun-warmed waters in the pools here maintain an average year-round temperature of 20-21ᵒC (68-70ᵒF).
If you're sure footed and looking for a less tame experience, the lava pools overlooking Ilheu Mole island are free to enter, but the rocks here are sharp and slippery and it is not really suitable for children.