Situated on the north coast includes the hamlets of Gorreana and Lombinha da Maia, the parish of Maia is bound by the sea and the parishes of São Brás and Lomba da Maia (Ribeira Grande municipality), Ribeira das Tainhas and Ponta Garça (Vila Franca do Campo municipality) and Furnas (Povoação municipality).
According to early Azorean historians, the name of this parish derives from the fact its founder was Inês da Maia, a noblewoman who settled there at the end of the 15th century.
This parish is one of the oldest in the country of Ribeira Grande, and its settlement occurred soon after the island was discovered, witnessed by the construction of its church, that dates back to the late 15th century. In a 1522 it already had its third vicar. It was one of the places on the north coast of São Miguel that developed most rapidly, and a hundred years after it had been founded it was already a parish.
The Parish Church of the Espiríto Santo dates from 1812.
The Lalém Country House, an ancestral home rebuilt in the 19th century, with an 18th century chapel and gate, is a fine example of Azorean aechitecture.
In the hamlet of Gorreana, there are the only tea plantations in Europe, At the hundred year old Gorreana Tea Factory this much appreciated beverage is prepared from the various varieties of tea cultivated there.
Demographic chart of Ribeira Grande Parishes