Central Group Santa Maria
The nine islands
he nine islands of the Azores are all volcanic in their origin and are located roughly between 37 ° and 40 ° north latitude and 25 ° and 31 ° west longitude, establishing the border west of the European continent in Flores island. According to 2011 data, 246,102 people live in these islands territory that covers 2,325 sq.km, distancing 1,815 km from mainland Europe (Portugal) and 2,625 km from the North American continent (Canada). The archipelago is divided into three geographical groups: the Eastern Group composed of Santa Maria and São Miguel, the Central Group includes the islands of Terceira, Graciosa, São Jorge, Pico and Faial and the Western Group comprising Corvo and Flores islands.
Brought together in an archipelago, each Azorean island has its own identity. Even if they all share an extraordinary natural legacy, they also have their own unique strokes in their landscape, traditions, cuisine and architecture. There are no words capable of describing and classifying the charm of these nine charismatic islands. They have been sculptured by ancient volcanoes and populated over the centuries by courageous and kind people. Thus the Azores are a place of varied experiences and emotions. But each one of the islands has its own identity. The fossils of Santa Maria, the lakes of São Miguel, the caves of Terceira, the cones of Graciosa, the fajãs of São Jorge, the Mountain of Pico, the Capelinhos Volcano of Faial, the volcanic chimneys of Flores, and the Caldeirão of Corvo are unmistakable features. To travel throughout the Azores is to get to know nine islands where the same genetic code generated profiles that are distinct from one another. The long lists of natural parks, of areas of protected landscape, of protected fauna and flora species, of forest reserves, of geolandscape,
and of sites with geological interest guarantee the preservation of a priceless natural legacy. As a form of compensation for all of this effort, the Azores are considered to be a sanctuary of biodiversity and geodiversity and one of the best locations for Nature Tourism.
Climate The Azores are characterised by their mild climate throughout the year. The average air temperature ranges between 13.6°C (minimum) and 22°C (maximum) throughout the whole year. The stabilising influence of the Gulf Stream, however, makes the sea temperature much more constant, with average temperatures ranging between 16°C in the winter and 20.5°C in the summer, with the maximum temperatures occasionally peaking at around 24°C - 25°C.
Walking Trails As you walk inland from the coast, you will enjoy a stunning landscape marked by dense coastal woods, in particular juniper trees and the remains of laurissilva forest. But there is much more to see than just vegetation. There are also waterfalls, vineyards, typical homes, windmills, fishing boats, and corrals. What’s more, on the coast, there are tidal pools nestling amongst unique rock formations.
MATA DO CANÁRIO SETE CIDADES TRAIL, SÃO MIGUEL island
CALDEIRÃO TRAIL, CORVO ISLAND
n the Azores there is a network of mapped trails, all of great biogeological, historical and ethnographical interest. They are classified in accordance with their level of difficulty, distance and type of route (linear or circular) – www.trails-azores.com.
PICO DO PEDRO - PICO DA ESPERANÇA - FAJÃ DO OUVIDOR TRAIL, SÃO JORGE ISLAND
Whale Watching and Swimming with Dolphins
he Azores is one of the best places in the world for whale watching. Around the archipelago, approximately 25 different resident and migratory species can be spotted.
The sperm whale (Physetermacrocephalus) is amongst the most common: the same giant of the seas that was immortalised in the classic book, Moby Dick. These whales can be as long as 18 metres and weigh as much as 44 tonnes. Other whales can also be seen, such as the blue whale (Balaenopteramusculus) and the fin whale (Balaenopteraphysalus), as well as several species of sharks, turtles and dolphins, namely the common dolphin (Delphinusdelphis), the common bottlenose dolphin (Tursiopstruncatus), the spotted dolphin (Stenellafrontalis), and many other fascinating marine animals.
GOLF COURSE OF TERCEIRA ISLAND
Golfing There are two golf courses on the island of São Miguel and one on the island of Terceira, which are all certified and recognised internationally. On the island of São Miguel, the Furnas Golf Course, approximately 40 km from Ponta Delgada, is a par 72 course with 18 holes. The Batalha Golf Course, located on the north coast of the island, only 10 minutes away from Ponta Delgada, is a par 72 course with 27 holes. The Terceira Golf Course is only one km away from the American Lajes Air Base and less than 15 km away from the city of Angra do Heroísmo. It is a par 72 course with 18 holes. These three golf courses are able to host large events, offering a restaurant/bar, a pro shop, golf carts, a chipping area, putting greens and a driving range.
BATALHA GOLF COURSE, SÃO MIGUEL ISLAND
FURNAS GOLF COURSE, SÃO MIGUEL ISLAND
onsidered by the IGTM (International Golf Travel Market) as one of the best and least exploited places in the world to play golf, the Azores combines a beautiful landscape with a mild climate, allowing golfers to play year round. 5
ozens of sites have been described and listed, suiting all tastes and types of dive: snorkelling, diving baptisms, evening dives, diving near the coastline, in caves or shipwrecks, coastal shoals or diving in deeper waters.
Mild sea temperatures, between 15º C and 22° C, and clear waters are some of the features that make the Azores an ideal destination for diving. Besides the mild weather conditions, there is also the diverse underwater landscape, featuring a volcanic seafloor inhabited by a variety of species and from which arches and lava tubes emerge. And if all that is not enough, there are also archaeological parks filled with the wrecks of merchant and war ships that have been buried here throughout history.
Formigas islets, Santa Maria island
he volcanic origin of the archipelago, the small size of the islands, and the short distance between some of them, make it easy for you to explore the region’s geodiversity at any time of the year, including its magnificent geolandscapes and geolocations. GRUTA DAS TORRES, PICO ISLAND
FURNA DO ENXOFRE, GRACIOSA ISLAND
Stand and stare at the collapsed calderas and their beautiful lakes, walk through the fajãs, see the volcanic ridges and the formations left behind by recent eruptions, discover the underground world by descending into caves and walking into lava tubes, or watch the bubbling hot springs. These are just some of the best reasons to visit the Azores. The region also has a number of interpretation centres giving visitors even further insight into its heritage – http://siaram.azores.gov.pt/.
Cycling and Mountain Biking There are various cycling and mountain bike trails suited to professionals and amateurs in the Azores. Throughout the whole year, with or without a guide, there are plenty of options for enthusiasts of this sport.
Sﾃ｣o Miguel island
Sﾃ｣o Jorge island
Health and Well being The Azores Islands are well known for their hydrothermal resources which have been exploited for centuries. There are various springs of natural carbonic water, waterfalls and iron water pools which have been used since the sixteenth century.
FERRARIA SPA, Sﾃグ MIGUEL ISLAND
he Ferraria Spa and the iron water pools in Furnas are unmissable on the island of Sﾃ｣o Miguel, whilst on the island of Graciosa, the highlight is the Carapacho Spa. 7
he ideal time for this sport is between April and October, but, if weather conditions are favourable, it can be practised throughout the whole year.
Together the islands of São Miguel, Santa Maria, São Jorge and Flores offer more than 50 equipped routes, some with small drops accessible to beginners and others with great vertical drops that will delight even the most experienced canyoners. São jorge island
Bird Watc hing
The geograph ical location of many birds, the archipelag the Azores along the mig ra o’s great vari proximity to ety of ecosyste tion route of each other, al ms, and thei l guarantee th land and seab r at you can se irds during on e many specie e single outin worldwide-im s of g. Some of th portant colo ese birds form nies. All the islands showcase man landscapes, bu y bird species in t wetlands, su ch as lakes, co all sorts of habitats and the best spot s for bird wat astal marshes chin and islets, off because they er provide a refu g. This is because so man y species go th ge for resting, that is protec ere breeding and ted from pred nesting; a re ators and off time to spot fu ers easy acce birds in the A ss to food. The ge zores is betw November. best een the mon ths of Septem The local spec ber and ies of birds in cl ude the Azore the Monteiro’ s bullfinch, th s storm petrel e Cory’s shea , the common common tern rwater, buzzard, the (Sterna hirun roseate tern do Linnaeus and the , 1758) amon gst others. n th
e Azores y species of w ou will find nesting 37 h ten are subsp ich two are endemic an d have been re ecies. More than 350 sp ecies corded in th e archipelag most of whic o, h Nearctic and come from mainland Palaearctic.
caldeirão, corvo island
Surfing and Body Boarding he mild climate and the constant air and water temperatures are ideal for surfing throughout the year, mainly during the winter months.
The diverse coastline of the various islands, which can be either high and steep with a rocky seafloor, or plain and sandy, offers a variety of great quality waves which are remarkably consistent. Besides its natural characteristics, the archipelago is also attractive to surfers because of its uncrowded surf spots and the short distances between them. You can find good waves on all the islands. Although the point breaks and beach breaks of the islands of Santa Maria and São Miguel have achieved a greater international fame, it is on the island of São Jorge, with its fajãs and reef breaks, that longer, tube-shaped waves are more common.
SANTA BÁRBARA BEACH, SÃO MIGUEL ISLAND FAJÃ DA CALDEIRA DE SANTO CRISTO, SÃO JORGE ISLAND
Fishing The Azores is a paradise for fishing enthusiasts, especially those who love big game fishing. The best time for fishing is from April to October, and the most often caught species are the swordfish, the wahoo, the yellowmouth barracuda, several species of tuna (such as the bigeye tuna, the skipjack tuna and the yellowfin tuna), some species of shark, the white marlin and the most coveted species of all – the great Atlantic blue marlin.
ou can find large pelagic species a few miles off the coast and the world records for the fishing of some species have been set in the Azores.
São Miguel island 9
ltogether, the marinas offer more than 1,000 mooring berths. All have been awarded the blue flag for quality. Many international regattas start, pass or end here.
For centuries, sailors from all over the world have been attracted to the Azores mainly because of the international relevance of the Marina of Horta. All the islands of the archipelago have and Sãoquays miguel harbours. The islands of São Miguel, Terceira and Faial have harbour centres with equipment for repairs and other facilities for boats and crews.
Canoeing and Kayaking
These sports can be practised in the Azores both in inland waters and in the open sea. Whether you’re enjoying the escarpments that surround the lakes at the bottom of volcanic calderas, or rowing around small islets to watch sea birds and visit caves, there is something for all abilities.
anoeing and kayaking give you a real physical and emotional involvement with the Azorean landscape.
Furnas, São Miguel island 10
Regardless of the direction of the wind and without having to walk long distances, there are all sorts of platforms on these islands from where it is possible to take off and land safely. This sport can be enjoyed solo or in groups and, because of the mild climate, takes place year round.
lying silently over the volcanic landscape, escorted by common buzzards searching for ascending air currents, is undoubtedly a once in a lifetime experience that will give you quite an adrenaline rush.
SETE CIDADES lake, Sﾃグ MIGUEL ISLAND
Horse Riding Horse riding in the Azores is more than a sport; it is a tradition. It is believed that the horse came to the archipelago with the first settlers, as horses are mentioned in property inventories dating back to the early sixteenth century. There are horse riding programmes available for first timers or experienced riders throughout the year.
alking or cantering along trails and around lakes on horseback is an unforgettable experience.
Sﾃ｣o Miguel island 11
do vila to por
Diving pedrinha; formigas/dollabarat; ambrósio Walking trails santa bárbara; santo espírito - maia; pico alto - anjos Geotourism / Geolocations pedreira do campo; poço da pedreira; ponta do castelo, ribeira do maloás
Fishing Departures from the Marina of Vila do Porto Sailing Marina of Vila do Porto Surfing and body boarding anjos; praia formosa
Places to visit Situated in the Eastern Group is the most southern island of the archipelago. It was the first island to be discovered and is distinguished by having a warmer and drier climate which makes part of its vegetation present a more yellowish tint. Due to these weather conditions, Santa Maria is assumed as the seaside resort of the Azores. The most famous beach is Praia Formosa, where one can practice aquatic sports. In an amphitheater position, São Lourenço Bay is surrounded by vines cultivated in terraces. In the northern part of the island there remains the chapel where Cristovão Colombo had a mass after his return from America, the hermitage of N. Srª. Dos Anjos (XV century). The Church of N. Sra. Da Assunção (XV century) patron saint of the island is one of the oldest of the archipelago. A collection of the island natural heritage can be found at the Environmental Interpretation Center of Dalberto Pombo. In Barreiro da Faneca we meet a barren landscape of reddish clay commonly known as the “Red Desert.” The Ribeira de Maloás, Pedreira do Campo and Fossils of Santa Maria are other points of interest for their geological formations. 12
Canoeing and kayaking praia formosa; baía de são lourenço; anjos Paragliding praia formosa; baía de são lourenço; anjos Bird watching Airport area; baía dos anjos
S Ã O LOUREN
Ç O B AY
Regional Food Cantaloupe
Barreiro da faneca
The land provides for one of the tastier dishes of Santa Maria. Turnip broth is made with a local kind of turnip, small and dark in colour. As for sweets, there are many local recipes. Tigeladas are often served in restaurants; however, light crisp cakes (cavacas), meringues, honey-cakes and cinnamon-based pastries are more typical, along with the biscoitos de orelha (ear biscuits), so called due to their shape. Rockmelons grown on the island have attained fame and a gourmet status over time. As for the handmade sausages, the highlight goes to the Alheira of Santa Maria. This is an island with a wine tradition and brandy and fruit liqueurs are also characteristic of this island. TRADItIONAL HOUSe
Events FESTIVAL AIA FOLK M ies stival ia a o festivitnhora da Blues fe çã ia n Jul., M r u a s M s ta ssa Se ra da A to, njos San sa Senho island festival, No ies in Vila do Por d s o N Jul., A o t r it e o h iv an ila do Pe patron saint of tere are various actdancing, concerts h th h Aug., V T s it gust see l taking place. and in hand w Mid Au a h iv t ld s e e h F g o Assunçã ious events bein ic fairs. m g om FESTIVAL with reli ft and gastrono E AGOSTO attracts visitors frht D É a r AR ic M d n ha the nig sic and rmosa raia Foicated to world muen to music during P ., g u A ed list tival is d , who come to This fes s the day. n g io t in a r c u d lo s h c u a io e r b ties e va t festivi est on th and to r o harves
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CA fRAN vila c a m p o do
Diving navio dori; arcos da caloura; ilhéu dos mosteiros
Fishing Departures from the Marina of Ponta Delgada and Vila Franca do Campo
Cycling and mountain biking furnas lake; sete cidades summit (cumeeiras)
Whale watching and swimming with dolphins Departures from Marina of Ponta Delgada and Vila Franca do Campo
Sailing Marina of Ponta Delgada and Vila Franca do Campo
Horse riding furnas; ginetes; ponta delgada
Walking trails sanguinho; praia - lagoa do fogo, ribeira funda (maia) Geotourism / Geolocations Furnas volcano caldera; Fogo volcano caldera; lagoa do congro; Sete Cidades volcano caldera Golfing Furnas Golf Course; Batalha Golf Course Health and well being ferraria; furnas
Surfing & body boarding ribeira grande; rabo de peixe; pópulo
Bird watching serra da tronqueira; Furnas Lake; Mosteiros Village
canyoning lombadas; faial da terra; pico da vela Canoeing and kayaking Sete Cidades Lake; furnas Lake; vila franca do campo islet Paragliding sete cidades; salto do cavalo (furnas/ povoação); fogo lake
F URNAS LAKE
Places to visit is the Lomba do Cavaleiro lookout which overlooks the whole caldera of Povoação and its seven slopes. The natural hot water pools are one of the most attractive features that São Miguel has to offer and include the Caldeira Velha, Terra Nostra Park or Poça da Beija, a pool of crystal clear water and ferrous mud.
ribeira dos caldeirões
São Miguel is a land of lakes nestled in volcanic craters that are many kilometres wide. The most iconic one lies in Sete Cidades. This is a place filled with legends and myths, and it deserves to be seen from the Vista do Rei Lookout; from there, in noble contemplation, one can see two twin lakes, the Green and the Blue, paired together by a bridge. The ecstasy moves on to Lagoa do Fogo (Fire Lake), which has a wilder nature. A large lake surrounded by extravagant, lush vegetation stands out in the Furnas Valley. But the number of lakes does not stop here, since others can be found both in the Serra Devassa and in the central part of the island, including the Canário, Santiago, Éguas and Congro Lakes... There will always certainly be another lake waiting to be discovered.
Other ways of enjoying the beauty of the island are by horse or bicycle. The two golf courses on the island of São Miguel, besides offering the practice of this sport, also provide a direct contact with unspoiled Nature. Those who prefer more action may hire a 4x4 SUV, a quad-bike or a mountain bike. Paragliding also offers the view of the beautiful lakes from a totally different perspective and the ability to take unique pictures.
LAGOA DO FOGO TRAIL
The magnificent Vila Islet in front of Vila Franca do Campo or of the Mosteiros Islet, glorious at sunset even when it is seen from the distant Ponta do Escalvado are points of great interest, as
SETE CIDADES LAKE
VILA FRANCA DO CAMPO ISLET 15
Sﾃ｣o Miguel furnas One can descend in to the subterranean world in the Gruta do Carvao and there are various cliffs equipped for climbing.
On the southern coast, beaches such as Pﾃｳpulo, Vinha da Areia and Ribeira Quente invite you for a swim and are sought after by many people. But if you prefer a more intimate contact with nature, the beaches of Amora, Viola, Lombo Gordo and Mosteiros among many others await you. Amid tips of black rock, sunbathing areas and crystal clear sea, one finds natural swimming pools and ponds in various places on the island; Capelas, Calhetas and Lagoa are just some of these sites.
TERRA NOSTRA PARK
And at the Ponta da Ferraria, Mother Nature takes care of heating the seawater with volcanic hot springs, offering an Atlantic Thalassotherapy in a unique natural setting.
Canoeing and other sports can be practiced on the rivers, and with the proper license, it is also possible to fish. Diving, whale watching and deep sea fishing are other activities not to be missed. On the north coast of the island, there are many great spots for surfing and body boarding. Sﾃグ ROQUE BEACH tea HARVEST
Regional Fo od
co zid o da s fu rn as The cuisine of São Miguel is filled with fish dishes, always with a common factor: freshness. There are also various types of sea food, and delicacies like the barnacle, a crustacean boiled in sea water. The meats comes from the cattle bred in the pastures and is tender and tasty. As for appetizers, there are the famous local red, mashed peppers served with fresh cheese. These local red peppers are also used in various recipes. The bolo lêvedo from Furnas is a cake that is well known and may be served during any meal. As for sweets, the most famous are the Queijadas de Vila Franca do Campo (Vila Franca do Campo Custards). On São Miguel Island there is a tradition for cultivating exotic fruits such as pineapple, annona, guavas and passion fruit, which are eaten raw or used to make liqueurs.
Events adas ations nde, the Cavalh r b e l e c PEDRO a Gra ade of
is a par de SÃO ds of Ribeir a Graneca, municipality ce on 29 June and ts, lancers, stewar ir e ib R h Jul., ibeira S g, knig akes pla Jun. to the parish of R Horse Riders) t mbolising a kin rses.
in o sy r’s Starting dro (Saint Pete urful outfits – ually adorned h e lo q P o e c o g ã in ridin de S sed ING peters, ers dres CLIFF DIV ULL B horse rid players or trum D RE n ivals h is Campo and hor ost festus tradition, whic périos” gh nca do y a l r o h F . io Im island called “ an relig Jun., V ., wholerepresent an Azorece around chapels p e S o May. tly Ghost Festivals nds. They take pla the isla The Ho er. tival eptemb ed on all week fes celebrat from May to S o r r a ) s e (Empir nte Chich
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Diving cemitério das âncoras; dom joão de castro bank; lidador
Fishing Departures from Marina of Angra do Heroísmo and Praia da Vitória
Paragliding serra do cume; serra do monreão; serra de santa bárbara
Whale watching and swimming with dolphins Departures from Marina of Angra do Heroísmo and Praia da Vitória
Sailing Marina of Angra do Heroísmo and Praia da Vitória
Bird watching cabo da praia; lagoa do ginjal; ponta das contendas
Walking trails mistérios negros; serreta; Monte Brasil Geotourism/Geolocations algar do carvão; caldeira de guilherme moniz; ponta da serreta Golfing Terceira Island Golf Club
Surfing and body boarding baía das quatro ribeiras; praia da vitória; baixa da vila nova Canoeing and kayaking Marina of Praia da Vitória; porto judeu Cycling and mountain biking monte brasil; biscoitos Horse riding terra chã
Places to visit Terceira means “the third,” earning its name because it was the third discovery among the nine Azorean islands. It is the eastern island of the five that form the central group: Graciosa, Pico, Faial and São Jorge. The historical centre is a laced picture of streets, alleys, churches, palaces, manor houses, monuments, squares and gardens, which selfless generations which selfless generations have preserved to this day, even against the forces of the earthquakes. UNESCO recognised this by introducing the Historic Centre of Angra do Heroísmo in the UNESCO World Heritage List since 1983. The remanence of volcanic activity on Terceira leaves behind traces of peculiar and spectacular forms in the landscape. Algar do Carvao stands out because
ANGRA DO HEROÍSMO Bay
it boasts a volcanic chimney which dazzles because of the immensity of its space. From its arched roof hangs remarkable silica stalactites, the biggest in the world. The Gruta do Natal, a cave consisting of a lava tube, is a wonder because of its extensive, straight and long passages. The walls, ground and ceiling have different colours and shapes, transforming the cave into a mystical place. Outside lies Furnas do
Events rope ulls on a B d n la hole is . festival als fill -Oct, w oaninas o (Saint John), loc the month of June id j n m a o S t o m y g ã g a ís in Jo o r in o t M d spor o Her days du d to Sã ngra da festival dedicate r ten consecutive hows, fireworks an A ., n u s fo , J ical mo inas eroís joan heatr The San s of Angra do H ts, food stalls, t nces. r t e e conc ular da the stre arades, e of pop p ESTIVAL d e a r r a a e p r VITÓRIA F omy. The A with a D g IA in d n n ória PRA gastro events e da Vit ival is music and ia al a r t P s zz festivd nationally. a Aug., in focus of the fe j a r g n e oísmo A ls featur The ma do Her rgest jazz festiva a r stival g n la o Vivo fe n o Oct., Already one of the t u O ória This is a da Vit
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Enxofre, an eloquent testimony to the strength of the Azores volcanic history. The landscape is filled with fumaroles, surrounded by a red soil which contrast with the green of the moss. But it is from the strategic location of belvederes, in the tallest of the island’s mountains and hills that one can best absorb the immensity of the volcanoes and take in the view. Climbing the hill of Monte Brasil, enjoy one of the most fabulous views over the city and the bay ofAngra do Heroísmo. Monte Brasil is an extinct volcano of three square kilometers, and it is surrounded by the four km long walls of the São João Baptista Fort, nowadays the oldest fortress that has been continuously occupied by the Portugeuse army.
PRAIA DA VITÓRIA CITY
It is at the top of the Serra do Cume that one can grasp the geometry of the endless stone walls and fences of hydrangeas which frame the pastures of Terceira Island. From the Facho belvedere, where the imposing monument of the Imaculado Coração de Maria lies, one can discover exceptional views over the beach, marina houses of Praia da Vitória and the whole plain of Lajes. The beach of Praia da Vitória couples history and fun, urban and rural landscapes, and the warmth of the sea with the sun. There are many tidal pools, typically equipped with support infrastructures: Porto Martins, Biscoitos, Negrito and Silveira.
SERRA DO CUME
Cliffs, headlands and bays also mark the coastline of Terceira Island, offering snapshots of rare scenic beauty, such as the bays of the Quatro Ribeiras, of Salga, of Mina or of Fanal.
MARINA OF ANGRA DO HEROÍSMO
Regional Fo o
d al ca tr a The cuisine of Terceira is m arked by alcatra, gener ally made wit h fish or beef (on the bone) . This is a typi cal dish that cooked very is slowly in a cl ay pot in orde to thicken th r e sauce. It is normally serv with bread or ed massa sovada (a kind of sweet bread) . This cookin g method is also applied when prepar ing chicken, beans, rabbit , octopus and broad beans. As for desser t, Queijadas Dona Amélia an exception is al cu with honey an stard based dish made d cinnamon mixed with raisins and ci ders. Accordi ng to legend, the name of this pastry is associated w the visit of Q ith ueen Amélia to Terceira. T coscorões, co he rnucópias (fi lled with egg custard) or ri ce pudding co mpletes a lis of local desser t ts.
algar do carvão
Diving terceirense; baixa do pesqueiro longo; baixa do farol
Geotourism / Geolocations furna do enxofre; ilhéu da baleia; caldeirinha de pêro botelho
Whale watching and swimming with dolphins Departures from Port of Santa Cruz and São Mateus
Health and well being carapacho thermal break
HORSE RIDING caldeira; serra das fontes; serra branca
Fishing Departures from the Port of Praia
Paragliding caldeira; serra das fontes; serra branca
Walking trails serra branca - praia; volta à caldeira; baía da folga
Cycling and mountain biking monte da ajuda; barro vermelho
Bird watching Ilhéu da praia; ilhéu de baixo
SANTA CRUZ DA GRACIOSA
Places to visit Classified by UNESCO as a Biosphere Reserve, the island of Graciosa is the second smallest of the archipelago and and also the one with the least imposing terrain, with several flat areas and smooth hills. Pedras Brancas (White Stones), Serra Branca (White Hills) or Barro Branco (White Clay) are localities on the island whose names are related to the presence of a volcanic rock, the trachyte, which is common on the island and which was once withered by the passing of time.
Santa Cruz stands out because of its typical houses and cobbled lanes wich stem from the large central square, where a bandstand emerges against brackish ponds and pines. Furna do Enxofre (sulphur cave) is the most symbolic element of the island’s landscape. The Pico Timão (Timão Peak) is one of the largest cones of scoria on the island of Graciosa. Along with the Ponta Lagoa –Arrochela (Lagoa – Arrochela Headland), Pico Timão resulted from the last volcanic eruption. The Praia Islet, which boasts the island’s only sandy beach, contrasts with the blue sea and green vegetation which covers its surface. Classified as a Special Protection Area, as it lies along the route of Monteiro’s Storm Petrel, the only seabird endemic to the Azores. The Ponta da Barca Lighthouse, the whale islet, the bays of Vitória, Folga, Barra and Porto Afonso are also points of interest.
QUE I J
A D AS
D A G RA Fresh C I OSA Azore fish capture s The g are traditi d in the gen a attain rlic and th onally serve erous sea o ingred ed gourmet e rockmelond roasted o f the a typi ients for va status and of Gracios r stewed. c adopt al product rious recipe are the bas a have da Gr ed the nam of this islan s. However, ic a the ce ciosa (Gra esake of the d, it is the p if there is c nturie Portu s-old iosa Custa island: Qu astry that g local p uese custar recipe of ce rds) inspiredeijadas go by astry also i d tart. The nturies-old by pastéi the name o ncludes oth popular an recipe of f [egg-b s de arroz [r cavacas, e er delicacie d tasty s made ased custar ice cakes] o comilhas, c s which aperit from origin d]. The win r encharcad apuchas, local bif wines also al verdelho e of Gracio as de ovos sa g everag comp lemen rapes. Spiri is es. t t the r ange os and f
CARAPACHO THERMAL BREAK
stivals ghost fe y l o h d islan AL ., whole p e ions CA FESTIV S o RAN t B y A a celebratl H IL s e M l z c u a r r musica t of mi anta C ord chrisf other events. Folkuz to life. l Aug., S z u r nt o a Cr anta C ompone streets of Sant Aug., S ligious c ic r to the re bring the histo Related ers c n a d and folk
Diving entre-morros; baixa dos rosais; ilhéu do topo Walking trails fajã de santo cristo - fajã dos cubres; fajã dos vimes; pico da esperança fajã do ouvidor Geotourism / Geolocations fajã do ouvidor; fajãs dos cubres e de santo cristo; morros de velas e de lemos
Sailing Port of Velas
Cycling and mountain biking pico da esperança; topo
Surfing and body boarding caldeira da fajã de santo cristo, fajã dos cubres canyoning sanguinhal; cavaletes (troço inferior); fajã redonda
Places to visit São Jorge, located in the central group, features a long volcanic ridge stretching from northwest to southeast of the island. The plateau of the inner part of the island, where the volcanic cones that generated the island were born, gives way to high, steep cliffs that either come to an end in the deep blue sea or in small flat areas at sea level, known as the famous fajãs of São Jorge. Flattened surfaces formed near the sea, which are framed by the imposing cliffs, are called fajãs which resulted either from lava flows that 24
Canoeing and kayaking baía de entre os morros; baía de velas; baía da urzelina
Fishing Departures from Port of Velas
HORSE RIDING ribeira seca; calheta; serra do topo Paragliding urzelina; brenhas; pico da esperança Bird watching fajã dos cubres
Fajã da ribeira da areia
entered the sea (such as Fajã dos Bodes e de São João) or from the erosion of land and rocks from the cliffs (as is the case of Fajã dos Vimes) due to earthquakes, heavy rain or another instability. The coastline of the island is characterised by the towering Rosais Headland, facing Faial, and the Topo Headland and Islet on the eastern side, which enhance the natural beauty of São Jorge. From fajãs of Cubres and Caldeira de Santo Cristo, with their coastal lagoons, to the lava fajãs of Velas, Almas and Ouvidor, there are a wide range of places to enjoy. In Calheta and Topo, picturesque ports are the gateway to centuries-old homes and churches, all with stories to tell. In Velas, the Portão do Mar (Sea Gate) has welcomed travellers that arrive in the port by boat.
FAJÃ DE SÃO JOÃO TRAIL
t se is the mos his chee probablyf the Azores. T aftertaste. is e s e e per y e Ch is uct o São Jorg wn food prod s a slightly pep to 12 kg, and 7 o a n h m k d o ll n fr e a w weights mi-hard e hard/se nd-shaped and on of th u he lago d Special o t in d It is r wedges. e d rais rve an d cut into eously born anto Nature Rese r exclusive foo n e is in a h r t t , e C n o p an ro Spo nto ms are se in Eu a de Sa Caldeir al Area, the cla nd. A rare ca f intense taste la ic o s Ecolog of São Jorge I enjoy coffee d beans. n wonder Vimes one ca locally source s Fajã do ma, made from and aro
fajã dos cubres
CALDEIRA DA FAJÃ DE SANTO CRISTO TRAIL
BANDSTAND OF JARDIM DA REPÚBLICA
pico da esperança
CLAMS/SÃO JORGE CHEESE
ivals ost fest gh y l o h island ts, ., whole p e S eek fair, nautical evenall tastes | w . l y a a r u M h suit s cult a book las velisating of lectures, d attractions whic e V , l. u n s J on ir a
me c ic fa fe. Program and gastronom ge of Velas to li l la a il the v music stival in ly bring estival Calheta hosts a ,fesports events and tru f y l u j f alheta village o , popular music Jul., Csame month, the ic des a r a p In the of ethnograph July full ibitions. ivities and exh sais fest
osais Aug., R
s laje ico p o d
Diving arcos da formosinha; baixa da barca; corais de são caetano
Geotourism / Geolocations gruta das torres; lajido de santa luzia; ponta da ilha
Whale watching and swimming with dolphins Departures from Marina of Lajes and Madalena
Fishing Departures from Madalena, Lajes and São Roque
Walking trails caminho dos burros; montanha do pico; caminhos de santa luzia
Sailing Marina of Lajes; Port of Madalena
HORSE RIDING ponta da ilha Paragliding pico do gerardo; s. roque; cabeço do silvado Bird watching plataforma costeira das lajes; lagoa do caiado; zona da barca
Cycling and mountain biking rota do verdelho; rota dos moinhos; rota das lagoas
Places to visit The second largest island of the Azores, dominated by the volcano of Pico Mountain and the highest point of Portugal, is the most southerly island of the Central Group and one of the vertices of the so called “triangle islands”. Imposing, majestic, magnificent, are some of the many nicknames that the Pico Mountain possess, thanks to its maximum altitude of 2,350 m and 19 km average diameter from sea level. This land is a mixture of nature and ancestral culture, which includes the landscape of Pico Island Vineyard, which has been classified by UNESCO as a 26
World Heritage Site since 2004. In the eastern half of the island is the Achada Plateau which dominates, with a volcanic ridge approximately 30 km long between the Capitão Lake and the Ponta da Ilha. It has about 200 volcanic cones and the surrounding areas such as the Grotões, Rosada, Paul, Landoral, Caiado, Peixinho and Negra, which features bogs, ponds and lakes. Ribeiras, Lajes do Pico or in Ponta do Mistério, one can find widespread lava deltas which remain as a eloquent testimony to the constant struggle between the creative power of volcanoes and the destructive actions of the sea. In times gone by, Pico was at the centre of the Azorean whaling era. The local areas of Lajes, São Roque, Calheta de Nesquim or Ribeiras invite you for walks to discover the picturesque ports, old whalers and the small streets and typical Azorean homes. The Whaling Association has various sites, such as the Museu da Indústria Baleeira.
Regional Food PICO WINES
Pico Island has a rich wine tradition, including white and red wines, which are produced in Pico , which are much appreciated throughout the Archipelago. “Magma”, ”basalt”, “Lajido” and “Lava Land” are types of wine from Pico. The fig and loquat spirits are also popular and old, copper distillers in working condition can still be found. Liqueurs such as Angelica and other fruit liqueurs are on offer for those with a sweet tooth. The island has always been a big producer of fruit. Its figs, bright red on the inside, are famous. The honey that is produced from the flower of the Australian cheesewood and the São João soft paste cheese complete the island’s list of food delicacies. As for dishes, octopus stewed in cheiro wine, sausage with taro root, boiled beef and fish broth are highlights.
Events WINE MUSEUM
vINEYARDS OF PICO ISLAND
estivals ly ghost f o h d n la rations whole is na celeb e ., l p a e d a S M o es, Maria t parad May. t s a Santa n ie hes, floa is t c le r a ivi a t m d s , h n a raftsma g o s to f e during t Jul., M e cais a e works of local c l cuisine on offer o Island. u q o R h a . of Pic Jul., S ibits include t ainment. Loc flavours the tert exh Popular at tours and en unity to sample o t r b o , s p d p ban he o om jesus ovides t event pr senhor b
us . Mate Aug., S ns haling lebratio e . This W c e o s im k o it e r r e lly ma milag r’s w rdes, s whale stival, but especia of Our Lady Lou je a L fe lt ., l a cu Aug d music d to the
s an nke Religiou ynonymously li s . s is r Week whale saint of n o r t a p gruta das torres
Diving Diving with blue sharks in the Condor Bank; boca das caldeirinhas; banco princesa alice Whale watching and swimming with dolphins DEPARTURE FROM MARINA OF HORTA Walking trails capelo - capelinhos; caldeira; morro de castelo branco Geotourism / Geolocations capelinhos volcano; graben de pedro miguel; morro do castelo branco
Fishing DEPARTURE FROM THE MARINA OF HORTA
Horse riding varadouro; praia do norte
Sailing MARINA OF HORTA
Paragliding praia do norte; caldeira; espalamaca
Surfing and body boarding almoxarife
Bird watching PORTO PIM BAY; lagoas de pedro miguel
Canoeing and kayaking HORTA BAY Cycling and mountain biking varadouro
Places to visit Faial island is part of the Central Group and is the westernmost corner of the so-called “Triangle Islands”. At the westernmost point of the island, the Capelinhos Volcano majestically rises up to the sky. It is the last volcanic eruption that took place in the Azores and added new land 28
MARINA OF HORTA OVERLOAKING PICO ISLAND
to the existing one. On the abrupt cliffs of Capelinhos and Costado da Nau, one can see the inside of these volcanoes in a sequence of contrasting rocks, layers and contours boasting surprising colours and textures. At present, light house is not operational but is home to the magnificent Interpretation Centre, featuring the most advanced multimedia and exhibition techniques. The visit ends with a climb to the top of the lighthouse to enjoy an unbeatable emotional
and visual experience. Faial offers great lookouts and views over the neighbouring islands: by the ruins of the Ponta da Ribeirinha Lighthouse one can enjoy the sublime outline of the island of São Jorge; at Ponta da Espalamaca, in the lookout by the monument of the Saint Nossa Senhora da Conceição and in front of the whole Bay of Horta, one can see the Pico Mountain rising majestically.
Events sea week FESTIVAL
to Pim ations the sands of Por r b e l e c gin from da Guia
nhora f the Vir orta Sescorts the statue o H ., g u se A red by e of ship it is sha A parad bour of Horta. w o n l t a u ar shows, sman, b k festiv to the h Sea wee edicated to yacht e includes music nd various a t r o d a m y regattas program Aug., H s initiall e ng boat to Pim. tival wa s. The extensiv ir, whali Horta and Por This fes r o fa it e is in v is f u nd locals a ft exhibitions, c liven the bays o a n handicr ctivities that e a sporting
PORTO PIM BAY
SANTA CRUZ FORTRESS
Looking inland, and great extensions of pasture land come into view; they climb all the way up to the Caldeira, being interrupted here and there by woods and trees. This natural landscape coexists on the island with enduring elements of human presence, with some typical windmills painted red and dotting the landscape, along with flowery and cultivated fields in Flamengos Valley, and rows of hydrangeas painstakingly aligned along roads and fields. And on the way between Varadouro and Castelo Branco, a rock surrounded by water and sea birds catches our attention. This is the Morro de Castelo Branco [White Castle Hill], which lives up to its name with trachyte white rock and a castle-like shape, as if it was once an almost indestructible fortress. Of the Triangle Islands, this is the one that has the most volcanic-sand beaches; the Porto Pim, Almoxarife and Norte Beaches invite you to enjoy sun bathe. The shape of the east coast varies considerably; sometimes it is high and other times it lies almost at sea level, given the action of gigantic tectonic forces that divided into several blocks of large dimensions. The coastline on the west side of the island is dominated by the imposing cliffs of Ribeira Funda and Praia do Norte and the ones that lie between Morro de Castelo Branco and Varadouro, sharply plunging into the deep ocean. Horta Marina, opened in 1986, is one of the worldâ€™s most famous harbours.
inside of peter cafĂŠ Sport
PETER CAFĂ‰ SPORT FACADE
One of the m ost typical di shes of Faial octopus in w is st ine, which is also as comm ewed the other isla on on nds of the ar chipel very importan t, especially st ago. Fish is ewed or serv a broth. Bread ed in and corn cake s are preferab included duri ly ng meals. As for meats, th local sausages ere are , eaten either as a meal, w served with ta hen ro root, or ju st as a snack. recipe for bo The iled beef tast es better whe especially wit n spiced, h pepper, cum in and cinnam stiffen the br oth in which on to the beef is co for pastries, oked. As the Fofas do Faial are typi aromatic pa cal: these stries include fennel seeds baked before and are being stuffed with a cream mixed with eg base g yolks, milk , sugar, flower lemon peel. and
Regional Fo od
Fi sh so up
Diving baixa do amigo; ilhéu do garajau; ponta da caveira
Fishing Departures from Port of Santa Cruz and Fajã Grande
Walking trails ponta delgada - fajã grande; lajedo fajã grande; fajã de lopo vaz
Surfing and body boarding fajã grande
Geotourism/Geolocations rocha dos bordões; caldeiras funda e rasa
canyoning ribeira dos algares; ribeira do cabo; ribeira dos mosteiros; ribeira do monte gordo Canoeing and kayaking fajã grande
Places to visit rocha dos bordões The European Continent has its westernmost point on this piece of land. The naming of Flores Island (meaning flowers) is thought to be related to the abundance of natural flowers. Among the intense greens of the vegetation, there are outstanding waterfalls and streams which water a natural garden of colourful flowers, where the pink of the azaleas and hydrangeas stand out. One of the most famous 32
Cycling and mountain biking fajã grande PARAGLIDING outeiro da madeira seca; pico do meio dia; pico dos sete pés Bird watching lagoa branca
poço da alagoinha
Albacora monuments of the Azores, the rock Rocha dos Bordões is made up by a large set of vertical basalt columns. More geological formations with peculiar shapes can also be seen at the hill Morro dos Frades, where the shadows of a friar and a nun can be seen by some. Even more symbolic, the Monchique Islet represents the westernmost piece of land on the European Continent. Seen from Vigia da Ponta Negra, close to the Albarnaz Lighthouse. Countless islets, headlands, shoals, inlets, coastal caves, waterfalls, and impressive valleys are some of the particularities that the coastline of Flores offers. Adorning the high cliffs of the south coast, Fajã Nova at Ponta da Rocha Alta and Fajã de Lopo Vaz can be reached by a walking trail carved along the cliff. Ponta Delgada, Santa Cruz and Lajes are other points of interest.
Regional Food por k mea t
negra and comprida lakes
and served with Flores salted pork meat is cooked sausage and with root Taro age. cabb potatoes and most traditional the in d ude incl water-cress soup is also on the uced prod recipes of Flores. The dried cheese The ure. text firm a with e past soft a island features cept con the ther toge g brin tart tortas de erva patinha ch grows on the whi e alga with ed serv lette ome of an heritage of the island shores. Fish is part of the cuisine ted tuna and stewed roas as and is served in recipes such w, red and purple conger eel. From the guava tree, yelloert. The honey is dess l loca a e mak to fruits are picked sands of flowers absorbed with the aroma of the thou d. islan this h ellis that emb
Events ivals ost fest gust in the gh y l o h u ay of A Cruz
d anta last Sun Sep., Sival is held on the o t . y Ma ly Ghost Fest sical FEstival plemented by mu The Ho Santa Cruz. AS Ç PO f AIS DAS g is com village o Cruz Cctivities and fishin htlife. a t n a ig a Aug., Sbration of water vens the island’s n li le e n c e is h h ic T ment, w ties entertain t festiviLajes das Flores n a r mig ival in ajes e Jul., L and Cultural Fest Musical
Suggested Activities WINDMILLS Diving gamela; baixa do buraco; caneiro dos meros Walking trails caldeirão - cancela do pico
Geotourism/Geolocations fajã de vila do corvo; caldeirão PARAGLIDING caminho para o caldeirão Bird watching whole island
Places to visit The entire island of Corvo is centred around its main volcanic struture, with a caldera at the top (called Caldeirão) and about twenty secondary volcanic cones on its flanks and inside the caldera. The Caldeirão is the main element of the island’s landscape and resulted from the collapse of the top of the central volcano of Corvo. This volcanic caldera has an elliptical shape, with a maximum diameter of 2.3 km and a depth of 305 metres. Its interior is filled with a body of water, which many claim replicate the Azores Islands. Vila do Corvo is located in a lava fajã (flat area of land by the sea), which flat surface had its origin in basaltic lava that flowed from Morro da Fonte. Portinho 34
vila do corvo
tart erva do calhau (rock grass) da Areia and Ponta Negra boast an underwater haven extention (the so-called caneiros), a location of choice for divers who come to the island. By the Alto dos Moinhos, next to Ponta Negra, small windmills adorn the seaside.
The local cuisine consists of fresh produce from the sea or picked from the land. Fish and Seafood are particular delicacies of the island. Corn bread is locally baked and is served with typical dishes such as the tart erva do calhau (rock grass). The grass is a type of seaweed picked from the sea rocks and the salt water is squeezed off. The handmade cheese of Corvo, which cures for at least 60 days, is a semi-hard paste and is yellow in colour, with a persistent and slightly hot taste.
Events gres ce dos mila
hora of the ossa sen onies in honour n o v r o m re ila do C gious ce Aug., Vre dancing and relis Milagres. al There a ssa Senhora do ll festiv l) is included in o dmi n wi a Saint N orvo indmill Festiv al brass band n ila do C loc (W tio Aug., Vtival dos Moinhos rings together the tertain the popula The Fes brations, and b er islands to en le om oth these ce bands fr . s s a r b do Bom and days Senhora uple of a s s o N o for a co rv
o ila do C er of summ Sep., V ns the end io r t g u a o in r t n b a o e r cel ies celeb procession in h Caminho . a r, festivit mbe after aminho In Septe ances are held o Bom C d a r d o e h includ ssa Sen aint No of the S
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