Leave the world behind and discover the spectacular unspoilt beauty of the Azores. Located in the North Atlantic Ocean, this archipelago is the westernmost point of Europe and composed of nine unique islands: São Miguel, Santa Maria, Terceira, São Jorge, Pico, Faial, Graciosa, Flores and Corvo.
Sculpted by volcanoes over thousands of years, the Azores is home to extraordinary geological formations including lava tubes, waterfalls, thermal springs and crater lakes. The volcanic peaks offer spectacular views and Ponta do Pico is Portugal’s highest point, rising to 7,713 feet (2,351 metres). Evergreen forests, native plants and patchworks of pastoral land cover many hillsides, while an abundance of flowering hydrangeas colour the landscape from spring to autumn.
The Azores Islands have a maritime climate with pleasant summers, mild winters and plenty of rainfall throughout the year. Activities range from hiking and mountain climbing to scuba diving, whale watching, big game fishing and golf. Stroll around the streets of Ponta Delgada on São Miguel island to discover the rich historical and architectural heritage of the island. Also worth a visit is the town of Angra do Heroísmo – an enchanting UNESCO World Heritage site on the island of Terceira.
Azorean cuisine is rich in spices from its history as a stopover point for caravels returning from the east. A wide variety of seafood and meat dishes are available including fresh fish, lobster and shellfish. São Miguel’s speciality is cozido das furnas, a hearty stew that is cooked underground in the thermal heat of the island. Visitors can also savour the local wines and liqueurs, which have been cultivated using techniques dating back to the 15th century.
More information may be found in our comprehensive Azores Destination Guide.