Activity Holiday Ideas
The Azores is a nature lover’s paradise. Each of the nine islands offer a wealth of activities to suit all interests and abilities. On certain islands you can pre-book the activities. Most are designed to be ‘bolted-on’ to a standard holiday - useful for parties of mixed interests as not everyone has to participate.
Throughout the year the Azorean waters attract a number of cetacean species. A pod of male Sperm whales, Common dolphins, Bottlenose dolphins and Risso’s dolphins call the Atlantic waters surrounding the archipelago their home. During the summer months (July – September) migratory species including pods of Sperm whales, Pilot and Beaked whales, Atlantic-Spotted dolphins, Striped dolphins and Turtles pass the islands. Whereas, in winter (October – June) species of Baleen whales such as Fin whales, Sei whales, Humpback whales and Blue whales are likely to be seen.
33 Blue Flag beaches & natural swimming pools
Imagine stretches of silky black sand in stark contrast to the white foam and deep blue of the sea. Although not a traditional beach destination, the beaches of the Azores provide the ideal place from which to sit back, relax and watch the world go by. There are some nice sandy beaches and coves on the north coast of Sao Miguel near Ribeira Grande (near the Quinta de Santana) and on the south coast at Agua de Alto (near the Hotel Bahia Palace). The shingle beach of Porto Pim on Faial is easily accessible, c. 5-minutes’ walk from the centre of Horta, and even some gold sand beaches can be found on Santa Maria and Terceira. In addition, all of the islands have natural rock pools - filled with ocean water and heated by the sun – meaning many unexpected private swimming opportunities.
You can’t be: each of the islands produces its own – and, paired with good Portuguese wine, it makes for wonderful post-dinner indulgence. On Sao Jorge its famous namesake cheese is still made in the traditional farmhouse way and aged for over 120 days.
Producing black, green and oolong tea since 1883, the Gorreana Tea Factory (Sao Miguel) produces up to 40 tonnes of tea per year. This 45-hectare plantation is the only tea producing factory in Europe. Learn how tea is harvested, processed and packaged to produce the perfect cuppa.
Sao Miguel has a profusion of public gardens filled with tropical fruits and rare plants. The Jardim Antonio Borges in Ponta Delgada is especially remarkable, and the stunning 30-acre Terra Nostra Garden in Furnas - with its giant araucarias, tree ferns, romantic streams and geothermal bathing pool - is a must and has an exotic, internationally significant collection of plants. Also worth a visit are the recently extended botanical gardens on Faial.
One of the best ways to explore these mid Atlantic islands is on foot. All the islands have walking trails. We operate our own guided walking holidays on three of the islands; Sao Miguel, Santa Maria and Pico. We feel that these walks are the most scenic routes that the islands have to offer that can be enjoyed all year round due to the mild temperatures. Each individual walk can also be booked separately and added to a standard holiday.
SATA Air Acores operate inter-island flights between each of the nine islands, with at least one flight per day from Sao Miguel to each island, and 3- 4 flights per day connecting the islands of Sao Miguel, Faial and Terceira.
To book this itinerary, or discuss a tailor-made alternative, call one of our Sunvil experts on:
020 8758 4722
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