Overview

Introduction

Azores Safe By Nature

The Atlantic’s Garden

Away from the beaten path, 321 miles (517km) from Sao Miguel – 1½ hours flight, the island of flowers is a land of spectacular natural beauty and a real find for nature enthusiasts.

Towering cliffs, a multitude of lakes, waterfalls, small pastures bordered by mile after mile of hydrangea hedges and spectacular views await at every turn.

Santa Cruz, located on the east coast of Flores, is a small village of narrow streets, local snack bars and natural rock pools. The capital is an ideal base from which to explore the island.

Situated on the seashore of a coastal plain, Faja Grande is enclosed by a high cliff with about 20 waterfalls. The village is also home to a small pebble beach and is a noted area for Nearctic land birds.

This peaceful settlement of some 200 inhabitants attracts walkers from all over the world. Two marked trails, 8.5km and 11km respectively, finish in the village and the combination of the two equates to walking the length of the continents westernmost coastline. A unique opportunity!

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About Flores

Area: 143 sq. km
Length: 17 km (11 miles)
Width: 11.5 km (7 miles)
Population: 4,500 inhabitants
Capital: Santa Cruz das Flores

Highlights

Rocha dos Bordoes
Of particular interest is the ‘organ pipes’ – a geological phenomenon formed by the solidification of basalt in high vertical channels which dominates the landscape above the village of Mosteiro on the west coast.

Festivals

Festival of Sao Joao (last week of June)

Activities

Boat Trips and Diving

The natural beauty and richness of the waters off Flores Island offers some diverse adventures.

  • Boat trip around the island to discover the waterfalls
  • Boat tour to discover hidden caves
  • Boat trip to Corvo Island (round trip) operates from 10th June to 20th September
  • Visit to the crater of Caldeirão at Corvo Island
  • Diving 1 or 10 dives

Notes:

  • These activities run between April to November and are bookable and payable locally
  • Minimum 6 people required, except for the boat trip to Corvo where no minimum number is required
  • Zodiac boats (small, rigid hull inflatable carrying up to 24 people) are used 
  • Diving for experienced divers only: The price includes the boat, skipper, full tank, weights and guide. 
  • Dive suits can be hired locally for approx. 15 Euros per person. 

Private taxi tours

Tour of Flores (Half Day)
Depart from Santa Cruz towards the west coast of the island on the interior road. En route you will stop at Pico da Casinha belvedere and visit the Volcanic lakes of Lomba, Funda, Rasa, Seca, Branca, Comprida and Negra. The next visit includes the Craveiro Lopes and Portal viewpoints. Continue towards Faja Grande and Ponta da Faja, see the beautiful cascading waterfalls and visit the Poco do Bacalhau. After Faja Grande you will visit the geological phenomenon of Rocha dos Bordoes followed by the Lajedo viewpoint. You will pass by Lajes Village and return to Santa Cruz along the East Coast stopping at the Caveira and Faja do Conde viewpoints, to admire the views over Santa Cruz, the principal town of the island and the west coast.

Tour of Flores (Full Day)
 Depart from Santa Cruz towards the centre of the island, in to the Luis Paulo Camacho Forest Park before heading to the viewpoints of Caimbras, Cedros, Ponta Ruiva, the parish of Ponta Delgada and its port and the island of Maria Vaz, just off the north-west coast of Flores. After lunch (not included), you will continue to the viewpoint of Pico da Se before passing through the largest Azorean forest of Cedros do Mato with its endemic trees. From here the visit continues to the volcanic lakes of Lomba, Funda, Rasa, Seca, Branca, Comprida and Negra. The next stop will be the Craveiro Lopes and Portal viewpoints after which you will take a short walk (c.45 minutes) with a guide along the Ribeira do Ferreiro walking trail. Afterwards continue towards Faja Grande, the westernmost point of Europe and Ponta da Faja, see the beautiful cascading waterfalls and visit the Poco do Bacalhau – the trail to the waterfall (with guide) takes approximately 20 minutes. After Faja Grande you will visit the geological phenomenon of Rocha dos Bordoes followed by the Lajedo viewpoint. You will then stop in the village of Lajes and visit the church viewpoint before returning to Santa Cruz along the East Coast stopping at the Faja do Conde viewpoint, to admire the views over Santa Cruz, the principal town of the island and the west coast.

  • Price is £114 per vehicle (Half Day) and £148 per vehicle (Full Day) - From Santa Cruz
  • Price is £127 per vehicle (Half Day) and £161 per vehicle (Full Day) - From Lajes, Cuada or Faja Grande

Notes:

  • Pick-up from hotels in Santa Cruz (Flores) at 09:00. Pick-ups outside Santa Cruz to be advised locally 
  • Prices are based on 1-4 people per vehicle 
  • Half Day: 4 hours 30 minutes 
  • Full Day: approximately 7 to 8 hours 
  • Not included: Lunch and entrance fees to museums and parks  
  • Ribeira do Ferreiro trail grading: Medium (depending on weather conditions) 
  • Poco do Bacalhau waterfall trail grading: Easy 
  • English speaking guide can be provided at a supplement on request

 

Self-guided walks on Flores

The islands of the Azores, with their mild climate (day time temperature ranging from 14-22 degrees), are the most wonderful islands for walking. All walks are to be booked and paid for locally. 

Ponta do Albarnaz – Faja Grande (Flores)
This 3 hour (12km) walk is along Flores’ west coast. The route is bordered by hydrangeas and descends and crosses several rivulets before reaching your first view point. Here you can enjoy spectacular views over Maria Vaz islet, Ponta do Albarnaz lighthouse and, on a clear day, the tiny island of Corvo. Continuing on an unmade track you will then descend towards Ponta da Faja and the quaint village of Faja Grande, where the walk comes to an end.

  • Grade 2 (Medium)

Lajedo - Faja Grande (Flores)
This 2.5 hour (10km) trail begins in the parish of Lajedo. Along the trail you can observe the western coast of Flores and the adjacent islets. The trail passes by the parishes of Mosteiro, Fajazinha and Ribeira Grande. Generally the trail runs on an unpaved track with some stone and tarmac areas.

  • Grade 2 (Medium)

Miradouro das Lagoas – Faja Grande (Flores)
This 3 hour (7km) walk offers spectacular views along the west coast of Flores and descends to the pretty village of Ribeira das Casas with its gurgling stream. The walk ends at the pool and waterfall of Poca do Bacalhau in Faja Grande – offering the perfect opportunity for a refreshing swim.

  • Grade 2 (Medium)

Notes:

  • The walks can be booked and paid for locally on Flores.

Useful information

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Alison
Alison Garrard
Best time to go
  • JAN
  • FEB
  • MAR
  • APR
  • MAY
  • JUN
  • JUL
  • AUG
  • SEP
  • OCT
  • NOV
  • DEC
Time Difference

GMT - 1 hour

Currency

Euro

Language

Portuguese

Average flight times

4 hours 5 minutes

  • Average temperature

    Average rainfall

Note: Map is for guidance purposes only.

Talk to our The Azores expert

Alison
Alison Garrard

Alison joined the Sunvil team in 2019 but has long been an extended member of our family, having sold our holidays as a travel agent for 25 years! Sunvil is more than a business, our approach to travel - introducing visitor to lesser-known places and placing them among the locals, is a concept that our staff buy into and feel passionate about. Our holidays are those that we ourselves enjoy and would recommend for our friends and family. Alison is no exception having chosen a Sunvil trip to the Azores for her honeymoon and having recently returned from Veneto.

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We open today at 9:15 AM

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We promise that a member of our specialist reservation teams will reply personally to your holiday enquiry before 5.30pm if received before 12.00pm (Monday to Friday). Enquiries received after 12.00pm will be replied to within 24-hours (excluding Sundays).

If your enquiry is of an urgent nature, please telephone our dedicated reservation teams on the numbers listed below.

Our lines are open from 9.00am to 5.30pm Monday-Friday and from 9.30am to 4.30pm Saturday.

  • Greece: 020 8758 4758
  • Cyprus: 020 8758 4759
  • Portugal, the Azores, Spain, Italy, Sicily and Scandinavia: 020 8758 4722
  • Latin America: 020 8758 4774
  • Marketing: 020 8758 4731

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