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Overview

The nine volcanic islands that make up Portugal's Azores lie in the mid-Atlantic, some 800 miles from mainland Portugal. Landscapes vary from rolling moors and fields covered in wildflowers (more than 1200 species of plants thrive here) to volcanic craters and cliffs dropping into the sea. Portugal's tallest mountain is here, as are Europe's only tea plantations. When the volcanoes subsided millions of years ago they left reminders: geysers, deep lava caves, crater lakes and a rugged silhouette. Outdoor sports are popular, with ample opportunities for hiking, climbing volcanoes, scuba diving, birding (150 species reside here), bicycling, big ...

The nine volcanic islands that make up Portugal's Azores lie in the mid-Atlantic, some 800 miles from mainland Portugal. Landscapes vary from rolling moors and fields covered in wildflowers (more than 1200 species of plants thrive here) to volcanic craters and cliffs dropping into the sea. Portugal's tallest mountain is here, as are Europe's only tea plantations. When the volcanoes subsided millions of years ago they left reminders: geysers, deep lava caves, crater lakes and a rugged silhouette. Outdoor sports are popular, with ample opportunities for hiking, climbing volcanoes, scuba diving, birding (150 species reside here), bicycling, big game fishing, and boat trips to watch whales in the surrounding ocean. Golf courses are superb, and the Furnas region is known for its natural spas. Rural landscapes and tiny agriculture and fishing communities are the setting for charming inns and upscale lodging and dining, often in former monasteries and in manor houses built by early traders and seafarers. Yachtsmen from all over the world still meet in the harbors of Faial.

Barbara Rogers
About the Expert

Barbara Radcliffe Rogers has written or coauthored more than 30 guidebooks, including The Portugal Traveler, Drive Around Portugal, City Spots Munich, City Spots Helsinki, City Spots Stockholm, Eating New England, and the Maine section of Thomas Cook's Independent Traveller USA.

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Barbara Rogers for Triporati

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Now Happening in Azores

Facts at a Glance

  • Location: A Portuguese archipelago in the Atlantic ocean located about 1500km from Lisbon.
  • Language: Portuguese
  • Currency: Euro
  • Research: Wikipedia | Wikitravel
  • Current Time:

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    Since weather is spring-like all year round, aim for a colorful festival, such as Senhor Santo Cristo dos Milagres in May.