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Azores Guided Walking Holiday

Lake of Sete Cidades with hortensia's, Azores
Duration: 14 nights
Type: European Multi-Centre
Walking Grade: 2
from £2,699pp with flights

Discover this lush and exotic archipelago lying in the midst of the Atlantic Ocean. Mighty Mount Pico, a towering volcano, reaches up to the clouds and stands at the heart of the Azores.. The historic coastal city of Angra do Heroísmo - a World Heritage Site - lies at the heart of Terceira, and island blesses with geological wonders and verdant landscapes. The lush gardens of Furnas and stunning crater lakes of Sete Cidades await on São Miguel.

Holiday Highlights

  • Walk the crater rim of the blue and green lagoons of Sete Cidades on São Miguel
  • Visit the UNESCO World Heritage areas of Pico and Angra do Heroísmo
  • Sail from Faial to the mighty Mt Pico, the highest peak of the Atlantic

What’s included

  • 14 nights' accommodation in en-suite rooms
  • Half board from breakfast on day 2 to breakfast on departure day, plus lunch on day 14
  • A full programme of guided walks and sightseeing with expert local guides and (in 2019) an HF Holidays' leader
  • Travel by minibus, taxi or coach around the islands
  • Travel between the islands by plane or ferry
  • Tips

Trip Notes

Trip notes are detailed, downloadable PDFs for each holiday.

Download Trip Notes

On arrival at Ponta Delgada airport, and after passing through security, there's a short transfer to our hotel.

Hotel Talisman, São Miguel - Azores

The art deco 4-star Hotel Talisman in Ponta Delgada, São Miguel, has two restaurants, a café terrace and a rooftop pool. It is in the centre of town, just minutes from the seafront. 

Hotel Marina Atlantico, Ponta Delgada - Azores

Situated in central Ponta Delgada, enjoy superb ocean views from the hotel. Featuring over 180 rooms, the Hotel Marina Atlantico also offers guests a health club with gym, indoor heated pool, sauna and jacuzzi. The en-suite guest rooms feature free Wi-Fi, air-conditioning, cable TV and a minibar.


After breakfast we’ll take a leisurely tour of Ponta Delgada through the cobbled streets of the old city, passing the fortress of Sao Bras, the 17th century Baroque Igreja do Colegio, the cathedral of Largo Martires, city gates and marina where you can stop for a coffee. In the afternoon we fly to Faial and transfer to the hotel.

Hotel do Canal - Azores

Situated opposite the marina with views of the marina and Pico beyond. This modern 4-star hotel is in keeping with the marine feel of Horta with a decked balcony and nautical photographs. This is a great base for exploring Horta.


Faial, known as the blue isle, is part of the central group of islands which include Pico, Sao Jorge, Terceira and Graciosa. Today we have a busy day exploring the island by bus and on foot.

We start the day with a short drive to the Caldeira in the centre of the island. The crater floor is a protected area, but for those wanting to stretch their legs you can walk from the view point to the highest point on the island, Cabeco Gordo at 1,043m with 400 feet (120m) of ascent.

From the Caldeira we head down towards the coast and Capelinhos where the last volcanic eruption in the Azores was in 1957. There are options for short walks in the area and a visit to the Capelinhos museum, which tells the story of the eruption.

Hotel do Canal - Azores

Situated opposite the marina with views of the marina and Pico beyond. This modern 4-star hotel is in keeping with the marine feel of Horta with a decked balcony and nautical photographs. This is a great base for exploring Horta.


A short ferry ride today takes us to the nearby island of Pico, and a short morning tour. Pico is the most obviously volcanic of all the nine islands and is dominated by its impressive volcanic cone of Pico Alto (2,351m), the highest point in Portugal.

In the afternoon we head up towards Mt Pico to start our walk at Frei Matias, gradually descending back to Madalena along farm trails and paths. There is an option (at additional cost, payable locally) to ascend Mt Pico, the highest mountain in the Atlantic. This involves a steep ascent and descent of 3,700 feet (1,120m)with some difficult terrain, and stout boots are required. The walk takes about 8 hours. If the mountain is covered by cloud it’s recommended to not attempt the ascent; you’ll be advised locally if it’s possible.

Hotel do Canal - Azores

Situated opposite the marina with views of the marina and Pico beyond. This modern 4-star hotel is in keeping with the marine feel of Horta with a decked balcony and nautical photographs. This is a great base for exploring Horta.


Today we have a morning walk to Monte Guia and Porto Pim on the outskirts of Horta. The afternoon is free, allowing you to explore independently at your own pace or to simply relax around the hotel. An option for you this afternoon could be a whale and dolphin watching trip (payable locally, approx. £50pp).

Hotel do Canal - Azores

Situated opposite the marina with views of the marina and Pico beyond. This modern 4-star hotel is in keeping with the marine feel of Horta with a decked balcony and nautical photographs. This is a great base for exploring Horta.


We take a morning ferry to Velas, São Jorge and transfer to the hotel. For the next 3 nights we are based in Velas, the island’s pretty capital. Like most of the smaller islands, this is a sleepy place with a few small hotels, shops, cafés and restaurants. This afternoon we have an optional guided walk from the hotel to the small volcanic cone opposite and chapel of Senhora Livramento. En route we pass a couple of bathing areas where you can swim or snorkel in the warm Atlantic (approx. 22°C).

Hotel São Jorge, São Jorge - Azores

A 3-star hotel located right on the seafront in Velas, São Jorge, looking out over the sea towards Pico. All the rooms have balconies overlooking the sea and there is a large outdoor pool. 


This is purported to be the best walk in the Azores. Most of Sao Jorge’s population is concentrated along the numerous island ‘fajas’ - the small coastal plains created by the erosion of the steep cliff sides.

This walk begins at the top of the island and descends to sea level through some of the archipelago’s most beautiful scenery. The hydrangea-lined path takes you through ‘forests’ of tree heather and pastures down to Faja do Santo Cristo where ‘clams’ are farmed in its sweetwater lagoon. The undulating path continues through two more fajas before ending at the café in Faja dos Cubres.

Hotel São Jorge, São Jorge - Azores

A 3-star hotel located right on the seafront in Velas, São Jorge, looking out over the sea towards Pico. All the rooms have balconies overlooking the sea and there is a large outdoor pool. 


This high-level walk follows a cinder track along the spine of the island circling between the green crater peaks including the island’s highest, Pico da Esperanca at 3,455 feet (1,053m). The walk undulates across the top of the island before descending to the small village of Norte Grande. For those who have walked far enough today, we can arrange for you to be picked up from the café and transferred down to Faja Ouvidor on the north coast (where the walk ends) for a refreshing dip in the sea!

The top of the island is often shrouded in cloud which blows in and out during the day but, when clear, there are spectacular views to Terceira and Graciosa on one side and Pico and Faial on the other.

Hotel São Jorge, São Jorge - Azores

A 3-star hotel located right on the seafront in Velas, São Jorge, looking out over the sea towards Pico. All the rooms have balconies overlooking the sea and there is a large outdoor pool. 


A mid-afternoon flight to Terceira, and a 20- minute transfer to the Pousada Sao Sebastao in Angra. Our hotel is situated just above the harbour and is a short walk from the historic city centre. The city was devastated by an earthquake in 1980 and has since been meticulously restored to its former glory. In 1983 Angra was declared a UNESCO Historic World Heritage Site.

Hotel Pousada Sao Sebastiao, Terceira - Azores

On Terceira, we stay in the historic Hotel Sao Sebastiao, one of two Pousadas on the Azores. Situated within a fortress, it has 28 bedrooms. All rooms have an en suite bathroom, heating/air conditioning, mini bar, phone, cable TV, hairdryer, safe and internet access.


Today we enjoy a full day tour of Terceira with some short walks. We head into the centre of the island, which is a mix of farmland and pristine forests of juniper and areas of dense sphagnum moss. These wild areas give you an idea of what the islands were like before they were colonised by the Portuguese.

A real highlight of the day is a visit to Algar do Carvao (Cavern of Coal), with its cathedral-like dome. From here we head north to the wine growing region of Biscoitos which is known for its Verdelho wines. In the afternoon we return via Praia and visit the small bird reserve near the harbour which is popular with waders.

Hotel Pousada Sao Sebastiao, Terceira - Azores

On Terceira, we stay in the historic Hotel Sao Sebastiao, one of two Pousadas on the Azores. Situated within a fortress, it has 28 bedrooms. All rooms have an en suite bathroom, heating/air conditioning, mini bar, phone, cable TV, hairdryer, safe and internet access.


A late morning flight takes us back to Ponta Delgada.

Hotel Talisman, São Miguel - Azores

The art deco 4-star Hotel Talisman in Ponta Delgada, São Miguel, has two restaurants, a café terrace and a rooftop pool. It is in the centre of town, just minutes from the seafront. 


This morning we drive west to the famous crater lakes known as Sete Cidades (Seven Cities). The lakes are known locally as Lagoa Azul and Lagoa Verde. The crater itself is the largest in the Azores measuring 3 miles (5km) across and 9 miles (15km) in circumference. The rim lies at 2,300 feet (700m) and is covered in lush vegetation: Himalayan ginger, blue hydrangea hedges and green dairy meadows.

The path contours half the crater rim giving wonderful views down towards the mystical blue and green lakes inside and over the deep blue Atlantic on the other side. The walk then descends, quite steeply, into the village of Sete Cidades on the shores of the two lakes.

Hotel Talisman, São Miguel - Azores

The art deco 4-star Hotel Talisman in Ponta Delgada, São Miguel, has two restaurants, a café terrace and a rooftop pool. It is in the centre of town, just minutes from the seafront. 


Today we drive east to the volcanic basin of Furnas. We spend part of the morning walking around Furnas lake (approx. 1 hour) before heading down to the Parque Terra Nostra and its thermal pool, in which you can swim. The gardens of Parque Terra Nostra were first created in 1770 by Thomas Hickling (the US consul to the islands). Since those early days the gardens have been extended and have matured into one of the finest to be seen anywhere in the world.

Hotel Talisman, São Miguel - Azores

The art deco 4-star Hotel Talisman in Ponta Delgada, São Miguel, has two restaurants, a café terrace and a rooftop pool. It is in the centre of town, just minutes from the seafront. 


Today we enjoy a full day geo-tour, driving from Ponta Delgada. We’ll be accompanied by a local geologist who will explain how the island was formed, the changes that have taken place from various eruptions and how this affects the landscape today. We’ll concentrate on the centre of the island and head up towards Lagoa do Fogo (Fire Lakes). This crater lake forms one of three volcanoes which make up the island of Sao Miguel, the others being Sete Cidades and Furnas.

Later in the morning we head north towards Caldeira Velha and the new geo-thermal power station which produces approximately 50% of Sao Miguel’s electricity. We usually have lunch in Caldeiras (a small spa village), which you can explore on foot.

Throughout the day there will be short walks to points of interest.

Hotel Talisman, São Miguel - Azores

The art deco 4-star Hotel Talisman in Ponta Delgada, São Miguel, has two restaurants, a café terrace and a rooftop pool. It is in the centre of town, just minutes from the seafront. 


Return flight back to the UK


Azores Itinerary Map

Hotel Talisman, São Miguel - Azores

The art deco 4-star Hotel Talisman in Ponta Delgada, São Miguel, has two restaurants, a café terrace and a rooftop pool. It is in the centre of town, just minutes from the seafront. 

Hotel do Canal - Azores

Situated opposite the marina with views of the marina and Pico beyond. This modern 4-star hotel is in keeping with the marine feel of Horta with a decked balcony and nautical photographs. This is a great base for exploring Horta.

Hotel São Jorge, São Jorge - Azores

A 3-star hotel located right on the seafront in Velas, São Jorge, looking out over the sea towards Pico. All the rooms have balconies overlooking the sea and there is a large outdoor pool. 

Hotel Pousada Sao Sebastiao, Terceira - Azores

On Terceira, we stay in the historic Hotel Sao Sebastiao, one of two Pousadas on the Azores. Situated within a fortress, it has 28 bedrooms. All rooms have an en suite bathroom, heating/air conditioning, mini bar, phone, cable TV, hairdryer, safe and internet access.

Guest Reviews

All holidays are subject to availability and prices are subject to change.
Non-member associate fee: £10 per person.

These departure dates can be booked with flights or as land only holiday options. All packages that include flights are ATOL protected. Advertised flight prices are based on UK flights departing from London. Regional departures and/or connections to London, if available, can be requested. Cabin upgrades may also be available on request.

Date (Start - End) Version Price Status Trip Notes Book
2020
06 Jun - 20 Jun 2019 Itinerary £2,899 Available Book Now
27 Jun - 11 Jul 2019 Itinerary £2,899 £2,699 TOP OFFER - SAVE £200 PER PERSON Book Now
19 Sep - 03 Oct 2019 Itinerary £2,899 Available Book Now
Date (Start - End) Version Price Status Trip Notes Book
2020
06 Jun - 20 Jun 2019 Itinerary £2,499 Available Book Now
27 Jun - 11 Jul 2019 Itinerary £2,499 £2,299 TOP OFFER - SAVE £200 PER PERSON Book Now
19 Sep - 03 Oct 2019 Itinerary £2,499 Available Book Now

Important Information

  • Single room supplement: £599
Duration:
14 nights
Type:
European Multi-Centre
Walking Grade:
2

14 nights from £2,699pp with flights

Save up to £200 per person

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