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The Enchanting Azores

Click on a ship name to get more details about the vessel Antarctic Dream Plancius Molchanov and Multanovskiy Polar Star Corinthian Two Clelia Two 50 Years of Victory Kapitan Khlebnikov Click here to see various itineraries for Antarctica, the Arctic and Atlantic Islands cruises Antarctica The Arctic Atlantic Islands The Azores Dates and rates Antarctic dates and rates Arctic dates and rates Atlantic dates and rates Azores dates and rates

Island life is often described as more laid back and indeed time spent on these islands seems to take you back a little to the more simple days when there was time to just relax and enjoy. The Azorean archipelago has an intricate culture affected by many other parts of the world. This combined with its remote location mid-Atlantic makes it both isolated yet worldly. It is a strategic transit point for both mariners and aviators. There is a history of pineapple and tea plantations, wine once bottled solely for the Russian Tsar, intricate scrimshaw, whaling, volcanic activity and waves of emigration. This archipelago is a natural gathering place for whales, dolphins, migrating birds and seabirds. This year the cruise has an added day to allow more time in São Jorge – visiting all nine islands - 8 nights/9 days
 

Day 1:
Thursday, Apr 22 (Saõ Miguel)
Embark in historical Ponta Delgada.

Day 2:
Friday, Apr 23 (Graciosa)
The first day of island hopping is to the tranquil island of Graciosa to visit a cave of sulphur, Furna do Enxofre and the charming town of Santa Cruz. Later Zodiac cruise around the volcanic coastal cliffs and islets.

Day 3:
Saturday, Apr 24 (Flores & Corvo)
Start the day on Flores, often considered the most beautiful island but also of notable geological interest – fajãs, basalt cliffs, and valleys and lakes often created by volcanic activity. The afternoon visit will be to the tiny island of Corvo, basically comprised of one caldeira. The ship will circumnavigate the island or if conditions permit, a landing will take place to visit the one small village and walk the rim of the caldeira.

Day 4:
Sunday, Apr 25 (Faial)
Faial has been a haven for sailors throughout time. A visit to Ponta dos Capelinhos gives an insight into the impact of the 1957-8 eruption on the community and environment. The scenic drive back to Horta will take in views of nearby Pico’s mountain and a visit to the Botanical Garden. Back at Horta enjoy the Scrimshaw Museum and wander the town.

Day 5:
Monday, Apr 26 (Pico)
This stunning island is physically dominated by a dramatic volcanic peak. Learn more about the local wine industry through a visit to a vineyard / wine museum and the UNESCO designated Lajido Acros. A drive will provide the opportunity to see more of the dramatic peaked landscape and then on to the museum in Lajes do Pico that tells the story of the early whaling in the archipelago.

Day 6:
Tuesday, Apr 27 (Saõ Jorge)
This largely rural island has many more cattle than people and is known for its strong cheddar-like cheese. It is of geographical interest with its cliff shoreline marked with flat fajãs sweeping to the sea. After visiting the charming old world harbour town of Velas, the ship cruises the coastline to find a tranquil fajã for a Zodiac landing.

Day 7:
Wednesday, Apr 28 (Terceira)
The UNESCO site Angra do Heroismo has a delightful waterfront area and Mediterranean feel. A walking tour takes in the Misericorda church, Convent do São Francisco, public gardens and museum. In the afternoon, there is time to hike to Monte Brasil to see the fortification and view, or relax and wander the historic town.

Day 8:
Thursday, Apr 29 (Santa Maria)
Dramatic waterfalls, lava tube caves and terraced cliff side vineyards create a stunning coastline on this island, the only one that is both sedimentary and volcanic. Sea conditions will dictate the day’s schedule but possibilities include a visit to São Laurenço or Maia, Zodiac cruise to see marine life and the sea caves or a circumnavigation of the island and on to the Formigas (Ant Islands).

Day 9:
Friday, Apr 30 (Saõ Miguel)

Disembark in Ponta Delgada.


Optional Land Excursion: April 30 – (09h00 – 16h00) This optional day gives you an opportunity to see the rest of Saõ Miguel island. The program includes a visit to the thermal springs and steaming geysers at Furnas, a tea plantation and pottery factory. A highlight of the day includes a volcanically cooked lunch (cozido nas caldeiras). Price per person $70.

 

Note:

All itineraries are for guidance only. Programs may vary depending on local ice and weather conditions and in order to take advantage of opportunities to see wildlife.