Perfect for nature lovers and keen walkers, this tailor-made walking holiday through São Miguel discovers the island’s rugged volcanic regions and introduces visitors to the stunning scenery typical of this far-flung archipelago. Carefully planned routes guide you through rich green pastures, take you to witness aquamarine lakes cradled in the base of calderas and up the slopes of extinct volcanoes.
The Azores experiences mild temperatures year-round, and their balmy summer temperatures are perfect for an outdoor adventure. This eight day tour is a great way to see the highlights of São Miguel on foot. Transfers to and from the starting point of each walk are included, along with a walking guidebook with details on trails and maps to follow.
Arrive in São Miguel and transfer to the hotel Terra Nostra Garden, located in the valley of Furnas. Check in for your 4 night stay.
Today, walk to Furnas Lake where the landscape is dominated by two volcanic calderas. Wherever you turn in, the surrounding environment serves as reminders of the Azores’ volcanic geology, with volcanic peaks and fertile soils resulting in verdant valleys, bubbling hot springs and steaming geysers. The walk today takes you around the lakeside, passing by the holes where the traditional meal cozido is cooked by the underground vapours released by the volcano. Stop to visit the Environmental Centre of Furnas for more insight into the unique surrounding nature. (B)
Walk through the Lomba do Cavaleiro region to reach Ribeira Quente, a quiet coastal community with a pretty beach. Upon arrival, spend time on the beach and exploring the small town, and we suggest you opt to dine on fresh seafood in a local restaurant or visit the fishing port. Afterwards, transfer back to your hotel. (B)
After breakfast, transfer to Faial da Terra in the south east of São Miguel. Follow the Salto do Prego trail along a river, routeing through a charming old village to reach a beautiful waterfall, and ending at the beach-side town of Faial da Terra . Afterwards, transfer back to your hotel. (B)
After breakfast, join the trail in Ribeira Funda and walk along the Praia da Viola beach to Maia, a small fishing village home to a tobacco museum (the Azores famously used to produce large quantities of dried tobacco), and a theatre housed in a pretty pink building. Enjoy various views of the village, set against stunning scenery, passing old watermills and beautiful waterfalls. Afterwards, a taxi will take you to your hotel in Ponta Delgada. Along the way, stops will be made at the most impressive viewpoints along the north coast and you will also visit a tea plantation. (B)
This morning walk to Lagoa do Fogo, or 'Lake of Fire'. This stunning, deep blue lake is one of the most famous and iconic sights of São Miguel, and arguably all of the Azores. The crater lake is situated in the centre of the island, and is surrounded by hydrangea bushes which bloom in bold blues and pinks during the Spring. It’s a long hiking route today but it’s worth it as the day takes in the best of the local scenery, ranging from mountains and hilltop viewpoints to meandering valleys. The walk concludes at the shore of the lake where you’ll have time to enjoy the beach and take a swim. (B)
After breakfast enjoy a walk to Sete Cidades, another of São Miguel’s most iconic natural wonders, to visit the large crater with its blue and emerald lakes. The crater itself stretches over three miles, so the views around the region are immense. Today’s walking route takes in the beautiful views of the island, spanning the crater lakes and the coast, before walking down to the village of Sete Cidades. Afterwards, transfer back to the hotel. (B)
International flights from the UK are based out of London via Lisbon in economy class. Regional flights are available (supplements may apply)