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Western & Central Islands - Single or Multi-Centred Guided - Independent walking holiday - Click here to find out more about Guided - Independent walking holidays  Self Guided walking holiday - Click here to find out more about Self Guided walking holidays 

Flores is the most western of the Azores Islands and is ‘pink’ due to the masses of beautiful pink azaleas and hydrangeas that grow all over the island. You will explore caldera rims and go up to the highest viewpoint Morro Alto at 911m with stunning scenery.

Corvo is the smallest of the Azores Islands and is home to several orchards and fruit trees. Your amazing walk here begins with a boat trip from Flores and then a short taxi ride up to the rim of the caldera, followed by an unforgettable walk around a lake filled crater back into town.

Faial is famous for its stewed octopus in wine amongst the Azoreans - you should most certainly try some! The walking here takes you to volcanic crater rims with breathtaking views and the opportunity to explore the lighthouse and museum which shows the history of volcanic eruptions.

Pico is the most volcanic of the Azores Islands and renowned for its almost perfectly coned mountain of Pico Alto standing at 2352m making it the highest peak in all of Portugal. Our adventurous walk takes you to the top of this fascinating mountain. You can also enjoy stunning walks through interesting fauna and picturesque villages.

São Jorge has the most-jagged coastline of the Azores Islands and offers spectacular waterfalls, lush ravines and the chance to explore the interesting fishing village of Velas.

 

Click here to discover more about Flores, The Pink Island

Click here to discover more about Corvo, The Black Island

Click here to discover more about Faial, The Blue Island

Click here to discover more about Pico, The Grey Island

Click here to discover more about São Jorge, The Brown Island

Guided Walking

We include eight guided walks in a 14 night stay (two on Flores, one on Faial, two on Pico and three on São Jorge). Walks are from 3 - 9 miles in length and considered easy or moderate.

We offer guided walks to the most western point in Europe, past lakes and to the fields of the Fajã Grande in Flores. In Faial we offer a guided half day or a guided full day of the island which takes you to the highest point and stops at Capelinhos (the remains of the last volcanic eruption). We offer guided walks to lava fields and vineyards with stunning panoramic views over the mountain and ocean in Pico. In São Jorge we offer guided walks which take you up to the highest mountain on the island and to the western corner along stunning cliffs.

Please note guided walks require a minimum of 2 people. All walks include an English speaking guide and all necessary transportation.


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Accommodation Details Click to View Accommodation Details

Hotel Ocidental 2*, Flores - 2 Star

Located on the northern tip of Santa Cruz, this family run hotel is on the sea front just 500 metres from the airport and the town centre. The rooms are comfortable and some feature a balcony overlooking the sea. Buffet breakfast and dinner are taken in the adjacent restaurant owned by the hotel owner’s brother. 

Hotel Facilities:

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Hotel das Flores 4*, Flores - 4 Star

Located to the north of the main town Santa Cruz and opposite the whaling museum, Hotel das Flores has stunning views over the Atlantic and the neighbour island of Corvo. First opened in 2009, this hotel has a lovely swimming pool and bar area available to all guests. The hotel restaurant serves excellent local food for breakfast and dinner.

Hotel Facilties:

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Pousada da Horta 4*, Faial - 4 Star

The Pousada was fully renovated in 2004 and is housed in a 16th century historic fort. The hotel is well located on the harbour front of Horta. A breakfast buffet is served daily on the poolside veranda terrace. They also have an on-site restaurant which serves delicious local dishes.

Hotel Facilities:

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Hotel Do Canal 4*, Faial - 4 Star

Located on the ocean front, Do Canal has great panoramic views over the city bay and Mount Pico. The staff are very friendly and welcoming, you will relax here in no time. Breakfast and dinner is taken in the hotel restaurant which serves local specialities.

Hotel Facilities:

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Whale'come 2*, Pico - 2 Star

Located in Lajes do Pico, you can stay at this characteristic hotel if you have opted to pre-book the whale watching excursion. Some of the comfortable rooms offer lovely views of the sea or mountains. Breakfast and dinner is taken in the on-site cosy restaurant.

Hotel Facilities:

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Alojamento Bela Vista 3*, Pico - 3 Star

Situated in Lajes do Pico this lovely hotel offers bright, comfortable rooms, some with mountain or sea views. The communal sun terrace has beautiful views over rooftops towards the sea and Mount Pico. Buffet breakfast is taken in the hotel and dinner in a nearby restaurant behind the church facing the sea.

Hotel Facilities:

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Hotel Caravelas 4*, Pico - 4 Star

Located on Madalena, Pico Island, Caravelas is just opposite the ferry terminal surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean on 3 sides and overlooks Faial Island. The pleasant rooms feature private balconies with ocean, courtyard or Mount Pico views. Buffet breakfast is taken in the hotel and dinner in a nearby restaurant. Please note that in high season the restaurants in Madalena fill up quickly so you will need to book in advance – the hotel can give you some good recommendations.

Hotel Facilities:

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Hotel Casa do Antonio 2*, São Jorge - 2 Star

Located only 100 metres from the harbour and a 15 minute drive from the airport, this small hotel was lovingly created by the owner Antonio Pedroso a local artist, keen walker and musician. The 8 spacious rooms are all air-conditioned, many with views across the harbour. There is a larger tower room available at a supplement which has a harbour view and a bath. A delightful breakfast is taken in the hotel.

Hotel Facilities:

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Hotel São Jorge 3*, São Jorge - 3 Star

Located in the harbour town of Velas, Hotel São Jorge is just a 15 minute drive from the airport. All the spacious rooms face the sea with a view of Pico and its iconic volcano from the balcony. Buffet breakfast is taken in the hotel. There is an outdoor swimming pool open in the summer.

Hotel Facilities:

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Hotel Vila Nova 3*, São Miguel - 3 Star

This hotel is well located near the harbour of Ponta Delgada. Local buses and the guided pick up point are very close. You can enjoy a buffet breakfast and dinner in the light and modern Atlantis Restaurant which serves a selection of local and international dishes.

Hotel Facilities:

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Hotel Do Colégio 4*, São Miguel - 4 Star

Located in a quiet side street within the historical centre of Ponta Delgada yet within easy walking distance of all the places you would want to visit. The building originally housed a music school dating back to the 19th century and has retained many of the original features and atmosphere. You can enjoy your breakfast and dinner in the award winning A Colmeia Restaurant which features a stone arched ceiling and serves a signature cuisine made from locally grown ingredients.

Hotel Facilities:

 

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Accommodation Details Click to View The Itinerary

Self-Guided Itinerary (please note these are proposed itineraries,  they are subject to change if flight times change).

Day 1 Arrive São Miguel. Overnight São Miguel (B&B).

Day 2 Take a morning flight to Flores. This walk takes you to the most western point in Europe! This walk is full of contrasts from the crater lakes of the high moorland at about 600m high down to the town of Faja Grande on the coast. On a clear day the circular, somewhat eerie lakes are incredibly impressive, with good views up to the highest point of the island, Morro Alto at 911m.  When you reach the edge of the cliff and descend, there are jaw-dropping views down to the town of Faja Grande and the coast. Overnight Flores (HB – B&B if staying at Hotel Ocidental.

Ascent: 160m. Descent: 720m. Distance: 4.5 miles. Time: 3.5 hours.

Day 3 An amazing trip to the small island of Corvo (check weather conditions on arrival in Flores), a taxi ride up to the rim of the caldera, then an unforgettable walk around the lake filled crater and back down to the town. The skipper Carlos will advise you when a trip might be possible with regard to the weather and sea conditions. Overnight Flores (HB – B&B if staying at Hotel Ocidental.

Ascent: 200m. Descent: 750m. Distance: 6.75 miles. Time: 3.5- 4 hours.

Day 4 A gorgeous linear walk first along some interesting old ‘donkey trails’ through woodland up into the hills and down to the coast to a lovely sheltered lunch spot. Then either take the adventurous levada route or the more sedate version up into the hills behind Santa Cruz, and back down into the town with superb views over the town and the runway which bisects it! Overnight Flores (HB – B&B if staying at Hotel Ocidental.

Ascent: 650m. Descent: 840m. Distance: 7 miles. Time: 5 hours.

Day 5 Spend the morning exploring this lovely island of Flores before taking a midday flight to Horta (Faial). Check in to the hotel and take one of our walks to Rocha da Faja. This shortish walk is ideal as an introduction to the Fajas of the Azores. Overnight Faial (HB).

Ascent: 300m. Descent: 295m. Distance: 4 miles. Time: 2.5 hours.

Day 6 This walk in Faial is superb with stunning views and an opportunity to explore the crater rim of Cabeco Verde, ending at the Lighthouse and Museum in Capelinhos showing the history of the volcanic eruption.  This museum is underground beneath the existing lighthouse which was atop a two storey building engulfed by the ash of the 1957 eruptions. Overnight Faial (HB).

Ascent: 450m. Descent: 500 m. Distance: 4.5 miles. Time: 2.5-3 hours.

Day 7 Choose another of our walks on Faial, for example walk from the Caldera to Parque Florestal do Capelo. In good weather this is the highlight of walking on Faial. Walk around the rim of a volcano (dormant), the Caldeira crater, it is breathtaking along with views over Faial and to the ocean and islands in the distance. Overnight Faial (HB).

Ascent: nil. Descent: 800m. Distance: 10 miles. Time: 4.5 hours.

Day 8 Take the ferry over to Pico and enjoy an easy walk down the lower slopes of Mount Pico with interesting lava tunnels at the start and superb views over to Faial. Or you can opt for a more adventurous walk to the top of Mount Pico (2351m) guide compulsory, best arranged in advance. Overnight Pico (B&B – HB if staying at Whale’combe).

Ascent: 120m. Descent: 250m. Distance: 7 miles. Time: 2.5 hours (excluding the top of Mount Pico).

Day 9 Take a half day whale watching (optional extra) or take the following walk. This is a stunning walk but with mostly descents from 800m down to sea level.  The first section is very easy amongst wild scenery contrasting with the second half which is mainly down through interesting vegetation and forest leading to the picturesque village of Sao Roque. This could be a superb full day walk using your extra time to explore Sao Roque, visiting its Whaling Museum and maybe having a swim in the sea. Overnight Pico (B&B – HB if staying at Whale’combe).

Ascent: 45m. Descent: 825m. Distance: 4.5 miles. Time: 3.5 hours.

Day 10 For most of the year this is a dramatic coastal walk but an inland diversion has to be used for the last section from the 15th May to 30th July, the terns' nesting season. This is round the Eastern Point (Ponta Da Ilha) of the Island. Overnight Pico (B&B – HB if staying at Whale’combe).

Ascent: 60m. Descent: 75m. Distance: 3.75 miles. Time: 3.5 hours.

Day 11 Take a morning ferry from Pico to São Jorge, check in to your hotel and take the opportunity to explore the small fishing village of Velas, or take a walk to the top of a nearby hill for panoramic views. Overnight São Jorge (B&B).

Ascent: 130m. Descent: 590m. Distance: 7.25 miles. Time: 3.5 hours (excluding possible extensions).

Day 12 A real ‘must do’ walk with great variety from misty hills, lush ravines and waterfalls to high cliffs and an insight to life on the Fajas. Plenty of places to linger by the sea for a picnic so be generous with your time in arranging return transport. Overnight São Jorge (B&B).

Ascent: 100m. Descent: 700m. Distance: 5 miles. Time: 4 hours.

Day 13 An easy walk through meadowlands to the lighthouse at the far end of São Jorge. Although the lighthouse is of little appeal, the views from the cliffs are spectacular. Sit here for a picnic and feel the real remoteness of these islands. There are possible sightings of dolphins and whales. Overnight São Jorge (B&B).

Ascent: 200m. Descent: 200m. Distance: 6 miles. Time: 3 hours.

Day 14 Fly to São Miguel (Ponta Delgada). Choose from one of our many walks on this large and intriguing island. Overnight São Miguel (HB).

Day 15 Transfer to the airport for your flight back home.

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Accommodation Details Click to View When it's Best To Go

Walking is possible all year around in the Azores. Spring is early so April and May are good times and Autumn extends into November. Being islands in the middle of the Atlantic it does tend to rain with the wettest months from October to March. The driest are July and August. There is only a 9°C variation (15 - 24°C) in average day time temperature between the coldest and warmest months so it is never very cold nor are there any prolonged hot days.



When to book your walking holiday in Portugal - Azores - Western & Central Islands
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Accommodation Details Click to Find Out How To Get There

There is a non-stop service from London to São Miguel. São Miguel can also be reached from Lisbon on a non-stop regular basis with flights connecting from a number of UK airports as well as from New York and Toronto. There are also non-stop flights straight into São Miguel from Boston, Toronto and Montreal.

Fly from São Miguel to Flores, take the boat between Flores and Corvo for your day walk. Fly from Flores to Horta (Faial), take the ferry from Horta to Pico and fly from Pico to São Jorge. Fly from São Jorge to São Miguel for your last night before your flight back home.

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Costs and Booking Details Pricing Details

Prices displayed in Sterling. View prices in £GBP  | View prices in $USD  | View prices in €EURO

Western & Central Islands – Flores, Corvo, Faial, Pico & São Jorge

Included:

  • 10 Nights accommodation in a standard room with B&B and 4 nights with half board* (standard grade) OR

  • 7 Nights accommodation in a standard room with B&B and 7 nights with half board* (higher grade)

  • Transfers between airports, ferry ports and hotels

  • Inter-island flight from Ponta Delgada to Flores, flight from Flores to Faial, ferry from Faial to Pico, ferry from Pico to São Jorge and flight from São Jorge back to Ponta Delgada

  • Our unique walking booklet written by one of our team and local walking map

*Half board is dinner, bed & breakfast

Optional:

  • 8 days guided walking is available at a supplement (English speaking guide and transport included)

  •  ‘With flights’ includes typical flight prices* between London Gatwick and Ponta Delgada airport. Flights are also available from many local airports (exact price for your dates available on request).

  • * For important details of our flight price policy click here

Not Included:

  • Lunch and drinks with meals

Please note these prices will differ from our current brochure price list and are the current correct prices.

All prices valid for 2017/18

Prices are per person in GBP / UK £ and are based on a shared twin/double standard room.

14 Nights – Standard Grade hotels (1 night São Miguel, 3 nights Flores, 3 nights Faial, 3 nights Pico, 3 nights São Jorge, 1 night São Miguel)

 Dates

10 nights B&B, 4 nights half board*

With International Flights#

10 nights B&B, 4 nights half board*

Own International Flights

Extra night per person

Single supplement per night

 

 

Supplement

for 8 days guided walking per person

01 May – 15 Jun

1559

1369

POA

28

370

16 Jun – 30 Sep

1644

1424

POA

34

370

01 Oct – 31 Oct

1449

1259

POA

28

370

*Half board is dinner, bed & breakfast

# For important details of our flight price policy click here

POA – Price on application

Room upgrades (per person per night):

Hotel Vila Nova:

  • Junior suite £45

  • Suite deluxe £75

Hotel Ocidental:

  • Suite £15

Hotel Do Canal:

  • Executive Double £20

  • Suite £46

Hotel Casa Do Antonio:

  • Tower room £10

14 Nights – Higher Grade hotels  (1 night São Miguel, 3 nights Flores, 3 nights Faial, 3 nights Pico, 3 nights São Jorge, 1 night São Miguel)

 Dates

7 nights B&B, 7 nights half board*

With International Flights#

7 nights B&B, 7 nights half board*

Own International Flights

Extra night per person

Single supplement per night

 

Supplement

for 8 days guided walking per person

01 May – 15 Jun

1759

1569

POA

34

370

16 Jun – 30 Sep

1879

1659

POA

38

370

01 Oct – 31 Oct

1689

1499

POA

34

370

*Half board is dinner, bed & breakfast
# For important details of our flight price policy click here

POA – Price on application

Room upgrades (per person per night):

Hotel Do Colegio:

  • Superior Room £10

  • Suite £10

  • Superior Suite £19

Hotel Das Flores:

  • Sea View Superior Room £8

  • Sea View Suite £10

Pousada da Horta:

  • Sea View Superior Room £12

  • Suite £15

Hotel Caravelas:

  • Suite £18


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General Information Click to View General Information

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