How easy is it to get to the Azores?
There are flights to the Azores from the US, Canada, Europe and the UK. You can also take internal flights (or boats) between different islands. We can help you with travel ideas and we have a local travel agent and concierge who can help with any requests you may have.
Are there any good beaches?
Despite the islands’ extensive coastline, this is not a destination for a beach holiday. Most of the coastline is made up of black volcanic rocks, although there are a few white sandy beaches, including Praia de Formosa on the south coast of Santa Maria. Saltwater swimming-pools have been created at various points along the coast to make swimming more appealing. Usually, some kind of jetty has been built so that it is easy to get into the water, and the pools are sheltered from the waves.
What cultural attractions exist in the Azores?
There are many wonderful sights on the Azores, from the main town of Sao Miguel to Angra do Heroismo on Terceira, which has been granted World Heritage status by Unesco. You can read about each island here in our guides section or book a tour here.
How do we get around?
The easiest way to get from one island to another is to fly; each island, even tiny Corvo with its single village, has its own airport. Fares vary, but an Azores Air Pass is available. This costs around £150 for flights to two islands and can be booked through SATA (0870 6066 664; www.sata.pt). There are daily ferry services (00 351 292 200 380; www.transmacor.pt) between Faial and Pico, which take half an hour and cost €3 (£2.15). Several days a week these connect with crossings to Sao Jorge, and there are daily sailings on this route from mid-June to mid-September.
Hiring a car is the best way of getting around the islands. Ilha Verde Rent-a-Car (00 351 296 304 891; www.ilhaverde.com) operates on all the islands and has rates starting at €45 (£32) per day including unlimited mileage. Buses operate on each island, although services are often infrequent.
An alternative is to hire a taxi to take you on a half- or full-day tour; typically you could pay around €50 (£35.75) for four hours, or €70 (£50) for six hours, for a taxi that will take four.
What is the weather like?
The weather in the Azores is generally very pleasant, in summer it generally does not go above 26c (78f) and in winter it does not drop below 10c (50f.) The Azores is a beautiful, green place so that means it does rain (happily when it does we have 1/2 price on gin & tonics!)
How much do things costs in the Azores?
The Azores is quite cheap compared to other cities such as London, Barcelona, and Paris for example. A coffee is less than €1, a beer is around 60 cents and a glass of wine is €2 (a nice bottle will be around €10+ in a restaurant.)
Are taxis expensive?
Taxis are very reasonable, honest, helpful and freely available in all major towns. The taxi fare from the airport to Solar Branco 1885 is around €12. We can provide you with numbers but we do not take on bookings as part of your stay.
How built up is the Azores?
The main attractions of the Azores are their lack of urban sprawl and their natural assets, such as the lakes of Flores and Sao Miguel; the caldeiras (craters) of Corvo, Faial and Graciosa; volcanic peaks like Pico mountain, the highest in Portugal at 2,351m; and the cliffs of Sao Jorge, which have fajas or “flat areas” at their base.
How safe is the Azores?
The Azores is an incredibly safe place and crime is extremely low (but of course not unheard of.)