04. December 2020
Azores Romantic Week Ultimate Guide
A Romantic Week in the Azores Islands
The Azores Islands are Europe’s best-kept secret. Full of exotic foliage, breathtaking untouched landscapes, and the exciting thrill of volcanic activity, the Azores Islands are a gem you seldom hear about.
Located in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean and off the coast of Portugal, the Azores Islands are an archipelago consisting of nine islands that are home to some of the most beautiful landscapes, flora, and animals in the world.
Each of the nine islands has its own alluring charm but regardless to which islands you visit, you will have the experience of a lifetime. The islands consist of dramatic waterfalls, lush landscapes, quaint fishing villages, and some of the largest and most beautiful hydrangea bushes that dot the rolling green hills.
It provides an exotic getaway not too far from mainland Europe and culminates to offer the perfect blend of relaxation, seclusion and adventure.
If you’re looking for a romantic and exotic getaway for you and your loved one, then you need to add this little gem to your list.
This is your guide to help you plan your next romantic getaway to the alluring and majestic Azores Islands.
How to Get to the Azores Islands
It’s incredible that this little secret has remainder quiet for so long considering it’s only about a two hour ride from Lisbon, Portugal and a five hour flight from the East Coast of North America.
Yup, the islands are that accessible, yet still so underrated!
The islands are comprised of nine small islands which are divided into three groups:
- The western grouping are the islands of Flores and Corvo.
- The eastern groupings are the islands of São Miguel and Santa Maria.
- The central groupings are the islands of São Jorge, Pico, Faial, Graciosa, and Terceira.
The largest of the nine islands as São Miguel and home to the capital city of the Azores, Ponta Delganda. When you’re booking your flight to the Azores Islands, you’ll fly into Ponta Delgada Airport (PDL) in São Miguel which has direct flights from both North America and Europe.
Getting Around the Azores Islands
Once you arrive into São Miguel and the Ponta Delgada airport, you’re going to need to get a rental car.
There is little to no public transportation throughout the islands, so you’ll need to rent a car to get around and have the freedom to explore.
Reserve your car ahead of time through a rental car service or hire a car service for your trip.
To get in between the islands you have two modes of transportation: air and water. We’ll provide more information on connections throughout the itinerary.
Romantic Getaway Itinerary Day 1: Western São Miguel
Now that you know where the Azores Islands are located and how easy it is to get there, why not start dreaming of your romantic getaway? The following is a loose guideline of what you can explore in a week in the Azores Islands to create a trip of a lifetime.
- Hike up to Miradouro da Boca do Inferno. This is one of the most iconic viewpoints of the islands and provide a great hike and amazing photography opportunities.
- Drive to the Miradouro da Vista Do Rei (Viewpoint of the King) for incredible views of the Cidades.
- Have lunch in the quaint small town of Sete Cidades with some beautiful views and fresh fish.
- End your day at the Elephants Trunk viewing point in Capelas and enjoy a refreshing swim in the ocean.
Romantic Getaway Itinerary Day 2-5: Central São Miguel
Start the day by taking a whale-watching tour out of Ponta Delgada
- Visit a pineapple plantation such as the Plantacoes de Ananases A. Arruda.
- Spend time exploring Ponta Delgada by walking through the farmers market, shopping for local souvenirs, visiting Igreja Matriz (Matriz Church) and enjoying local fare.
- Visit Lagoa do Fogo (Fire Lake) for some of the most beautiful views of the gorgeous lake and surrounding greenery.
- Relax in the natural thermal pools and stone-walls of Caldeira Velha Romantic Getaway Itinerary Day 3: Eastern São Miguel
- Start exploring the most remote part of the island like Nordeste and Pedreira by starting the day at the beautiful Ponta da Madrugada Lookout.
- Relax and unwind in the Parque Terra Nostra, a beautiful botanical garden and thermal bath.
- Enjoy lunch along the way to the impressive waterfalls of Salto do Prego.
- Visit the Lighthouse Arnel, located on the edge of a cliff with a dramatic view of the Atlantic Ocean.
- End your day exploring the Gorreana Tea Factory, one of the only places in Europe where tea is grown. Romantic Getaway Itinerary Day 4: Travel Day + Santa Maria
- Travel back to Ponta Delganda and enjoy a little lunch before catching a ferry or a short plane ride to the island of Santa Maria.
- Once you arrive to Santa Maria, start by dipping your toes into the wind sand beaches of Praia Formosa.
- Spend the rest of the afternoon shopping and exploring local shops and shopping for souvenirs like local pottery and straw hats. Romantic Getaway Itinerary Day 5: Santa Maria
- Start the day by heading over to Cascata do Aveiro and experience one of the most beautiful waterfalls in the country.
- Visit the N. Sr.ª da Assunção Church – the oldest church on the archipelago.
- Explore the Barreiro da Faneca, a semi-desert, arid and clay landscape that makes you feel like you’ve stepped onto the planet of Mars. This provides a super unique experience unlike anything else on the island.
Romantic Getaway Itinerary Day 6-7: Santa Maria + Travel Day to São Miguel
- Spend your last morning in Santa Maria enjoying a fresh local breakfast and walking the streets and enjoying the water views.
- Catch the local ferry or a plane ride back to São Miguel
- Use this last bit of time to explore São Miguel and soak up the local culture, food and shops before beginning your journey back to mainland Europe or North America
The Azores Islands are a hidden gem that are nestled in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean yet super convenient and quick to access.
The islands have untouched beauty setting a romantic backdrop for your nature-meets-relaxation trip.
There is something tranquil and peaceful to dip your toes in the water, swim under a waterfall, and hike among nature and get away from it all.
This trip will provide you with memories for a lifetime and provides the perfect combination of nature, seclusion and adventure.