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Places we stayed...

Sao Miguel Island "The Green Island"

Mosteiros Place is a six unit Aparthotel (pictured above) in Mosteiros which is located at the far end of the island near Sete Cidades.  Each with a separate bedroom, living area with kitchenette, private deck with a huge European continental breakfast included daily.  Pool (unheated) and fitness center.  All spotless.  Room service was also offered until 11pm.

Aqua Populo Eco Beach Hotel is a five unit apartment style hotel across from Populo.  Most units are two bedrooms.  Convenient to beach (5 min walk or less) and (5 min drive to Ponte Delgada) 

Terceira Island "The Lilac Island"

Terceira Mar Hotel is a traditional hotel on Terceira.  Nicely appointed clean rooms with a large breakfast buffet.  It is within walking distance to Angra and Mont Brasil.

Other places to consider in the Azores::

Sul Villas and White Villas were both booked when we were traveling.  Both have great reviews and are near Ponte Delgada.

We had lunch on our last day in Ribeiro Grande Beach at the Verde Mar & Spa It is a brand new property and one of the larger resorts on the island.  It is worth checking out as it is centrally located on island which makes it easy to see all the destination spots.  


Things we did...

On Sao Miguel:

Half Day Afternoon Sete Cidades Buggy Tour - ask for Gabriel as your guide.  Note:  If you are staying in Mosteiros, this tour is about 30 minutes away, even though Sete Cidades is not.

Afternoon Ponte Delgada Hungry Whales Food & History Walking Tour - this is a GREAT way to start your trip to get a lay of the land and the history of the island!  The owner Raphael is helpful and personable.  They offer group and private tours.  Try to do this tour when the street markets are open.

Furnas Golf Course - dress for wet weather!

Half Day Lagoa Tour - try to plan this for the afternoon to afford better views.  John was a fantastic guide.

Full Day Furnas Tour - this tour covered a TON and Rui was a great guide!  On it you will see the South Coast and where the Red Bull Diving competition has taken place, Pisao Viewpoint, Vila Franca do Campo with a stop to try amazing Queijadas, the Terra Nostra Botanical Garden, Hot Spring where your Cozido meal is cooked (see above!) and then also a visit to the Tea Factory.

Also worth seeing, on your own as part of a tour...Ribeiro Grande, Nordeste is breathtaking, pineapple plantation...

On the list, but no surf...

On Terceira:

One-hour buggy tour of Mont Brasil.  Great views from the top of Mont Brasil. We were short on time.  

Things on the list, but ran out of time...


Places we ate..

Mosteiros - Sao Miguel:

Restaurante O Chico - get the grilled mussels!

Restaurante Briso Mar - best potatoes on the island (and we sampled many!) yup, you read that right, potatoes.  Still trying to recreate at home.

Sunset Steve's - did not eat here, but wish we did.  Best place to see a sunset.

Ponte Delgada/Populo - Sao Miguel:

Sunset Beach Restaurant & Bar - casual spot on the beach, great service, good food.

Cais 20 - very popular, book a reservation ahead of time

Angra - Terceira:

O Chico - lovely, family owned restaurant.

Bar Fanal at Terceira Mar Hotel 


Tips we have...

  • The typical weather pattern in July went something like this...mist/fog in the morning that burnt off in the afternoon, plan accordingly when doing tours, etc.  Morning tours at Sete Cidades, Lagoa and other higher altitudes might not afford great views in the morning.

  • If you plan to rent a car, do so early, or learn how to drive stick!  Limited inventory after coming out of quarantine.

  • Azoreans are extremely friendly and very proud of their island.  Although most speak fluent English, as the saying goes...a little 'por favor' and 'obrigada/obrigado' go a long way.

  • There are more cows than people in the Azores!

  • If you are planning travel to Mainland Portugal/Lisboa, you can plan a stopover on your way to, from, or both! to the Azores.  The Azores are approximately five hours from the East Coast and/or two plus hours to Lisbon.  Both TAP and SATA airlines offer stopovers via Ponte Delgada and Terceira. 

  • If you are on an overnight flight and can financially swing it, book your hotel the night you depart so that it is ready when you land OR book a spa appointment (thanks JC for this tip!) and spend the afternoon shaking off the jet lag.  If you do book the night prior, let your hotel know that when you make your reservation so they do not think that you are a 'no-show'.  Most hotels guarantee reservations until midnight only.

  • Most hotel room rates include a European continental breakfast.

  • Use the 'Whatsapp' to communicate with your smaller hotels, tour operators and taxi drivers, etc.  If you find a good taxi driver (hello George!), grab their number.  Some will offer tours of the island, can help get you to Covid testing (hopefully a thing of the past, but thank you George!), etc.

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