Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Portugese Islands of the Azores

I recently returned from a trip to the Portugese islands of the Azores. There are 9 islands in total and I visited 4 of them. They are located in the Atlantic Ocean - a 4 1/2 hour flight from Boston, MA and 2 hours from mainland Portugal. Although they are islands, they are very much European. All the sidewalks and most of the streets are cobblestones. It is very common to see narrow streets with a veiw of the Atlantic. Each island has an abundance of cows. Until a few years ago, Terceira had more cows than people...lol There are various religious monuments around each island. And each island is represented by a different color b/c of some natural feature that is prevalent on the island.

Although not native to the Azores, the hydrangea is the official flower. From May through September, they are in full bloom and all over each island. It is also not common for them to serve vegetables with meals (other than a small salad of lettuce and tomatoes with oil & vinegar). Depeending upon the time if year you visit will determine whether you are served more meat or fish. Another things the islands are known for are the many volcano craters. Some have lakes and cities inside them. The last eruption was on the island of Faial in 1957.

The only airline that services the islands from the US is SATA International which has flights twice a week from Boston, MA. During high season, they offer an additional non-stop flight from Oakland, CA. From mainland Portugal, TAP Portugal is another way to gain access.

Alexis Armstrong, Travel Agent
Distinct Destinations Travel Agency
267-760-1103 267-760-1103 - cell
215-224-0100 215-224-0100 - office
215-224-7928 - fax
The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.- St. Augustine

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