Beyond The Volcanoes Fly & Drive - Sao Miguel / Terceira / Pico / Faial - OPEI
Embrace this opportunity to explore four of the most beautiful Azorean Islands behind the wheel! Drive from the breath-taking views of Sete Cidades idyllic crater lakes to the relaxing thermal waters of the mystical Furnas Valley on São Miguel Island. On Terceira Island visit the historical city centre of Angra do Heroísmo, UNESCO Heritage site, and descend the Algar do Carvão volcanic chimney. On Pico Island witness the highest Mountain of Portugal while wandering in the UNESCO Heritage site vineyards landscape and on Faial Island visit the world renown Hortas Marina and the most recent Azorean eruption site, Capelinhos Volcano. What are you waiting for?
Day by Day
Day 1 - São Miguel
Meet & greet at the airport for car rental assistance. Accommodation.
Day 2 - São Miguel
Drive to the Sete Cidades Massif, an area with a central volcanic crater and lake-filled caldera, with various cones, deposits of pumice, lava domes and maars. In the northeastern flank of this volcano the Mosteiros Graben. Visit Ferraria in the extreme southwest of the island with its thermal springs of volcanic origin and its Thermal SPA. On the return to Ponta Delgada visit the Gruta do Carvão, the longest lava tunnel of São Miguel Island that extends for 1912 metres. The caves age is comprehended in the gap between 5000 to 12000 years old, classified as a Regional Natural Monument. Located in a region geologically known as the Complexo Vulcânico dos Picos, an area of fissure volcanism composed of over 250 scoria cones and lava flows of basaltic nature.
Day 3 - São Miguel
Drive to the village of Lagoa to visit the OVGA (Volcanology Centre), the science centre for applied research and scientific dissemination in the field of volcanology, seismology and geothermal energy. Continue driving to Furnas, a village with a Volcano comprising two ancient calderas, occupied by the lake of Furnas. Try the traditional meal "cozido" cooked inside holes by the underground vapors of the volcano. Visit the fumaroles and the hot springs in the centre of the village. There is also the nice Terra Nostra botanical garden where one can have a swim on a large natural warm water swimming pool. On the way back to Ponta Delgada drive to the top of the mountain of Lagoa do Fogo, the central volcano on the island, for an amazing view. Stop for a swim at Caldeira Velha, a natural tepid water swimming pool.
Day 4 - São Miguel / Terceira
Car delivery at the airport. Flight to Terceira (45 minutes). Car collection at the airport. Accommodation. Drive to Angra do Heroismo, declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is a picture-book town of imposing townhouses and cobbled streets seemingly untouched by time. The best views of this once prosperous trading centre are from Monte Brasil across the harbour. Drive to Monte Brasil, an extinct volcano that emerged from the sea to join the city of Angra do Heroísmo. It is a protected landscape and the city's natural park.
Day 5 - Terceira
Drive to Serra do Cume, a viewpoint with a beautiful landscape, popularly called "Patchwork Quilt". Visit the Algar do Carvão, an ancient lava tube located in the centre of the island. Considered a geological Nature Reserve, it has an altitude of about 550 meters above sea level, with majestic stalactites and stalagmites and a pool of crystal-clear water. Visit the Natal Cave (10 minutes driving from Algar do Carvão), an extensive geologic formation composed by fluid lavas solidified that formed several tunnels, ramifications and stalactites.
Day 6 - Terceira / Pico
Car delivery at the airport. Flight to Pico (35 minutes). Car pick-up at the airport. Accommodation.
Day 7 - Pico
Pico island is geologically the youngest island and its active volcano, with steep slopes and 2351m high, is the highest mountain in Portugal. Visit Gruta das Torres, located in Criação Velha. This Regional Natural Monument is a cave with volcanic origins, with about 5km extension, consisting in one of the biggest in the entire Archipelago. The main tunnel has about 4480 meters long, with heights that arise to 15 meters. In its interior it is possible to observe curious geological structures such as stalactites, lava stalagmites, lateral tiers and lava balls. Drive by Criação Velha and Santa Luzia for an impressive view over an extensive area with a notable pattern of linear walls called "currais" built by hand with volcanic stone to protect the thousands of vineyards from the wind and the seawater. Place classified by UNESCO as World Heritage. We suggest a stop at Adega da Buraca for a wine tasting and other local products.
Day 8 - Pico / Faial
Car delivery at the car rental office (5 minutes walking from the harbour). Boat trip to Faial Island. Car pick-up at the harbour. Accommodation. Visit the Cabeço Gordo Cauldron, located on the Capelo, marking the highest point in the Faial Island, with its attractive viewpoint situated at 1043 meters high above the sea level.
Day 9 - Faial
Drive to Capelinhos, inserted on the Capelo volcanic complex, this was the last volcano with eruption between 1957 and 1958. This landscape is different from all the rest of the Island and of the Archipelago, a strange arid and volcanic beauty. Visit the Capelinhos Lighthouse, one has an excellent panorama over all the volcano extension and its rare beauty. Here stands nowadays the Interpretation Centre that better explains this phenomenon and its history, housing a wide room that symbolizes a volcanic eruption.
Day 10 - Faial
Car delivery at the airport.
Included / Not Included
- 9 nights (breakfast included depending on the hotel selected)
- Meet & greet at the airport of Ponta Delgada and assistance with car rental
- Car rental as per program description in the islands of São Miguel / Terceira / Pico / Faial:
- Unlimited Kms
- Insurance SCDW
- Insurance TP
- Insurance WWI
- Additional driver
- VAT & road service charge
- Airport delivery & collection fees
- Harbour delivery fee at the island of Faial
- Boat ticket Pico/Faial
- Flight ticket São Miguel/Terceira/Pico
- Issuing of ticket 15 days prior to departure
- Cancellation before departure: 50% refund
- Cancellation after departure date non-refundable
- Rerouting after departure: no refund unless due to death of passenger or family member
- Voluntary routing changes after issuing ticket permitted to upgrade to normal fare
- Change name after issuing ticket permitted with penalty
- Symbolic contribution to social & environmental institutions: Rabo de Peixe Sabe Sonhar & Life Priolo: 1€
- Flight ticket to and from the Azores
- Entrance fees
- Car rental extras not mentioned in the program (see Car Rental Details section)
Car delivery & check-in times may change from those mentioned in the program. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic new procedures may have to be adopted. The updated times will be informed with the confirmation of the reservation.Car Rental Details:
- Car Rental Company: ILHA VERDE
- Necessary documents: ID or Passport, driver license and VISA or similar must be presented by clients at car rental.
- Age of the driver: Minimum 18 and at least one-year license.
- Young driver: drivers aged between 18 and 23 years inclusive: 2,60€ / per day (maximum 26,00€ / per each rental)