Portugal’s Secret Islands

The Azores! Somewhere in the middle of the Atlantic ocean hides Portugal’s hidden gem. I’d never even heard of it until I spotted it on Google maps. It has a certain wow factor even when you see a picture of the place. I can tell you it’s even better in person. Every corner of Sao Miguel island has an amazing photo opportunity waiting for it. From the Alpine passes to the flower lined roads to the epic cliff faces and lakes in the volcanic crater walls. I wouldn’t recommend it for a beach though!

I was fully expecting www.skyscanner.net to tell me the flights there would be extortionate but amazingly enough Ryanair fly there! (Now my favourite airline!). £25 flight there, bargain! Possibly my favourite flight I’ve ever been on too, I was having the time of my life whilst the guy opposite in the next row looked very glum. If only he had an Aldi salad like me, he could be living the dream! I have learnt the best way to kill time whilst flying is to get up and go to the toilet… I was on the back row right next to it. I tried every toilet including the one right at the front. #LivingTheDream

Landing at 10:30pm with only carry on luggage meant getting the shuttle bus to our hostel. And what a bloody nutter he was driving! The narrow streets of Ponta Delgada barely has room to squeeze a small car through, let alone a minibus. So, of course, it’s only right for him to put his foot down and go as fast as he could for the perfect welcome to the Azores!

I’ve never stayed at shared dorm hostel before so when I was told we had an upgrade to a garden room I was totally oblivious to the fact I was still sharing. I crashed in wondering why it was so dark and asked ‘where’s the light???… waking everyone up. ‘owp! There’s someone in here!’. I rolled over in a half conscious way the next morning and thought ‘ooo complimentary flip flops, this is a fancy’ and then I clocked they were the guy’s in the bunk above me.

The first day was spent wandering around the capital of Sao Miguel, Ponta Delaga.

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This bad boy Peugeot 108 was definitely needed! Worst. Car. Ever. but it did the job.

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Just look at this place!

 

Found an abandoned house which was pretty cool.

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Natural hot spa waterwall

I have many more beautiful shots that can be found on my Instagram @ ChrisPilgrimages

I can highly recommend staying at Out of the Blue in Ponta Delgada!

I explored these islands for 5 days, you’ll have to wait for my next blog post to find out what happened next…

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