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SIGNATURE MOMENT
Walking through Pico’s heritage vineyards
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Cruising for the legendary Sperm Whale
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Exploring the lush highland laurel forests
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Watching for the endemic Azores Bullfinch
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Enjoying the distinctive Azorean way-of-life

The Azores: Mystical Islands of the Mid-Atlantic

Apr 16-23, 2020

8 days | Portugal | Quest Nature Tours

The Azores have long held a privileged place as one of Portugal’s earliest outposts during the Age of Exploration. They have longer still enjoyed an important place in natural history. Situated along the Mid-Atlantic Ridge on the border of two tectonic plates, this archipelago has literally risen from the ocean’s depths, gradually colonized by far-flung organisms whose descendants adapted to the local conditions and constitute a distinctive set of endemic species and subspecies found only here, with plants and birds as the standouts. The islands would also become a beacon for many cetaceans who either made the Azores their permanent home or an annual migratory port-of-call. On this inaugural tour, we will have a chance to discover this archipelago on the edge of two worlds and contemplate the seeming impossibility of its existence!

Our explorations will cover both land and sea. On São Miguel, we’ll get a first taste of the rugged volcanic landscapes and shorelines that define the Azores. We’ll explore the woodlands of a type found nowhere else. The bird life is also distinctive and various species here have diverged from their nearest relatives in Europe. Over 25 cetacean species have been recorded here and their ranks include several dolphin species as well as the legendary Sperm Whale and Blue Whale, so our time on land will be complemented by our time at sea, where we can watch for whales and dolphins on our private boat tours. The timing of our tour coincides with the return of several ‘great whale’ species so we have the chance to see the largest variety. Various hardy seabirds call the Azores home and accompany us on our forays! The distinctive feel of the islands is enhanced by their unique culture, which we’ll discover in part through their food and fine beverages. The Azores are well know for their vines, dubbed 'volcanic wines' given the bedrock upon which they grow!
Quest Nature Tours
Tour Cost (per person):
US$4595
Group Size:
10 - 12 participants
Reserve my spot now!

What’s included: Accommodations based on double occupancy in hotels listed or similar; gratuities for services provided by Quest; all activities as described in the detailed itinerary; ground transportation and park entrance fees; airport transfers, if travelling as per the group flight itinerary; meals as specified in itinerary; services of local English-speaking guides; bottled water on bus; services of your Quest leader Alan Watson

Itinerary at a Glance

DayActivity
1Arrive at Ponta Delgada Airport, São Miguel
2Whale watching, Sete Cidades
3Whale watching, fly to Faial
4Pico and Faial
5Capelinhos Volcano, fly back to São Miguel
6São Miguel, Nordeste
7São Miguel, Lagoa de Fogo
8Departure day
download full detailed itinerary >

Your Tour Leader

As a former faculty member in the School of Environmental Sciences at the University of Guelph, Alan Watson taught nature interpretation, environmental stewardship and a conservation field course. With over 25 years of experience leading nature tours, Alan has guided groups in southern Ontario, Canada's Maritime Provinces, Trinidad and Tobago, the Lesser Antilles, Costa Rica, Brazil, Tanzania, and the Galapagos.

Reserve my spot now! Email Us

Or call 1-800-387-1483 with any questions or to reserve your spot!

Quest Nature Tours
Tour Cost (per person):
US$4595
Group Size:
10 - 12 participants
Reserve my spot now!

What’s included: Accommodations based on double occupancy in hotels listed or similar; gratuities for services provided by Quest; all activities as described in the detailed itinerary; ground transportation and park entrance fees; airport transfers, if travelling as per the group flight itinerary; meals as specified in itinerary; services of local English-speaking guides; bottled water on bus; services of your Quest leader Alan Watson

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The Azores: Mystical Islands of the Mid-Atlantic

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