Nine islands make up an archipelago synonymous with natural beauty. To the East, in Santa Maria, the beaches are warm and sandy, and the vineyards that cover the slopes in an amphitheatre resemble staircases for giants. São Miguel enchants with the Lagoa das Sete Cidades and Lagoa do Fogo. In the Central Group, Terceira, São Jorge, Pico, Faial and Graciosa are harmoniously disposed in the blue sea where whales and dolphins can be spotted. Terceira speaks of history in its capital, Angra do Heroísmo. Faial is a blue fresco of hydrangeas and the Capelinhos volcano reminds us of a lunar landscape. In Pico, the mountain rises from the sea, with vineyards planted in black lava fields. In São Jorge, the highlight is Fajãs and its unmistakable flavourful cheese. Graciosa has fields covered with vineyards contrasting with peculiar windmills. To the west, Flores dazzles with natural waterfalls and lakes carved out by volcanoes, and Corvo is a sanctuary for various species of birds from Europe and America.
With three Protected Designations of Origin, Graciosa, Biscoitos and Pico, the still wines of the Azores Demarcated Region reflect the maritime influence that is expressed in high rainfall and mild temperatures throughout the year. The very poor soils are of volcanic origin and extremely rich in potassium giving rise to saline wines with sharp iodinated reflections. More than five centuries ago, it became clear that protecting the vines involved building basalt walls that not only protected them from the storms but also released heat during the night. The predominant grape varieties are Arinto dos Açores, Boal, Fernão Pires, Terrantez do Pico and Verdelho. Liqueur wines offer remarkable freshness and acidity and, at one time, became famous for being served to the Russian Czars.
3 REASONS TO COME HERE
- Volcanic landscapes
- Whale and dolphin watching
- Outdoor adventure
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