Visit PortugalPico Azores – a Truthful Guide to Visit the Island

Luísa Santos5 months ago

Lost in the middle of the sea, Pico Azores is the second biggest island of an archipelago of 9.

It’s one of the most beautiful places in the world to visit, and we’re going to guide you through.

To enjoy Pico to the fullest, we’ll also need to give you a few tips about the Azores, such as, how the weather is there, what you should be eating during your stay and how to move around between the Islands.

Pico Azores: the second largest island of the archipelago

Welcome to Pico, the Portuguese island which has the highest mountain in the country!

Pico Azores has a total area of 444,9 km2 and is very famous for its volcano, located in Montanha do Pico, the highest in the country. This island is 6 km away from neighbor Faial and has been experiencing an inevitable loss of its population.

The official data goes back to 2011 and counts a total number of 14.148 people, according to Tourism of Azores.

 

How to get to Pico Azores from Australia

Even though the main airport is in São Miguel, it is equally possible to get to Pico coming from Australia.

 

It’s possible to find different options.

 

Some are more expensive than others, but here are our suggestions for traveling with 1-week distance.

Departing from Sydney

Getting to Pico Azores can last for almost 40 hours, which is the quickest way to do it. Here are the connections you need to travel on, with a round trip ticket costing €3.724:

  1. Sydney – Dubai
  2. Dubai – Barcelona
  3. Barcelona – Lisbon
  4. Lisbon – Pico Island

Departing from Melbourne

The quickest way to get to Pico Azores from Melbourne has a round trip ticket costing, on average, €3.494, lasts more than 37 hours and has the following connections:

  1. Melbourne – Dubai
  2. Dubai – Lisbon
  3. Lisbon – São Miguel Island
  4. São Miguel Island – Pico Island

See here more about the airports in Portugal and advice when traveling to Portugal.

How to get to Pico Azores from the UK

You already got our logic here, right? So let’s see the flight connections needed to get to Pico Azores from the UK. Coming by car? No problem, here’s a complete guide on how to arrive in Portugal by car from the United Kingdom.

Departing from London

Here’s the quickest way to do it. It lasts for 9h45 and a round trip ticket costs, on average, €828:

  1. London – Porto
  2. Porto – São Miguel Island
  3. São Miguel Island – Pico Island

Departing from Manchester

The quickest way costs  €697 and lasts a bit more than 15 hours:

  1. Manchester – Lisbon
  2. Lisbon – São Miguel Island
  3. São Miguel Island – Pico Island

Want to know what changes will happen after Brexit? We have expat UK advice prepared for you on that.

How to get to Pico Azores from the US

Departing from Los Angeles

Round trip tickets can cost €2.024 and last for about 18h15. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Los Angeles – Boston
  2. Boston – São Miguel Island
  3. São Miguel Island – Pico Island

Departing from New York

Round trip tickets can cost €1.537 and last 10h40:

  1. New York – Boston
  2. Boston – São Miguel Island
  3. São Miguel Island – Pico Island

How to get to Pico Azores from Canada

Departing from Toronto

Round trip tickets can cost €1.255 and lasts more than 12 hours. Here are the connections:

  1. Toronto – Boston
  2. Boston – São Miguel Island
  3. São Miguel Island – Pico Island

Departing from Vancouver

The quickest way to get to Pico Azores costs €1.545 for a round trip and lasts 18 hours:

  1. Vancouver – Boston
  2. Boston – Lisbon
  3. Lisbon – Pico Island

Pico Island
Pico Island

What’s the best option to reach Pico in the Azores?

The best and fastest way to reach Pico in the Azores is without a doubt by plane.

Nonetheless, there are some alternatives, such as traveling in cruise ships that will have Pico Azores as a stop. For some, this might even be the best alternative.

Where to stay in Pico Azores

There are a lot of places to stay on the island. Most of the accommodation options belong to locals, so there are not luxury hotels in Pico. The prices vary but, for a week at the end of July, you can pay between €300 and €900 for two adults. We have gathered some of the best options below:

Thinking about also visiting a different island? We got you covered with this complete guide on visiting the Azores.

Where to eat

You should know by now everything about Portuguese food. Well, Pico is one of the best places to eat in, and we have selected the best restaurants for you to try out:

What to eat: Pico’s traditional gastronomy

First of all, you need to try one of the best cheeses produced in the country: Queijo da Ilha! Portuguese cheese is the absolute best, and in Pico Azores, you have the chance to taste it directly from where its’ source.

The island’s fruits are also very applauded, mainly fig and also the honey produced there. But, if we are talking about proper meals, here are some suggestions of the island’s traditional gastronomy:

  • Polvo guisado com vinho de cheiro, which is octopus stewed with red wine;
  • Linguiça com ínhame, which is a particular sausage type fried with yam;
  • Molha de Carne, a meat stew with tomato, wine, and other unusual ingredients;
  • Caldos de Peixe, a broth made from every part of the fish.

See more about traditional Portuguese food here.

How long should you stay in Pico

You need at least three days to visit the island, so make sure to check your trip agenda before leaving.

What’s the weather like in Pico Azores?

Azores Landscape
Azores Landscape

The weather on the island is very similar to the weather in the Azores in general.

Spring

During Springtime, the minimum temperatures are of 14ºC (57ºF) and the maximum of 16ºC (60ºF).

Summer

The minimum temperatures are of 19ºC (66ºF) an the highest go around 22ºC (71ºF).

Autumn

Temperatures begin to decrease in the Autumn, with minimum temperatures of 15ºC (59ºF) and highest of 18ºC (64ºF).

Winter

Winter is the time when it is most cold in Pico Azores, with minimum temperatures of 14ºC (57ºF) and highest of 15ºC (59ºF).

So, What’s the best season to visit the island?

We would say during the Summer. The weather in the whole archipelago can be a bit unstable: in a minute, it can be raining and, in the next one, you only see the sun in the sky. As you could see from the temperatures above, the weather in Pico Azores is not that warm, so it is better to visit during the Summer.

If you can, do visit Madeira also, another beautiful (and much warmer) Portuguese island.

Go on a cruise to Pico Azores

One of the best ways to visit this and the other islands is to go on a journey. There are several connecting them and below we present you the best options.

Departing from other islands

The best option you can follow is to go to Atlântico Line, by far the best service there is connecting the Azores islands. There are a lot of fares you should check before booking your trip because special discounts are depending on the people traveling.

You can pick any island since the cruises go around every island and stop at Pico, mainly at the ports of São Roque and Madalena. A single ticket cost starts at €3,60, but if you want to visit several islands, the price increases and starts at €50 per person and you can carry two pieces of luggage of 25 kg each, in a journey that usually lasts for a day.

Departing from the continent

It is possible to go on a cruise to Pico from Porto, Lisbon, and Faro. These are the best companies and agencies operating the ships, in which you can book your trip:

Do know in advance that, in most cases, cruises may stop at São Miguel, but the package you buy already includes a flight to Pico, so don’t worry. Prices may vary depending on the season you choose to travel and also the number of nights.

On average, the total cruise package cost starts at €700 per person and lets you visit, at least, three islands: São Miguel, Terceira, and Pico for, at least, one week.

How to rent a car in Pico Azores

Living in the Azores is a dream, and visiting it is as close as you can imagine. One of the best ways to go around the island is by car since you can quickly get to the other side of the island in a matter of minutes. These are the most known companies for renting a car on the island:

Depending on the company you choose, which you can find directly at the airport, the price may vary. On average, some of them charge €45 per day and others charge €110, so you should carefully plan your journey before making any decision. Also, make sure you read all the requirements since some companies require that drivers be at least 25 years old.

7 best things to do in Pico Azores

Montanha do Pico
Montanha do Pico

  1. Taste the island’s unique wine: besides the delicious gastronomy, Pico is also known for its wine production, which benefits from the volcanic soil, and it’s made from Verdelho grapes. Two great places to do this are Museu do Vinho, and  Cooperativa Vitivinícola do Pico;
  2. Visit Gruta das Torres: this is the largest lava tube in Portugal, and the tour lasts around 1h30;
  3. Clim to Montanha do Pico: as we said earlier, this is the highest mountain in Portugal, so the views are breathtaking from the top. Be prepared. Climbing this mountain is very hard and may last more than 6 hours;
  4. Go on a hiking trail: there are at least 20 hiking trails in Pico, and each one of them is lovely to walk on;
  5. Go whale watching: as beautiful as you can imagine, we guarantee you. Chances to see the whales are higher between April and October and the best place to do it is at Espaço Talassa, in Lajes do Pico. There are a lot of packages to choose from and some even last for two weeks, but the most basic, which allows you to travel for 3 hours, starts at €39 per person;
  6. Swim in the Atlantic: there are no proper beaches in Pico, but the water’s still there! Go for a dive in the ocean and also try the Piscina Municipal da Madalena, a public free pool with salty water,
  7. Have a drink at CELLA BAR: it won the Building of the Year award in 2016 by ArchDaily and offered breathtaking views.

Whale Watching
Whale Watching

What to do in the other islands

Nine islands to explore means a bunch of things to do!

The Tourism of Azores assures that you don’t miss a thing at the archipelago. The experiences include bike tours, bird watching, canoeing, golf, hiking, paragliding, scuba diving, and so much more!

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Knowing more about Pico Azores

If by know you’re interested in visiting Pico in the Azores, then we gathered some advice that might be useful for you about Pico and the Azores. Check it out.

Pico is the second biggest island in the Azores.

The Azores belongs to Portugal and is an archipelago with nine beautiful islands with breathtaking landscapes. All of them have a volcanic origin and are spread in the Atlantic Ocean, West of Portugal. In 2011, a total of 246.772 people lived in these islands, which are 1.600 km away from Europe and 2454 km away from Canada.

Want to meet the islands? Great, here they are:

  • Santa Maria;
  • São Miguel;
  • Terceira;
  • Graciosa;
  • São Jorge;
  • Pico;
  • Faial;
  • Corvo;
  • Flores;

The 9 islands are grouped into three main groups:

Oriental Group

  • Santa Maria;
  • São Miguel;

Central Group

  • Terceira;
  • Graciosa;
  • São Jorge;
  • Pico;
  • Faial;

Western Group

  • Corvo;
  • Flores.

Azores Archipelago
Azores Archipelago

How to get to Pico Azores

There are several ways to get to the Azores, from boat to airplane.

Going by plane is the most common way. But that only takes you so far.

To commute to other islands, you probably need to get a boat.

The airports

There are five leading airline companies which fly to the Pico Azores:

There are four main airports spread across the archipelago:

Other aerodromes also operate flights between the islands.

They can be found in the islands of

  • Graciosa
  • Pico;
  • São Jorge;
  • Corvo and Flores.

The Azores Ports

It is also possible to get to the islands by boat, and these are the main ports:

Terceira Island ports

  • Porto de Pipas
  • Porto Comercial da Praia da Vitória

São Jorge Island ports

  • Porto de Velas
  • Porto de Calheta

Graciosa Island ports

  • Porto da Praia

Pico Island ports

  • Cais de São Roque do Pico
  • Cais da Madalena do Pico
  • Cais das Lajes do Pico

Flores Island ports

  • Porto de Santa Cruz das Flores

Corvo Island ports

  • Porto da Casa

São Miguel Island ports

Cruise on São Miguel
Cruise on São Miguel

Santa Maria Island port

  • Porto de Vila do Porto

Faial Island port

  • Porto de Horta

Impressed? Well, wait until we tell you these only are the main ports. There are several other secondary ones used nowadays. In total, the Azores archipelago has 89 ports!

 

And that’s it.


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Luísa Santos

Proudly from Porto, Portugal. I love everything about Communication and that is why I have a degree in Communication Sciences, with a specialisation in Journalism. I later took a Masters in Multimedia, so I can say that, today, I can communicate through a various number of forms. I am all about love and passion, in everything I do. I believe everyone has a special talent and is destined to do specific things. I believe in people, most of all, and strongly defend team work in any area - we can go much further when we go together. Alone, we achieve nothing.

Jeronimos Monastery Lisbon

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