The benefits of hiking are countless. Hiking allows a person to explore the natural surroundings, discover new places, see animal and plant species, experience great views of the areas around and so much more. Additionally, hiking is a good way to exercise and keep one's body in a good shape at all times since it helps in weight loss. However, in some cases hiking can be difficult when not planned well.
This is especially in cases where it is a new place. The islands of the Portuguese Azores are one of those places. Although it is very popular for hiking, there are many things that one should know before hiking in this region. They include the following:
10 Geographical Groups
The Azore Islands region is vast and it is important for a visitor to know that before they decide on hiking there. The place has many big islands and the area is divided into three different geographical groups. Understanding these groups is crucial in helping a person choose where to hike correctly.
One the Eastern group there are two regions one can hike to which are Sao Miguel and Santa Maria. For the central, there is Pico, Faial, Terceira, Sao Jorge, and Graciosa, and the Western group has Flores and Corvo.
9 Best Island
The best island for hiking in the Azores is Sao Miguel. The main reason is that more than a third of the 23 trails in the Azores are here. It is the largest island and it provides everything for the hikers. Sao Miguel is the most beautiful one for hikes followed by Sao Jorge and Flores.
However, there are other interesting islands, although smaller, such as Santa Maria, Corvo, and Faial. For someone looking for a few trails, then Pico and Terceira is the place to visit.
8 Flying Is An Option
In some cases, people may be worried about the accessibility of this place. The Azore islands can be accessed in many ways. one of them and the easiest is by air. The availability of an airport makes it easy for someone who would like to access the place by air.
However, there are other people who may want to get there by sea and it is okay.
7 are There Accommodations?
Yes. The islands have decent accommodation facilities and hotels for people who would like to stay there longer. Some of the best hotels include; hotel Marina Atlantico, Hotel Azor, Terra Nostra Garden Hotel, and the Furnas Boutique hotel.
However, it is recommended that a visitor should check the hotels based on the islands they want to visit and know more about them before traveling. It is easier to select the right one this way.
6 Linear Vs Circular Hikes
For one to hike into the Azores, understanding different trail routes and methods is crucial. This is because the trails in the area are very long. As a result, a hiker must choose one that is suitable for them.
For linear trials, they start from one point and end at the next without going back. It means once at the destination one has to be picked up. For circular trails, they start at a point, go around and end at the same point.
5 Way Through The Trails
For a beginner or a solo person, following the trails of the Azores is not a problem. As a result, one does not necessarily need a guide or company. Due to the popularity of this region with hiking, the authorities have taken the initiative to mark the trail very well. As a result, all one has to do is follow the marks to learn more about the area.
However, one must learn about the Azore trail marks before starting the hike to make sure they do not misinterpret their meaning.
4 Prepare For Unexpected Weather
The weather in the Azores is not predictable. As a result, a stranger may find it difficult when hiking as the weather may change at any time. It can be difficult starting the trail in sunny weather and then finding rain or fog along the way.
As a result, it is advisable to be prepared for any conditions. One should not be surprised to find weather changes along the trail.
3 What’s The Best Time?
Although the weather in the Azore is not predictable, hiking during the summer is the best thing one can do. The summer period offers the best dry weather with low chances of weather changes along the trails. During this period, it is also easy to do other interesting activities such as swimming in the area.
2 Carry Or Wear The Following
To handle the hiking experience effectively, a visitor must make sure they carry the right supplies. One must make sure they pack a rain jacket that is lightweight. This will protect a person during the rain and not bulk. Other things include hiking shoes, trail app, sunscreen, sunhat, cell phone, reusable water container, and snacks.
1 Extra Activities In The Azore
Other than hiking, there are several things hikers can do in the Azores to make the whole experience better. One of them is swimming on the beach. With the region having many islands, there are also many beaches that provide a unique environment for swimming.
Other activities include site seeing, sunbathing on the beach, and diving. There is also an option of exploring the local life by interacting with people, trying local food and hotels.