PICO, A Whale Watching Island of the Azores
Pico Mountain, at 2,351 meters, is Portugal’s highest mountain and a nature reserve since 1982
By Leila Monteiro Lins | Photos by Teresa Oliveira
PICO Island has several points of interest for visitors. Its typical architecture of simple white houses built with blocks of black lava reflects the volcanic origin of the island. The Museu dos Baleeiros (Museum of Whalers) is another must-see-spot. Other places worth visiting for their history and cultural heritage are: Lajes, São Roque and Madalena.
The unique nature of wine production seen in Criação Velha (photo) and Santa Luiza led PICO to be recognized as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2004. The grapes of verdelho wine are planted along the coastline and are protected by walls of black stone laid out in currais and curraletas. These rectangular plots comprise one of the biggest stone networks built by man. During the 18th and 19th centuries, the wine was exported to Europe to be housed in royal courts’ wine cellars.
Swimming with dolphins and whale watching
Watching whales and dolphins in their habitat is a fascinating experience. PICO is the best island for whale watching trips, with frequent sightings of these amazing creatures from the shore. Photo by Pedro Madruga.
Where to Stay: Adegas do Pico: (351) 933-256-277 | firstname.lastname@example.org | www.adegasdopico.com | Fonte Resort: (351) 292-679-500 | email@example.com | www.aldeiadafonte.com
Where to Eat: Ancoradouro: (351) 292-623-490 – Madalena do Pico (Sr Genuino Madruga) Cellar Bar: (351) 292-623-654 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Activities: Swimming with Dolphins (€ 65) – Whale watching ( € 50 ) – AquaAçores: (351) 292-672-009 | 917-569-453 | Aquaacores@gmail.com | www.aquaacores.com.pt
DISCOVER magazine’s press trip was hosted by the Azores Promotion Board.