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7 Best Portuguese Islands You Should Visit

7 Best Portuguese Islands You Should Visit
Portugal . Portuguese Islands .

Visiting mainland Portugal is a destination included in everyone’s bucket list. But not everyone knows that Portugal actually houses some of the most beautiful and fascinating islands on earth. Portugal actually has twenty tree inhabited islands scattered across the Atlantic Ocean. Each one of them has a distinct culture and unique spirit to it. You will enjoy some of the best surfing in the world, taste mouthwatering local dishes, visit Christopher Columbus’ house, breathtaking scenery, instagrammable views, and stunning sandy white beaches. What more could you want in a vacation?

So, let’s explore seven of the most stunning Portuguese islands, shall we?

1. Sao Miguel Island


Sao Miguel is a part of the popular group of Portuguese islands, called the Azores Islands. Scattered throughout the island are volcanic calderas and the abundance of mineral hot springs which is a perfect place to relax on a long day spent sightseeing around the island.

If you are an adventure-seeker, you can go on a hike through the hiking trails surrounding the Sete Cidades Caldera are among the best in the Azores. Sao Miguel is also known for its beautiful beaches and dolphin and whale watching tours, and there is no shortage of guided boat tours to let you spot them in the wild.

Location: Azores
Best time to visit: April to November
 

2. Flores Island


Flores is another island from the Azores Islands group. The name of the island is derived from the abundance of colorful flowers on the island. The landscape is impressive and full of high peaks and deep valleys. The scenery throughout the whole island is so impressive and unbelievingly beautiful which makes it the most instagrammable island in all of Portugal. Flores speaks to all the nature lovers out there; you can enjoy kayaking, hiking, swimming, and even whale watching. Flores also has a number of waterfalls, including the infamous Poco do Bacalhao Falls close to Faja Grande.

Location: Azores
Best time to visit: mid-April to mid-October

3. Cape Verde Island


Cape Verde has the driest and the most favorable weather for tourists. It is never too hot nor too cold which makes it the ideal island to relax by the beach and take in the view of the turquoise waters. The island sits just off the coast of Mozambique in Africa, nowhere near Portugal itself. Cape Verde is a combination of ten volcanic islands.

As we mentioned before, the island has beautiful beaches and the waters there are amazing which makes it popular for water sports and water activities like surfing, boating, and much more. It makes the vacation there a dream for every beach lover.

Location: Praia
Best time to visit: November to June

4. Pico Island


Pico is another Azores Island and it is famous for the volcano after which it has taken its name. Pico is considered the hidden gem of the Azores Islands and all of Portugal. It’s a spot you cannot miss when you are visiting Portugal. 

The highest mountain in Portugal, Pico Mountain, is present and is the main attraction of the island and it can be seen from any spot in the Pico. That’s why the main activity on the island is hiking along the summit of the mountain. It takes around two hours to reach the summit of Pico and once you do, you will see the most beautiful view of the sunset. You can also actually see other islands from the top of the summit, like Sao Jorge Island and Faial Island.

Location: Azores
Best time to visit: May to September

5. Madeira Island


Madeira is one of the most popular and sought-after Portuguese islands and it’s also blessed with the most pleasant and nice weather out of all the Portuguese islands. Having many nicknames like the Garden Island and the Pearl of the Atlantic, Madeira is not only sought after for its beaches and is also known for its nature with its green forests that you can get lost in for hours. 

There are many fun and exciting activities that you can do on the island, such as kayaking, golfing, horse riding, fishing, and paragliding. 

Location: Madeira
Best time to visit: May to August

6. Porto Santo Island


Porto Santo is also a Madeira Island. It houses some of the best beaches in Portugal. That’s why the main attractions of this island are its stunning beaches. Its coast runs more than four miles of pristine sandy beaches. There are many water activities that can be done in its beautiful blue waters, namely snorkeling and diving.

Porto Santo also has a number of historic landmarks, such as the former house of Christopher Columbus, the 16th century Paços do Concelho, and the 15th century Matriz Church. Some other popular activities that can be enjoyed on the island are hiking and golfing.

Location: Madeira
Best time to visit: Throughout the whole year

7. Faial Island


We are going to end the list with yet another beautiful Azores Island, Faial Island. Faial Island, also known as the Blue Island, is a gorgeous island and it lies in the center of the Azores group of islands. Faial has three main attractions: the volcanic craters, the town of Horta, and the sand white beaches. 

There are many exciting activities that can be done on the island. Our favorite is exploring the Caldeira do Faial at the volcanic craters, relishing the delicious local cuisine n Horta town, and watching the ships sail from a distance at the marina.

Location: Azores Platform
Best time to visit: May to October

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