The Azores: Last Stop before Sailing into the Sunset

Street scene in Ponta Delgado on the Island of San Miguel in the Azores.

We spent a pleasant three hours wandering along the streets of Ponta Delgada. Note the fun pavement.

Nine hundred miles west of Portugal we arrived at Ponta Delgada on the island of San Miguel. The Azores Islands are an autonomous region of Portugal and Delgada is the administrative center. When the Portuguese arrived in the 1400s, they found the islands uninhabited. In the days of sailing ships the islands became an important stop for resupplying with fresh food and water.

We found Delgada quite occupied and very pleasant, almost charming. Surrounded by green mountains that feature pineapple groves and grazing cattle, the city of 45,000 is nestled against the ocean. Instead of scrambling to see sites, we simply wandered through the streets.

The pineapples grown in the Azores are known for their sweetness and considered a gourmet treat.

The pineapples grown in the Azores are known for their sweetness and are considered a gourmet treat.

I even found time to check in on my blog. Normally, I had to use the ship’s Internet, which cost the proverbial arm and a leg. (Cruise ships are dedicated to separating passengers from their cash. We were dedicated to keeping as much of ours as possible.)

The town of Punta Delgado on the Island of San Miguel in the Azores

The town of Pont Delgada is surrounded by green mountains where cattle graze.

A church in Ponta Delgado in the Azores

Our stroll around Delgada took us past attractive churches.

Church door in Ponta Delgado in the Azores

This door on the church was quite dramatic with its white background.

As always, our traveling companion, Kathi, could be expected to find tasty pastries.

As always, our traveling companion, Kathi, could be expected to find tasty pastries. (Photo by Peggy Mekemson)

Carriage ride in Ponta Delgado in the Azores

These horses waited patiently to provide tourists with a carriage ride.

Ponta Delgado City Hall and reflection pool

I loved the way the street tile was extended into the reflection pool in front of Ponta Delgada’s city hall.

Peggy, Kathi and Frances take a break at the pool's edge.

Peggy, Kathi and Frances take a break at the pool’s edge.

Graffiti in Ponta Delgado

We found interesting murals in Delgada including this chicken?

Whale mural in Ponta Delgado

I found these abstract squid quite attractive.

Ponta Delgado balcony in Azores

As in Europe, we found a number of attractive balconies.

Balcony in Ponta Delgado, Azores

Another balcony in Ponta Delgada.

A bouquet of roses in the Azores

A flower stand provided a beautiful bouquet of roses.

Crown Princess

As the shadows lengthened it was time to return to the ship.

NEXT BLOG: Sailing into the sunset. The proper term is probably cruising into the sunset but I find sailing much more romantic. Our next stop would be Florida.

6 comments on “The Azores: Last Stop before Sailing into the Sunset

  1. I just love the chicken and the – whatevers – surrounding it. It looks quite happy and lively, even though it seems to be carrying death in its belly. I’m really curious about a possible connection with the Courir de Mardi Gras of rural Louisiana. While NOLA’s doing their thing with boobs and beads, out in Cajun country they’re chasing a chicken around, drinking beer and generally celebrating their ties to medieval French peasantry. I’ve missed doing a post on the Courir for the past two years – it just sneaks up on my. I should start my research now and see if I’m ready for next year.

    Your time ashore looks wonderful. How was the ship experience for you? I’ve always had a sense that taking one of those cruises would be akin to hard time in the slammer.

    • Let’s see: boobs and beads or chasing a chicken. Hmmm. As for the cruise ship, I am not a fan although it is better than doing hard time in a slammer. (grin) It got me some places I wanted to go. And I always did want to take a ship across the Atlantic. We had the usual cruise ship experiences: the guy who dropped dead in our dining room, the virus that took down dozens of passengers, the coast guard helicopter rescue by sea, etc. –Curt

  2. Loved it! I was in Ponta Delgada only when I was a child (9 Yrs. old) a long time ago, lol! I was born in Graciosa a much smaller island in the Azores, so I always love seeing other islands…Obrigado!

  3. Beautiful post, Curt! Your picture of the pineapple reminded me of my husband’s picture as a boy in the pineapple plantation when they stopped by Azores en route to Holland from Suriname 40 years ago. 😉

    • Thanks Malou. Pineapples were the featured fruit of the Azores. I had to incorporate a photo of one. (grin) And it is always interesting to me how a photo can transport you back in time. –Curt

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