If you plan to visit the Azores with your family, you have to include Pico Island in your itinerary. It’s just that it’s practically impossible to visit this island without falling completely in love with it.
1 – Be dazzled by the traces of volcanic activity on the island – Volcanic activity traces can be found all over the island and will dazzle not only small explorers but also the adults. Examples of this are the so-called Mysteries of Pico island, lava fields resulting from volcanic eruptions and for which the inhabitants had no justification, being therefore considered mysteries of Nature. The well-known lajidos, fields of lava flows that assumed many different forms after cooling can be observed, such as the so-called stringed lava, are equally impressive. You cannot miss Gruta das Torres, the largest lava tube in Portugal, with 5150 meters, where you can observe several types of lava, as well as different geological formations, of which different types of lava stalactites and stalagmites stand out, side benches, lava balls, fluted walls and stringed lava, during an expedition of approximately one hour
2 – Take the Vinhas da Criação Velha trail – Exploring this trail is always a good idea. In addition to being done in approximately 2 hours and having an easy degree of difficulty, it starts in Porto do Calhau, almost always following in an area of Protected Landscape of the Culture of the Vineyard, until ending in Porto da Areia Larga. Along the way, you can see examples of relheiras, traces of carts and kite rollers, ramps dug into the sea, where the wine barrels rolled. Don’t forget to stop at Moinho da Criação Velha to take pictures and contemplate the surrounding corrals .
3 – Visit Casa da Montanha – The climb to Pico mountain will depend on the age of the children and the condition of the family. However, even if you don’t make the climb, a visit to Casa da Montanha is very interesting because it’s where the control of all climbs is made, but also where you can find information about the Pico Mountain Nature Reserve and relax at the bar with a panoramic view.
4 – Watch the sunset – There are several restaurants in the village of Madalena where you can watch the sunset in an orientation that allows you to have the island of Faial as a backdrop.
5 – Take a dip in one of the bathing areas – Pico Island offers natural pools, harbors and small beaches, very popular among locals and visitors, where you can enjoy clear and inviting waters.
6 – Enjoy São João Forest Park – Spend pleasant moments with your family in this recreational forest reserve that has a covered picnic area, a children’s playground, fences with animals, a Forestry Center, a bird watching post, maintenance, a traditional games area, a multi-sports court and a croquet court.
And don’t forget to visit the other islands in the triangle. The island of Pico is one of the vertices of Central Group triangle, being 15 km away from the island of São Jorge and 8 km from the island of Faial, so you will have the opportunity to take one of the several daily connections by boat and visit two other islands of this fantastic archipelago that are the Azores!