Such is the growing appeal of the Azores island of Sao Miguel, it’s slowly-but-surely becoming one of Europe’s most popular honeymoon destinations.
With our Honeymoon Escape, you’ll spend your week at one of our favourite hotels in the whole of the Azores: Quinta do Mar in the peaceful south coast village of Caloura. This small fishing village is famous for its secluded tranquillity: you can spend your days amongst the cultural hustle and bustle of Ponta Delgada, or floating in the famous geothermal pools at Furnas – returning to the calm of your Quinta in the evenings, and Caloura’s little sea-front restaurant to enjoy a quiet glass (or two) of the best Portuguese wines.
The biggest highlight is undoubtedly your swimming with dolphins trip. I’m reluctant to call it a ‘once-in-a-lifetime experience’ as that kind of implies you’ll never return to the Azores. In truth, most visitors to Sao Miguel can’t wait to return, so let’s call it an ‘unforgettable experience’ instead!
As with our all tailor-made holidays and honeymoons, if this is close to but not quite the ideal honeymoon you’re thinking of, just call for a chat and we can make a few tweaks before you book. Of course, if you’re not newlyweds but this is the holiday you’re looking for, we won’t stop you booking! Click on the Enquire Now button to the right, fill out the form and we’ll give you a call.
We’ll normally leave your first full day on the island free, so you can relax and explore Caloura....We’ll arrange for your hire car will be delivered at 11:00 to allow you to begin exploring the wider island....You might like to spend your afternoon exploring Ponta Delgada; capital of the Azores and the main town on the island….It’s very difficult to get lost as you stroll around the town – the streets always seem to lead you to either the main marina and the main Avenida Infante Dom Henrique (and both are nice spots for afternoon (Azorean) tea), or to Largo da Matriz which is home to the main church in the town: Igreja Matriz de Sao Sebastiao (the church of St Sebastian; patron saint of the city)….there are some excellent restaurants in Ponta Delgada – two of my favourites are Rotas Ilha Verde (on Rua de Pedro Homem; a vegetarian menu but that’s irrelevant as the food is so well made) and A Tasca (on Rua do Aljube); a very traditional and very seasonal Portuguese menu with excellent Azorean and mainland wines.
Today you’ll head to the marina in the nearby town of Vila Franca, for whale and dolphin watching trip from the local marina.
Afternoon trips begin at 13:00 with a short briefing before heading out to sea....We normally recommend heading out to sea on a small Rigid Inflatable Boat – we find it’s a better experience as you’re close to the water (and the wildlife)....However, if you have a history of back pain or are recovering from a recent injury, (or you might simply prefer a bigger boat of course), you might be more comfortable on a larger catamaran.
Today, you could head east for a swim in the geothermal pools at Furnas....Furnas is home to over thirty springs and geysers which were once considered to have therapeutic properties....Lagoa das Furnas (Furnas Lake) is on the approaches to the village – it’s lakeshore is a mish-mash of bubbling mud pools and sulphurous steam vents....Heading down into the centre of the village, my favourite swimming spot is the outdoor spa at Poca Dona Beija, where the hot waters which run naturally through Furnas (as the Ribeira dos Lameiros) have been channelled into a series of five pools, of varying depths and temperatures.
You’ll return to the marina today for your swimming with dolphins trip....You’re swimming with wild dolphins in their natural environment; a couple of kilometres out into the Atlantic with our marina biologist, where you’ll snorkel with the Bottlenose and Spotted Dolphins that live in and around the waters of Azores.
You could spend today exploring Sao Miguel's wilder interior, with a drive into the mountains of the Agua de Pau volcano....You could begin by driving up to the summit of Pico da Barrosa (947m), one of the highest points on the island with a wonderful panoramic view of the north and south coasts...Heading north, you have to stop for a dip in the geothermal pools at Caldera Velha. Like its sister pools in Furnas, Caldera Velha’s waters are coloured deep orange, from the high iron-oxide content drawn into the waters as they rise from a deep thermal aquifer. What’s unique about Caldera Velha is the hot waterfall, where the 30˚C waters fall out of the forest into the bathing pools below.
For your final full day on the island, you could drive west to explore the great crater at Sete Cidades - the largest of all the calderas on the island, 5km across and 15 km in circumference....You could begin with a visit to the famous viewpoint 'Vista do Rei' - the King’s View, named in honour of King Don Carlos and his Queen Dona Amelia following their visit in 1901....the bird's eye view of the caldera and her twin lakes (Lagoa Azul and Lagoa Verde) is stunning...driving down from the crater rim, you could spend a peaceful afternoon kayaking and stand-up paddleboarding out on Lagoa Azul.
You'll return your hire car to the airport before flying home.
Price Per Person
We can create a tailor-made holiday to suit your budget.
What's included ?
Your accommodation on B&B basis in a double room, airport transfers, a half-day whale watching and a half-day swimming with dolphins, six days' car hire (a Model B - normally a Nissan Micra) and return flights.
With regards to the flight price, there are a few different ways of travelling to the islands - we try to include a realistic guide price and once we've had a chat regarding your holiday, we'll send you a detailed itinerary which includes an exact price based on your preferred flight option.
What's not included ?
Other than breakfasts, we don't include any other meals. There are some excellent restaurants with easy walking distance of your hotels, and we'll let you know which are our favourites.
If you asked each member of our team to list their favourite hotel in the Azores, Quinta do Mar would undoubtedly come out on top every time.
Back in 2003, owners Nick and Chris were passing through the Azores on a winter cruise, when they fell in love with the island, and with Caloura, and they purchased what was then a defunct winery in the centre of the village. Fast-forward two years and they transformed the Quinta into today's exclusive, boutique hotel. They've struck a clever balance between five star luxury and the laid-back, informal atmosphere that's often the biggest appeal of self-catering.
There’s so much to see and do on Sao Miguel – swimming with wild dolphins is the big highlight of the week and whale watching comes a close second. If you’d prefer to stay on dry land, Sao Miguel has some jaw-droppingly beautiful scenery and you have to spend a day swimming in the geothermal pools in Furnas.
You'll spend your week on Sao Miguel, the largest and best-connected island in the Azores. There are direct weekly flights from Gatwick, Stansted and Manchester, and you can fly most days via Lisbon from Heathrow. Edinburgh and Birmingham via Lisbon could also be options - we can talk you through all the possible routes to see which fits best.
Azores Choice provided a prompt, helpful service. they found us the perfect accommodation for our needs and provided superb, expert advice on how to spend our week walking on San Miguel. I would certainly use them again.
Joan from Durham
Recommended small travel company!
Great little company with friendly staff. Organisation of flights & accommodation very efficient. When problems arise they are helpful and very reasonable in their efforts to resolve them. We would definitely use them again for a return trip.
Really great! Would use again!
Very efficient, friendly, helpful. Excellent local knowledge. Everything ran very smoothly, from supplying the tickets to airport pick ups and hotel bookings. Lovely accommodation selected. No complaints!
A wonderful break in a beautiful environment!
Everything was excellent. The information and organisation, the hotel and the island itself all exceeded our expectations. Whale watching and other trips out, fantastic. We will book again!
Great honeymoon package and experience!
They provided a great package at a good price. We found them to be helpful and a quality service was provided.
Nicola and Christopher – Winchester
Top notch service. Highly recommended!
Excellent service throughout. Very informative, with lots of literature, maps and the like. Attended their offices in Ponta Delgada – very impressed with Olivia, friendly and helpful. Paul was first class.
Lynne in Welton-by-Lincoln
Great company for first time Azores visit!
Really great company, will be recommending them. We had never visited the Azores before but this company helped us decided which islands to visit.
Brilliant holiday organised by an excellent company!
Friendly, helpful, professional and completely geared to us as individuals.
John and Janice
Very helpful staff, and the trips they organised for us were excellent with knowledgeable guides.
A really wonderful holiday!
We normally travel independently, but I am go glad that we used Archipelago Choice – their insider knowledge was really helpful in making the most of our time.
Valerie – Brighton
Our customers know that Feefo reviews are the real deal. We trust Feefo to independently collect reviews from our customers
Feefo believe that only authentic reviews are worth collecting: genuine feedback that has been matched to a holiday with us
Often referred to as Europe’s best kept secret, this spectacular group of 9 volcanic islands lie 950 miles west of Lisbon. With their mild climate, geothermal pools, crater lakes and lush green scenery the islands are perfect for active holidays for all ages.
Sao Tome and Principe is Africa’s best kept secret, it’s not the easiest place to get to, and it’s also not for everyone. But it’s worth the effort if you’re adventurous and looking for a safe and fairly untouched and undiscovered holiday destination.
Cape Verde is an archipelago of dramatic beauty and cultural vibrancy. With its all-year-round warm climate, a variety of unique islands to explore, and stunning sun-drenched beaches, it’s enjoyed by adventurer-seekers, holiday makers and families alike.