Unique accommodation in the Azores
In my last post I already spoke about my love for the Azores. The rough, green nature of the islands has inspired me. In this post I would like to show you two of our (very) short-term homes on the Azores. These were absolutely unique. They could not have been more different, but they were both beautiful and we would have liked to have spent more time in each. On the one hand there was the former whaling house on Pico and on the other hand our glamping tent in the middle of a banana forest on Faial.
Traditional whalers house
with sea views in Pico
This little house with a fabulous view over the Atlantic is not easy to find. We met the landlady after our arrival in Pico and she led the way. On the drive there, she showed us the sights of the volcanic island and told us little stories about them. This made us feel welcome and gave us ideas about what we can do with the next couple of days on Pico island. I think it’s great to get directly in contact with locals, so you learn a lot about your destination and get lots of insider tips. Before we drove to out house, we shopped in the supermarket for some food and drinks, because Pico only has a handful of supermarkets.
From old to new
Now a little more about the accommodation. Pico’s story is strongly influenced by whaling. Thank God it is now forbidden. At that time, the whalers built their volcanic stone houses high up on the mountain to allow them a view over the sea. So they already saw from a distance if a pod of whales appeared around the island. After that they quickly gave chase with their boats. After the banning of whaling in the 1980s, many of the whaling houses were abandoned. Through tourism, many of these houses have been restored and rented as holiday apartments.
Our little place was a bungalow with a cellar. The cellar served as a living room. Down there the humidity was very high and it was very cool. Back in the days, the whalers stored their supplies here. We spent most of our time outside in the hammock or in the whirlpool. The house has two bedrooms, so it is suitable for 4 persons. The landlady presented us with a small basket of fruit, tea and other local treats. I think it’s great how the restoration of this house was done. It has definitely kept its original character. In addition, only local materials were used.
One of the top accommodations in the Azores! Here is the link to airbnb: X
Waking up underneath banana trees
The accommodation in the Azores generally offers an incredible closeness to nature. In the middle of a banana plantation you can find the small glamping camp Azul Singular on Faial island owned and run by Pedro and Antonia, one of the most down-to-earth and warmest couples we have ever met. Pedro is from Faial, a local. He inherited the land with the palm plantation from his father. After his studies and his time on the Portuguese mainland, he returned with Antónia and created this little paradise. The plantation is not far from Horta, the capital of the island, but you should rent a car. So you can also see the rest of the beautiful island filled with blue hydrangeas.
When we stayed at the Azul Singular in September 2017, it had just opened for the first time. So we were one of the first people to come and enjoy the tranquility of this unique place. It was my first experience with glamping. My childhood was marked by traveling in a caravan during the summer holidays. I have always valued being close to nature. Glamping is still a very new trend, it combines the cosiness and comfort of a hotel, mixed with the feeling of being outside amongst the birds and the bees. It is something I would definitely do again.
Our Glamping Experience
The tents and houses are on a hill. The palm trees and plants provide very good privacy for each little plot of land and its guests. Our yurt was the main tent. The toilet and the shower, as well as the kitchen were built outside. The yurt has a small fireplace for cold days and a mosquito net for warmer days. Mosquitoes seem to like me very much…
The kitchen has a sink, electrical outlets and even a stove, just like in a normal apartment. All products in and around the tent have a very high quality and are sourced from local small businesses. Our yurt also has a terrace where you can relax together for breakfast, which is included in the price. When you wake up you’ll find it already there for you on the kitchen counter in a wicker basket. For us the breakfast basket was always a highlight. Every day there was something new within. If you have any allergies, intolerances or preferences, you can of course tell the hosts. Customer satisfaction is of course very high on their list of priorities, and they certainly didn’t disappoint.
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Advertising: We booked and paid for both accommodations ourselves. The links are affiliate links. This means that I receive a small commission from booking.com if you book through the links provided.