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An adventure in a Breathtaking Archipelago

Hiking in the Azores Post-Eclipse

Portugal

14 Days

From $11,495

Level 3

Moderate

Overview

    Contact Us Download Itinerary

    Call 1-800-368-2794 or contact us for any questions

    Overview

    After the thrill of witnessing the total solar eclipse in Lerma, Spain, we welcome you to an island-world of traditional villages, lake-filled calderas, and ancient vineyards—the Azores! On this volcanic archipelago, we explore four enchanting islands: São Miguel, Faial, São Jorge, and spectacular Pico, each with its own personality. We'll hike along crater rims, cross moorlands above a deep blue sea, and follow canadas (pathways) that link farms and villages. Along the way, we'll go whale watching, dine on fresh fish at local spots, and relish the unhurried pace of Azorean life. Our Azores accommodations include a 16th century fort and an Art Deco hotel with thermally heated bathing pools.

    Arrive: Bilbao, Spain

    Depart: São Miguel Island, Azores

    Highlights

    • Witness the dramatic phenomena of a total solar eclipse with renowned astrophysicist Alex Filippenko, PhD (veteran of 14 eclipse events with WT!)
    • Enjoy the fabulous Parador de Lerma and our private eclipse-viewing site at a hilltop winery
    • Hike and explore four lush volcanic islands, each with a unique culture and landscape
    • Taste Pico Island's white wines from age-old vineyards
    • Search for whales and dolphins in one of the world's largest whale sanctuaries
    • Stay in a converted 16th-century fort and the Art Deco grandeur of Terra Nostra Garden Hotel

    Overview

      Contact Us Download Itinerary

      Call 1-800-368-2794 or contact us for any questions

      Itinerary

      Download Itinerary Expand All Days
      Our eclipse program begins in Bilbao, with a tour of the world famous Guggenheim Museum, a cruise along the Nervión River, and a walking tour of the Old City. We then continue south to charming Burgos, where we'll have a tour of its imposing Gothic cathedral, a World Heritage Site. A short drive from Burgos brings us to the medieval town of Lerma and our private eclipse-viewing site at an expansive winery on a hill—virtually on the centerline of the eclipse. Our Bilbao accommodation on Days 1-2 is the Carlton Hotel. On Days 3-4, we stay at the fabulous Parador de Lerma, a ducal palace originally built for King Felipe III. En route to Lerma during the first few days of the trip, we enjoy lively talks on eclipses and other celestial topics by our esteemed eclipse expert Dr. Alex Filippenko, Professor of Astronomy at UC Berkeley.
      Fly to Sâo Miguel Island in the Azores for a hike up to the twin crater lakes of Sete Cidades, one very blue (Lagoa Azul) and the other distinctly green (Lagoa Verde). We then fly to Faial Island for a hike on the Praia do Norte Levada with spectacular coastal views.
      On Pico Island, crowned by a dormant 7,713-foot volcano, Portugal's highest point, we explore vineyards where wines have been produced since the 17th century. Whale watching is one of our delights at Lajes do Pico, once a whale-hunting hub and now a sanctuary and major whale-watching destination. A ferry ride brings us to Sâo Jorge Island for a coastal hike following a panoramic trail from the charming Fajã dos Cubres to the pilgrimage church in Fajã da Caldeira de Santo Cristo.
      From the picturesque spa village of Furnas, nestled inside a huge caldera, we'll hike along the shores of Lake Furnas. Restaurant owners here make the famous local dish called cozido nas caldeiras (meat and vegetables slow-roasted in pots set in the geothermally heated soil of the caldera). One night we'll enjoy a hearty cozido feast for dinner. Depart on Day 14.

      Dates & Pricing

      Payment & Cancel Schedule

      At time of reservation $1,000 per person
      Due 180 days prior to departure: 25% of land cost
      Due 90 days prior to departure: Balance

      Please note that this differs from our standard policy.

      Cancellation & Transfer Schedule

      Minimum cancellation fee: $500 per person
      365-181 days prior to departure: $1,000 per person
      180-91 days prior to departure: 25% of land costs
      90 days or less prior to departure: 100% of land costs

      We reserve the right to treat the reservation as canceled if payments are not received when due.

      Included
      • Presentations by Guest Speakers
      • Expert Trip Leaders and local guides
      • All accommodations based on double occupancy
      • Meals as indicated in Detailed Itinerary
      • All ground transportation and baggage handling from meeting until departure
      • All activities as indicated in Detailed Itinerary
      • Entrance fees to museums and archaeological sites
      • Gratuities during the Eclipse Program portion of your journey
      • A glass of wine or beer with lunch & dinner
      Not Included
      • Travel to and from the arrival and departure location as indicated in Detailed Itinerary
      • Additional hotel nights outside the trip's scheduled dates
      • Optional gratuities to Trip Leaders or staff
      • Optional travel insurance
      • Other expenses of a personal nature (some alcoholic beverages, laundry, etc.)

      Accommodations

      Scroll through our signature accommodations for this trip below. Although it is highly unlikely, we may make substitutions when necessary.

      Hotel Carlton

      Bilbao, Spain

      Days 1-2 (2 nights)

      The Hotel Carlton, built in 1919, is an impressive Beaux Arts monument in the grand style of its era. It is centrally located in the Old Town on Plaza de Federico Moyúa and just a short walk to the Guggenheim Museum. The hotel was the seat of the Basque government...

      Parador de Lerma

      Lerma, Spain

      Days 3-4 (2 nights)

      Built in the 17th century atop a medieval castle, this former Ducal Palace was built by the Duke of Lerma as a place of lodging, rest, and general enjoyment for his close friend, King Felipe III. The palace has a central courtyard surrounded by stately columned galleries, and features interiors...

      Hotel Talisman

      Ponta Delgada, Portugal

      Day 5 (1 night)

      With a great location in the center of town, near Ponta Delgada's cafes and historic churches, the Talisman is a historic 17th century building converted into a charming hotel. Guest rooms differ in size and shape, but most have views of the port. The hotel is decorated in an Art...

      Pousada Forte Hotel

      Horta, Portugal

      Days 6-7 (2 nights)

      The Pousada Forte is a restored fortress set along a promenade on Horta's port.  It offers comfortable rooms overlooking the harbor and a great swimming pool. The views of Pico Island are breathtaking.

      Hotel Caravelas

      Madalena, Portugal

      Days 8-9 (2 nights)

      The Caravelas offers clean, comfortable rooms with views of Faial Island and the harbor and a central location for the ferry. The hotel offers an excellent buffet breakfast.

      Hotel São Jorge Garden

      Velas, Portugal

      Days 10-11 (2 nights)

      The simple but comfortable Hotel S. Jorge Garden has guest rooms with panoramic views of Pico Island, a friendly bar, and a lovely saltwater swimming pool. In the evenings, guests can hear the sounds of the local Cory's shearwaters coming back to their colony to roost for the night.

      Terra Nostra Garden Hotel

      Furnas, Portugal

      Days 12-13 (2 nights)

      The historic Terra Nostra Garden Hotel, surrounded by calderas and thermal springs, is the perfect spot to enjoy São Miguel's natural geothermal wonders. You can step right out of your room and straight into the garden to relax in bubbling hot springs. The hotel is...

      Trip Leaders

      Wilderness Travel Trip Leaders have a passion and a joy for creating an unforgettable journey. We are extremely proud of them and the incredible travel experiences they make possible. For more information, including client comments about them and which specific trips they will be leading, please click on their profiles below.

      Skye McDonald

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      David Monteiro

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      What the Trip is Like

      This trip is rated Level 3, Moderate, according to our trip grading system. You will need to be comfortable hiking up to 7 miles a day and being on your feet for 5 hours a day. With the exception of one day, there are no alternative hiking options, so you will need to be able to keep up with the moderate but steady hiking pace of the group. Trail conditions, weather, and the group's level of fitness can affect hiking times and pacing. 

      Average Hiking Day
      • 6 miles
      • 3-4 hours
      • 800 feet gain and 1,200 feet loss
      Challenge Day
      • Day 6 - 5.5 miles, 4 hours, 2,300 feet gain, and 400 feet loss; includes 1.5 hours by ferry and 2 hours of driving
      Review Trip Level Details
      We'll hike along crater rims in a volcanic landscape, traverse rugged moorlands above a deep blue sea, and follow ancient canadas (pathways) that crisscross the islands linking farms and villages. Occasionally there are steeper paths and steps on the coastal walks, and the ground can be uneven with some sharp rocks. If there has been rain, it can be muddy and slippery. Hiking poles will be beneficial on many days. Many of the trails are on rocky and uneven ground, so it is important that your footwear is comfortable and has a good hiking sole. On non-hiking days, we'll still be on foot for many hours as we explore the towns and sites.
      The Azores have a subtropical maritime climate with mild temperatures throughout the year. In the summer, temperatures average between the mid-60s°F to the low 80s°F during the day and the 50s°F and 60s°F at night. It can be humid, and although it is usually sunny in the summer, clouds and rain is a very real possibility all year round—it is not uncommon for rain in the morning and sunshine in the afternoon. A light waterproof shell of a rain jacket and pants in your day pack are highly recommended for the short rainstorms that may pass us while hiking.
      Our accommodations include a refurbished 16th century fort, a 17th century townhouse, and an Art Deco hotel with geothermally heated bathing pools. Since they are in historic buildings, the rooms are not always of uniform or international size. Our leaders do their best to assign rooms in a fair way so that all participants experience an equal advantage throughout the trip as a whole. Single rooms can be requested but are not always available, due to the limited space in the hotels. If you prefer a single room, please make your request as early as possible.
      We'll enjoy the fresh and varied cuisine of the Azores which include many Portuguese specialties. The islands are known for excellent seafood, spicy stews, sweet desserts, and local wines from the island of Pico. Lunch will be picnic-style, at our hotel, or at one of the local restaurants. Dinner will be at our hotel or a local restaurant in town. Please note that in Europe, the dinner hour is considerably later than what it is in the US. We do our best to secure early reservations for our groups, but most often the evening meal will be at 7:30 pm.
      Our van will transport the group's luggage, so you only need to carry a daypack for items you need during the day (rain gear, sweater, camera, water bottle, etc.). Trip members are always free to skip a day's hike and travel to the next destination in the support vehicle (or remain at the hotel if we are not transferring that day). On one day, we will spend a few hours in a 16-seater RIB for whale watching. We will also take ferries between the islands and take various forms of transportation on each island.

      Book your trip today

      Our Area Specialists know every detail about our tours. They will be happy to answer any questions and help you choose the journey that’s right for you. Contact us to learn more or book your trip today!

      Itinerary

      Submit the form below to download itinerary

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      Trip Levels

      With more than 200 different adventures to choose from, we want to help you find the trip that’s right for you. Our Trip Level system ranks each trip in two ways: a number rating from 1 to 6 according to the activity, and general travel rigors. 1 is the easiest and 6+ the most difficult—see descriptions below for explanations of each number. A plus (+) sign means the trip is a bit more strenuous than other trips of that level. The detailed explanation of each trip—below the bar with the number rating—is perhaps more important, specifying activities, altitudes, hiking, and travel conditions. The Detailed Itinerary, available by download or mail, gives further information. Our Area Managers can also answer questions and guide you to the trip that best suits your interests.

      Level 1 – Easiest

      Non-camping journeys, optional walks, little elevation gain or loss.

      Level 2 – Easy to Moderate

      Hotel nights and/or safari-style camping, hikes of two to four hours on some days. Other physical activities are sometimes included, such as optional sea kayaking.

       

      Level 3 – Moderate

      Half- to full-day hikes (3-6 hours) over rolling countryside on most days, occasional steep trails. Many of our hotel-based walking tours are in this category, as are our snorkeling adventures.

      Level 4 – Moderate to Strenuous

      Full-day hikes (4-6 hours), mountainous terrain, significant elevation gains and losses (hiking up or down as much as 3,000 feet) on many days. Altitudes no greater than about 10,000 feet.

       

      Level 5 – Strenuous

      Full-day hikes (4-8 hours), mountainous, steep terrain (hiking up or down as much as 3,500 feet) on many days. Trips with hiking at average altitudes of 10,000 to 12,000 feet are in this category.

      Level 6 – Very Strenuous

      Full-day hikes (5-8 hours), mountainous, steep terrain (hiking up or down as much as 3,500 feet) on many days. Most hikes take place at altitudes above 10,000 feet, with some days ascending as high as 18,000 feet.

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Ponta Delgada is a port, so it's a delight to stroll the waterfront promenade, Avenida Infante Dom Henrique, which will take you from the 16th-century Forte de S&atilde;o Br&aacute;s, a fortress at the western end that is still in use today by the Portuguese navy, to one of the city's three original gates, which date to the 18th century. Lunch and dinner will be on your own as people will be arriving at different times into the evening. <br><br>An important note: While we work hard to make this itinerary as accurate as possible, the planned daily activities are subject to change as necessary, depending on weather conditions and ferry schedules at the time. Our guides are very knowledgeable and will always provide you with a worthwhile alternative. We will do our very best to follow this itinerary, but please bring your spirit of adventure and flexibility, and be aware that some changes may be necessary. 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Our &#8220;moderate&#8221; day starts with a short drive to the rolling moorland of the central highland plateau for a hike on the Caminho dos Burros (&#8220;Path of the Donkeys&#8221;). The local people used this path for centuries to transport items to other villages. We'll have fabulous views towards Pico Mountain and across the sea to the sharply defined ridgeline of S&atilde;o Jorge Island. We'll pass a small green volcanic cone, Cabecos do Mist&eacute;rio (&#8220;Mystery Head&#8221;), formed between 1562 and 1564. We'll descend to the Forest Nature Reserve of Mist&eacute;rio da Prainha, an ideal spot for our picnic. After lunch, we'll head to the Gruta das Torres (&#8220;Grotto of Towers&#8221;), near Madalena, the biggest lava tube in all of Portugal. We'll don hard hats and carry lamps for an hour's guided tour exploring these intriguing lava tunnels. These show great geological diversity, with different types of stalactites and stalagmites, and ropey lavas. Our &#8220;strenuous&#8221; option is a climb of Pico Mountain, a very steep climb to the summit at 7,713 feet and not to be taken lightly (we will only be able to do it if the weather conditions are good). The rocky trail starts at Cabeco das Cabras at about 4,000 feet above sea level and continues over small, loose stones to the summit. It is not technically difficult, but walking poles are essential. The views from the highest point in the mid-Atlantic will be well worth the physical effort.\nThis evening we'll savor\ntraditional dishes washed down with a zesty Pico wine in one of the best restaurants on Pico Island, with superb views toward Faial Island .\nOvernight at the modern Hotel Caravelas, where guest rooms have balconies facing Faial Island.","Breakfast":1,"Lunch":1,"Dinner":1,"Overnight":"","Travel_Type":"","Quotation":"","Quotation_Attribution":"","Itinerary_Location":"","Latitude":"","Longitude":"","Brief":false},{"DayFrom":9,"DayTo":9,"Headline":"Pico Island \/ Whale Watching \/ Whale Museum \/ Winery","ActivityOverview":"Whale Watching:","EstimatedLength":"approximately 3 hours","ActivityLevel":"","ItinBlock":"A morning ferry crossing of about 30 minutes brings us to the island of Pico, crowned by a dormant 7,713-foot volcano, Portugal's highest. We head to the town of Lajes do Pico, Pico's oldest settlement (its chapel dates back to 1460, the time of the Portuguese discovery of the islands). Once a whale-hunting hub, it is now a major whale-watching destination, with a remarkable 26 species of cetaceans documented in the deep waters offshore. Together with a marine biologist, we venture out by boat for some whale watching. Sperm whales as well as humpback, minke, pilot, fin, and blue whales are seen at different points in the year. Bottlenose, spotted, striped, common, and Risso's dolphins are also found here. After lunch, we'll visit the whaling museum, then make our way to the island's main wine-growing area. The Azores Islands have produced wine for hundreds of years, and in the 17th and 18th centuries, thousands of liters were exported throughout the world. The fact that vines grow in this temperate climate warmed by the Gulf Stream is not remarkable, but what is unique is that the grapes are grown on a surface of volcanic rocks and the vines lay unsupported on the ground, protected by a labyrinth of five-foot-high rock walls (known as currais), that provide a wind break and create heat pockets to help ripen the grapes. We'll be met at Czar, a local winery, where the owner will bring us into his traditional wine barrel storage shed to share the history and techniques of his unique wines.\nDinner is on your own tonight and the Trip Leader will be happy to make recommendations. ","Breakfast":1,"Lunch":1,"Dinner":0,"Overnight":"","Travel_Type":"","Quotation":"","Quotation_Attribution":"","Itinerary_Location":"","Latitude":"","Longitude":"","Brief":false},{"DayFrom":10,"DayTo":10,"Headline":"S\u00e3o Jorge Island \/ Cheese Tasting","ActivityOverview":"","EstimatedLength":"","ActivityLevel":"","ItinBlock":"An early ferry ride brings us to Velas, the picturesque principal town on S&atilde;o Jorge Island. The town is a delight to wander around in, with its narrow, cobbled streets, colorful town houses, newly renovated town square, and 17th century church. S&atilde;o Jorge is reputed to produce the best cheese of all the islands&mdash;in fact, there are more dairy cattle on this island than people! We check into our simple accommodation, Hotel S. Jorge Garden, situated above the Atlantic and facing Pico Island, with fantastic views of Pico Mountain. The hotel has a pool, but if the sea is calm, it is pleasant to bathe in the natural swimming pools carved into the dark lava rocks just a couple of minutes' walk from the hotel. We'll visit the island's only remaining family cheese producers who milk just 40 cows and we'll hear about their production and sample some of their much-prized &#8220;Canada&#8221; cheese. We'll have lunch and a walk at Faj&atilde; dos Cubres. Dinner tonight is in a typical local restaurant.","Breakfast":1,"Lunch":1,"Dinner":1,"Overnight":"","Travel_Type":"","Quotation":"","Quotation_Attribution":"","Itinerary_Location":"","Latitude":"","Longitude":"","Brief":false},{"DayFrom":11,"DayTo":11,"Headline":"S\u00e3o Jorge Island \/ Coffee Tasting and a Hike","ActivityOverview":"Hiking Details:","EstimatedLength":"6.2 miles, 4.4-5 hours, ascent 1,400 feet, descent 1,400 feet","ActivityLevel":"","ItinBlock":"Before today's hike, we'll stop at Caf&eacute; Nunes, where we'll meet our local guide and her family. Her mother and aunt have a small workshop where they weave traditional woolen bedspreads on wooden looms, and her father operates the largest commercial coffee plantation in Europe, producing Arabica beans for local consumption. We'll enjoy the earthy flavor of an espresso here before heading out on the trail. Our hike starts in Vimes, on the south coast following old, cobbled trails. Turning into the Faj&atilde; dos Bodes (&#8220;Place of the Goats&#8221;), we head steeply up, mainly under a canopy of dense trees, and savor vistas over to the island of Pico and its iconic mountain as well as the rugged coastline of S&atilde;o Jorge. Higher up, we'll see endemic species including Azorean heather and blueberry plants before popping out into the village of Lourais, where cattle graze. A steep descent (hiking poles are recommended) brings us down to Faj&atilde; de S&atilde;o Jo&atilde;o on the coast. This town has narrow, cobbled streets and a small fishing harbor. The only caf&eacute;, opposite the village church, is our final destination. Cold beers are on order after our demanding yet satisfying hike! Dinner tonight is at a wonderful small restaurant with picture windows offering views over to Pico and Faial. All dishes are home-cooked using only local meat and fish, accompanied by organic vegetables and herbs grown in the owners' garden.","Breakfast":1,"Lunch":1,"Dinner":1,"Overnight":"","Travel_Type":"","Quotation":"","Quotation_Attribution":"","Itinerary_Location":"","Latitude":"","Longitude":"","Brief":false},{"DayFrom":12,"DayTo":12,"Headline":"Faj\u00e3 Dos Cubres \/ S\u00e3o Miguel Island \/ Furnas \/ Terra Nostra Gardens and Thermal Bath","ActivityOverview":"Hiking Details:","EstimatedLength":"4 miles, 3 hours, 400 feet ascent\/descent","ActivityLevel":"","ItinBlock":"In the morning we head to the northern coast for our hike. A central ridge runs the length of S&atilde;o Jorge, with steep hillsides descending to flat coastal &#8220;faj&atilde;s,&#8221; or fertile plains along the coast created by lava flows and rock falls. Small settlements were established on the faj&atilde;s because microclimates created such excellent growing conditions. Our out-and-back hike is one of the best on the trip. A dirt track brings us from Faj&atilde; dos Cubres (&#8220;Place of the Goldenrods&#8221;), a yellow flower that flourishes here, alongside the rugged ocean coastline, through the partly abandoned villages of Faj&atilde; dos Tijolos (&#8220;Place of the Tiles&#8221;) and Faj&atilde; do Belo (&#8220;Place of Beauty&#8221;) and into the pretty village of Faj&atilde; da Caldeira de Santo Cristo and its quaint white church. People from around the island make regular pilgrimages to the 19th century church, especially on the first Sunday in September, when long processions of devotees arrive to pray and give thanks. Astonishingly, this remote location is also known as the best place to surf in S&atilde;o Jorge and the only place where clams can be dug out of the nearby lagoons. In the afternoon, we fly back to S&atilde;o Miguel, where we are met and whisked off to the picturesque town of Furnas and our hotel, the Terra Nostra Garden Hotel, an Art Deco hotel dating to the 1930s and surrounded by a large 19th century garden with canals and lakes. If we arrive in the late afternoon, we'll take a stroll around the gardens, then enjoy the thermally heated pools, with their rich iron-red waters, a good way to soothe tired muscles.<br>","Breakfast":1,"Lunch":1,"Dinner":1,"Overnight":"","Travel_Type":"","Quotation":"","Quotation_Attribution":"","Itinerary_Location":"","Latitude":"","Longitude":"","Brief":false},{"DayFrom":13,"DayTo":13,"Headline":"S\u00e3o Miguel Island \/ Furnas Lake \/ Cozido","ActivityOverview":"Hiking Details:","EstimatedLength":"Morning (Lagoa das Furnas), 2.5 miles, 1.5 hours, level ground. Afternoon: 3 miles, 2 hours, 630 feet, 740 feet descent","ActivityLevel":"","ItinBlock":"On our final full day, our explorations are based around the 19th century spa village of Furnas, nestled inside a huge caldera with many active fumaroles. Taking a short drive to a higher, water-filled caldera, we'll hike along the lake's pretty shoreline. Our hike's end coincides with a chance to see local restaurant owners coming to retrieve their cook pots buried in hot soil in the geothermally active area at the northern end of Furnas Lake. The famous cozido nas caldeiras, a traditional dish, is cooked in pots set in the geothermally heated soil. The large pots are carefully extracted by two men using long metal poles, then driven down the hill to be served up in Furnas as lunch and dinner. Today we'll have a light lunch, saving the hearty cozido dinner for tonight. There is a choice in the afternoon, either to hike or to relax in the thermal pools and spa of the charming Terra Nostra Garden Hotel. If hiking, the guide will decide the most appropriate hike for those walking, as again, there is a choice: either a linear hike along the north coast with a possible swim in the sea, or a circular hike higher up among trees and along a river with waterfalls. Both are of similar length and time. In the early evening we'll gather and raise a glass to toast our hikes and the four islands of the amazing Azorean archipelago. Our Farewell Dinner at the Terra Nostra Garden Hotel is a treat&mdash;the traditional cozido meal, with mouth-watering flavors of tender meat (beef, pork, and chicken) and assorted rice and vegetables, and we pair it superbly with the deep red wines from Pico Island.<br>","Breakfast":1,"Lunch":1,"Dinner":1,"Overnight":"","Travel_Type":"","Quotation":"","Quotation_Attribution":"","Itinerary_Location":"","Latitude":"","Longitude":"","Brief":false},{"DayFrom":14,"DayTo":14,"Headline":"Tea Plantation \/ Ponta Delgada \/ Departure","ActivityOverview":"","EstimatedLength":"","ActivityLevel":"","ItinBlock":"This morning we make a call at one of only two tea plantations in Europe. Ch&aacute; Porto Formoso is set on the north coast of S&atilde;o Miguel, where climate and soil conditions have allowed tea to thrive far from its native terrain in Asia. Tea production on S&atilde;o Miguel started at the end of the 19th century with seeds and techniques brought from China. Sitting out on the wooden veranda overlooking the neatly clipped tea bushes that sweep down toward the sea, we'll savor a cup! The teas produced here have an especially aromatic flavor and make a lasting memento of the islands to take home with you. We'll transfer to the city of Ponta Delgada, S&atilde;o Miguel's capital, for an early lunch and arrive at San Miguel Airport by 1:00 pm, in time for your international flight.<br><strong><br>An important note:<\/strong> The ferry and flight schedules in the Azores are not always available at the time we are planning our departures. While we have worked hard to make this itinerary as accurate as possible, we want you to be aware that the planned daily activities are subject to adjustment as necessary in the field, depending on conditions and schedules at the time. We will do our very best to follow this itinerary, but please bring your spirit of adventure and be aware that some changes may be necessary.<br>","Breakfast":1,"Lunch":1,"Dinner":0,"Overnight":"","Travel_Type":"","Quotation":"","Quotation_Attribution":"","Itinerary_Location":"","Latitude":"","Longitude":"","Brief":false},{"DayFrom":1,"DayTo":4,"Headline":"August 9-12, 2026, Total Solar Eclipse Program, Bilbao to Lerma, Spain","ActivityOverview":"","EstimatedLength":"","ActivityLevel":"","ItinBlock":"Our eclipse program begins in Bilbao, with a tour of the world famous Guggenheim Museum, a cruise along the Nervi&oacute;n River, and a walking tour of the Old City. We then continue south to charming Burgos, where we'll have a tour of its imposing Gothic cathedral, a World Heritage Site. A short drive from Burgos brings us to the medieval town of Lerma and our private eclipse-viewing site at an expansive winery on a hill&mdash;virtually on the centerline of the eclipse. Our Bilbao accommodation on Days 1-2 is the Carlton Hotel. On Days 3-4, we stay at the fabulous Parador de Lerma, a ducal palace originally built for King Felipe III. En route to Lerma during the first few days of the trip, we enjoy lively talks on eclipses and other celestial topics by our esteemed eclipse expert Dr. Alex Filippenko, Professor of Astronomy at UC Berkeley.","Breakfast":0,"Lunch":0,"Dinner":0,"Overnight":"","Travel_Type":"","Quotation":"","Quotation_Attribution":"","Itinerary_Location":"","Latitude":"","Longitude":"","Brief":true},{"DayFrom":5,"DayTo":7,"Headline":"August 13-15, S\u00e2o Miguel Island, Portugal \/ Faial Island","ActivityOverview":"","EstimatedLength":"","ActivityLevel":"","ItinBlock":"Fly to S&acirc;o Miguel Island in the Azores for a hike up to the twin crater lakes of Sete Cidades, one very blue (Lagoa Azul) and the other distinctly green (Lagoa Verde). We then fly to Faial Island for a hike on the Praia do Norte Levada with spectacular coastal views.<br>","Breakfast":0,"Lunch":0,"Dinner":0,"Overnight":"","Travel_Type":"","Quotation":"","Quotation_Attribution":"","Itinerary_Location":"","Latitude":"","Longitude":"","Brief":true},{"DayFrom":8,"DayTo":11,"Headline":"August 16-19, Pico Island \/ Whale Watching \/ S\u00e2o Jorge Island","ActivityOverview":"","EstimatedLength":"","ActivityLevel":"","ItinBlock":"On Pico Island, crowned by a dormant 7,713-foot volcano, Portugal's highest point, we explore vineyards where wines have been produced since the 17th century. Whale watching is one of our delights at Lajes do Pico, once a whale-hunting hub and now a sanctuary and major whale-watching destination. A ferry ride brings us to S&acirc;o Jorge Island for a coastal hike following a panoramic trail from the charming Faj&atilde; dos Cubres to the pilgrimage church in Faj&atilde; da Caldeira de Santo Cristo.","Breakfast":0,"Lunch":0,"Dinner":0,"Overnight":"","Travel_Type":"","Quotation":"","Quotation_Attribution":"","Itinerary_Location":"","Latitude":"","Longitude":"","Brief":true},{"DayFrom":12,"DayTo":14,"Headline":"August 20-22, S\u00e3o Miguel Island \/ Spa Village of Furnas \/ Tea Plantation","ActivityOverview":"","EstimatedLength":"","ActivityLevel":"","ItinBlock":"From the picturesque spa village of Furnas, nestled inside a huge caldera, we'll hike along the shores of Lake Furnas. Restaurant owners here make the famous local dish called <em>cozido nas caldeiras<\/em> (meat and vegetables slow-roasted in pots set in the geothermally heated soil of the caldera). One night we'll enjoy a hearty cozido feast for dinner. Depart on Day 14.<br>","Breakfast":0,"Lunch":0,"Dinner":0,"Overnight":"","Travel_Type":"","Quotation":"","Quotation_Attribution":"","Itinerary_Location":"","Latitude":"","Longitude":"","Brief":true}],"itinpdf":[{"ItinYear":"2026","docType":"1","FileName":"https:\/\/s3.us-west-1.wasabisys.com\/wildernesstravel\/portal\/hiking-in-the-azores-post-eclipse-itinerary-2026.pdf"},{"ItinYear":"2026","docType":"2","FileName":"https:\/\/s3.us-west-1.wasabisys.com\/wildernesstravel\/portal\/hiking-in-the-azores-post-eclipse-predeparture.pdf"}],"whattoexpect":[{}],"highlights":[{"DisplayOrder":1,"HighlightText":"","Description":"Witness the dramatic phenomena of a total solar eclipse with renowned astrophysicist Alex Filippenko, PhD (veteran of 14 eclipse events with WT!)","Image":"","VideoLink":"","ImageAltTag":"","image_id":31880,"caption":""},{"DisplayOrder":2,"HighlightText":"","Description":"Enjoy the fabulous Parador de Lerma and our private eclipse-viewing site at a hilltop 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Trekking","Primary":0}],"guides":[{"GuideID":850823,"First_Name":"Skye","Last_Name":"McDonald","BioShort":"Skye McDonald lives in Scotland&apos;s Highland capital, Inverness. She has worked as a Trip Leader in 35 countries since the millennium and lived in Germany, France, and Tanzania. &ldquo;Bringing understanding between peoples of very different cultures and backgrounds is one of the joys of being a Trip Leader, and of course, the chance to make friends around the world.&rdquo; Closer to home, she delights in sharing the glories of her native Scotland, and says that a good day scaling some of the beautiful Scottish mountains is hard to beat. Skye speaks German, French, beginners' Portuguese, and unusually, a smattering of Swahili from earlier years as a volunteer agricultural officer in Tanzania. Life continues to be an adventure for Skye, who has recently taken up bee-keeping, wild-water swimming, and scuba diving.","BioLong":" Skye McDonald lives in Scotland&apos;s Highland capital, Inverness. She has worked as a Trip Leader in 35 countries since the millennium and lived in Germany, France, and Tanzania. &ldquo;Bringing understanding between peoples of very different cultures and backgrounds is one of the joys of being a Trip Leader, and of course, the chance to make friends around the world.&rdquo; Closer to home, she delights in sharing the glories of her native Scotland, and says that a good day scaling some of the beautiful Scottish mountains is hard to beat. Skye speaks German, French, beginners' Portuguese, and unusually, a smattering of Swahili from earlier years as a volunteer agricultural officer in Tanzania. Life continues to be an adventure for Skye, who has recently taken up bee-keeping, wild-water swimming, and scuba diving."},{"GuideID":851138,"First_Name":"David","Last_Name":"Monteiro","BioShort":"David Monteiro was born in Mindelo, Cape Verde, an archipelago on the west coast of Africa, and moved to Portugal with his family when he was a child. After working as a CPA for more than 20 years, he felt the need for a change and began to lead hiking, mountain biking, and rock-climbing trips, all sports he had enjoyed since his childhood. When not guiding, David indulges in his passion for photography, literature, and history.","BioLong":"David Monteiro was born in Mindelo, Cape Verde, an archipelago on the west coast of Africa, and moved to Portugal with his family when he was a child. After working as a CPA for more than 20 years, he felt the need for a change and began to lead hiking, mountain biking, and rock climbing trips, all sports he had enjoyed since his childhood. When not guiding, David indulges in his passion for photography, literature, and history."}],"guestreviews":[{}],"Extensions":[{}],"SimilarTrips":[{}],"Specialists":[{}],"TripSegments":[{"VendorID":73429,"ProductID":84491,"SelectType":"Operational","ChoiceGroup":0,"ProductType":"Vendor Ops Payment","Vendor":"Futurismo Azores Adventures","Address1":"Portas do Mar, loja 24","Address2":"","City":"Ponta Delgada","State":"","Postal":"9500-771","Product":"Land Cost","Day":1,"Sequence":0,"Duration":9,"PropertyDescription":"","ItinBlock":"","VendorPhoto":"","ProductPhoto":"","OnRequest":"Option","Overhead":false,"BookingNotes":"","TicketSession":"","TicketTimeOfDay":"","TicketRound":"","TicketCategory":"","TicketDate":"","TicketLocation":"","NotTicketOnly":false,"Inactive":false},{"VendorID":73646,"ProductID":85060,"SelectType":"Operational","ChoiceGroup":0,"ProductType":"Transfer","Vendor":"AlexGo","Address1":"","Address2":"","City":"","State":"","Postal":"","Product":"Local Transfer","Day":1,"Sequence":0,"Duration":1,"PropertyDescription":"","ItinBlock":"","VendorPhoto":"","ProductPhoto":"","OnRequest":"Option","Overhead":false,"BookingNotes":"","TicketSession":"","TicketTimeOfDay":"","TicketRound":"","TicketCategory":"","TicketDate":"","TicketLocation":"","NotTicketOnly":false,"Inactive":false},{"VendorID":11,"ProductID":54,"SelectType":"Optional","ChoiceGroup":0,"ProductType":"Single Supplement","Vendor":"Wilderness Travel","Address1":"1102 Ninth Street","Address2":"","City":"Berkeley","State":"CA","Postal":"94710","Product":"Single Supplement","Day":1,"Sequence":2,"Duration":1,"PropertyDescription":"","ItinBlock":"<p><\/p>","VendorPhoto":"","ProductPhoto":"","OnRequest":"Option","Overhead":false,"BookingNotes":"","TicketSession":"","TicketTimeOfDay":"","TicketRound":"","TicketCategory":"","TicketDate":"","TicketLocation":"","NotTicketOnly":false,"Inactive":false},{"VendorID":71620,"ProductID":81448,"SelectType":"Operational","ChoiceGroup":0,"ProductType":"Accommodation","Vendor":"Hotel Carlton","Address1":"","Address2":"","City":"Bilbao","State":"","Postal":"","Product":"Standard Room","Day":1,"Sequence":10,"Duration":2,"PropertyDescription":"<p>The Hotel Carlton, built in 1919, is an impressive Beaux Arts monument in the grand style of its era. 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Timing to be advised prior to departure.<br><strong> <div><br><\/div><\/strong><div><strong>Flight to Azores<\/strong><br><strong><br><\/strong><\/div><div><strong>Suggested Departure Airport:<\/strong> Madrid (MAD)<br><strong>Suggested Arrival Airport:<\/strong> Ponta Delgada Airport (PDL<br><strong>Date &amp; Time:<\/strong> Day 5, August 13, any time <br><br><strong>Note:<\/strong> We will organize a Group Transfer from Lerma to Madrid with the intention to arrive at the Madrid-Barajas Airport by 9:00 am. There will be many flights to choose from throughout the day to the Azores, but if you get one around noon, you would normally arrive in Ponta Delgada by about 6:30 pm. Upon arrival at the Ponta Delgada Airport, taxis are readily available outside the terminal and the transfer cost into town is approximately &euro;10. There is also a bus that costs around &euro;2. <br><br><strong>Meeting Place:<\/strong> You will meet your trip leader in the lobby of the first hotel the morning of August 14th. Timing to be advised prior to departure.<\/div>","Custom_Departure_-_Sales":"<strong>Suggested Airport:<\/strong> Ponta Delgada Airport (PDL)<br><strong>Date &amp; Time:<\/strong> Day 14, August 22, any time after 3:00 pm <br><br>Please do not book a departing flight leaving before 3:00 pm, as we begin our day on the other side of the island and have some scheduled activities and lunch before dropping the group at the airport at around 1:00 pm.","Custom_International_Air_Travel":"If you would like assistance booking your flights, there are many online consolidators for booking travel who can help, but for more personal help arranging air transport, you can contact Exito Travel at 1-800-655-4053 in the US or 1-800-670-2605 in Canada. They are very adept at putting flight itineraries together, to even the most far-flung places. More information can be found on Exito's website at <a href=\"\/\/www.exitotravel.com\">www.exitotravel.com<\/a> <br><br>Please remember that the name on your airline ticket must match the name on your passport exactly, and your passport must be valid for at least six months after your date of return to the US. Please do not purchase your tickets until you are confirmed on the trip (as specific as arrival and departure details could change) and we have sent final arrival and departure instructions. <br><br>Once your tickets have been purchased, please forward us a copy of your email flight confirmation from the airline. It is your responsibility to ensure your flight times coordinate with the arrival and departure logistics for this trip.","Custom_Extra_Hotel_Nights":"If you are arriving one or more days early, we can book extra nights for you at the group hotel in Bilbao (an 'on your own' expense).","Custom_Recommended_Hotels":"","Custom_A_and_D_Misc_-_Header_1":"","Custom_A_and_D_Misc_-_Text_1":"","Custom_A_and_D_Misc_-_Header_2":"","Custom_A_and_D_Misc_-_Text_2":"","Custom_FAQ_-_Header_1":"","Custom_FAQ_-_Text_1":"","Custom_FAQ_-_Header_2":"","Custom_FAQ_-_Text_2":"","Custom_FAQ_-_Header_3":"","Custom_FAQ_-_Text_3":"","Custom_FAQ_-_Header_4":"","Custom_FAQ_-_Text_4":"","Custom_FAQ_-_Header_5":"","Custom_FAQ_-_Text_5":"","Custom_file_name":"hiking-in-the-azores-post-eclipse","Custom_Passport":"A valid passport is required for your trip. Be sure to check the expiration date. Your passport must be valid for three months after your date of exit from Portugal. In addition, your passport must have at least two completely blank visa pages for every country you will be visiting. It is very important that the blank pages say &#8220;Visas&#8221; at the top. The last few pages of your passport, which say &#8220;Amendments and Endorsements,&#8221; and the final page of your passport, which may not have a page number, are not considered to be legitimate visa pages. The service of adding pages for visas was discontinued as of January 1, 2016. You can request a new passport through <a href=\"http:\/\/travel.state.gov\/passport\">US Passport Services Office<\/a> or use a visa service agency, which can take care of your passport renewal and expedite the process, if needed. We recommend <a href=\"http:\/\/www.passportvisasexpress.com\/?affId=2120\">Passport Visas Express<\/a>. Be sure to allow sufficient time to acquire this before your trip. <br><br>It is very important to carry photocopies of your passport's photo page and any acquired visa pages for your trip (if applicable) in case your passport is lost or as an additional piece of identification, as well as two extra passport photos.","Custom_Visas_and_Entry_Notes":"US citizens do not need a visa for countries visited on this trip. If you are a citizen of any country other than the US, check with a local consulate for entry requirements.","Custom_Money":"The Euro is the official currency of both Spain and Portugal. The most convenient way to obtain Euros is to use your debit card at ATMs. To use an ATM internationally, you must have a four-digit PIN. Major credit cards are accepted in most shops in cities and larger towns. If you plan to use your credit cards, inform your credit card company before your departure that you will be using the card abroad.","Custom_Tipping":"Tipping is completely discretionary, but over the years, clients have asked us for tipping guidelines to reward guides for outstanding service. <br><br>While all gratuities are included during the eclipse portion of your journey, we suggest a tip of $200 or more per trip member for each of your post-eclipse Trip Leaders, preferably in local currency. The Trip Leaders take care of gratuities for hotel and restaurant staff, and for local guides and drivers.","Custom_Food":"Please reach out to us directly to discuss any dietary restrictions or concerns you may have. We can easily make arrangements for most diets, but please keep in mind that certain cultural differences or logistical limitations can make it difficult or at times impossible to accommodate all requests. With this in mind, please inform us at least eight weeks before your trip if you have a special diet, and any food allergies in particular, so we can do our best to meet your needs.","Custom_Communications":"<strong>Telephone:<\/strong> The international dialing code for\rSpain is 34, and for Portugal it is 35. Please contact your cell phone company for specific instructions for international use.<br><strong><br>Email &amp; Internet Access:<\/strong> Internet access is available at all of our hotels, but connections may be intermittent and slow.","Custom_Electricity":"Europe has 220-volt current. Plugs usually have two or three prongs.","Custom_Laundry":"","Custom_Ship_Notes":"","Custom_Inoculations":"","Custom_International_Health":"","Custom_Malaria_Prevention":"","Custom_Staying_Healthy":"","Custom_Getting_In_Shape":"We strongly urge you to train for your trip, as your enjoyment will be highly dependent on your level of fitness. The best training for a hike is to hike, especially over hills or rough terrain. Next best are running, swimming, bicycling, or other cardiovascular exercise. Stair climbing machines are excellent preparation for hiking uphill. Your feet should also be well prepared&mdash;make sure your hiking boots are sturdy, comfortable, and thoroughly broken-in.","Custom_Medical_Care":"No inoculations are required. However, it is easy to get a small cut, so a tetanus booster is strongly recommended (good for 10 years). If you take prescription medicines, be sure to bring enough for the duration of your trip.","Custom_Altitude_Considerations":"","Custom_Reading_List":"Elevate your travel experience by delving into this curated collection of books tailored to your upcoming adventure. They will not only entertain but also provide invaluable insights into the history, culture, cuisine, wildlife, mountain trails, or even folklore of the places you're about to explore. Discover the perfect companions for your journey ahead by <a href=\"https:\/\/bookshop.org\/lists\/wilderness-travel-hiking-in-the-azores\">\r\n\nfollowing the link<\/a> or scanning the QR code.","Custom_Photography":"<strong><br>Eclipse Photography<\/strong><br>When photographing an eclipse of the sun, preparation is key. Still, capturing that perfect picture is challenging because totality is short, lighting conditions are tricky, and you don't get a second chance (at least not until the next eclipse). Wilderness Travel will provide recommendations for eclipse-specific photography in your Final Documents packet, which will be sent 2-4 weeks prior to departure.","Custom_Cultural_Considerations":"","Custom_Giving_Back":"","Custom_Enviromental_Concerns":"","Custom_Shopping_and_Souvenirs":"","Custom_Seasickness":"","Custom_Explore":"","Custom_Additional_Information":"","Custom_Essentials":"<ul><li>Air tickets (or E-tickets)<\/li><li>Passport<\/li><li>One other picture ID, such as a driver's license<\/li><li>Expense money<\/li><li>Shade 14 Welder's Lens for making eclipse viewers (included with your Final Documents)<\/li><li>Commemorative 2026 Eclipse t-shirt for a group photo after totality (included with your Final Documents)<\/li><\/ul>","Custom_Luggage":"Although airline service to Europe is generally reliable, it is best to wear or carry your hiking boots with you on your flights in the event that your luggage is lost or delayed. Likewise, don't pack valuables, such as travel documents, camera gear, or prescription medicines in your checked luggage. <br><br><ul><li>Soft-sided suitcase<\/li><li>\r\nDaypack, large enough for a jacket or rain gear, water bottle, and items you want on the trail<\/li><li>\r\n(Optional) Small roll-up bag to carry home purchases<\/li><\/ul>","Custom_Clothing":"<div>Dressing in layers is the best way to stay comfortable. We ask that you pack everything in one piece of luggage as this simplifies the transportation of luggage en route. You'll want a change of clothes for the evening, but nothing dressy is necessary. Casual wear is fine, and coats and ties are not required. <br><br>In Europe, there are dress requirements to enter churches: Shorts (or skirts) should come to the knees, and shoulders should not be bare. Women can use a shawl or large scarf to cover bare shoulders; short-sleeved t-shirts are acceptable. The dress code applies to both men and women. <br><br>The clothing list below is provided as a guideline only: <\/div><br><ul><li>Lightweight rain gear, such as a Gore-Tex rain\/wind shell jacket with hood, and Gore-Tex rain\/wind pants<\/li><li>\nFleece jacket or nano-puff jacket<\/li><li>\nLight fleece sweater or sweatshirt<\/li><li>\nLong-sleeved shirt. Quick-drying &#8220;travel&#8221; fabrics like nylon are recommended.<\/li><li>\nT-shirts or short-sleeved shirts<\/li><li>\nHiking pants. Lightweight synthetic hiking pants are a practical choice. Jeans are not recommended because they can be hot and they take a long time to dry if they get wet.<\/li><li>\nHiking shorts. Quick-drying fabrics are recommended.<\/li><li>\nShade hat with a wide brim&mdash;preferably a waterproof one you can use as a rain hat as well<\/li><li>\nSturdy medium to heavyweight hiking boots, well-broken in.<\/li><li>\nTevas or walking shoes for sightseeing in towns<\/li><li>\nWarm hat and gloves<\/li><li>\nHiking socks. Some people like thick Thorlo-type socks with padded toes\/heels, or an outer sock and synthetic liner sock.<\/li><li>\nUnderwear\/sleepwear. Synthetics dry faster.<\/li><li>\nSwimsuit<\/li><li>\nCasual city\/hotel attire<\/li><\/ul>","Custom_Hiking_Boots":"","Custom_Equipment":"<ul><li>\r\nReusable water bottle, one or two, 1 qt. capacity<\/li><li>\r\nCollapsible walking stick or trekking poles (highly recommended)<\/li><li>\r\nGood quality sunglasses with case. A spare pair of sunglasses is a good idea should your first pair be broken or lost.<\/li><li>\r\nFlashlight and extra batteries<\/li><li>\r\nRaincover for daypack (or rainproof dry bags for items in your daypack)<\/li><li>\r\nCamera, plus a waterproof cover for rain showers and during whale watching<\/li><li>\r\nStuff sacks or plastic bags to compartmentalize items, Ziploc-style bags to carry small items during the day<\/li><li>\r\nMoney belt or neck pouch. Always carry your passport, credit cards, and cash with you in a money belt or neck pouch tucked down inside your shirt or blouse.<\/li><\/ul>","Custom_Personal_First_Aid":"Every trip member should bring a small kit for personal use. Your own experience will influence your choices.<br>\r<br><ul><li>\r\nSunscreen SPF 30 or higher and lip balm with sunscreen. We recommend mineral-based sunscreens with zinc oxide or titanium dioxide because they do not contain harsh chemicals that are harmful to the environment. Brands such as Honest Company, Badger, and Alba Botanica are found in most sporting goods stores and drugstores.<\/li><li>\r\nAspirin, ibuprofen, or Tylenol for muscle pain or headaches, Tylenol PM for sleep<\/li>\r\n<li>\r\n\r\nAnti-seasickness medication for ferry crossings and whale-watching excursion; some travelers find medication such as Dramamine helpful.<\/li><li>\r\nBlister kit. Look for long-lasting gel-type bandages that you can apply directly on blisters, such as Band-Aid Advanced Healing Bandages or Curad Gel Multi-Day Bandages. &#8220;Liquid band-aids,&#8221; such as New-Skin, are useful because they dry rapidly to form a tough protective cover over a blister.<\/li><li>\r\nPrescription medications properly labeled<\/li><li>\r\nSpare contact lenses or spare prescription glasses<\/li><\/ul>","Custom_Optional_Items":"<ul><li>Voltage converter and plug adapter for appliance use in hotels<\/li><li>\nCamera, spare batteries, memory cards<\/li><li>\nReading\/writing material<\/li><li>\nBandanas (many uses)<\/li><li>\nLightweight binoculars<\/li><li>\nTravel clock<\/li><li>\nSmall umbrella<\/li><li>\nLaundry soap for hand-washing clothes<\/li><li>\nWashcloth, if you like to use one (most European hotels do not provide them)<\/li><\/ul>","Custom_Prohibited_Items":"","Custom_When_to_Go":"","Custom_Children":"","Custom_Tag_Line":"An adventure in a Breathtaking Archipelago","Custom_Lodging":"<meta charset=\"utf-8\"\/><body>13 nights hotels<\/body>","Custom_Meals":"All meals included except 1 lunch and 2 dinners","Custom_Difficulty":"8 hiking days on moderate trails (some steep sections), 3-5 hours a day, van support","Custom_Currency_Exchange_Rate":"","Custom_Fuel_Surcharge":"","Custom_Signing_Up_For_a_Trip_-_Email":"","Custom_Optional_Hotel_Upgrades_-_This_Year":"","Custom_Optional_Hotel_Upgrades_-_Next_Year":"","Custom_Trip_Cost_Misc_Header":"Special Note","Custom_Trip_Cost_Misc_Text":"This brochure provides an indication of the schedule and scope of the program, including the speakers confirmed at the time of publication. While no changes are anticipated, Wilderness Travel reserves the right to make necessary adjustments and substitutions. In the event of a speaker's cancellation, Wilderness Travel will make every effort to secure a suitable replacement, but we cannot guarantee it. A price adjustment would only be considered if, over the next three years, there were exceptional cost increases or significant currency fluctuations that we cannot absorb.","Custom_What_the_Trip_is_Like":"<html><head><meta charset=\"utf-8\"\/><\/head><body style=\"font-size: 14px;\">\nThis trip is rated&nbsp;<strong>Level 3, Moderate<\/strong>, according to our trip grading system. You will need to be comfortable hiking up to 7 miles a day and being on your feet for 5 hours a day. With the exception of one day, there are no alternative hiking options, so you will need to be able to keep up with the moderate but steady hiking pace of the group. Trail conditions, weather, and the group's level of fitness can affect hiking times and pacing.&nbsp;<strong><br><\/strong><strong><br><\/strong><strong>Average Hiking Day<\/strong><ul><li>6 miles<\/li><li>3-4 hours<\/li><li>800 feet gain and 1,200 feet loss<\/li><\/ul><strong>Challenge Day<\/strong><ul><li>Day 6 - 5.5 miles, 4 hours, 2,300 feet gain, and 400 feet loss; includes 1.5 hours by ferry and 2 hours of driving<\/li><\/ul><\/body><\/html>","Custom_Terrain":"We'll hike along crater rims in a volcanic landscape, traverse rugged moorlands above a deep blue sea, and follow ancient <em>canadas<\/em> (pathways) that crisscross the islands linking farms and villages. Occasionally there are steeper paths and steps on the coastal walks, and the ground can be uneven with some sharp rocks. If there has been rain, it can be muddy and slippery. Hiking poles will be beneficial on many days. Many of the trails are on rocky and uneven ground, so it is important that your footwear is comfortable and has a good hiking sole. On non-hiking days, we'll still be on foot for many hours as we explore the towns and sites.","Custom_Getting_in_Shape":"","Custom_Weather":"The Azores have a subtropical maritime climate with mild temperatures throughout the year. In the summer, temperatures average between the mid-60s&deg;F to the low 80s&deg;F during the day and the 50s&deg;F and 60s&deg;F at night. It can be humid, and although it is usually sunny in the summer, clouds and rain is a very real possibility all year round&mdash;it is not uncommon for rain in the morning and sunshine in the afternoon. A light waterproof shell of a rain jacket and pants in your day pack are highly recommended for the short rainstorms that may pass us while hiking.<br>","Custom_Accommodations":"<meta charset=\"utf-8\"\/><body>Our accommodations include a refurbished 16th century fort, a 17th century townhouse, and an Art Deco hotel with geothermally heated bathing pools. Since they are in historic buildings, the rooms are not always of uniform or international size. Our leaders do their best to assign rooms in a fair way so that all participants experience an equal advantage throughout the trip as a whole. Single rooms can be requested but are not always available, due to the limited space in the hotels. If you prefer a single room, please make your request as early as possible.<\/body>","Custom_Cuisine":"<meta charset=\"utf-8\"\/><body>We'll enjoy the fresh and varied cuisine of the Azores which include many Portuguese specialties. The islands are known for excellent seafood, spicy stews, sweet desserts, and local wines from the island of Pico. Lunch will be picnic-style, at our hotel, or at one of the local restaurants. Dinner will be at our hotel or a local restaurant in town. Please note that in Europe, the dinner hour is considerably later than what it is in the US. We do our best to secure early reservations for our groups, but most often the evening meal will be at 7:30 pm.<\/body>","Custom_Transportation":"<meta charset=\"utf-8\"\/><body>Our van will transport the group's luggage, so you only need to carry a daypack for items you need during the day (rain gear, sweater, camera, water bottle, etc.). Trip members are always free to skip a day's hike and travel to the next destination in the support vehicle (or remain at the hotel if we are not transferring that day). On one day, we will spend a few hours in a 16-seater RIB for whale watching. We will also take ferries between the islands and take various forms of transportation on each island.<\/body>","Custom_What_the_Trip_is_Like_-_Header_1":"","Custom_What_the_Trip_is_Like_-_Text_1":"","Custom_What_the_Trip_is_Like_-_Header_2":"","Custom_What_the_Trip_is_Like_-_Text_2":"","Custom_Trip_Level_Note_1":"","Custom_Trip_Level_Note_2":"","System_Choosing_the_Right_Trip":"<p>Adventure travel often involves exotic destinations, unusual levels of physical exertion, or activities you may not have participated in previously. We work hard to help you choose the right trip for you, paying attention to your individual interests, abilities, and needs. If you have questions about the level of comfort or any of the activities described in this itinerary, please call Wilderness Travel at 1-800-368-2794 or email us at <a href=\"mailto:\/\/info@wildernesstravel.com\">info@wildernesstravel.com<\/a>.<\/p>","System_References":"<p>We&rsquo;d be happy to put you in touch with a past client that has traveled with us on this trip.<\/p>","System_Visit_Our_Website":"<p>At <a href=\"https:\/\/www.wildernesstravel.com\/\">saito8.com<\/a>, you can book your trip online or find out about added departures, last-minute deals, and one-time Limited Edition adventures that aren&rsquo;t listed in our catalog. You can also access our complete library of detailed itineraries filled with enticing photos and videos, read bios of our Trip Leaders, find descriptions of trip accommodations, and check real-time availability of any trips that interest you.<\/p>","System_Helpful_Links":"<!-- Generated by XStandard version 3.0.0.0 on 2023-01-27T07:52:03 --><p>Wilderness Travel has compiled a list of useful websites for travelers. Find the Toucan Club tab on the home page of our website and choose Helpful Links: <a href=\"http:\/\/www.wildernesstravel.com\/ toucan\/links\">saito8.com\/ toucan\/links<\/a>.<\/p>","System_About_New_Trips":"This is a new adventure and one that we are particularly excited about offering. However, as with all new departures, flexibility and a spirit of adventure are always appreciated! Activities are described in the itinerary but they can vary, sometimes considerably, depending on weather conditions, the group, and other factors.","System_About_Private_Journeys":"<p>Wilderness Travel Private Journeys are designed for people who want to travel with their own small private group, but who still want to experience the same superb itinerary design, great accommodations, and signature quality of Wilderness Travel's escorted group trips. These Private Journeys allow you to choose your own dates and your traveling companions&mdash;and enjoy the WT touch on all aspects of the journey.<\/p>","System_Limited_Edition_Adventures":"This is a Limited Edition adventure&mdash;which means a unique trip we've never run before or offer only every few years. Led by our most experienced Trip Leaders, these journeys often take place in remote destinations with only the most basic infrastructure for tourism. If you see a Limited Edition trip scheduled for this year, now is the time to sign up, as spaces fill very early and the trip may not be back for a while! Planned daily activities and actual timings may vary due to local conditions or the discretion of your Trip Leader&mdash;it is important to bring your spirit of adventure for these special exploratory journeys!","System_Social_Media":"<!-- Generated by XStandard version 3.0.0.0 on 2023-03-29T11:33:43 --><p><strong>SOCIAL MEDIA:<\/strong> We invite you to share your adventure with us on social media. Tag @wildernesstravel and we may even feature your content on our pages!<\/p>","System_If_You_Miss_Your_Flight":"<p><strong>IF YOU MISS YOUR FLIGHT<\/strong><br>If you miss your flight or are otherwise delayed, contact our Wilderness Travel office, as well as our local partners, with your new flight information. Refer to the Emergency Contact Information listed in this Final Bulletin.<\/p>","System_Valid_Passport":"<!-- Generated by XStandard version 3.0.0.0 on 2023-06-16T10:26:21 --><p><strong>VALID PASSPORT:<\/strong> Check that your passport is valid for at least six months from the last day of your trip, and that you have at least two blank pages for any necessary visa or entry and exit stamps.<\/p>","System_Insurance_Policy":"<p><strong>INSURANCE POLICY:<\/strong> If you have purchased the Travelex Travel Protection Plan, you should have received an email confirmation of your policy. Please bring a digital or printed copy of this policy with you. If you cannot find your email confirmation, please contact Travelex's Customer Solutions team at 844-877-1885 or e-mail customersolutions@travelexinsurance.com. If you have not purchased Travelex insurance already, you have the option to do so up to 24 hours prior to your departure.<\/p>","System_Covid-19_Travel_Requirements":"<!-- Generated by XStandard version 3.0.0.0 on 2023-04-19T13:27:44 --><p><strong>COVID-19 TRAVEL REQUIREMENTS:<\/strong> Please double-check COVID-19 entry requirements for any countries you may be traveling to or transiting through, on this website: <a href=\"apply.joinsherpa.com\/travel-restrictions\">apply.joinsherpa.com\/travel-restrictions<\/a><\/p>","System_Pre-Trip_Safety":"<!-- Generated by XStandard version 3.0.0.0 on 2023-03-29T11:37:06 --><p><strong>PRE-TRIP SAFETY:<\/strong> In the next weeks, we encourage you to do everything possible to stay healthy. Please practice social distancing, steer clear of potential COVID-19 exposure, and take an at-home antigen or lab based PCR test before you depart.<\/p>","System_Wilderness_Travel_Office":"<!-- Generated by XStandard version 3.0.0.0 on 2023-03-29T11:38:07 --><p>Our office in Berkeley, California can be reached at 510-558-2488, or by email at info@wildernesstravel.com. We are available during regular business hours (M-F, 8:30 am-5:00 pm, PST). <\/p>","System_ECI_Travel_Insurance":"<!-- Generated by XStandard version 3.0.0.0 on 2023-03-29T11:38:31 --><p>If you have purchased the Travelex Travel Protection Plan through Wilderness Travel, please remember to bring your Confirmation of Coverages (COC) with you on the trip, including your Plan Number and important emergency contact information.<\/p><p>If you've purchased a travel protection plan on your own, we recommend that you bring a copy of your policy, including all coverages, with you on your trip.<\/p>","System_Face_Masks_and_Hand_Sanitizer":"","System_DidNotPurchase_Insurance":"<!-- Generated by XStandard version 3.0.0.0 on 2023-02-28T12:27:44 --><p>Travel Insurance: We recommend that you purchase travel insurance for this trip. For your convenience, we offer Travelex travel protection. Please let us know if you would like us to add the Travelex Travel Protection Plan to this final invoice. You can learn more about the policy on our <a href=\"https:\/\/www.wildernesstravel.com\/toucan\/travel-insurance\">website<\/a>.<\/p>","System_Purchased_Insurance":"Please remember to bring a copy of your Travelex Confirmation of Coverage and State Specific Policy with you on your trip. You should have received an email directly from Travelex with these documents. If you need this email to be re-sent, please contact Travelex's Customer Solutions team at 844-877-1885 or e-mail customersolutions@travelexinsurance.com. <br><br><br>","System_Photography":"<strong>Camera Recommendations<\/strong><br>With the many advances in digital technology, a simple compact digital camera or even your smartphone is capable of taking pictures suitable for the needs of most people. For higher quality images and the ability to use long lenses for closer wildlife pictures, a DSLR camera is well worthwhile, though heavier. Most digital cameras and phones have good video options, but you may want to consider a GoPro for a lightweight, waterproof option. Always practice ahead of time with new equipment and bring your manual with you. You may want to consider renting camera equipment for your trip from places such as <a href=\"https:\/\/www.borrowlenses.com\/\">borrowlenses.com<\/a>. This is an especially good idea for renting large zoom lenses that you may need for just one trip. Adding their extra insurance fee to cover expensive equipment is recommended. <br><strong><br>Camera Accessories<\/strong><br>We recommend bringing at least two large capacity memory cards or a small digital storage unit (or tablet) to back up your photos, freeing space on your memory cards. Don't forget to bring a battery charger and a backup battery so one is always charged and ready to use. For trips where you may be away from power sources for multiple days, consider looking into a solar-powered battery charger or buying additional backup batteries, and check that you have the appropriate adapter for the electrical outlets in your destination.<br><strong><br>Sharing Your Images<\/strong><br>We would love for you to share photos from your trip, and with your permission, may even use your photos in our marketing materials or on our photo blog. We request that you send us a small sample of your best images. Please email your photos to wtphotoblog@gmail.com or tag us @WildernessTravel on social media.<br><strong><br>Photography Etiquette<\/strong><br>When taking pictures of local people, be aware of cultural considerations. Approaching people with a warm smile and using polite gestures or simple phrases to ask permission to photograph them usually works well. It is always recommended to engage people in conversation before asking to photograph them, but if people do not wish to have their photo taken, please honor their requests. We urge travelers to avoid giving money in exchange for photo opportunities, which makes it harder for future travelers to have a meaningful personal interaction with local people. Please always heed your Trip Leader's guidelines for what is appropriate. ","System_Gear_Store":"To help you prepare for your next WT adventure, we've put together a great collection of top brands including Patagonia, Outdoor Research, Eagle Creek, and more at our WT Gear Store (<a href=\"https:\/\/wildernesstravel.newheadings.com\/\">wildernesstravel.newheadings.com<\/a>).","System_Questions?":"<p>Our Area Specialists are your single point of contact and would be happy to answer any questions about your trip!<br>800.368.2794 | 510.558.2488<\/p>","System_Pricing_Detail-Small_Group_Adventure":" <br><br>To offer the lowest possible cost, our trips are priced according to the number of participants on the trip. All costs are per person, based on double occupancy. If you wish to have a single room, you must pay the single supplement fee. Please note that Wilderness Travel staff, or guests of Wilderness Travel such as travel writers, photographers, or leaders-in-training, are not included in the tier pricing count.","System_Travel_Insurance":"<!-- Generated by XStandard version 3.0.0.0 on 2023-01-27T07:58:05 --><p>We highly recommend you purchase travel insurance. You can take advantage of a comprehensive Travel Protection Plan designed for Wilderness Travel by Travelex, or purchase other insurance on your own. See our website for details: <a href=\"http:\/\/www.wildernesstravel.com\/insurance\">saito8.com\/insurance<\/a><\/p>","System_Make_it_Your_Trip":"<!-- Generated by XStandard version 3.0.0.0 on 2023-03-29T11:44:18 --><p>The prices above are for the ready-to-book adventure outlined in this Detailed Itinerary, a popular option that has been handcrafted by our Area Specialists to include the best of every destination. While many travelers choose to book this tour as is, our Area Specialists are also happy to work with you to customize this Private Journey to suit your specific interests and style of travel. We can arrange for longer or shorter stays, offer hotel upgrades (see below for sample costs), or add an extension to additional places of interest. We can even add special activities or customize excursions depending on your interests. We invite you to contact us to discuss your options!<\/p>","System_Signing_up_for_a_Trip":"<!-- Generated by XStandard version 3.0.0.0 on 2023-03-29T11:44:42 --><p>Early reservations are recommended since accommodations often sell out far in advance. Please call 1-800-368-2794 and ask for our [Africa Manager] or email us at [africa@ wildernesstravel.com] with any questions that you may have about this trip. To reserve your Private Journey, we will need to know your preferred dates of travel. We will then check availability and send you a proposed itinerary with exact pricing for your adventure. We can typically hold a provisional booking for one week. At that time, we must collect your initial deposit or accommodations will be released. We accept Visa, Mastercard, or American Express card. Upon receipt of your deposit, we will send you a Welcome Packet that includes a letter of confirmation, Detailed Itinerary, Trip Application, Medical Form, and Pre-Departure Information Booklet with information to help you prepare for your adventure. Please see our Cancellations and Transfer Fee Schedule for specific payment information.<\/p>","System_Trip_Leaders":"<p>Wilderness Travel Trip Leaders have a passion and a joy for creating an unforgettable journey. We are extremely proud of them and the incredible travel experiences they make possible. For more information, including client comments about them and which specific trips they will be leading, please visit <a href=\"https:\/\/www.wildernesstravel.com\/leaders\/\">wildernesstravel.com\/leaders<\/a>.<\/p>"},"terms":{"PaymentSchedule":"At time of reservation $1,000 per person<br>Due 180 days prior to departure: 25% of land cost<br>Due 90 days prior to departure: Balance <br><br><em>Please note that this differs from our standard policy.<\/em>","CancelSchedule":"Minimum cancellation fee: $500 per person<br>365-181 days prior to departure: $1,000 per person<br>180-91 days prior to departure: 25% of land costs<br>90 days or less prior to departure: 100% of land costs <br><br><em>We reserve the right to treat the reservation as canceled if payments are not received when due.<\/em><br>"}}