Pico Journals

Azores : Pico

A May 2001 trip to Pico by allain

Island of Pico Photo, Pico, Portugal More Photos
Quote: my third travelogue in the Azores, the island of Pico

Azores : Pico

Overview

wineyard of Pico Photo, Pico, Portugal
Quote:
The green of the vines embellishing the black of the basalt. Delicate hands weaving a web of transparent lace. Places recalling the deeds of the whales who voyaged over the oceans. The dark and dramatic blotches of the "mistérios" or lava formations. The great pleasure of wine once enjoyed by the Czars (white sweet wine). The charm of wilderness and vegetation. That is what Pico is like: a mountain that suddenly rises upon the horizon of the sea. With all the small walls of stones on green pastures, Pico reminds me, by some ways, Ireland. The island has only 15,000 inhabitants and no major city for entertainment.Quick Tips: Stretching out from the volcano, with an altitude of 2,351 metres, w...Read More
Residencia Mini Bela Photo, Pico, Portugal
Quote:
There are not many accommodations in Pico. Madalena is the natural entrance door to Pico. The airport is built there, and the boat comes 2 times per day from the Neighbor Island of Faïal. Residencia Mini Bela is located near the firemen station (ask for "bomberos"). From outside it looks nice, from inside it needs to be refreshed. However, the double room costs 5500 escudos ($25) and conditions remain correct. Hot shower, private bathroom but no TV. From the balcony, nice view on the Pico.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on July 22, 2001

Residencia Mini Bela
Rua de Fernanda Maria de Oliveira
Pico, Portugal
622-286

Lajes de Pico

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Attraction

Lajes de Pico Photo, Pico, Portugal
Quote:
The first settlement on the island. Important fishing and commercial port. Whale hunting centre with a century-old tradition. Old houses, with dressed stones and balconies running the length of the facade, reveal past prosperity. Picturesque views of the port, with its houses by the sea, and of the volcano of Pico. Curious plant for making dairy products. Place to visit: Church of Nossa Senhora da Conceição; Chapel of São Pedro and Whalers' Museum. Set up in the former Boat-House. Whaling-boat with its equipment. Products of the whaling industry. Important collection of scrimshaw made from the teeth, bones and ivory of the sperm whale. The entrance of the museum is free on Sunday. Lajes ...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on July 22, 2001

Lajes de Pico
45 km from Madalena
Pico, Portugal

Climbing the Pico Mountain

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Attraction | "Climbing the Pico mountain."

Climbing the Pico Mountain Photo, Pico, Portugal
Quote:
Majestic volcano dominating the island, with an altitude of 2,351 metres. It is crowned by Pico Alto, a round crater with a perimeter of about 700 metres and a depth that reaches 30 metres. At the extremity of the crater lies the volcanic cone Piquinho or Pico Pequeno, with a height of about 70 metres and with fumaroles at its base, and which constitutes the summit of the mountain. It is covered with thick forests up to about 1,500 metres, but above this altitude the vegetation is reduced to shrubbery ending at 2,000 metres. After that there is only the cone of bare, naked lava, which is covered by snow in the winter. Provides magnificent views, including glimpses of the islands of Faial, São Jorge, G...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on July 22, 2001

Climbing the Pico Mountain
15 km from Madalena
Pico, Portugal

The Island of Whale and whalers

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Story/Tip

whale ! Photo, Pico, Portugal
Quote:
For over a century, the shout of "whale in sight!" has echoed in the streets of the ports of Pico, preceded by the explosion of a warning rocket set off by the "watchman" stationed on a height with a broad view of the ocean. The canoes then set out and fight with the whale. In the Azores the whale is the spermwhale (the size of its head and the presence of theets are its main characteristcs). Then the great mammal becomes tired out...it is killed and tugged to the "factory" where the oil and spermaceti, used in making perfume, are extracted. The hunt finished only in 1984 when Portugal reached the EEC. It is strange to see that fomer whalers are not old retired men. It was in the middle of the 1...Read More

The shuttle

Story/Tip

the shuttle arrives Photo, Pico, Portugal
Quote:
The islands of Pico and Faïal are distanced from only 8 km. The natural way to move from one shore to the other, is the boat. The course costs 500 escudos (less than $1). The boat is safe and comfortable. About 100 seats and a TV are available. The schedule of departure is always the same for years and years. Three courses per day at 8h00, 11h00 and 17h00. The punctuality of the shuttle is legendary even in case of strong wind. With a little bit of luck maybe you could spot a dolphin or even a whale.

About the Writer

allain

allain
paris, France