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V19 - Eco adventure sailing to Flores Island’s biosphere

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Travellers must be between 14 and 80 years old on the date of sailing to be eligible for the trip.

Itinerary: Terceira - Flores - Corvo - Terceira

Dates: 18 Aug (Embark 16h00) - 25 August (Disembark 10h00)

Voyage highlights

  • Hosted by one of Portugal’s leading marine biologists gain an insight into Flores’ pristine marine biodiversity
  • Open ocean sailing to the Western most tip of Europe
  • Hands-on sailing experience
  • Travel in comfort in the newly renovated Santa Maria Manuela
  • Explore the waterfalls and volcanic lagoons of Flores island, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve
  • After disembarking at the end of the voyage consider spending a few days exploring Terceira’s volcanoes and swimming in lava pools

Voyage description

This unique eco voyage is, for the second year, hosted by one of Portugal’s leading marine biologists, who will offer an insight into Flores’ pristine marine biodiversity, and the chance to get actively involved in eco workshops aboard.  

Our Azorean sailing adventure starts and finishes in Terceira, with an open ocean crossing to the pristine island of Flores, the western most point of this mid Atlantic archipelago, designated an UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. We spend 2 days in this lush green paradise where waterfalls and volcanic lagoons abound.  

Take advantage of the Santa Maria Manuela’s zodiacs, and our crew’s adventurous spirit by exploring the hidden sea caves and rock formations and swimming in secluded bays.

Consider hiking to one of the islands many waterfalls. The majestic Ribeira Grande Waterfall plummets from a granite wall on the west of the island. In contrast, but equally striking, the tiny waterfall of Ribeira da Cruz drops into a hidden pond, in a deep the valley. The most famous of the Flores waterfalls is Ribeira do Ferreiro in the Morro Alto Forest Reserve, with its walls totally covered in dense vegetation, or more accessible is Poço do Bacalhau waterfall which drops 90 meters into a plunge pool ideal for a refreshing dip.  

Or save your legs, and book a bus tour to visit some of the seven lakes of Lagoa Rasa, Lagoa Funda, Lagoa Seca, Lagoa Branca and Lagoa da Lomba. 

Over the water is Corvo Island and the chance to explore Monte Gorde Volcano. 

Whilst aboard there’s always time to learn. Led by our onboard marine biologist, and ably supported by our crew, our Manta Net and microscope, donated to us by Waste Free Oceans, allow us to collect and analyze water samples. In 2023 our findings of a blue dragon (Glaucus atlanticus), various plankton and microplastics provided inspiration for some lively debate. 

After our island adventure help the crew to hoist  and set the sails again as we head east. There´s nothing our crew like more then to share their knowledge of sailing with our guests, and they will encourage you to get actively involved in the ship’s life.  The feeling of helming a 68m sailing ship as she responds to the command of the wheel is something to savor forever.  

Knot classes are a great way to learn a new skill whilst sharing sailing stories with shipmates, and if the weather allows there's the opportunity to go up the mast or relax in the bowsprit netting. A drink at sunset on the deck is the perfect way to round off each day. 

We finish our voyage on Terceira Island anchoring in the bay of UNESCO-listed Angra do Heroísmo, the Azores' oldest city, with its 16th-century fortress and Renaissance town. We disembark after a sumptuous deck BBQ and an evening of celebration with fellow shipmates. 

Consider visiting Algar do Carvão with its 90m-deep volcanic chimney, and the island’s small vineyards and lava-rock bathing pools in Biscoitos. 

NOTE: Shore excursions are not included within the price of this voyage. We recommend you book transport and tours well in advance as there are very few suppliers on the islands.  

In August, the Azores enjoy a delightful climate, characterized by mild temperatures and balmy sea breezes. Expect daytime temperatures averaging 24°C (75°F), ideal for both sailing and land-based exploration.

When preparing for your voyage please bear in mind:

  • Your passport must have at least 6 months validity at the time of travel
  • The SMM is granted no flexibility for the embarkation and disembarkation times from the customs authorities
  • All guests must be between the age of 14 and 80 yrs at the time of travel