It’s a question most people ask – how easy is it to get around the 9 islands once you are there? The quick answer is, it’s very easy! Here’s a run down of all the options :
Travelling between the islands – there is an excellent inter island flight service operated by SATA Air Azores between all 9 islands. The airline operates 2 x Bombardier Q200’s which seat 37 passengers and 4 x Bombardier Q400’s which seat 80. Both are twin propeller planes and operate like buses during the day, flying to one island, stopping for 20 minutes and then flying to the next island and so on. You only need to check in 1 hour before departure so it doesn’t feel like a big deal to fly. Flight times vary between 15 minutes to 50 minutes and flights cost around £75 each.
In addition, there is also a ferry service between all islands. Taking the ferry is cheaper but obviously it takes longer and ferries are much more at the whim of the weather. Generally, we advise clients to only use ferries between Faial, Pico and Sao Jorge as these rarely get cancelled and are relatively short journey times. For example, a ferry from Faial to Pico costs around €4 per person and takes 30 minutes. Faial to Sao Jorge can take 90 minutes and costs around €15 per person.
Travelling around the islands – many people ask us about using the buses on the islands. Again, there are services on most islands but they are generally to help locals to get to and from work so don’t stop at all the lovely viewpoints along the way. The best service is on Sao Miguel, the main island, and you can see timetables here. The fares are very cheap but be prepared for lots of stops. You’ll have plenty of time to soak up the scenery though!
If you want more flexibility then car hire is available on all the islands even tiny Corvo and roads are generally good and well signposted. The biggest danger are the cows on the road so it’s wise not to go too fast round blind corners! If you prefer not to drive but like to be able to choose where you’re going, then there are excellent English speaking taxi drivers on all islands. If you’re travelling with us, you’ll get to meet our very special drivers, some of whom we’ve worked with for 20 years like Joao on Pico who was just 18 when he first drove our clients.
Award winning Azores holidays specialists
At Archipelago Choice, we have a team of Activity Holidays Specialists who know all about family holidays in the Azores. They are ready to answer all your questions…
We are a member of AITO (the Association of Independent Tour Operators) which encourages the highest standards in all aspects of tour operating. All members must adhere to the AITO Quality Charter.