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The Boston Globe

Magazine

Spring Travel: Natural Wonders

Azores, a perfect destination for Boston travelers

A four-hour direct flight from Boston brings you to this string of volcanic islands, and transports you to an altogether other world.

AT THE END of my first day on Sao Miguel, after racing to glimpse half a dozen of the island’s spectacular mountains, lakes, and beaches before a helmet of fog settled down over them, I came across an arresting sight. In Mosteiros, a small village of red-roofed, whitewashed houses on the island’s northwestern corner, the mauve sunset collided with the blue ocean to frame a set of rock formations standing sentinel just offshore. It looked a bit like a Stonehenge of the sea. In every guidebook for the Azores — a string of nine volcanic islands sitting in the wide-open Atlantic between New England and Western Europe — there is a checklist of not-to-miss sights. It’s a testament to the bounty of Azorean beauty that on the lists I had consulted, this gorgeous scene in Mosteiros was nowhere to be found.

Before I became too enamored, Pedro Pavao, the 36-year-old native who was showing my wife and me around, offered some perspective. “Wait until you see Furnas tomorrow,” he said.

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