Location: Faial, The Azores
Today started early, right at 5:45. We had a very nice breakfast of granola and yogurt. Then we packed up our bags and went over to the ferry dock to catch the ferry to the island of Pico. While there, we went on a taxi tour of the old wineries in Pico and learned how wine was made. We had the opportunity to see what a distillery looked like, as well as how wine barrels were disposed of along the coast. It was really exciting! Halfway through this wine expedition, we found a cafe and ordered some 1 Euro croissants and ice cream. (The Euro is a pretty good time, no lie). Then we went on a tour of not one but two whale museums! The first whaling museum was an old whaling factory. It had giant metal vats where they used to mix and heat crushed whalebone, blubber and meat to extract the oil (mostly from sperm whales). The second was a whaler’s museum where we could see into the lives of the old whalers. There were displays of whalebone carvings as well as how whaling boats were constructed. We also saw a temporary photography exhibit that depicted the beauty of the Azorean archipelago. Part of our island tour included a visit to one of the crater lakes and a forestry park where we all ‘played’ on an outdoor gym (aka a playground for adults). Lastly, we visited the winery area of Pico that has been dubbed a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The initial surveyors that came to Pico to determine whether it was worthy of being given such a title estimated that the lava wall that is used to insulate and protect the grapevines is, in total, over 100,000 km in length -enough to circle the globe at the equator two times! Then those who were of age could try some genuine, authentic Azorian wine! Which, unfortunately, wasn’t me 🙁 After that was our first night out, so then we started our night of Azorian club-hopping, just kidding. We went to an authentic Azorian restaurant. Those who were of age could once again try some of the local spirits, which included one Euro draft beer, but since I couldn’t do that, I bought some snacks. That was pretty much it. Shout out to my fam.