Frequently asked questions
Where are the Azores?
Trace a straight line from Lisbon to New York, and in the
middle of the Atlantic, you’ll find the archipelago of the Azores. The archipelago is divided into 3 groups,
and in the central group, on the southern coast of Pico island, you’ll find Lajes.
Learn more about the Azores
How to get to Pico?
Unfortunately the only means of transport is also the most pollutant, by air, as there is no sea link. SATA International and TAP Portugal are the two airlines, which connect the islands to the continent; however, it may be easier to go through a travel agency. If they do not know the Azores the airport of arrival code is PIX, or alternatively HOR.
If I have a stopover in Lisbon, where should I stay?
If you're arriving late and leaving early (which is often the case) your best bet is to sleep near the airport. The Trip Lisboa Aeroporto hotel is anything but quaint, but has the advantage of only being 200 meters from the terminal:
- Tryp Lisboa Aeroporto | Tel:+ 351 218 425 000
If you prefer to be in the city, the Hotel AS Lisboa is a good compromise. It's also basic, but is only a 5km taxi ride from the airport and/or just by the "Alameda" tube station.
- Avenida Almirante Reis 188 1000-055 Lisboa -(+ 351) 218 429 360 www.hotel-aslisboa.pt
Why choose Lajes?
Today, Lajes on the island of Pico is one of the best whale watching locations in the world in regard to the quality and diverity of the species encountered. Far from the agitation of other Azorean ports, where it is also possible to embark on whale and dolphin watching tours, we are much closer to the observation zones. On average we are 10 minutes way as opposed to 30 minutes from Horta, Madalena or Ponta Delgada. Being far away from the others, we seldom encounter other boats, which means the animals are less stressed and can be observed in peace and quiet. White washed villages facing the sea dominated by the presence of the Pico mountain form the breathtaking terrestrial background. Tradition is also very much alive and it is not rare to encounter ancient whaling boats training for the weekend regattas that take place during the summer. The architecture is reminiscent of 19th century American whaling ports and it is possible to visit the ancient factory, the museum and the observation tower of 'Queimada' all within 1km walking distance.
I'm travelling with my family, have you thought of us?
Yes, we propose a special family package, "Whales as a family". For any pains or sprains we have a health unit just a few meters from our base and we offer a nanny service for children up to 6 years old. You can also benefit from 3 seater Kayaks, some all-terrain bikes equipped with child seats, data bases, films and books for children in our library.
Which are the most observed cetacean species in the Azores and when is the best period of the year? Is it possible to experience a one trip with no cetaceans?
There isn’t really a better period because it all depends on the species. However, our activity is limited due to the climatic conditions of the "Atlantic" which go from November until end March. We have maintained observation observation statistics since 1993and in the sea set beside the highest mountain of Portugal there is always something to watch: birds, turtles, sharks... Less than 1% of our trips to sea are experienced without cetaceans.
What's to do in Pico when I am not at sea?
Walks, museums, horse riding, scuba diving... Refer to "Pico beyond the whales" information.
What is the hotel like?
"Whale' come ao Pico"was designed by Alexandra, architect and cofounder of Espaço Talassa. It is a renovated old house made out of basalt where sober contemporary lines and soft colors meet tradition. It is just a stones throw from our base.
Is it possible to stay elsewhere?
What happens if I cancel my trip?
Up to one month before arrival we refund 100 % of paid sums. Less than 30 days before arrival we retain all paid sums. It is thus important to envisage taking a "cancellation" insurance, which is very often included proposed via your credit card.
Is it possible to observe whales during a "Dancing with the dolphins" trip?
Yes, it is possible and it in fact happens very often. However the trip is intended for swimming with the dolphins so it is important to have a majority of passengers who are also interested in whales.
May I make just one trip to swim with dolphins?
No. It is the best way to respect the animals and to insure the safety for the Homo sapiens... Refer to "Dance with the dolphins"
I'll be in Lajes several days but dont't wish to take a package. Is this possible?
Yes, you can reserve one or more exits outside the fixed weekly packages... Refer to "Whales and Dolphins of Queimada"for information, prices, etc...
Is there a minimum age limit for children?
There is no legal minimum age limit as it all depends on the child, their relationship with water, their capacity to be in a restricted place (the boat) over several hours etc. However, age 6 to 7 seems to be the most appropriate for a first experiment with Cetaceans. Your child will be sufficiently physically developed and able to fully appreciate the privileged encounter.
I am pregnant. May I participate?
No. It is too risky, for you and for your baby. The sea conditions in the Azores can change quickly and a dream can rapidly become a nightmare. If marine mammals can adjust to waves and undercurrents unfortunately it is not the case for the small mammalian which you are carrying!
Is it possible to rent a car in Pico?
Yes, but not in Lajes. We advise you to reserve it in advance, as it is not easy to find cars
(especially the least expensive categories) during July and August.
“Oasis” | “Auto Turística Picoense” | “Tropical” | “Ilha Verde” www.ilhaverde.com | Azorestravel :
If you didn't find the precise question or the right answer, please contact us:
or directly by telephone: + 351 292 672 010