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The stunning Archipelago of the Azores consists of nine volcanic islands found in the North Atlantic Ocean. Situated around 1300 km west of Portugal and 3900 km from North America. The islands in the Azores archipelago are seperated into three groups. The Eastern group includes Santa Maria and Sao Miguel, the Central group is made up of Terceira, Graciosa, São Jorge, Pico and Faial, and the Western group includes Flores and Corvo. The distance between Pico and Faial is a mere 6 Km. Whereas the maximum distance between two islands is from Santa Maria to Corvo, measuring 600 Km. The Archipelago is influenced by the Gulf Stream, providing the islands with ideal conditions for a resting place to some of the worlds largest pelagic species. Along with the abundance of fascinating marine life, an Azores diving holiday offers numerous underwater arches, tunnels, caves, and cliffs, providing a haven for sub tropical fish and stunning silhouette photography opportunities. The island of Pico is named for its imposing mountain, being one of the most beautiful and underrated island of all the Azores. Only second to S. Miguel in size the 'Mountain Island' stands majestically amongst the Azorean central group. Pico sits approximatelyt 4.5 nautical miles from the Azorean island of Faial and 11 miles from S. Jorge Island. Pico is approximately 167 square miles in size. Pico has a fascinating history, adding to the diving experience on the island which will also offer a great experience to the non diver. Her history involves decades of whale hunting and famous wine traditions. Whale hunting, long gone, gave way to a movement of fair treatment study and observation of whales, dolphins, and other sea mammals. Whale and dolphin watching trips can be organized from Madalena or Lajes. Volcanic eruptions ended 300 years ago and Pico is considered a dormant volcano, adding to the mystique of the island, and serving as a magnet for scientists.
Princess Alice - Imagine her abyss with waters deeper than 1000 metres, which suddenly rise up to a mere 30 metres from the waters surface. This is Princess Alice, a seamount right in the mid-Atlantic, 45 nautical miles (around 85 km) off the Azorean island of Pico. Along with being famous for the extraordinary Carousel of Mantas and Mobulas, Princess Alice is also inhabited by Jacks, huge Tunas, Barracudas and Sharks. This is an advanced dive site, sue to the offshore, rmeote location, deep waters, and strong currents.
Pico offers visitors loads of extra activities apart from the fascinating diving. Due to the amazing Marine life that surrounds these islands, boat trips for whale and dolphin watching are a great way to spend you time. Picos' mountain means walking, trekking, and mountain biking here is an amazing experience, with tremendous views over the beautiful un spoilt island. Those with enough endurance may even wish to climb the mountain, which offers various routes with different levels of difficulty. Swimming is possible in the various natural pools dotted along the coast, and the occasional sand beach that pops up every year. Some favourite swimming swimming holes are Madalena, Santo Antonio, Sao Roque and Prainha.