Saturday, May 12, 2012


Ponta Delgada is part of the Azores which is a small chain of islands about 750 nautical miles off the coast of Portugal and there wasn’t a person on the ship who wasn’t excited to see land after six days. Ron and I have been eager to visit here since we learned about this contract. I mean who goes to the Azores, right? We had big plans to send postcards, and buy T-shirts, and add to our magnet collection… but we didn’t have the opportunity due to a considerable lack of souvenir shops anywhere we went. After two years of Caribbean, Alaska, and Central America it was a little confusing and a lot refreshing.

We had some great starter adventures that set the tone for the beginning of our European run. Along with some “ship friends,” Ashlee (the solo guitarist), Chris (one of the photographers), and Brett (the travel guide), we rented a tiny car for the day and jammed ourselves in to go exploring. Our first discovery was this beautiful view of a tiny island with a perfectly round warm water lake in the middle. 




We ventured on to find Terra Nostra Botanical Gardens and along the way discovered a lake veiled in mist and beautiful winding roads taking us to our destination. 




Inside Terra Nostra we sought out the pinnacle destination of our day – the hot spring baths. Natural, warm, iron oxide saturated water flows into this bath from two large spickets attracting locals and tourists alike. We splashed around in the murky water for a while enjoying the warmth it provided after a nice chilly morning.

The boys decided to do a cannon ball from the island in the center. Leave it to ship folks to impinge further disgrace on the American reputation for being tacky. Still, I think this picture is worth the damaged repute!





We strolled around town and found other pretty sights and quirky characteristics that add to the charm of this little island. Like this pretty bridge...



And this lovely street...

And this funny upside down house...


 And mineral water flowing from the walls



And exercise equipment on the beach...


 And a pretty church with steps all around...
 And this picturesque park...
We headed back to the ship in search of food and a nap after a long, much needed day off the ship. 

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