Trip Planning Azores Islands Flag Cruise Route History Daily Log & Photos

   Trip Planning

Chuck and Viriginia on the Queen Mary II on their Transatlantic cruise from South Hampton to New Jersey.

Over the last ten years we have been celebrating my birthdays all over the world. Chuck's Harem! Cocktails  - Chuck & Virginia  - Queen Mary II! But this time Virginia decided to go on a cruise for her 84th Birthday in 2022.

She wants to go on a cruise featuring fine dining on the Mediteraneum and the Atlantic Ocean!

We will visit Barcelona and Cartagena Spain, then on to other stops, the Azores Islands, Bermuda, and on to New York!

We have been talking to our friend LaVerne and she told me she thought I was also going so she had someone to take the tours with, she is only 95 years young! Her friend Jean will accompany her on the cruise!

Here all of us are together 42 days before the cruise. On the left is Virginia, behind me is LaVerne, on the right is Jean Elizabeth Bramer and in the middle is Chuck and his Harem!

Jean Elizabeth Bramer, will be LaVerne's cabin companion, and their cabin is three doors down from us, Virginia and Chuck's cabin. So far, four of us will be going! The party is getting bigger!

    Personnal Travel Agent - Gerard Ramos - Vacations to Go

Gerard Gerard has been our travel agent for many years as we have cruised around the world to the Caribbean, the Atlantic Ocean, Indian Ocean, the South Pacific and more cruises.

He is is so helpful and responds quickly to questions one might have about traveling, especially in a time of uncertainty as far as Covid is concerned.

Gerard Ramos

Master Cruise Counselor

Vacations To Go

My office hours: Tue-Sat: 8am-5pm (US Central Time)

US and Canada: 1-800-338-4962 ext. 7487

Feel free to tell Gerard you viewed his business as a travel agent on my website.

   Azores Islands Flag History

The Azores Islands Flag History The Portuguese discovered Azores in 1427 and eventually in 1431 it became an official Portuguese colony. There was no specific Azores flag during this time, however the symbol of the goshawk was popular because when the first explorers visited the archipelago of the Azores they thought the common buzzards indigenous to the region were northern goshawks.

A version of the modern flag was first seen In 1975 when the Azores Liberation Front formed to try and bring a forced independence to Azores. They chose the bicolour of the Portuguese flag that was used between 1830 and 1910 with the Portuguese liberals formed a government on the Azorean island of Terceira. Rather than include the Portuguese coat of arms, the Azores Liberation Front chose a goshawk with falling five-pointed stars.

After the Carnation Revolution, Autonomy was granted from Portugal in 1976 and a flag for Azores was adopted in 1979. It is very similar to that of the liberation front, the blue and white bicolour has a golden goshawk with nine five-pointed stars in a semicircle above and in the canon there is the Portuguese shield.

   Azores Islands History

One of nine Azores Islands sitting in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, Ponta Delgada has a lush landscape that produces such unexpected flora as camellias, azaleas, hydrangeas and flame-colored wild ginger lilies. Hot springs and geysers that spew clouds of sulfurous smoke may be natural safety valves that have kept the volcanoes relatively quiet since the 17th century. Cruise to the Azores Islands!

The Azores Islands, officially the Autonomous Region of the Azores, is one of the two autonomous regions of Portugal (along with Madeira). It is an archipelago composed of nine volcanic islands in the Macaronesia region of the North Atlantic Ocean, about 1,400 km (870 mi) west of Lisbon, about 1,500 km (930 mi) northwest of Morocco, and about 1,930 km (1,200 mi) southeast of Newfoundland, Canada.

Its main industries are agriculture, dairy farming, livestock, fishing, and tourism, which is becoming the major service activity in the region. The government of the Azores employs a large percentage of the population directly or indirectly in the service and tertiary sectors. The largest city of the Azores is Ponta Delgada. The culture, dialect, cuisine, and traditions of the Azorean islands vary considerably, because these remote islands were settled sporadically over a span of two centuries.

There are nine major Azorean islands and an islet cluster, in three main groups. These are Flores and Corvo, to the west; Graciosa, Terceira, Sao Jorge, Pico, and Faial in the centre; and Sao Miguel, Santa Maria, and the Formigas Reef to the east. They extend for more than 600 km (370 mi) and lie in a northwest - southeast direction. All of the islands have volcanic origins, although some, such as Santa Maria, have had no recorded activity in the time since the islands were settled several centuries ago. Mount Pico, on the island of Pico, is the highest point in Portugal, at 2,351 m (7,713 ft). If measured from their base at the bottom of the ocean to their peaks, which thrust high above the surface of the Atlantic, the Azores are among the tallest mountains on the planet.

The climate of the Azores is very mild for such a northerly location, being influenced by its distance from the continents and by the passing Gulf Stream. Because of the marine influence, temperatures remain mild year-round. Daytime temperatures normally fluctuate between 16 and 25 degrees C (61 and 77 degrees F) depending on season. Temperatures above 30 degrees C (86 F) or below 3 degrees C (37 F) are unknown in the major population centres. It is also generally wet and cloudy.

   Azores Islands Weather

We will be sailing in the middle of October to the Azores so it looks like the weather may be perfect for us, around 70 degrees F. Probably close to the same for Spain and Portugal!

Azores Weather

   Ponta Delgada


Ponta Delgada, on Sao Miguel Island, is the capital of the Azores archipelago of Portugal.

The striking, 3-arched city gates and the Gothic-style Church of St. Sebastian are near the harbor.

The Convent and Chapel of Our Lady of Hope houses a revered image of Christ. The Carlos Machado Museum offers diverse artifacts of Azorean culture.

The city is a gateway to the crater lakes of Sete Cidades, to the northwest.

Ponta Delgada

   Azores Island Tour

Ponta Delgada

This tour makes it easy to experience one of the most incredible sights in the Azores - Sete Cidades.

You'll travel 1,900 feet above sea level to peer down at the famous twin lakes. One, which reflects the sky, is a gentle blue. The other, shaded by vegetation at the crater's edge, is a deep green. Your drive stops at the best lookout points for unbeatable views of this natural phenomenon and incredible photo opportunities.


  • Enjoy a scenic coastal drive through the western part of Ponta Delgada before visiting the extinct crater of Sete Cidades.
  • Soak up the views of the famous twin lakes set deep in the volcanic crater.

Azores Islands  Tour

Azores Islands Tour

Azores Islands  Tour

Azores Islands Tour

Azores Islands  Tour

Azores Islands  Tour

Azores Islands Tour

Virginia's 84th Birthday

Virginia's 84th Birthday Virginia's 84th Birthday

   Foods We Tried

Virginia's 84th Birthday Virginia's 84th Birthday

Octopus Shrimp

Virginia's 84th Birthday Virginia's 84th Birthday

Snails! Beef Shank

   Cocktail Time

Virginia's 84th Birthday Virginia's 84th Birthday

Goldmine Cocktails - Scotch Starting our Martini taste test!

Virginia's 84th Birthday Virginia's 84th Birthday

Virginia and Jean.... Stuff a pickle in an Olive?

   84 and Counting - Virginia

Virginia's 84th Birthday Virginia's 84th Birthday

We had terrible weather after leaving the Azore Islands. The captain said there were cross currents and the ship would vibrate and sometimes shutter. All very strange. Here we are having our morning breakfast on the 14th Deck! Also, the restaurant Virginia booked for her birthday, no solid walls so the weather could blow through the glass particians. Go figure!

Virginia's 84th Birthday
The morning started out alright but as the day continued, the weather got worse and the wind picked up. Then it started to rain.Virginia met two women at dinner and they called up and said they were worried that Virginia's dinner might be canceled as the restaurant was on the top deck, partially open to the weather. They came over with the champagne and I suggested Virginia call the reservation desk about the weather. The reply was they have not closed down the restaurant. Virginia asked about other restauants if this one closed and she was informed the restaurant you have signed up for is open. Virginia said it was her birthday but no dice. The walls of the restaurant are glass panels about two feet wide but have a space of about eight or so inches between each panel and the wind and rain can whip through the restaurant.

We got there that evening and it was raining hard and very windy, cold actually. The restaurant was full but it was nasty with the wind and sometimes rain coming through the empty spaces. I said I had to go back inside as my bacterial infection was getting worse and I couldn't stay in the weather. Everyone agreed and we went back inside to have a cocktail and talk about the 84th birthday not to be forgotten!

   Where has Virginia Been?

Virginia keeps saying she forgets where we have been! Well here are photos from around the world we have visited over the last eight years. We sure have done a lot of traveling!

Virginia's 84th Birthday

    Created on: 2022.06.17 Return to Chuck    Return to Chuck's Home Home Page   Buntjer's Home Page Updated on: 2022.10.30