Vila Belgica bed and breakfast holiday accommodation on Faial, Azores
Dolphins on Faial, Azores B&B accommodation, Faial Sailing holidays on Faial, Azores
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Bed and breakfast accommodation on Faial, the Azores

Stay and Sail in The Azores

CRUISING AREA: THE AZORES - central group

View Schedule | View Island Information

After a few days of relaxation and rest at our Vila Belgica, you will transfer to the schooner "Elise Picard" for your private mini-cruise around the Azorean Islands.

The "Elise Picard" is a solid comfortable yacht, a large steel double-master with an open foredeck, ideal for sunbathing. Accommodation on board comprises a double bedroom with private bathroom and shower ( the "Captain's Suite"), 2 double rooms, each with 2 single bunks plus a bathroom and shower.

Between these is the spacious dining room, kitchen and navigation/charts table.

Your healthy and rich breakfast will be served either in the dining room of if you prefer, outside in the cockpit. Meanwhile you can enjoy the ocean views, coastline cliffs, the salt sea-air and the briny blue waves.

The "Elise Picard" was refitted last Autumn to increase the comfort for all the guests, and provide each with their own en suite bathroom and privacy.

The Marina in Horta, Faial, is our home port; from there we sail to Sao Jorge, Graciosa and finally Terceira Island before returning to Faial.

Sailing experience is not required but you are welcome to take the helm, navigate or hoist the sails. Jean-Pierre, the skipper, will guide you through each process.

Or perhaps you would prefer a more relaxed holiday enjoying some sun on the foredeck? No problem: it's your holiday, take it as you wish.

Admire wonderful ocean passages, watch the countless dolphins that accompany the boat and perhaps even encounter some whales. The Azorean waters in summer are home to numerous species of dolphins and whales, and also turtles. Relax - unwind - and enjoy all the beauty that the ocean offers.

Each and every Azorean island is unique in its fauna and flora. One is richer in plants, another has lakes and waterfalls etc. During the days that the "Elise P" rests at harbour on the different islands, we can, if required, organize daytrips ashore. For example, a jeep safari, a rental car, diving trips, whale-watching trips, nature walks etc. (prices not included)

Minimum occupancy: 2 persons

sailing the Azores    at anchor in the Azores    dolphins in the Azores    sailing the Azores    sailing the Azores    sailing the Azores   
BOAT: Type: schooner
Length: 15, 00 m - 47 ft
Width: 4.60 m
Draught: 2, 20 m
Engine: Ford - 85pk
Sails: Main sail, Gennaker

OWNERS:
Owner and skipper Jean-Pierre Dhondt (°1953) and his wife Yvette de Schutter (°1954)

Jean-Pierre, a bargeman's son, was literally born and raised on water.

Later they restored a classic Dutch "'Skûtje" (original build in 1905) and made her ready to sail again. The "Philomene" was sadly sold before arriving on the Azores.

Once the B&B was up and running, they purchased a Spirit 28, named 'Twisted' to offer guests day sailing. Meanwhile, after a short while Jean-Pierre joined the Club Naval in Horta and again is competing with success.

Due to demand of B&B guests, they felt the need to organize longer sail trips, in-between the islands. Therefore they purchased the "Elise P" to offer comfortable mini-cruises at the central group islands.

During summer the programme includes island hopping in the Azores, in winter months they relocate to the Canary Islands and the Caribbean.
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MINI-CRUISE - ISLAND HOPPING - CENTRAL ISLAND GROUP

SCHEDULE: Day 1: Arrival at Vila Belgica - briefing and welcome appetizer and drink.
Overnight stay: Vila Belgica
Dolphins from our boat

Sailing in the Azores

Our schooner Elise
Day 2 and 3: Leisure days to explore Faial
Overnight stay: Vila Belgica
Day 4: After breakfast in Vila Belgica transfer to the schooner "Elise P"
Boat introduction and departure to Sao Jorge Island - Harbour Velas
Afternoon arrival at Velas - Sao Jorge
Sailing trip: 4 - 6 h
Leisure afternoon to explore Sao Jorge
Overnight stay : "Elise P"
Day 5: Breakfast on "'Elise P" - leisure day to explore Sao Jorge
Overnight stay: "Elise P"
Day 6: Breakfast on "Elise P"
Depart for Graciosa Island - Harbour Santa Cruz
Arrive in the afternoon at Santa Cruz - Graciosa
Sailing Trip: 6 - 8 h
Leisure afternoon to explore Graciosa
Overnight stay: "Elise P"
Day 7: Breakfast on "Elise P"
Leisure day to explore Graciosa
Overnight stay "Elise P"
Day 8: Breakfast on "Elise P"
Departure for Terceira Island - Harbour Angra do heroismo
Evening arrival at Angra do Heroismo - Terceira
Sailing trip: 7 - 9 h
Leisure time to explore Angra do Heroismo
Overnight stay: "Elise P"
Day 9: Breakfast on "Elise P"
Leisure day to explore Terceira
Overnight stay: "Elise P"
Day 10: Breakfast on"Elise P"
Leisure day to explore Terceira
Overnight stay: "Elise P"
Day 11: Breakfast on "Elise P"
Return to Faial - Harbour Horta
Evening arrival at Horta
Sailing trip : 10 - 12 h
Overnight stay : "Elise P"
Day 12: Breakfast on "Elise P"
Transfer to Vila Belgica
Leisure day to explore Faial or Pico Island
Overnight stay: Vila Belgica
Day 13: Breakfast Vila Belgica
Leisure day to explore Faial or Pico Island
Overnight stay: Vila Belgica
Day 14: Breakfast Vila Belgica
Transfer airport Horta - Faial


PRICE 14-DAY PROGRAMME : 1.755 euro per person

Included: Breakfast and overnight stay in Vila Belgica and on the schooner "Elise P"

All meals aboard the "Elise P" whilst we are under sail (Breakfast, lunch and dinner)
Not included: Personal expenses during your leisure time on the Islands, such as taxis and excursions.
Lunch and dinner during leisure time on the islands
Travel and cancellation insurance needs to be acquired personally
Harbour dues and taxes during your stay on the Islands.
Fuel costs expenditure due to unfavorable weather conditions (such as loss of wind, etc.)
We offer a private and exclusive sailing trip for one couple.
This schedule is the standard cruise, however due to the weather - wind circumstances, there is of course the possibility to start first with Terceira Island and travel via Graciosa - Sao Jorge - back to Horta.

It is also possible to sail to the other Azorean islands, for example, Sao Miguel and Santa Maria.
The "Elise Picard" is available for any trip you wish!

THE ISLANDS OF THE CENTRAL GROUP:

FAIAL:

faial

Faial, The Azores

Harbour paintings on Faial, The Azores
Location: 38 ° 34'NB , 28° 42' WL
Population: ca 16.000
Area: 173,42 km2

Faial is known for its abundant growth and variety of hydrangeas, hence it is also known as the Blue Island.

Some history:
Josse van Heurtere, a rich Flemish merchant, was stranded on Faial in 1453 together with 15 fellow countrymen.

They were eager to explore Faial for silver and tin but were disappointed by its absence. However, they were enchanted by the beautiful Island and its rich nature and soils, so in 1468, Josse van Heurtere, was granted permission by the King of Portugal to found a Flemish settlement on Faial. The first village was named Flamengos and still exists to this day.

The presence of the Flemish settlers, especially on Faial, Graciosa and Sao Jorge, marked the Islands in the past as ' the Flemish Islands'.

Some facts:
Faial's centre is the Caldeira, a large lush green crater with a depth of 400 m and diameter of 1450m.

Faial's highest point is the hill Cabe├ža Gordo with a height of 1043m.

Another attraction is the Vulcano at Capelinos which erupted in 1957-1958 and created an offshore islet that eventually joined Faial's coast line and expanded Capelinos. The lighthouse at Capelinos was restored in 2008 and offers an interesting museum well worth a visit.

Faial's main asset, however, is the international harbour, Horta Marina, where over 1500 yachts dock each year.

Horta is the first harbour in the North Atlantic ocean where every sailor-yachtie stops to rest, to shop, to repair or just to admire. Every boat leaves a wall painting at the Marina, as proof of their Atlantic crossing and to ensure a good onward trip to further destinations.

Horta is Europe's most Western located town (6.000 inhabitants) and has always been an important sheltering place between Europe and America. The city's architectural buildings are proof of a rich past.

PICO:

Pico

Location: 38 ° 28 'NB , 28° 22' WL
Population: ca 15.500
Area: 447 km2

Pico is the second largest Island of the Azores and is largely dominated by its Vulcano of 2.351 m.

This makes Pico not only the highest mountain of the Azores but also the highest in Portugal and the whole Mid-Atlantic rug.

At the moment Pico is known for its grape culture and its vineyards are protected by Unesco's World Heritage List.

In previous years Pico was the centre for whale-hunting. Whaling was prohibited in 1984 and replaced by the popular whale-watching and swimming with dolphins.

Pico island is not included in our package because it does not provide a good harbour to dock. However, you can take the ferry Horta - Madalena Pico. It's a 30min trip and offers the possibility of exploring the island.

SAO JORGE:

Sao Jorge

Location: 38 ° 39 'NB , 28° 5' 00'' WL
Population: ca 10.500
Area: 237,59 km2

Sao Jorge is the pre-eminent walking-trekking island, with the villages of Velas and Calheta the 2 main starting points.

Some history:
The Flemish colonization in 1439 by Wilhelm van der Haeghen is still noticeable. (Later he changed his name to Guilherme de Silveira)

Sao Jorge is very long, like a needle, formed by a mountain range with its highest peak, Pico da Esperan├ža 1053m.

Sao Jorge's most characteristic features are its spit of lands and steep cliffs formed by lava (called faja). The most famous faja are de Faja de Ouvidor and the Faja Grande.

The Island produces excellent cheeses that are enjoyed on all Islands.

GRACIOSA:

graciosa

Location: 39 ° 2 'NB, 27° 594' WL
Population: ca 4.800
Area: 60, 8 km2

Lovely Graciosa is very peaceful and remote from the Central Island group.

Visitors are charmed by the peace and quiet and the friendly inhabitants. Time has stopped here: the windmills are still actively working, small farmhouses spread out one from another with live stock grazing.

Worth visiting is de Furna de Enxofre, where it is possible to descend to the Vulcanic Crater. Down below is a cave with a deep, sulphur lake.

Graciosa produces good red and white wines that are very much appreciated on other Islands.

TERCEIRA:

terceira

Location: 38 ° 43 'NB, 27° 12' WL
Population: ca 55.000
Area: 399, 8 km2

Terceira is the lively Island of the Central Group.

It gets its name from to Diogo de Teive, who discovered the Island as third Island, in a mandate by Prince Henrique of Portugal.

Angra do Heroismo is classified by Unesco as a World Heritage site due to its rich history and architecture. It is still protected by a fort, visible as one enters the harbour.

There is an American Airbase in Lajes, and so the town offers restaurants, shops and nightlife. English is the common language there.

Terceira is renowned among the other Islands for its parties and bull runs (festas do Espirito Santo). In summer it offers non-stop party activity: you can watche the bull runs (no animal is harmed), take in the local folklore or listen to live music with international bands on stage.

Sailing Day Trips | Scuba Diving | Whale Watching Trips | Swimming with Dolphins | Walking holidays

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