Island Vacation Retreat to Mallorca & Azores

A 8 day trip to Portugal & Spain 
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Indulge in a dreamlike getaway to Mallorca and the Azores Islands during your custom tailored itinerary to Spain and Portugal. Medieval lanes wind along the sandstone walls of an opulent cathedral as the ocean breeze adds a unique flavor to the vineyards that grow out of the cooled lava. Pine forests drape over mountains, and a lunar landscape brings an impressive ambiance atop a volcanic peak. From basking in the sunlight on a pristine beach to searching for whales as they breach from the cobalt waters, your time in Mallorca and the Azores will offer an unforgettable retreat into Western European island culture, history, and enchantment. 

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General Information

Photos
spain mallorca spanish seafood paella
Detailed Itinerary

Places Visited 

Puerto Portals, Monestir de Lluc, Palma, Azores, Faial, Horta, Pico Island 

Departure Dates 

Dates are flexible and customizable for private departures.

Detailed Itinerary 

Day 1: Puerto Portals – Arrive into the Remarkable Charm and Beauty of Mallorca

Mallorca is an island of prestige and elegance with beaches of soft golden sand and historical towns that overlook the Serra de Tramuntana Mountains and the coastline of the Mediterranean Sea. As your flight sets down at Palma de Mallorca Airport, you can look out the window to find the azure water ridged by the forest that overtakes the hills. Cliffs drop precipitously into the water for a picture-perfect first impression of the island as your private transfer will greet you upon your arrival and escort you to your luxurious resort-style accommodation near the serene southwest town of Puerto Portals.

The remainder of the day will be yours to indulge in the five-star luxury of the hotel or embrace the thrill of discovery around Puerto Portals. Yachts drift along the crystal-clear water to reach the port. Sailboats glide over the horizon and return in the late afternoon. The marina fills with a mixture of opulent ships and smaller vessels with masts that wade in the gentle sea. Dig your toes into the soft sands of Portals Nous situated beside the marina as the breeze rustles through the soaring palm trees. The water splashes against the shore with a soft mist that splashes into the air. Gorgeous high-end boutique shops frame the streets of the town you will have the luxurious feeling of a getaway with the world’s elite as you enjoy the views of the Mediterranean from the cafes and restaurants.

What’s Included: accommodation, airport transfer

Day 2: Puerto Portals – Wander Historical Palma for Architecture and Culture

In the morning, the sweet aroma of ensaimada emanates from the cafes in town. The pastry is made of a cinnamon roll dusted with powdered sugar or chocolate and to indulge in the morning is a perfect way to wake up. After breakfast, your guide will greet you at your hotel eager to take you on a fascinating tour of Mallorca’s historical capital of Palma. The streets and architecture feel like a storybook as they overlook the Old Harbor as the aroma of espresso fills the narrow lanes of the streets as they open to the refreshing scent of the sea.

The Cathedral, La Seo, was built out of sandstone in the 13th century and bring a golden sheen beside the water. The Gothic features on the façade give way to the dramatic nave that reaches a height of nearly 145 feet tall, with the entire Cathedral encompassing more than 7,100 square feet. Stained glass windows glisten with vibrant colors and provide an ethereal glow to the gallery. Lush trees frame the walls of the 13th-century Bellver Castle, which crowns the hilltop above town as Romanesque and Gothic arcades decorate the courtyard.

A hilltop compound near the castle presents the work of Catalan artist Joan Miro. The main exhibition space displays more than 2,500 pieces and includes sketches, sculptures, and paintings. The sculptures add to the natural beauty of the landscape outside, and visitors are guided to the 18th-century farmhouse set beside the museum. The interior whitewashed walls have preserved sketches that the artist had used as plans for various bronzes he had wished to make. The mixture of contemporary architecture and modern artwork blends with the old streets of Palma below.

What’s Included: accommodation, tour, breakfast

Day 3: Puerto Portals – Relish a Catamaran Cruise for a Half-Day Snorkel Tour

Just after sunrise, the morning market in Palma erupts with life. Fishmongers call to passersby to present their displays of colorful sea bass and ruby prawns as produce vendors display ripe cherries and beautiful strawberries. The San Juan Gastronomic Market fills with the aromas of marinated olives and an array of buttery pastries stuffed with poached pears or berries. After breakfast, you can make your way to the marina to board your private catamaran bound for the Mediterranean waters. The boat weighs anchor, and the breeze will drift across your cheeks as the scent of the Mediterranean carries a hint of sweetness and the water shimmers with indigo and sapphire hues.

You will make your way towards the nearly two-mile long island of Dragonera, named for its resemblance to a sleeping dragon. Forest drapes over the national park and turns the green canopy into an image of dragon scales. The boat stops near Mal Pas, and you can jump into the water as the cool, crystal-clear sea provides a refreshing contrast to the Mediterranean heat. The water makes you buoyant and cradles your body as you view the rolling hills of Mallorca. You can grab the snorkel gear and plunge back into the indigo water with better vision to view elaborate aquatic life. Starfish cling to small boulders as their arms move slowly with the current, iridescent against the seafloor. Hard coral grows near the sea grass bringing a balance of underwater plain and calcite statues amongst the passing schools of fish.  

What’s Included: accommodation, tour, breakfast

Day 4: Puerto Portals – Visit Monestir de Lluc and Valldemossa on a Half-Day Tour

The clear indigo waters of the Mediterranean splash against the golden shores of Mallorca as the light of morning returns. You can hear the serene soundtrack of the island from your room as the sand glistens with white along Cala Llombards cove beneath the pine trees. Your guide will meet you at your hotel after breakfast and lead you to the Monestir de Lluc, located in the island’s northwest atop a mountain basin at more than 1,700 feet above sea level. The sanctuary was established in the 13th century and remains a major pilgrimage site on the island. A cloister encircles the garden, which adds to the opulence of the complex mostly built between the 17th and 18th centuries.

The Basilica maintains Renaissance features on the façade while the botanical garden enriches the complex with the aroma of roses and luxuriously manicured hedges. Violets and daffodils blossom with graceful, bright petals against the silver stones that pave the pathways. Continue to the town of Valldemossa, located beneath the crowning spires of a Carthusian monastery as the forest borders the town as it ascends the hill with narrowing alleys and remarkable vistas of the valley bellow. You can make your way to the monastery grounds to find an edifice that once belonged to kings and monks while the interior cells offer insight into the lifestyle of the monks during their vow of silence. The structure was erected in the early 14th-century with medieval rooms that display the furniture and artifacts utilized more than half a millennium ago.

What’s Included: accommodation, tour, breakfast

Day 5: Faial – Venture to the Azure Islands and Enjoy the Day at Leisure in Horta

The sunlight washes over the pine forests on the outskirts of Alcudia’s Old Town and the walled city remains the best-preserved medieval architecture on Mallorca. In the morning, cafes place tables and chairs along the narrowing cobbled streets for patrons to enjoy a frothy cappuccino while watching passersby. Two ancient gates continue to allow access to the city along the ramparts, accompanied by a Renaissance tower. The scent of pastries fills the air, accentuated by the spiced pine of the thriving forest. After breakfast, your private transfer will greet you at the hotel. Pass the marina where the yachts have been taken out for the day as beachgoers lounge in the golden sunlight to relax on the soft sand.

You will soon board your flight bound for Faial, an island on the Azores archipelago. Hydrangeas overtake the rolling hills and provide accents of blue across the island landscape and a sweet fragrance to accompany the seaside aroma. Secondary volcanic formations speckle the skyline with the highest mountain on the island that reaches a height of more than 3,240 feet above sea level. Your flight will land at Horta Airport, located beside the largest town on the island. Your private transfer will greet you upon arrival and escort you to a magnificent resort-style hotel that will offer divine views of the sapphire Atlantic Ocean.

The remainder of the day will be at your leisure to enjoy the comforts of the hotel or stroll along the cosmopolitan center of the island at Horta. Murals brighten the marina with images of life on the island, from sirens to guitars, fishing boats to marine life. Catamarans catch the breeze and glide along the edges of the cliffs rounding the island. Sao Salvador is the oldest church on the island, first erected in the 16th century as English pirates in search of treasure burnt the original church down, with locals rebuilding the edifice in the early 1600s. 

What’s Included: accommodation, flight, transfer, tour, breakfast

Day 6: Faial – Discover the Landscape and Wildlife on a Volcano and Whales Tour

The doors to the Scrimshaw Museum in Horta open in the morning as the galleries of the small exhibits offer insight into the historical fishing industry of the island, with a particular focus on the whaling tradition between the 19th and early 20th centuries. The spotlight shines over the whalebone that has been carved with ornate depictions of shipping scenes, utilizing the artwork like whittling. Whaling was banned in the early 1980s and gave rise to the whale watching industry around the Azores. After breakfast, you will begin the day with a tour of the countryside and take to the roadside with your guide, who will bring you around the mountains and over the Flamengos Valley. Hydrangeas will be in bloom against a backdrop of exotic species, along with plants traditionally used for medicinal purposes around the island.

The mountains shape the valley with sectioned greenery and tall grasses along the upper rims. You will pass Caldeira, the highest summit on the island. The caldera has a diameter more than a mile wide with an indentation more than 1,300 feet deep. Pockets of hydrangeas blossom with textured petals and resemble miniature balloons. Continue to the ash fields of Capelinhos, the site of the most recent volcanic eruption. The volcanic activity took place in the 1950s and added more than half a square mile to the island’s landscape and brings a lunar quality to the summit region. Upon returning to Horta, you can continue out to sea for an afternoon adventure in search of passing whales.

What’s Included: accommodation, tour, breakfast

Day 7: Faial – Enjoy Pico Island’s Volcano Views with a Unique Wine Tour

The greenery around Horta contrasts with the white and golden stone of the cityscape. The Jesuit College was founded in the 17th century and adds the youthful ambiance across the antique cobbled lanes due to the students the university attracts. The cafes near the waterfront have views to the fishing boats as they return from their morning expedition. You will venture to the marina and board a high-speed ferry bound for Pico Island where the majestic summit of Pico Alto reaches a height of 7,715 feet above sea level and crowns the second largest island of the archipelago.

The plains along the eastern edges of the island lead to volcanic cones and glistening crater lakes along Planalto da Achada. After traveling along the Faial Channel, the ferry will dock at Madalena. The town sits beneath the dramatic cone of Mount Pico with traditional orange-tiled rooftops and whitewashed walls of Portuguese architecture. The surrounding forest canopy adds texture to the bordering landscape as it sweeps upwards to the summit. After exploring the lava tubes and lakes around the island, your guide will lead to the rows of vines as they grow along the lava fields. Walls crafted out of stone were erected to protect the nearly 2,500 acres of vineyard from the rough winds of the Atlantic.

The salty ocean water adds to the fortifying flavors of the verdelho grapes grown in the region since the 15th century. The lush waves of leaves contrast with the black basalt soil. After touring the rows of vines, you can take a look at the rugged cliff to view how the indigo waters crash against the black rocks. You will have a great view of the water from the tasting room as your guide pours a sample of the white wine. Hints of green apple and grapefruit drift upwards from the glass, blending with the savory aroma of the Atlantic Ocean.

What’s Included: accommodation, tour, breakfast

Day 8: Faial – Depart for Home

The doors to a nearby cafe will open against the breeze of the Atlantic. The interior features bright flags passed along by yachtsmen from around the world since 1918 and by afternoon, the dining room will fill with the aroma of fresh fish dressed with lemon and wine brought from Pico Island. You will find the aroma of hydrangeas in the air, accentuated by a hint of orange from the plantations that once thrived along the interior of the island.  Bakeries in Horta place elegant meringue kisses in their window displays, each laced with vanilla for a delicate accompaniment to a rich cup of espresso in the morning. After one last morning to enjoy it all, your private transfer will greet you at your hotel after breakfast and escort you to Horta Airport for your flight home.

What’s Included: airport transfer, breakfast

Price

Starting Price 

$1,755
This trip is customizable for your private travel.

What's Included 

  • Accommodations
  • In-country transportation
  • Some or all guided tours and activities (dependent on season)
  • Expert trip planning
  • 24x7 support during your trip
The starting price is based on travel during the low season for a minimum of two travelers staying in shared 3-star accommodations. Please inquire for a custom trip quote based on your travel preferences and travel dates.