Azores Adventures – Futurismo

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Santa Cruz da Graciosa

Santa Cruz was the first location to be populated on the island of Graciosa back in the 1470s. It was chosen thanks to its fertile soils, safe bays and easy ocean access. From there, the population grew and spread around the island. Nowadays, it is a lovely town where locals welcome travellers into their culture and traditions.

About Santa Cruz da Graciosa

Santa Cruz da Graciosa is a municipality and also the only county on Graciosa Island in the Azores, with four municipalities. Being the second smallest island of the archipelago, the whole island of Graciosa is protected by UNESCO and named a Biosphere Reserve.

The town by the ocean is famous for its vineyards from the 17th century, taking great advantage of the volcanic land to plant unique vines and create special wines. The delicious beverage was a great source of income for the local population. 

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Nature & Geology

The gracefulness of Graciosa can truly be seen at Furna do Enxofre, in Caldeira. It was even explored by Albert I, Prince of Monaco, and Carlos I of Portugal.

The dramatic landscape can be observed going inside the crater, after going down 183 steps and seeing the lake at the bottom. Or also walking the trail around the crater, of 10km for amazing views over Graciosa and the other surrounding islands. At the visitor center, there is plenty of information about this magical place.

A wonderful place to explore is Carapacho hot springs. It is a very popular spot where you can enjoy thermal waters of 35-40°C. Since the late 18th century, the waters coming from Furnas do Enxofre are famous for their healing properties for rheumatic and skin diseases. There is also a spa to enjoy different relaxing services.

Experiences and Tips

The historical center of Santa Cruz is worth a visit. If you like architecture, then you will be served with beautiful typical streets, significant monuments, and impressive churches. Also not to miss are the forts that protected the town for centuries against pirates.

For a bath of local culture, Graciosa’s museum is the place to go. It tells the story of the island from the start and shows the important viticulture as well as whaling traditions.

Before leaving Graciosa, make sure to taste one of the delicious queijadas – the typical sweet of the island. Their crusty dough and sweet filling are unique.

Why Futurismo

Things you must see in Santa Cruz da Graciosa

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