Bubbling pots

Furnas, home to the currently most active volcanic area of the Azores, was the perfect match for the overcast weather of the day. We arrived at Lagoa das Furnas, and enjoyed a leisurely stroll around the south side of this beautiful lake. The walk took us past Capela da Nossa Senhora das Vitórias, Chapel of Our Ladies of Victory, before we arrived at the Monitoring and Research Center of Furnas.

Lagoa das Furnas

After soaking in the views of the lake from the south side, we headed to the north end of the lake to see the bubbling pots of Furnas. Much like other geysers and fumaroles, the smell of sulfur is strong and very little plant life exists around them.

Having waited out a short rain storm, we made our way into the town of Furnas, and enjoyed a delicious lunch at the Furnas Boutique Hotel and Thermal Spa. A post lunch stroll around the hotel grounds prepared us for the Terra Nostra Gardens, where we enjoyed a soak in another hot spring.

Terra Nostra Gardens

Completely different from yesterday’s hot springs, these were set amongst a beautifully manicured garden in the heart of the city. With several pools to choose from, we took our time enjoying them all. The main pool is also unfiltered, and left a wonderful orange stain over our entire swimsuits and bodies.

With the closure of the gardens at 6pm, we headed back to Ponta Delgada. (Pro tip: do your mountain driving during the daylight! It gets dark, REAL dark and switchbacks aren’t much fun in the dark!)