I know you love hearing my quippy voice (says the ridiculously humble writer over here,) but this post is gonna be mostly a vomiting of photos because there are just too many damn good ones from this past week!!
We spent the girls' midterm break in the Azores - or the Açores, if you're in the local cool kid club, which clearly we are(n't...please don't ask me how my Portuguese language classes are going...)
Anyway... The Azores is a set of nine volcanic islands off the coast of Portugal. I know, I never knew that either. High School geography majorly failed me. I digress... We landed on the biggest one, São Miguel, and were immediately blown away. Like, hearts-as-eyes gazing over its insane beauty.
We planned the trip with our new friends, team Kismarton (yay new friends who were SO fun to travel with!!), so it felt only appropriate to rent a car that would fit all nine of us. Because nothing says vacay like a party van!
I'll do my best to be brief with our plethora of awesome activities. Starting with kayaking volcanic-craters-turned-lakes. Ummm..say wha??
Visiting multiple different hot springs, including a brown one that made us all a bit nervous and turned our bathing suits baby-poop-color. But that didn't stop the girls from putting their heads under water and making a game out of blindly trying to not run into strangers' legs. And yes, almost a week later and the girls still have brown clay in their hair. But hey, all worth it for those healing minerals, eh?
Including an insanely cool natural hot spring in the ocean!! Never have I ever.
We tried to do this on our second day there, but the tide was too high and there was no way anyone could've safely gotten in. So, we made it an "early" morning activity later on to get there during low tide.
Milking goats... nuff said...
Some great hiking to see quite possibly the most beautiful overlook known to man. Challenge me.
Growing up with a mom who doubles as a killer designer, I'll never forgot how we'd say something like, "it's so green!" And she'd respond, "Yes, but how many shades of green do you see?"
And that's all I could keep thinking about in the Azores. So. many. shades. of green. (p.s. that lake? yeah... it's a volcanic crater.)
Good eats, including a pot full of food cooked directly in one of the volcanic hot spots, because when in Rome...err..The Azores.
More good eats courtesy of a local couple with a totally off-the-grid, sustainable farmette, We went there one day for fondue, and loved it so much, we took our friends back for a whole dinner. It did not disappoint.
And of course, we brought the costume bag (Bill's brilliant idea.) Since it rained a fair chunk of the time while we were there, the costumes made for the perfect afternoon activity.
So there you have it. The Azores in a nutshell. Five stars, would definitely recommend. I'd also give ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ to team Kismarton. We all know traveling is a make-or-break moment in any relationship, and I think I can safely say, we're ready to get more serious.
And now, a few more of those photos I promised you (yet another reason our friends were great travel companions... they took great pics!)
And remember, how many shades of green can you see??