Europe

Azores, Portugal

The best places to run on São Miguel, Terceira, and Pico

Creative Commons: Feliciano Guimarães

The Azores are an archipelago of nine volcanic islands located in the North Atlantic Ocean, about 1,400 km west of Lisbon. They’ve become an increasingly popular visitor destination, for their beautiful coastline and interior mountains with lush vegetation. The gorgeous scenery can be enjoyed via the terrific network of well-waymarked walking and hiking trails. Our guide to running in the Azores is focused on the three most visited islands: São Miguel, Terceira, and Pico.

Finding a good place to run in the Azores can be tricky — the interior is typically hilly, most roads lack a sidewalk or shoulder, and some of the trails can be quite rugged. So for each island, we’ve researched safe & scenic coastal routes, bucolic interior roads that are lightly trafficked and not too hilly, and the ‘easier’ walking/hiking trails that are good for easy-moderate trail running.

Note that the climate in the Azores, while mild, can be very changeable, and can vary depending on location on the island. Winters can be cloudy and wet, but temperatures rarely fall below 10C. Also note that most of the roads on the Azores lack a sidewalk or shoulder. We’ve researched the roads that tend to be lightly trafficked, but caution should be used.

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São Miguel: Furnas Lake Loop

Azores, Portugal

Easy and scenic 6 km loop on a path around this popular lake. Great views of the lake, surrounding mountains, and lovely trees and flowers. There are hot springs at the lake's southern end. Also possible to run from Furnas (hilly!).
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