How lucky is booking tickets 6 months in advance and still get the biggest swell of the year during your stay? The Azores archipelago is secluded in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean and as you may imagined, its coastline gets smashed by plenty of swells when Autumn kicks in. We had our flight booked for 7 days in October and even though it was in the peak period, we were only there for a week so the risk of not getting any swells was high, especially with the luck we had in 'Ulang Tahun' & 'Maybe Tomorrow'. We took the bet and I guess the wheel of fortune has turned for us, thankfully.
After a short flight from Lisbon, we arrive at night in São Miguel, the biggest island of the archipelago. A good night of sleep and we're on for business the next day as a fun swell hits the coastline.
It's the first time there for all of us and except what we had seen on the web, we didn't know much about the place. We quickly reach out to our number one guy on location: Pedro Correia.
Pedro or Pedrim as he's best known is a local bodyboarder from Azores, total ripper and full time frother. We meet with the man in a cafe on the first day and he was amped like a kid. Super happy and stoked to show us around his home soil. We don't waste too much time, we drink a quick coffee and head to the spot.
A pretty big black sand beach with a huge cliff and some super fun sand-bottomed wedges that make for a place that reminds us a lot of the more than famous Javanese bay in Indonesia. The first few days were just 3 to 4 ft perfect & incredibly fun little wedges close to shore. Adding to these warm waters and a mellow crowd, It's hard to picture a better type of session than this.
The crew paddles out and they start tearing apart the whole place until the last hint of light, pushing the crew's cameras ISO to their limits.
The fest goes on for 3 days until the swell starts to fade, giving us some time ro rest and enjoy even more the true beauty of the island.
The Azores is an archipelago, formed by nine islands, discovered and settled by the Portuguese in the beginning of the 15th century. Our host island, São Miguel, is the biggest one of the archipelago. The island is famous for it's volcanic landscape as well as its rich & diverse marine wildlife. Because of his geographical position in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, we learn that the weather (Or at least our iPhone Weather App) in Sao Miguel is absolutely not reliable. Sao Miguel literally has four seasons in one day. We could wake up to heavy rain & stormy weather then gets a big bright blue sky all day 30 minutes later while rain was forecasted the entire day.
With plenty of incredible landscapes, hikes & waves for all abilities, São Miguel is a must do for every nature lover. Local airlines are operating daily quick & affordable flights from Lisbon, Portugal. And if you're not sold yet, the food is as incredible as the landscape and the cost of living is fairly cheap.
After a bit of rest & tourist time we were getting ready for a huge swell. The swell was so big we didn't really know if we were going to be able to find something rippable. We showed up to the wedge first thing in the morning and it was just all time. 6 to 8 ft perfect wedges with the most perfect ramp you could ask for. Full froth from the whole team, they get suited pretty quickly, paddle out and start the carnage.
It was just nonstop back to back punt from everyone and in only a few power hours of bodyboarding the crew had clicked off the end section of the movie.
One of the most unexpected and intense session we’ve witnessed in recent years at one of the most beautiful location we’ve been given to visit.
That swell turned out to be the biggest of the year and local said they hadn't seen that place as good in years.
Well, thank you Azores, thank you Mother Nature.