Graciosa, the white island is the second smallest among the Azorean islands. Its landscape is marked by gentle volcanic hills and, unlike the other islands, Graciosa has settlements spread all over the island. Sometimes the island is also named being a small edition of Terceira.
The gracious white island
Traditionally Graciosa was the grain chamber of the Azores, meanwhile wheat has been replaced by cows. What stayed are the numerous old windmills, some of them carefully restored. Green as the other islands, Graciosa, the white island, might have gotten its nickname from the bright colored rocks which can be found on the south coast. The south of the island is dominated by the 405 m high crater Caldeira de Graciosa.
Due to its size, Graciosa can be explored by car in a day. Besides the two larger places Santa Cruz and Praia, you should not miss the Caldeira and the Furna do Enxofre. A volcanic cave with a small sulfuric lake, which you can reach by climbing the stairs down into the volcanic cove. The Termas de Carapacho on the south eastern tip of the island are a thermal spa dating back to the XIX century located directly at the sea front.
Graciosa measures only 12 km by 8 km, and has about 4500 inhabitants. The island has daily flights to Terceira and during summer times there are occasional ferry connections to the neighboring islands but check the schedule in advance.