Breaking down the Azores’ weather:
What you can expect during each season
The great thing about the Azores is that due to its mild temperatures year-round, there’s no such thing as an “off season” here. In general, the climate is very similar to that of San Francisco in the United States, meaning it’s relatively mild year-round and a bit more humid in the summer. Since the Azores are located in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, the weather can change quickly, so it’s good to always be prepared for an unexpected rain shower. The locals like to say that in the Azores, you can experience all four seasons in one day, so it’s best to leave the house prepared for anything. Our advice is that you bring a lightweight jacket, umbrella, sunglasses and sunscreen with SPF with you to the Azores — you may find yourself needing it all on your trip! The good news is that the Azores are perfectly situated geographically, allowing these idyllic islands to never get too cold or too hot. For this reason, and so many more, we have a feeling you’re going to like it here!
Due to their unique position on the Gulf Stream, the Azores maintain a temperate, subtropical climate with mild air and ocean temperatures all year long. Average temperatures sit comfortably at about 13ºC (55ºF) in the winter, and 24ºC (75ºF) in the summer. The Azores Islands are fairly humid and prone to quickly shifting weather patterns, which are the reason the archipelago’s beautiful landscapes are always so lush and green. also noteworthy to mention is that the Azores Islands have several microclimates, depending on whether you’re by the sea, at the top of a mountain, or visiting the hot springs, so think layers when dressing to go out each day.
Here’s what you can expect during each season in the Azores Islands: Any time of the year is a great time to visit the Azores!
December to March
Wondering what to do in the Azores during the off-season? Well, starting with the deeply discounted airfares offered during this window, autumn and winter are wonderful times to plan an escape to this idyllic archipelago. You’ll be able to find our Azores travel deal for half the price if you choose to visit during this season. An added bonus is that Azores Getaways has a special winter offer to the gorgeous Terceira Island! Click here to find out our special Winter offers if you’re flying out of Boston to Azores, and here if you’re flying from Toronto to Azores. Think of anything you’d normally do in the Azores during the other seasons, and add these factors to the equation: a bit less warm, far less people and crowds, much cheaper fares, and still just as incredibly beautiful!
- Average temperature during winter in the Azores: between 14ºC (57ºF) and 16ºC (60ºF)
- Coldest day of the year in the Azores: February 9
- Rainiest month of the year in the Azores: December/ early January
March to June
Fast following the arrival of March, flower season is in full bloom in the Azores, highlighted by the sun that’s beginning to shine more brightly through the islands’ mystic fog. For those who are used to strict and frigid, snow-filled winters, spring in the Azores will feel like total summer. By late May and early June, there are already people heading to the beaches and natural swimming pools, as the ocean is already plenty warm, ultra calming, and absolutely inviting.
Spring is also the perfect season for hiking, offering you wonderful temperatures that are not too hold but not too cold, but also miles and miles of trails dotted by the most heavenly floral blooms Mother Nature provides. Are you ready to plan your spring Azores vacation? We guarantee that we have an Azores travel deal that is perfect for you. If not, Azores Getaways will be pleased to create an itinerary from scratch, uniquely curated just for you to ensure you get your dream Azores trip.
- Average temperature during spring in the Azores: between 14ºC (57ºF) and 18ºC (64ºF)
June to September
Wondering what summer in the Azores is like? Imagine the Garden of Eden, then multiply it times at least 10. And then, add 100 times the beauty to that! And of all the seasons, summer in the Azores makes these Portuguese islands look even more idyllic. The pros to planning your Azores adventure during the summer is that the weather is absolutely perfect to go to the beach and do all kinds of outdoor activities.
As for the cons, the Azores summer season sees many more people arriving in the islands for their vacation, which inevitably means slightly higher prices for things like fares and accommodations. During summer in the Azores, you won’t have to think twice before diving in that sparkling waterfall after a vigorous hike, the water will be the perfect temperature and everything will be just ideal. And we must mention the sunsets, which are postcard worthy and will make all of your Instagram followers green with envy once you post all your sunset snaps.
Summer is especially the time when Azoreans love to get outside to watch the sunsets while toasting an end to the day with some friends and local spirits. And again with the flowers, because you cannot forget the summer flowers in the Azores-- especially keep your eyes peeled for the hydrangeas, which are in full bloom during the summer months! Summer festivals and other popular island festivities also take place from June to September, and you’ll be welcome to join any of these exciting local celebrations.
- Average temperature during summer in the Azores: between 19ºC (66ºF) and 22ºC (71ºF)
September to December
If you like the summer breeze, but could do without the heat of this hottest season, early autumn would be the perfect time for your Azores trip. The hydrangeas are still in bloom, the temperatures remain warm and pleasant but not overbearing, and the larger crowds of tourists that the summer months draw have already long gone. So, for travelers looking for a more quiet and relaxing holiday, autumn is a great option. You can do everything you’ve imagined, just as in the height of the summer months, just count on some occasional rain, as spring is the time of extra showers in the Azores.
- Average temperature during autumn in the Azores: between 15ºC (59ºF) and 21ºC (69ºF)
Best Time to Come to the Azores for:
Although, as we have mentioned, anytime is a great time to visit the Azores, there are a few special activities that have ideal time windows in the Azores. Read on to see which of your favorite activities is listed below, and the optimum time to come experience them for yourself in the most beautiful islands in the world.
The peak season for whale watching in the Azores begins in April and runs through October, with the exception of sperm whale sightings, which are commonplace year round. The types of whales you will be able to catch a glimpse of will vary depending on the exact times of year you visit the islands as well. The larger whales, like the beloved blue whales of the Azores, are most prevalent during the months of April and May, and October is the hot month for humpbacks to be spotted.
Although you may be like most people, who assume that hiking season only starts in the spring and is over once summer comes to an end, when speaking of the Azores, all those rules go right out the window! Here, hiking is always a good idea, and it is never too cold or too hot to enjoy a happy trekking adventure in the beautiful Azores outdoors. In fact, fall and winter are actually some of the best seasons to visit the island trails, as they are far less crowded than they would be in the summer. It is worthy to note that during the winter season, it does get rainier, but don’t let that deter you, just plan ahead and pack appropriate weather attire so you can still hit the trails!
Horse lovers will be thrilled to learn that the Azores is an equestrian’s dream destination. You may even be pleasantly surprised to learn that these islands have some of the best-trained Lusitano and Cruzado Portuguese horses, with several tour operators on the islands available to saddle you up and offer you your dream ride(s) in paradise. No matter what season you decide to arrive in the Azores, you will be delighted to find plenty of rides available, taking you through the most awe-inspiring landscapes and providing you with postcard-worthy views across the Atlantic Ocean--as far as the eye can see. Add to that the promise of a trail ride through peaceful rolling hillsides and idyllic green pastures on your choice of several rides--from short to multi-day long treks--and the only issue won’t be when is a good time to come ride, but why are you waiting?
For those specifically intrigued by geotourism, the Azores has a proverbial treasure chest of adventures that will be right up your alley. The volcanology offerings of the Islands alone are enough to keep you busy your entire trip. Although these once in a lifetime geotourism experiences can most definitely be visited year-round, the majority of the caves that are open to the general public have specific opening hours during a part of the year (usually operational in peak seasons of spring and summer).
If you adore all things avian and are an avid bird enthusiast, the Azores will quickly become your favorite place to watch and learn, literally. You will be thrilled to know that massive colonies of Cory's Shearwater and Roseate Terns, among many other feathered friends including the authentic Atlantic Canary, call the Azores home. It is worthy to note that while you can catch a glimpse of beautiful birds year-round, the most ideal time to get a gander at these gorgeous creatures is during the spring and fall, since this is the window of time that the birds go through their migratory process and nest.