Disney Cruise Line and Its Ports of Call LIVE! Guidebook

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Making the Most of Ponta Delgada, Portugal

Making the Most of Ponta Delgada, Portugal


GETTING THERE

The Disney Magic calls on Punto Delgada twice is 2017, on both the Eastbound and Westbound Transatlantic voyages. In both cases, she'll be the only cruise ship in port. Tour buses and taxis (flat rates) will be waiting as you disembark, and Autatlantis car rental has a desk in the terminal (http://www.autatlantis.com). The modern cruise pier is lined with cafés and shops, and you'll reach a very attractive waterfront promenade at the end of the wharf. The marina (and most boat and scuba tour operators) will be to the right, but most sights and shopping are to the left, including the City Gates, Church of São Sebastião, and the São Brás fortress/museum. On May 20, 2017 All Ashore is 7:00 am, All Aboard is 3:45 pm. On September 21, 2017 All Ashore is 8:15 am, All Aboard is 2:00 pm.

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ACTIVITIES

Disney's lineup of shore excursions is remarkably low-priced. The island's natural, volcanic beauty figures in many shore trips.  Fogo (Fire) Lake, near the island's center, the lakes of Sete Cidades on the island's west end, and Lago das Furnas on the east end are volcanic crater lakes surrounded by forested slopes, and are centerpieces of tours to those three regions. These excursions often include visits to the islands many hot springs. The north shore town of Ribiera Grande, its beautiful Misericórda Church, and the hot springs of Caldiera Velha factor into several tours of the central part of the island. Though neither is native to the Azores, visits to tea or pineapple plantations are featured on several tours (the pineapples are greenhouse-grown). For the price, who can resist either Sete Cidades Lake Vistas, Botanical Garden and Pineapple Plantation (PD01, $29/$24 ages 3-9, 4 hours) or Fogo Lake, Ribiera Grade and Pineapple Plantation (PD06, $26/$23 ages 3-9, 4 hours)? Whale and dolphin watching is also popular, with the widest variety of species seen from April through June. Noteworthy on the Disney excursion list is a swim with the dolphins experience that takes place in open waters, rather than the usual, captive training pen (PD11, $135/$101 ages 8-9). Another intriguing active excursion, Canyoning in the Azores (PD09, $95 ages 12+, 5-5.5 hours) takes you climbing, rappelling, and jumping into the waters of a cascading canyon. Wow!

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SAFETY

The crime rate in the Azores is quite low, though normal precautions should always be taken if you're walking around town. The weather here is often cloudy, and temperatures will often be in the comfortable low 70s; just don't let those factors lull you into skipping your sun block!

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