The island group known as the Azores (or in Portuguese ”the Açores) are a group of Portuguese islands situated out in the mid-Atlantic approx. 1,500 km. from Lisbon and 3,900 km. from the east coast of the USA. The area is an autonomous region under Portugal. The nine islands that make up the group are spread out over an area of more than 600 km. in diameter. All the islands are volcanic in origin. The islands´ highest point is the volcano, Montanha do Pico, which at a height of 2,351 m. is also the highest mountain top in Portugal.
The group of islands consists of nine separate islands: São Miguel, Terceira, Santa Maria, Faial, Pico, Graciosa, São Jorge, Flores and Corvo. The largest town is Ponta Delgada on São Miguel with approx. 28,000 inhabitants. There are four other large towns: Ribeira Grande on São Miguel, Angro do Heroismo and Praia de Vitoria on Terceira and Horta on Faial. In total, the population of all nine islands is approx. 245,000.