Trail Running in the Azores Islands

Written by Sonia Pietrangelo and originally published in the Winter 2017/18 edition of our Trail Times newsletter.

In the middle of the North Atlantic Ocean, halfway between North America and Continental Europe lies the unique and breathtaking archipelago known as the Azores. This autonomous region of Portugal consists of nine mysterious volcanic islands of untouched beauty whose spectacular landscapes have been carefully preserved over time. In this modest Portuguese territory, and on the islands of Faial, Pico, São Jorge, and Santa Maria the thrill-seeking adventurer will experience an event like no other – The Azores Trail Run® group of trail races. These challenging races consist of technical terrain and breathtaking landscapes that will leave you in awe.

Experience the rare privilege running through centuries-old trails, around one of the most beautiful bays in the world, across and around volcanoes and craters, through the surreal aftermath of a modern day volcanic eruption, up the highest mountain in all of Portugal, down cliffs and ‘fajás’ known nowhere else in the world, around the island that Christopher Columbus made his port of call on his journey back from the America’s some 500+ years ago, and following the route that pays homage to the Great Whalers that sustained these people.

  • Azores Trail Run has an event for everyone from beginner to experienced or ultra, from 10km to 125km, from one island to three.
  • Azores Trail Run Columbus Trail (Island of Santa Maria): February 24, 2018 (Grand Trail 76km, Marathon, Half Marathon).
  • Azores Trail Run (Island of Faial): May 25 & 26, 2018 (Whalers’ Great Route Ultra Trail 125km, Ultra Blue Island 65km, Coast to Coast 42km, Ten Volcanoes 25km, Family Trail 10km, Pico Vertical Kilometre).
  • Azores Trail Run Triangle Adventure 100km (Islands of Faial, Pico & São Jorge): October 5-7, 2018.

Learn more about races in the Azores at

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