Tuesday, 15 December 2009


I'm often asked what the weather is like in the Azores.

Being much further north than the Canaries and Madeira, the weather is correspondingly not as good as in these holiday hot-spots and I answer the question by saying the weather here is pretty similar to the west coast of Britain in terms of sunny, windy, rainy, cloudy-ness but about 10 degrees centigrade (18F) warmer over the year.

That figure of 10 degrees was one I'd sort of plucked out of the air by educated guesswork hitherto but I actually sat down the other night and compared three years of mean temperature statistics from Flores airport with those of Benbecula airport on an island off the west coast of Scotland (stats obtainable off the world wide interweb) and, lo and behold, the average difference was precisely 10 degrees C. (That's another question I'm asked a lot - what do you do all day? Well there you have the answer and it's a damn sight more fun that what I used to do, I can tell you.)

That's Benbecula airport above. Flores airport below:-

As it happens, the weather's a bit of a hot topic here just now. It's a fact of life on Flores that, in winter, you can't take it for granted that the plane will be able to land. So, if you're booking a flight from Lisbon to Scotland on a Friday, it's prudent to fly from Flores to Lisbon on the Wednesday so as to build in a day's slack in case the plane can't land on Wednesday and you don't get away till Thursday. If the plane does manage to land, then that means an extra night in Lisbon but, as we are flying to Scotland from Lisbon on Friday and the mid-week weather chart is looking like this (the Azores being right in the eye of that storm):-

... that extra day's slack is looking like quite a good insurance policy right now. The wind hasn't started to blow yet and if you don't hear from me again you can take it no news is good news.


Kathie said...

Bet you'll enjoy that comparatively mild Azores weather after a winter solstice stint in frigid Scotland! Wish I were in the Azores (or California) right now, instead of hiding out indoors from a freezing-rain storm this morning. Can't seem to recall just why I thought moving away from California would be such a great idea, lo these many decades ago...

Kathie said...

Yoo-hoo! Did you guys fall into the Firth of Forth, or something? I need my Flores fix, stat! Also, please let me know if you got the calendar in the mail.