Toronto to the Azores, Portugal | $369 roundtrip including taxes
It looks like SATA is offering some really cheap flights from Toronto to the Azores in April 2014. Considering even the cheapest of the cheapest flights to Europe tend to be around $600-$700 roundtrip from YYZ these days, it's certainly a price that sticks out, even if the Azores are not mainland Europe (but are a part of Portugal).
To find this price, have a look at SATA's website:
To: Ponta Delgada (PDL)
Departure: April 05 or April 12
Return: April 19
Select the 'Flexible Dates' option to bring up a calendar that makes it easier to compare date combinations and prices.
There might be some other cheap date combinations available if you have a look at March or possibly even into May.
UPDATE 1: Feb 12, 2014 - It looks like prices have dropped a little bit more, down to $330 roundtrip including taxes.
screenshot of verified price:
It also looks like Toronto to Lisbon, Portugal (LIS) can be had for $465 roundtrip including taxes - which is nearly 50% cheaper than the next cheapest fares on any other airline! Try April 08 to April 18 for example.
About the Azores
I had the opportunity to visit the Azores in October of 2013. In fact, it was on the same SATA flight into Ponta Delgada via Toronto.
Leading up to the trip, I think I only ran into one or two people who even knew where the Azores were. They are in the middle of the Atlantic, about two-thirds of the way from North America to Europe.
The Azores are made up of 9 islands, and I visited 4 of them (Sao Miguel, Pico, Faial, and Terceira) in about 10 days. You can find SATA flights between most of the islands, but a lot of them connect through Ponta Delgada (PDL), which is by far the largest city.
Climbing Pico mountain at sunrise was one of the highlights for me...
...along with hiking around some cool looking caldeiras (collapsed volcano) such as Lagoa do Fogo.
I had also hoped to spot some whales up close, as the Azores are known for being one of the best whale and dolphin watching spots in the world, but October turned out to be a sparse month for whales in 2013. April is actually supposed to be a very good month for whale watching.
Overall, I'd recommend the Azores to the more independent traveler, perhaps with at least a few countries under their belt. You won't find a lot of tourist infrastructure in the Azores, or great public transportation. You pretty much need to rent a car, and organize your own sight-seeing.
I would also recommend it for people that like to hike, or enjoy getting away from other tourists, in a very isolated place that is often named the 'most sustainable' tourism destination. A few Germans here and there were about the only other tourists I saw in October. The Azores definitely has an authentic feel to it, which can be hard to find these days.
If you have any questions about the Azores, feel free to comment below, or post your question in the YYZ Deals Facebook Group, and myself or someone else in the group that's been to the Azores can try to help.
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