There aren't enough superlatives to describe Quinta das Acacias and the hospitality of Bonita and Ed Sousa. Long before our arrival at the Quinta, Bonita answered all of my questions via email very promptly and professionally. She offered to make a car reservation for us and secured a very good rate with Hertz. We were 2 women interested in hiking, horseback riding and outdoor activities and she offered great suggestions. Before our early Sat. morning arrival into Ponta Delgada Bonita had sent maps and a suggestion for a beautiful breakfast spot on the beach. She allowed us to check in early and gave us directions to a large grocery store so we could stock our beautiful cottage. We felt right at home in the cottage which was immaculately clean, had all the conveniences of home and is set in a garden setting of stunning flowers, sculptures and herbs. Bonita showed me where all the herbs were and encouraged us to use them for cooking. She even gave us a recipe. Bonita made reservations for us at a vegetarian restaurant in Ponta Delgada when she learned I was a vegetarian. She has lots of hiking trail maps available and recommended several of her favorites. She also told us about the hot springs at Poca Dona Beija in Furnas which felt heavenly after one of our hikes. Perhaps the highlight of our 8 day stay on the island was our full day of horseback riding that Bonita booked for us to Sete Cidades with Quinta da Terca stables just down the road from Quinta das Acacias. Sophie, our guide for the day, was lovely. She paired up rider and horse so that those of us who were novices felt comfortable. The horses were extremely well behaved and patient. We rode around the crater and had stunning views of the blue and green lakes way below. The weather was perfectly clear so our vistas were breathtaking. We then descended into the crater floor and rode around the 2 lakes, even coaxing our horses into the water to play. Lunch was a sight to be seen and enjoyed! We were treated to tables set up along one of the lakes with table clothes, china and glasses for our delicious home cooked tuna salad, fruit, bread, cheese and bottles of local wine.
Ed is an artist, gardener, and wealth of knowledge about his homeland. He has created a peaceful haven for relaxation. The wall enclosed property is full of his creations and is a joy to come back to after a day of sightseeing. The location in the small village of Livramento is convenient to get to every place. A perfect place!