Horta, Azores. How gorgeous is this little Portuguese town?? ? Way out in the Atlantic, the Azores are a third of the way to the US from Portugal, and the island of Faial here is a popular stopover for sailors making the Atlantic crossing. ? ? I found myself out here through a last minute opportunity. I was horse (and house) sitting four rescue horses, a newly rescued foal, a cat, two dogs, and a brood of hens for a few weeks. ? ? The Azores are very similar to New Zealand, a similar climate, similar plants, similar close ocean drop-off ripe for whalewatching. ? ? It was out here I passed my 30th birthday, I can't think of a more wonderful place to do so. I wouldn't have ever found my way here (or even heard of the Azores) had all my plans not fallen through at the last moment. ? ? I truly feel I got lucky, and this is just one of many occasions in my travels that something fell through with moments to spare, only for an even more wonderful opportunity to present itself instead.