Faial was an important staging port for ships traveling between the Americas and Europe and is now a stopover for modern yachts and sailing vessels.
The yachts sail in from all four corners of the globe. Crews retain their fascination for Faial for days, weeks and even months, spending hours socializing in the cosmopolitan and renowned Café Peter. Before taking their leave, seafaring travelers leave behind them a picture of their boat on the marina wall-thus transforming the wall into a rainbow of art and imagination. The Horta marina is also the point of departure for big-game fishing boats which, year after year, catch record-breaking fish. The ocean surrounding the island is an immense aquarium where blue and white swordfish, tuna and dogfish are ready to engage fishermen in vigorous battle. Faial's reputation for water sports is complemented by its underwater observation. And the highlight is surely the Semana de Mar (Ocean Week) in August with its Yachting regattas and whaleboat races, a lively festival which sets the entire city alight.
Faial Island , also known in English as Fayal, is a Portuguese island of the Central group (Grupo Central) of the Azores. Its area is 173 km² and it is located 28.7° W longitude and 38.6° N latitude. The nearest island is Pico Island to the east. The island is also referred to as Ilha Azul (the "Blue Island"), by poet Raul Brandão, due to the large quantity of Hydrangeas that bloom during the summer months.