Flag of Azores
The Azores is an autonomous region of Portugal, an archipelago consisting of nine volcanic islands in the northern Atlantic Ocean (850 miles west of Portugal). In 1427, the Portuguese explorer Goncalo Velho Cabral claimed the Azores for Portugal, and settlers arrived on the islands from 1433 to 1436. Ponta Delgada became the largest settlement in the islands, and the Spanish-led Portuguese monarchy recaptured the city from the armies of France, England, the United Provinces, and the Portuguese forces led by Antonio, Prior of Cato in 1583 during the Anglo-Spanish War and War of the Portuguese Succession. Today, the Portuguese government is responsible for the economy of the islands, with much of the population having farming-related jobs. In 2012, the Azores had a population of 245,746 people.