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Madalena

Trip Planner Europe  /  Portugal  /  Azores  /  Pico  /  Madalena
Madalena is a municipality along the western coast of the island of Pico, in the Portuguese Azores. The population in 2011 was 6,049, in an area of 147.12 km². The municipality is fronted by the stratovolcano Pico in the eastern frontier, and the Faial Channel which divides Pico from the island of Faial seven kilometers away. It is encircled almost entirely by the Atlantic Ocean except in the east, where it is bordered by São João (Lajes do Pico) in the southeast, and Santo António (São Roque do Pico) in the northeast.HistoryThe settlement of the island of Pico occurred much later than most islands, partly due to greater interest shown in the other islands of the Central Group. For a time, only small herds, deposited by property-owners from Faial and Terceira, along with their caretakers (some of whom were slaves), were the only inhabitants of the island. It was not until the Infanta Beatriz proceeded to reorganize island administration and promote a greater colonization of the islands of the Central Group (between 1470 and 1480) that this changed. In 1483, Faial and Pico were integrated into one Captaincy, under the Flem Josse van Huerter, and settlers were encouraged to colonize the island of Pico. But even still, the area of Madalena, with its rocky coastal plain, did not attract many new settlers and the community did not expand significantly until the municipality was created in 1723.
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