The Azores are an archipelago, formed by nine islands, discovered and settled by the Portuguese in the beginning of the 15th century
Its main industries are agriculture, dairy farming, livestock, fishing, and tourism, which has become a major service activity in the region. The government of the Azores employs a large percentage of the population directly or indirectly in the service and tertiary sectors. The largest city of the Azores is Ponta Delgada. The culture, dialect, cuisine, and traditions of the Azorean islands vary considerably, because these remote islands were settled sporadically over a span of two centuries.