This is the seventh time that the region has been bestowed with the accolade from the World Travel Awards, which were announced on 2 November.
Often deemed to be the “Oscars” of the travel industry, the World Travel Awards, bring together leaders of the travel and tourism industry who annually participate in this initiative and vote to reward the best tourism offers at a global level.
Turismo do Algarve, the Algarve tourism board, considers the distinction achieved this year is of particular importance. “In a year as troubled as 2020, receiving this award and continuing to earn the trust of travellers from all over the world is a sign of confidence in the future. This distinction recognises not only the quality of our beaches, but also shows that the Algarve continues to be a safe destination for holidays, complying with all the rules defined for the protection of public health”, said João Fernandes, the president of Turismo do Algarve.
Fernandes highlighted that the Algarve was one of the first European regions to open the bathing season for the summer while guaranteeing all safety conditions. “Strengthening the security of the destination and regaining the confidence of tourists has been our priority since the beginning of the pandemic”, said João Fernandes.
“There was a great joint effort by the whole region to put these measures in place, which proved to be essential to consolidate our image of being the Best European Beach Destination. Receiving this international distinction validates all this work and proves that the Algarve is capable of adapting to new circumstances, without altering the quality and authenticity of the experiences that can be discovered by tourists here.”
The beauty and diversity of the beaches in the Algarve, the year round good weather and the opportunity to enjoy various activities and sports-related to the sea are some of the characteristics most valued by those who choose the Algarve beaches. The Algarve also has 87 blue flag beaches and 48 beaches with the necessary accessibility for people with disabilities.
The awards have helped Turismo do Algarve to promote the region to various markets while also highlighting the diversity the region has to offer visitors. “Together with all those who visit us to discover our exceptional beaches, we then seek to promote a rich and diverse region to discover - ranging from golf, nautical tourism and nature tourism, to culture and gastronomy in the region,” concluded João Fernandes.
While the Best Beach Destination in Europe Award is seen as a highlight, the region and Portugal as a whole also picked up a whole host of awards this year.
Portugal as a whole was voted as Europe’s Leading destination, while Madeira took the award for Europe’s Leading Island Destination and the Azores was voted as Europe’s Leading Adventure Tourism Destination.
Other awards given to Portugal include the Pestana Porto Santo All Inclusive Beach & Spa Resort which was voted as Europe’s Leading All-Inclusive Resort, Sublime Comporta voted as Europe’s Leading Boutique Hotel. 1908 Lisboa Hotel was given the award for Europe’s Leading Design Hotel, Pestana CR7 Lisboa was Europe’s Leading Lifestyle Hotel and Conrad Algarve was Europe’s Leading Lifestyle Resort, Vale Verde Hotel received Europe’s Leading Boutique Hotel award, Belmond Reid’s Palace was recognised as Europe’s Leading Luxury Hotel and Dunas Douradas Beach Club as Europe’s Leading Luxury Resort & Villas.
Porto was voted as Europe’s Leading City Break Destination, Europe’s Leading City Tourist Board was Turismo de Lisboa and Europe’s Leading Cruise Destination and Cruise Port was given to Lisbon. Finally L’AND Vineyards was Europe’s Leading Wine Region Hotel, Monte Santo Resort Europe’s Most Romantic Resort and Dark Sky Alqueve was awarded with Europe’s Responsible Tourism Award.