Everyone knows that Portugal is a great place to spend a fun and cheap holiday, but now it’s official. In 2018, Portugal has been chosen the best tourist destination in the world for the second consecutive year in the World Travel Awards (WTA), the "Oscars of world tourism", held for the first time in Portugal at the Patio da Galé in Lisbon. The country, playing at home, scooped up 16 awards at this year’s event.
South Africa, Brazil, Spain, the United States, Greece, India, Indonesia, Jamaica, Malaysia, the Maldives, Morocco, New Zealand, Kenya, Rwanda, Sri Lanka and Vietnam. Portugal beat all sixteen of these destinations and retained the title of best in the world.
At the event held on Saturday 1st December 2018 in the Portuguese capital, the country was awarded 16 prizes, more than the seven trophies it won in 2017 and the four from 2016. It should be remembered that in June, Portugal had already been re-elected as the best tourist destination in Europe, also for the second time.
"We’re very proud to receive this award again," said Ana Mendes Godinho, Secretary of State for Tourism, quoted by Lusa. “Being world champions in tourism for the second consecutive year is a sign of international affirmation of the capacity of Portugal, thanks to the work of all Portuguese people. Portugal is undoubtedly a destination to see.”
Tourism generated income of 15 billion
"In the last three years, Portugal's international recognition has increased significantly," says Godinho, noting that, "Since 2015, the number of international articles on Portugal as a vacation destination has increased by 107%.”
In 2017, the turnover of the tourism sector, which represents 10% of GDP in Portugal, was more than 15 billion euro, with an increase of 23.6% over 2016 and a daily expenditure of 41 million euro, as reported by the idealista/news.
Ana Mendes Godinho reminds us that these figures are a "reward for all those working in the tourism sector," ensuring that the record of 24.1 million tourists in 2017 will be surpassed in 2018, and Portugal’s star looks set to keep rising in 2019.