Portugal has been mentioned as a leading destination for vacation in many articles and placed in the top of various rankings. This year, World Travel Awards distinguished the country with several awards in different sections.
Photo credits: Bengt Nyman
Portugal conquering hearts
2018 is definitely the year of Portugal as an unmissable touristic place. World Travel Awards awarded Lisbon as Europe’s Leading City Destination 2018 and Portugal as Europe’s Leading Destination 2018.
Also, it is the third time in a row that Lisbon receives the award of Europe’s Leading Cruise Port 2018 and many Portuguese resorts and hotels conquered a prize in World Travel Awards this year. Regarding places hidden in the countryside, Madeira Islands were awarded as Europe’s Leading Island Destination 2018 and Passadiços do Paiva (Arouca UNESCO Global Geopark) as Europe’s Leading Adventure Tourist Attraction 2018.
Lisbon: the chosen place for a visit and for the stay
Lisbon has been in the top of the last rankings as a city break for tourists. The Telegraph explains the main reasons why Lisbon is such a desired destination, considering its restaurants, gastronomy, architecture, street art and closeness to the beach. There are other curious facts about the city: it is one of the world’s oldest ones, it is marked by Portugal’s role in the Age of Discovery and it gets more sun than anywhere else in Europe.
However, Lisbon is just not a city for a quick visit. Very recently it became the home of some celebrities: Monica Belluci, Michael Fassbender and Christin Louboutin bought their apartments in the typical neighbourhood of Alfama while Madonna is in the city’s spotlight because of her struggle to buy her ideal Portuguese house.
What really matters when moving abroad
The living cost, the sun and the quality of life are surely crucial factors that bring so many foreigners to Portugal. Nevertheless, when choosing this country to visit or to settle, there are two essential factors that strongly influence this decision: it is a safe destination and it has one of the few good healthcare systems in the world, as stated by the World Health Organization’s Director-General.
Lisbon cultural side and the welcoming start-up environment are the recent aspects of this city that have been recognized abroad. The capital of Portugal remains an attractive and trendy destination for tourists, people looking to relocate and entrepeneurs.
Lisbon got the first place in the “Culture Dynamism” ranking among cities between 500 000 and 1 million inhabitants, part of the “The Culture and Creative Cities Monitor” developed by the European Comission. The report explains how it got the top position: “In recent years, the local authorities have taken new action to strengthen the economic potential of arts, culture and creativity. Co-working spaces, fab labs and start-up incubators are now available in the rehabilitated urban areas. In addition to long-lived international events such as the Lisbon Architecture Triennale, the Lisbon Fashion Week and the Lisbon & Estoril Film Festival, the city has started to host new creativity-related events, such as the European Creative Hubs Forum in 2015, connecting over 200 creative hubs across Europe.”
If you are interested in exploring the city, the Guardian leaves you some tips in a recent article:
- Gulbenkian Museum and the gardens surrounding it, perfect for a relaxed afternoon under the sun.
- the MAAT, the most recent museum of the city and currently shortlisted in the category “Building of the year” in the World Architecture Festival.
- flea markets and bric-a-brac stores in different parts of the city.
- as well as multiple places to eat! Read the full article to learn more!
Start up environment
In the ranking by “PeoplePerHour”, a large UK-based platform for freelancers, Lisbon comes in fourth place in a world ranking, ahead of cities like San Diego (USA) and London (UK). The ranking evaluates aspects like life quality, cost of offices and easinness to start a new business.
Portugal is also the host city of the reknown WebSummit, “the largest tech conference in the world”, yet another proof of the city’s value for entrepeneurs.
Forbes contributor Ann Abel provides a dozen of reasons to love Lisbon, “a postcard-picturesque city”. Safety and affordability, architecture, historical landmarks, its welcoming inhabitants are only some of the charms of this city. But the food scene deserved a special remark from the author. We picked 5 things from her list when it comes to eating (and drinking) out:
José Avillez: This internationally renowned chef offers you many options around Lisbon. This article emphasizes the restaurant Belcanto, winner of two Michelin stars since chef Avillez renovated this 50-year-old restaurant, back in 2012. Bairro do Avillez, a recently opened multi-concept place that includes a traditional grocery shop, multiple choices for traditional Portuguese “fast food”, seafood and wine, is also mentioned in the article.
Palácio do Chiado: an 18th century palace now hosting seven restaurants and one bar, where the possibilities are multiple: eating traditional Portuguese food, sushi, burgers or simply enjoying a drink. All of this while admiring the unique architecture of this building.
Time Out Mercado da Ribeira: another multi-concept place, managed by the well-known magazine Time Out. There is a wide range of offer you can choose from, including dishes by some prominent Portuguese chefs, like Henrique Sá Pessoa.
Cervejaria Ramiro: if you are looking for a more traditional place with “white paper over tablecloths, wood paneling that likely hasn’t been updated since the place opened in the ’50s”, as Ann Abel describes it, and you love seafood, this may be your place.
Ginjinha: after the gastronomy route, you may want to finish with this liquor, a “Portuguese brandy infused with sour cherries and cinnamon”.
You can check Forbes’ full list here.
Read more about Lisbon:
US News explains why Lisbon is a perfect place for retirement
Esquire magazine names Lisbon one of the coolest cities in Europe
What do in Lisbon in one day, by Yahoo Australia