Algarve to be “special guest” at major tourism fair next year

The Algarve has been announced as the “special guest” of BTL 2016, the annual tourism fair that will be held in Lisbon between March 2-6.

Considered to be Portugal’s largest tourism fair, the Bolsa de Turismo de Lisboa (BTL) brings together the country’s tourism destinations in an attempt to promote the best that Portugal has to offer.

Algarve tourism chief Desidério Silva is happy about the announcement and said that being BTL’s special guest will be “the perfect opportunity for the public and trade business to learn more about the Algarve’s tourism, which goes way beyond just the sun and beach”.

Silva explained that nature, gastronomy, wine, golf and residential tourism also offer “unique experiences that make the Algarve the favourite destination of the Portuguese”.

On a closing note, he said that being BTL’s special guest is the “cherry on the cake” at a time when the Algarve is “breaking records and winning international awards, such as being named ‘Best Beach Destination’ at the World Travel Awards, the Oscars of tourism”.

Exhibition organiser Fátima Vila Maior explained that the fact that the Algarve is the country’ biggest tourism destination weighed heavily on the decision to have the region as “guest of honour”.

“We cannot forget that the Algarve has a relevant and strategic importance in the internal and external markets, and thus it is the right choice for next year’s event,” she said, adding that visitors will “certainly learn more” about what the region has to offer.

The Alentejo and the Azores were the previous special guests in 2015 and 2014.