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Portuguese island voted best in Europe

12 June 2019 - Evening Standard

Undecided on where to holiday this summer?

You might want to consider a stint on the stunning island of Madeira, which was just voted 'Europe’s Leading Island Destination' in the 2019 World Travel Awards.

The volcanic island, which forms part of an archipelago south-west of Portugal along with Porto Santo and the Desertas islands, enjoys a sub-tropical climate, meaning you can expect year-round mild temperatures.

In addition to its breathtaking natural beauty, with its mountainous terrain and rugged coastline, it's an emerging foodie destination, known for its fantastic local seafood and wine tasting. It's location in the middle of the Atlantic also makes it a prime spot for scuba diving and dolphin and whale watching. 

There's plenty to do on the island, too. Explore the network of around 3,000km of levadas (irrigation channels), visit the capital city of Funchal and its colourful Old Town or take a boat ride to admire the island's spectacular coastline. Meanwhile beach lovers should head to Porto Santo, known as the "Golden Island," for its turquoise waters and silky sands. 

For more reasons to visit the island, check out our guide to Madeira, including a review of the Belmond Reid’s Palace, widely considered one of the island's finest hotels. 

Portugal did well in the awards overall, scooping Europe's Leading Destination for 2019, meanwhile Lisbon was named best city break destination, The Algarve was crowned leading beach destination and the five-star Hotel Quinta do Lago was named Europe's Leading Beach Resort for 2019. 

Other notable wins included Capri Palace Hotel & Spa in Italy, which scooped "Europe's Leading Beach Hotel 2019" and Santo Maris Oia Luxury Suites & Spa in Greece, which was named Europe's Leading Boutique Resort 2019.

Russia's St Petersburg and Batumi in Georgia were each crowned best city destination and best emerging destination respectively.

Source: Evening Standard


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