Oviedo is TAP’s 11th new destination in 2014

Portuguese airline strengthens its market lead in the Iberian Peninsula. 

TAP has announced the eleventh new route it is to launch in 2014. It will connect Lisbon and Oviedo from 1 July, and enable the Portuguese airline to strengthen its leadership in carrying passengers between the two Iberian countries.

The launch of the Oviedo service has been made possible because of an important change to the fleet operated by PGA — Portugália Airlines, with the replacement of two 19-seater Beechcraft 1900-D aircraft with two modern 46-seater ATR 42-600s, which also have a longer range.

There are many advantages to using the new ATR aircraft, including being able to improve the in-flight service and consequently customer satisfaction, greater reliability, seats that are more comfortable, lower noise levels, faster turnarounds, improved cost effectiveness, the ability to operate longer flights with greater options for use, lower fuel consumption per passenger per kilometre and lower CO2 emissions.

TAP routes currently using Beechcraft aircraft will in the future be served by the ATRs, representing a large increase in the number of seats on offer. This could result in an increase in the number of seats available to other destinations operated by the company.
Oviedo will become the eighth Spanish city with direct TAP flights, joining Madrid and Barcelona (which have direct flights from Lisbon, Porto and Funchal), Seville, La Coruña, Bilbao, Malaga and Valencia.

In 2013 TAP carried 944,000 passengers between Portugal and Spain, a 6% increase on 2012. With the increase in the number of seats announced and with this new route, the Portuguese company is getting ready to be the first to carry one million passengers between destinations on the Iberian Peninsula.

Source: Tap Portugal 

Madeira Islands Open: 8-10 May 2014

Madeira Islands Open_Clube-Golfe Santo da Serra
The Madeira Islands Golf Open, which is part of the main PGA European Tour, is held in May at Santo da Serra Golfe club.

Santo da Serra Golf Club is is rated as one of the most spectacular golf courses in Europe, with staggering views from the mountains to the sea below.

The course was built in 1937 and was redesigned by Robert Trent Jones in 1991. It is located in Santo da Serra not far from Funchal and less than 15 minutes from Madeira International Airport.

With 27 holes available for play in 1998 all characterised by generous fairways, tight undulating greens and a choice of tee positions to suite all abilities. 

The Madeira Island Golf Open is a European calendar event, which every year attracts the best golfers to fight for victory hole by hole. According to the rules, the last two days of each tournament are played only by the 70 best contestants from the first two days.

If you are a golfer, don’t miss the chance of visiting the Madeira Islands that week and seeing for yourself the three excellent golf courses that Madeira and Porto Santo islands have to offer.

More information at:

Between 25-27 of April don't miss in Fronteira, the CEI Atoleiros – International Endurance Event

In April, the town of Fronteira, in Alentejo region, holds the CEI Atoleiros, an Endurance event named in honour of the historic battle that took place here in 1384.

This event involves a series of national and international equestrian endurance tests, of which the highlight is the 2 star CEI that runs for 120km. The event, which takes place on Sunday 27 April, incorporates the HH Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Flat Racing Festival, and will be attended by participants from every continent. 

This festival also includes three other races in Europe, to be held in Italy, France and Slovakia, and is sponsored by HH Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates.

The senior and junior National Portuguese Endurance Championships take place at the same time, as well as the rating for the 7th edition of the World Equestrian Games to be held in France from 24 August to 7 September.

More information at:


Easter mini-holidays in Portugal

©Turismo do Alentejo
Make the most of the Easter mini-holidays and discover Portugal with the whole family together!

Portugal has everything you need to make this a great trip: there’s a wide variety of tours available, entertainment to suit all ages, a mild climate and a country where you can feel entirely safe. 

Discover how we celebrate Easter in Portugal by visiting Porto and the North for the Holy Week festivities in the city of Braga, or travel south and appreciate the beauty of the Festivity of the Sovereign Mother and Festivity of the Flowered Torches in the Algarve

If you prefer something more active, travel to the Alentejo region and discover the various itineraries and routes on offer. Alternatively, visit Lisbon’s Parque das Nações that offers fun for the whole family. 

Another relaxing Easter break option is a trip to the Slate Villages, or one of the magnificent “Quintas da Madeira” country estates or a rural tourism house in the Azores… all offering the finesse and tradition of Portuguese hospitality

We urge you to accept our invitation and let yourself be seduced by the Spring in Portugal. 


Easter in the Algarve: Season of Folares, almonds and processions

Folar da Páscoa ©Turismo do Algarve
On Easter Sunday, people eat lamb, beans flavoured with mint, and homemade sausages, followed by folar (traditional Easter bread) and almonds.  Philharmonic music bands accompany the religious processions, and balconies and windows are decorated with colourful quilts.
The Good Friday procession, commemorating the burial of Jesus, takes place at night.  On Easter Sunday, there is the Procession to the Risen Christ.  The most important Easter processions are the Mãe Soberana (Sovereign Mother) celebration in Loulé and the Festa das Tochas Floridas, (Flower Torch Festival) in São Brás de Alportel.
In Loulé, the Easter Sunday celebrations start with Festa Pequena (Small Feast) in which the statue of the Pieta on its litter is brought down from the Hermitage of Our Lady of the Pieta, to the Church of St Francis, where it stays for two weeks.  The Festa Grande (Big Feast) culminates with the procession of the Pieta back up the steep slope to the Hermitage with the statue borne on the shoulders of men running up the slope.
In São Brás de Alportel, on Easter Sunday, men holding torches decorated with branches of lavender, rosemary, and country flowers form lines in a procession marking the Resurrection of Christ in a celebration linking the religious and the secular.

Lisbon is one of the "Travelers' choice: World's top 25 destinations" by TripAdvisor

TripAdvisor's sixth annual Travelers' Choice awards were chosen once again based on the quality and quantity of TripAdvisor users' reviews
and ratings over the past 12 months.

This year, at number 23, Lisbon breaks into the top 25 of the Global Destinations of 2014.
"The museums of Lisbon celebrate the rich history and culture of this Portuguese capital city. The Maritime Museum is perfect for kids (and grown-ups!) who adore all things nautical, while the Casa-Museu Dr. Anastácio Gonçalves is a hidden gem of colorful artwork. To fully appreciate the city’s dramatic stone architecture you can take a guided walking tour, or customize your own tour, making sure to visit the Padrao dos Descobrimentos, the Mosteiro dos Jeronimos, and the UNESCO World Heritage site the Torre de Belem." 

More information about the Travelers' Choice awards here.

For more tips about Lisbon, check the following links: Region
- Lisbon Brochure
- Lisbon City Breaks Brochure


Jet2 starts flying from East Midlands to Madeira

Jet2 will start flying from East Midlands to Madeira on April 8th, 2014. 

Later on this IATA Summer of 2014, Jet2 will start operations from Glasgow and Newcastle. Madeira Airport will be connected to five of Jet2 major bases: Manchester, Leeds, East Midlands, Glasgow and Manchester.

Flights from Glasgow start on May 26th, with one weekly frequency at Mondays. On the other hand, flights from Newcastle start on July the 4th, once a week, every Friday.Tickets are on sale at

These new operations from East Midlands, Glasgow and Newcastle represent more than 22 thousand seats from the UK market to Madeira and may reflect on the arrival of 9.600 additional tourists this Summer.

The UK is the second largest source market to Madeira, 441.328 passengers were registered in 2013, a market share of 18,6% on Madeira Airport. Flying toMadeira since 2010, Jet2 has a fleet of 50 aircrafts and serves over 50 destinations, from its home bases in the UK.

Jet2 flew over 42 thousand passengers to Madeira in 2013, from Manchester and Leeds.
“Jet2 traffic has been growing substantially at Madeira Airport, not only with the increase of number of seats but also launching new routes to regional airports in the UK. This combines with our strategy to consolidate an important market and stimulate demand from different market segments like youth and families.”, said Duarte Ferreira, Madeira Airports Director.
Steve Heapy, Chief Executive of said: "We're delighted to be launching our first flights between Funchal and East Midlands today. Our low fares, industry leading baggage allowance and famous friendly service will be welcomed by our loyal customers at both ends of the route."

These operations result from a joint effort to promote Madeira in the UK, supported by Madeira Promotion Bureau and Madeira Airports.

Kátia Carvalho, Executive Director of Madeira Promotion Bureau explains: “The work that Madeira Promotion Bureau and Madeira Airports have been done in the past years has been producing positive results. Jet2’s growth is a good example of an airline that has been growing steadily and has been increasing the market share of the UK.”

To celebrate the arrival of the first flight, Madeira Airports will be hosting a welcome reception, offering flowers and Madeira Wine to the passengers.

Source: ANA Aeroportos de Portugal