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Ponta Delgada ,  February 02, 2017

Azores are the first region invited to the Congress of the Portuguese Association of Congress Companies, Tourism Recreation and Events

The Regional Secretary for Energy, Environment and Tourism welcomed the prominence of the Azores as the first region invited to the Congress organised by APECATE - Portuguese Association of Congress Companies, Tourism Recreation and Events for the growth that tourism registered in the last years. The event began today in Évora.

"Today, we want to share with you the work we have developed towards the qualification of the destination by promoting its sustainability and focusing on the promotion and efficiency of accessibility," said Marta Guerreiro at the opening session.

Marta Guerreiro stressed that the Azores destination is asserting itself as an active nature tourism destination that "combines the contemplation of landscape with the development of tourist entertainment activities."

In this regard, she stressed that "the range of possibilities on land and at sea on each of the nine islands is a factor of development of the sector by enhancing the specificites of each of its primary products."

"The investment will be maintained in the consolidation of a tourism offer based on activities that harness the potential of natural areas, such hiking, cycling, trail run, whale watching, diving, bird watching, canyoning, surfing, bodybord, among others. Moreover, they also counter the effects of seasonality and boost the occupancy rates of our hotel units," said the Regional Secretary.

With regard to regional tourism offer, there is a growth of tourist entertainment activities on land and at sea. Currently, there 315 companies in the Azores while there were only 118 in 2012, which represents an increase of 166.5%.

Marta Guerreiro also highlighted the importance of hiking trails, ensuring that the Regional Government will "continue to improve the conditions for their use, namely through the implementation of new trails and promotion of Grand Routes."

In this context, he pointed out the creation of "small installations along the routes that provide minimal comfort to visitors, either they are walkers, cyclists or trail runners."

"The focus on the sophistication of services and infrastructures related to health and well-being is another aspect that should be mentioned, namely on hydrotherapy. This has been carried out through the use of local natural resources for tourist purposes as, in this specific case, the many millions litres of hot water spouting on our islands," said Marta Guerreiro.

The strategic goal of the Regional Secretariat for Energy, Environment and Tourism is to combine these three areas in order to maintain the priority on the protection and preservation of natural and cultural heritage. At the same time, it consolidates the active nature tourism as an economic, social and cultural driving force in the development of the Region.

The 5th Congress of APECATE, which runs until Friday, will feature a presentation by the Azores Tourism under the title "Azores: A Landscape Touring destination that is also Cultural?" under the panel on "Culture and Tourism - Issues and Challenges."


Official government press-releases presented in all foreign languages interfaces of the Azorean Government Portal (Portal do Governo dos Açores) are a sub-set of the government's official press-releases daily output and are chosen for translation and publication on the foreign language interfaces based on audience segmentation criteria. The entire collection of the Azorean government press-releases is available in portuguese, here, from the GACS Press Office site.

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