Awards and Distinctions

Madeira voted 'Best Island Destination in the World'

This archipelago has received countless national and international awards and distinctions thanks to its lavish nature and tourism heritage.
"World's Leading Island Destination"
World Travel Awards 2022, 2021, 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015
"Europe's Leading Island Destination"
World Travel Awards 2021, 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2014, 2013
“Sustainable Tourist Destination”
EarthCheck Bronze Benchmarked 2022

Awards and distinctions

Madeira has been elected several times as the 'Best Island Destination in the World' by the renowned World Travel Awards. This is one of the many awards that attest to the exceptional nature of this archipelago, which is increasingly recognised as one of the most attractive tourist destinations on a global scale. Come and see for yourself!

Madeira Island

Many reasons turn Madeira Island into one of the most awarded tourist destinations in the world. Besides being consecutively considered by the World Travel Awards since 2013, as The Best Island Destination in the World, it has been recognized in the most diverse areas.
In recent years, this island has received awards for its excellence in areas such as culture, tradition, safety, hotels, golf and the richness of its ecosystems. In this context, we should highlight the recognition of the Laurissilva forest as a World Natural Heritage Site by UNESCO.

Awards and distinctions

"Europe's Best Cruise Destination" | World Cruise Awards
Europe's Best Cruise Destination 2022 - 1st place
"Europe's Best Cruise Destination"
European Best Destinations 2021 - 1st place
"Santana World Biosphere Reserve"
UNESCO 2011
"7 Natural Wonders of Portugal - Forests and Woodlands"
7 Wonders of Portugal 2010 (Laurissilva Forest)
"World Heritage of Humanity"
UNESCO 1999 (Floresta Laurissilva)

Porto Santo Island

Often called the 'golden island', Porto Santo has been widely awarded for the immeasurable richness of its ecosystems and its heavenly landscapes. Its golden, nine-kilometres long, sandy beach has made this small island famous all over world.
In 2022, European Best Destinations awarded it the title of 'best beach in Europe 2022'. The recognised therapeutic properties of its sandy beach and its crystal-clear turquoise waters contribute greatly to this. In addition, Porto Santo was awarded the title of Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO for its biodiversity conservation efforts.

Awards and distinctions

"European Best Beaches"
European Best Destinations 2022 - 1st place (Porto Santo Beach)
"Porto Santo Beach one of Europe's Safest Beaches 2021"
European Best Destinations 2021 - 1st place
"Porto Santo Biosphere Reserve"
UNESCO 2020
"Beaches and Dunes" - Porto Santo Beach
7 Wonders of Portugal 2012

Desertas Islands

South east of the island of Madeira there is group of three small islands called 'Desertas'. They are Ilhéu Chão, Deserta Grande and Bugio. This volcanic archipelago is one of the last strongholds of the monk seal (Monachus monachus), an emblematic species.
This area is also an important nesting centre for seabirds and has an endemic species, the Desertas tarantula (Lycosa ingens). Therefore, the Desertas Islands were classified as a Nature Reserve in 1995. They received the European Diploma for Protected Areas for their outstanding work in restoring and protecting the local environment.

Awards and distinctions

Desertas Islands Nature Reserve 1995
European Diploma for Protected Areas, for the exceptional work of recovery and protection of the environment of the Desertas.

Selvagens Islands

This small archipelago consists of two main islands and several islets of volcanic origin. They are located 250 kilometres south of Madeira and are surrounded by an extensive barrier reef. These islands, bathed by pristine and warm waters, are considered a sanctuary for birds. Access to this territory is restricted.
The Selvagens Islands Nature Reserve was created in 1971 and was awarded the European Diploma for Protected Areas in 1992. In 2018, the Global Ocean Refuge System distinguished this archipelago with the GLORES award, for the scrupulous ocean protection developed this region.

Awards and distinctions

"Selvagens Islands Nature Reserve"
GLORES Award - "Global Ocean Refuge System" 2018
Selvagens Islands Nature Reserve 1992
Council of Europe's European Diploma for Protected Areas, Council of Europe (EU)
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