Valley of the Nuns nominated
RTP report that Curral das Freiras is on the “7 Wonders of Portugal” candidate list in the category “Remote Villages” in a Portugal-wide competition. Arco de São Jorge, Espigão and Furna are also competing in the same category. Madalena do Mar and Porto Moniz are candidates in the “Seaside Village” category. Chão da Ribeira, in Seixal and Ilha, in Santana, have been selected for villages in “Protected Areas” category, while Lombada dos Esmeraldos in Ponta do Sol appears in the “Monument” category. Serra de Água is competing as a “Riverside Village”. Faial is nominated in the “Rural Village” category. Curral das Freiras also has a second nomination for the “Authentic Village” category. It is not immediately apparent who is behind the awards, with the contenders being whittled down to a shortlist this month.
Jet2 wins Best Airline awards in TripAdvisor poll
Jet2.com took two top prizes in the inaugural TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice awards for airlines, winning the “Best Airline – UK” and “Best Low-Cost Airline – Europe” prizes. The awards, covering every major carrier worldwide, are based on an algorithm that took into account the quantity and quality of airline reviews and ratings submitted by travellers over the past 12 months. It is the first time that the world’s largest travel website has published “Travellers’ Choice” awards for the airline industry.
Madeira Island Ultra Trail
The annual Madeira Island Ultra Trail event officially kicks off tomorrow, and seems to be getting even more popular year on year – 2016 saw 2,000 participants with 48 different nationalities. The primary race (MIUT) is a ridiculous 115km from one end of the island to the other, passing through the highest peaks on in the centre – Encumeada – Pico Ruivo (1861 m) – Pico do Areeiro. This sets off at midnight on 22nd April in Porto Moniz., with last year’s winner finishing in Machico just under 14 hours later. There are three other events: 85 km (Ultra), 43 km (marathon) and a mini marathon of 16 km. More details of the different races and routes can be found on a previous post.
Madeira Film Festival
The 6th Madeira Film Festival is underway as of yesterday, lasting until the weekend. This is an independent international film festival “inspired by nature, which brings together various initiatives associated with sustainability, art, education, eco-tourism and leisure, a tribute to the Laurissilva Forest”, according to Visit Madeira. The Festival is staged between Belmond Reid’s Palace Hotel and the Municipal Theatre. All films are screened in the theatre while most of the workshops, fashion show, gala dinner and cocktail drinks are held at Reid’s. A full program can be found on their website.
Part of the old North Coast Road re-opens
Part of the old road between São Vicente and Porto Moniz has re-opened with restrictions – cars can travel on a one-way system, and only between 10h00 and 18h00. I recall first travelling this route in 1989 – stunning, but a little scary! A more recent video of the old road can be seen on YouTube from 2009, by which time the “new” north coast road had been added.