A study conducted by the University of the Algarve for the regional tourism board (RTA) has found that the ‘365 Algarve’ programme is delighting residents and tourists.
In fact, findings show that 84% of locals and 79% of holidaymakers who attended at least one of the programme’s events were “pleased” by the experience and will recommend ‘365 Algarve’ to their friends and family.
“Most people saw their expectations surpassed, want to attend another of the programme’s events and consider ‘365 Algarve’ to be an innovative and diversified initiative with events and venues of excellence.”
The ‘365 Algarve’ programme was launched in October in a bid to boost the region’s cultural scene with around 1,000 events until the end of May.
The study, based on the feedback of 1,200 people and interviews with eight of the initiative’s stakeholders, also found that tickets sell faster for “music, dance and theatre” events. And while the proximity of events is considered important to local residents, it is the “possibility of enjoying new experiences in the Algarve” that is most appealing to holidaymakers.
But it is not all good news. Some people did call for “more diversity, a larger variety of locations and venues, the events to be promoted in advance and more adequate schedules”. The average age of residents and holidaymakers who took part in the study was 53 and 46, and most of them had a university education.
Those who live in the Algarve were mostly Portuguese (53%), English (26%), Dutch (5%) and German (4%), while most holidaymakers were Portuguese (53%), American, British, Dutch and Belgian.
Though ‘365 Algarve’ has apparently won the public over, it has been criticised by hoteliers who believe it has failed to boost winter tourism and lacks events large enough to pull large crowds.
The programme is now in its last month with highlights including the Algarve’s International Music Festival (FIMA), the original Algarve Jazz Gourmet Moments festival, and the first-ever BARRO CAL fair taking place in Santo Estevão, Tavira.