The best ‘Accessible Tourist Destinations’ awards go to Portugal, Barcelona and Thrissur

The best ‘Accessible Tourist Destinations’ awards go to Portugal, Barcelona and Thrissur


Image: view of the Lisbon city - ref foors of the coty buildings and the sea at the horizont


The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and Fundación ONCE celebrated the best ‘Accessible Tourist Destinations’ - ATDs 2019, at FITUR, the tourism trade fair in Madrid. These are distinctions granted by the two entities to recognize and promote tourist destinations that are accessible to all people. In this first edition of the initiative, this special recognition was given to Portugal, Barcelona and the Indian city of Thrissur.

The organizers want to value the destinations that make an important effort so that they can be enjoyed by any tourist, regardless of their physical, sensory or cognitive abilities

The recognition ceremony took place within the framework of the International Tourism Fair (FITUR) 2020, which is now in its 40th edition and is held in Madrid.  The ATDs 2019 edition conferred special recognition to Portugal for the importance the country has attached to accessibility and for their involvement in the development and implementation of tourism products and services that have access for all in every part of the design.  


Image: Guel park in Barcelona
Barcelona is also “really advanced in terms of accessibility”


In addition, special mentions were given to Barcelona and the Indian city of Thrissur. In the case of the Spanish city, the jury considered that it is “really advanced in terms of accessibility”, presenting good conditions in its tourist resources, including accommodation and catering establishments, in addition to transport. Thrissur, meanwhile, received a special mention as an ‘Emerging Destination’ for being “in full development of accessibility, with strong involvement of public entities in this regard”.  

Аlthough it is a recognition of the effort to maintain and increase the level of accessibility achieved in tourist destinations, the ‘Accessible Tourism Destination’ awards are not formal certifications of accessible destinations that guarantee that accessibility.