The fire, which broke out in Odemira (Beja), but spread to the municipalities of Aljezur and Monchique (both in the district of Faro), affected the entire surroundings of the Algarve town of Odeceixe and sections of the Rota Vicentina pedestrian and cycling route, which the President of the RTA, André Gomes, classified as a “strategic” offer in the nature tourism segment.
André Gomes explained to the Lusa that the visit was part of the program of the “decentralized” monthly meeting that the current RTA executive committee initiated when it took office.
These actions aim, he explained, to “highlight good examples, the quality of the offer”, but also to address some “current” issues, such as the issue of the effects that the August fire had on the Algarve's tourist infrastructure.
André Gomes stressed that “the most significant impact” in the Algarve “was precisely on these sections of the Vicentina route, namely in the Odeceixe area”, where the entire landscape is burnt.
After the fire, the damage was assessed and the results transmitted to the Government, which is now working with local and regional entities to define support mechanisms for the recovery of affected areas and activities, such as tourism, he noted.
The objective of this work is, “as quickly as possible, together with the Rota Vicentina association, to restore the infrastructure in terms of signage, route marking and in particular a wooden pedestrian bridge, which ended up burning down and being completely damaged by the fire”, he pointed out.
The president of the RTA recalled that September and October is the period of the year in which the “segment of the tourist offer of nature tourism, cycling routes and walking routes has greater demand from tourists” and highlighted that the Rota Vicentina continues to be sought after, despite the effects of the fire.