From the nineteenth century to the present day

Porto Santo became a municipality in 1835.

On January 7th 1893, a first analysis of Fontinha waters was made in Paris, which revealed that this liquid was bicarbonate, chlorinated and sodium sulfated, and so it was recommended for treatment of skin and digestive tract diseases. Later this water activated the first and only mineral water factory on the island.

The first airport of Madeira archipelago was in Porto Santo and was inaugurated in 1960. The construction of the airport, which was extended in 1973, was a factor that greatly contributed towards the economic and touristic growth. The tourism industry provides an economic thrust that has been growing in Porto Santo, year by year.

The region has good hotels that offer visitors not only pleasant and comfortable facilities, but also a whole series of entertainment such as tennis, mini golf, volleyball, windsurf, island excursions, among other activities.

In August 1996 the capital, Vila Baleira, became a city.
Nowadays there are many tourists who seek Porto Santo Island, also known as the Golden Island, to enjoy a quiet holiday and the sand’s therapeutic qualities.


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