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In 2017 the Portuguese Tourist Authority launched their €20 million 'Can't skip Portugal' video campaign

Portugal’s national tourist authority budgeted €20 million on a video publicity campaign to attract tourists to the country.

‘Can’t skip Portugal’ has been launched by Turismo de Portugal and for the next few years will be on social networks in 20 priority markets.

"Can’t skip Portugal" is the theme across four videos by Pedro Varela.

"The fact that the campaign targets digital media, especially social networks, means an emphasis on getting people involved," said Portuguese Tourism President, Luís Araújo.

The campaign will reach 20 countries. In addition to the main markets of the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Spain and Brazil - the targets include the US, China, Russia, Canada, India, Norway, Denmark and Poland.

"This film was shot entirely in December 2016 in the middle of winter," the video voice-over informs viewers. 

Pushing light, warmth, water, nature and Portugal’s architectural heritage, the tourist authority wants people to see Portugal as a year-round destination.

One of Turismo de Portugal’s goals for the next decade is to mitigate tourism seasonality, but only by 2.5% from the current 37.5% to 33.5%.

The €20 million spend aims to show people that it’s not all sun and sand as there are things to do outside the summer season up and down the country, not just in the Algarve.

In 2016 Portugal had 11.4 million foreign guests in its hotels. For the first time, the number of tourists surpassed the Portuguese population of 10.5 million with foreigners already representing seven out of ten overnight stays.

For the first of the four promotional videos, 'Cant' skip freedom' you can now play on the video player above.

Followed by - Second, 'Can't skip inspiration' - Third, 'Can't skip new beginnings' - Fourth 'Can't skip us, can't skip Portugal'.



Jack is a man who thinks life is slipping through his fingers. He can hardly breathe, he feels overwhelmed by his daily routine. He sets off to see a new world, to get lost amidst the light that a new place brings. 


Chloe is a young lady who’s tired of feeling uninspired with life. She wants joy, she wants enthusiasm, she wants beauty. She leaves for a place where she finds herself seduced by history, by old traditions dressed as new, by a new life. 


Klaus has a whole lifetime behind him, but he feels that he missed out on something important: living. Here he finds new talents, tries new hobbies, discovers new flavours. He knows that it’s never too late to change his life. Life passes us by, time slips through our fingers. Decide your next stop, pick your next destination. 

Can’t skip life. Can’t skip us. Can’t skip Portugal.


How would you like to feel today? Cheerful? Energetic? Creative? Inspired? Or adventurous? The time for visiting Portugal is now. Don’t put off till tomorrow, to another life, what can happen today leave routine and stress behind, meeting rosters and your packed schedule. Feel the breeze of the sea as you sail along the Alentejo coast, walk along the green landscapes and the calm waters of the old volcanic craters on the Azores Islands, explore the waterways along the Levada walks in Madeira, or take a bracing dip in the warm water at the Algarve beaches.

When every day seems the same as the day before, it’s time for you to take off and visit other cities and new places, to learn about new customs and mores, to unwind and charge your batteries. Lisbon and Porto are two cities with a river and a sea, plenty of attractive sites, shops and, of course, lots of entertainment. Learn about Portuguese art and be surprised with the new contemporary architecture trends, design and street art.

When you feel like making a fresh start or a change in your life, there is nothing else to do but travel! Travel to discover Portuguese art and culture, visit the Historical Villages and Schist Villages and learn from the details of old traditional crafts. Travel to taste Portuguese typical food and to experience new flavours. Travel to be in harmony with nature at the natural parks like Serra da Estrela and Peneda-Gerês National Park. Travel to experience new things. Who said you’re too old to learn to surf?

If something good happens, travel to celebrate it. If something bad happens, travel to forget it. And if nothing happens … go somewhere and make it happen! Don’t let life slip through your fingers. Don’t skip Portugal.

Note: these films were shot in Portugal in December, during the winter.



Jack played by James Palmer 


James Palmer was born in London but grew up in Tulsa, Oklahoma before moving to Scotland as a teenager, where he attended Gordonstoun School. He is best known for his work on Endeavour (2014), River City (2009 - 2011) and Birds of a Feather (2014). He has also worked extensively on the London stage, most recently in Alan Alda's Radiance: The Passion of Marie Curie.

Cloe played by Murielle Huet des Aunay

Murielle Huet des Aunay is an actress, known for Trois pères à la maison (2004), After Fall, Winter(2011) and Meurtres à... (2013).

Klaus played by Tony Greengrass

As a very young man, Tony ran away to sea and joined the Royal Navy. When he'd reached the rank of Lieutenant he ran back from sea. He has worked as an actor, stage manager and technician in theatre,television and film; as a carpenter, electrician and rigger building exhibitions and leisure interiors; as a barman and pub chef; as a writer and graphic artist producing educational materials; and (since 2008) as a photographer and corporate film-maker.

International Film Director - Pedro Valera 


Pedro Varela started out as an actor at the age of sixteen before working for over fifteen years in theatre, film and television. In 2000, he made his theatre directing debut with his stage version of Irvine Welsh's "Trainspotting". Years later, he would again direct another Welsh work, "Ecstasy", in Los Angeles. In 2002, he represented Portugal at the Rio de Janeiro International Theatre Festival directing Gil Vicente's "A Barca do Inferno" with an entirely Brazilian cast.

He returned to cinema as an actor in 2006 but with "Anesthesia", his last short-length film, selected for the international competition at Fantasporto film festival in 2010, he moved definitively behind the camera and writing and directing everything that he has since filmed. In 2011, he adapted and directed the Fox television drama series "Tiempo Final".


He is also the creator, writer and director of the award winning and acclaimed television series "Os Filhos do Rock (The Children of Rock)", which premiered in 2013 and has already taken on a cult status. The period series tells the story of the boom in Portuguese rock in the 1980s. "A Canção de Lisboa (The Song of Lisbon)" in 2016, a romantic comedy written and directed by Varela, became the most seen film of the year. "Filha da Lei" his latest original TV Series about a Portuguese homicide squad, premiered at the national television channel in 2017. 


Varela has also been directing commercials regularly over the last seven years working both for leading brands and top agencies. Among other awards won worldwide, he picked up a Cannes silver lion and three National Grand Prizes with "Cant Skip Us", the multi-awarded Turismo de Portugal Campaign. "The Seven Sorrows of Mary", his first dramatic feature will be released in 2019, the international production shot in Rio de Janeiro last summer is produced by Belladonna Productions, New York, in partnership with Varela production company in Brazil, Blanche Filmes.