Foreign-language newspapers (including the European editions of British papers, plus the International Herald Tribune, Le Monde and the like) can be bought in the major towns, cities and resorts, usually the same day in Lisbon and much of the Algarve or a day late elsewhere. For an English-language view of what’s happening in Portugal, the weekly Portugal News is widely available, while Portugal Resident is aimed principally at expats.
Newspapers and magazines
The most respected Portuguese daily newspapers are the Lisbon-based Diário de Notícias and Público and Porto’s Jornal de Notícias. While the traditional Diário de Notícias is associated by many with the former Salazar regime, Jornal de Notícias is more liberal in outlook, and stylish Público has the youngest, most sophisticated feel, good for politics and the arts. All have useful daily listings information (with good Friday supplements). The best-selling tabloid is the right-wing Correio da Manhã, while business daily Jornal de Negócios keeps you up to date with economic issues, and the weekly Expresso has lots of meaty articles on politics, economics and culture. For fans of Portuguese sport (mainly football), A Bola, O Jogo and Record cover the daily ins and outs of teams and players. Popular current-affairs magazines include the long-standing Visão, while for coverage of the C-list celeb and reality TV scene you need a copy of Caras (ie, “Faces”), a bit like a Portuguese Hello!
Television and radio
There are four domestic channels – the state-run RTP1 and 2, and the private channels SIC and TVI. The best is 2, which is a mix of films from all over the world, National Geographic-style documentaries and daily coverage of the arts. The other three channels are heavy on game shows, variety shows, reality TV, and imported or adapted American and British series. Films are nearly always shown in their original language (ie, subtitled rather than dubbed), while you also get a full diet of telenovelas (soaps). Some of the most popular soaps are actually Brazilian (saucy historical romps a speciality).
Most Portuguese households and businesses get their TV via cable or satellite subscription. Even in small two- and three-star hotels you’ll often get a couple of foreign-language channels (BBC World, CNN, Eurosport, MTV), while four- and five-star places usually offer an endless range of foreign-language channels plus pay-per-view movie channels.
Portugal has a plethora of national and local radio stations. Antena 1 mixes golden oldies and Portuguese music with news on the hour. Antena 2 has classical music, while Antena 3 has the best contemporary sounds and new Portuguese music. Rádio Comercial is the best of the independent stations, playing pop and rock. Radio Renascença is a mainstream station of a religious persuasion; the associated RFM has a younger target audience but its playlist hasn’t changed in years. With a short-wave radio you’ll be able to tune into the BBC World Service.
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