WHAT CAN I EXPECT FROM PORTUGAL?
There is so much worth discovering on this small “noodle” at the end of Europe! Portugal is a fascinating country with a diverse landscape and colorful culture, which has long been influenced by the intertwining of different civilizations.
THINGS TO SEE AND DO IN PORTUGAL
- Capital Lisabon
- Porto – cradle of port wine
- Algarve coast
- Madeira island
- Colored Palácio Nacional da Pena
- University city of Coimbra
- Exotic Azores
- Historic Évora
SOME INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT PORTUGAL
Sea – Portugal is the most western European country. To the west and south, its shores are washed only by the Atlantic Ocean, and to the east lies its only mainland neighbor, Spain.
Islands – Portugal also has two island autonomous regions – Madeira and the Azores. The Madeira archipelago, called the Islands of Eternal Spring, is made up of the islands of Madeira, Porto Santo, Ilhas Desertas and Ilhas Selvagens.
The exotic Azores consist of nine islands and several islets: Santa Maria, São Miguel, Terceira, Graciosa, São Jorge, Pico, Faial, Flores and Corvo.
Beaches – More than 850 km of Portuguese coastline offers some of the most beautiful beaches in Europe. You will find endless beaches covered with fine golden sand, beaches sunk between bizarre rock formations, high waves of the Atlantic and calm bays with crystal clear water. Thanks to the ocean, which is wilder (and colder) than the Mediterranean, the Portuguese coast has been saved from mass construction.
Portuguese beaches are well equipped and safe for children and people with reduced mobility. The presence of a lifeguard and facilities for sports and relaxation are a matter of course. And the most famous beaches can be quite crowded in the season.
In terms of the beauty of the beaches, the Algarve on the south coast of Portugal certainly leads. More than 150 km of beaches here follow each other and it is difficult to decide which is the most beautiful.
Nature – Most of the Portuguese surface is slightly undulating. To the north lies the rugged highlands of Trás-os-Montes (height around 1,500 m above sea level) and part of the Castile Mountains also extends here. It gradually turns into the highest mountain range Serra da Estrela and the slightly lower Serra de Nogueira and Serra de Monchique. The rest of the country is lowland.
A total of over 6.5% of the area is protected. In addition to one national park, you will find 13 nature parks, 9 nature reserves, 2 geoparks and other natural monuments in Portugal.
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Historical monuments and tourist attractions – Portugal has a very long and rich history. In the past, the country was inhabited by various tribes and entities, the legacy of which is evident here to this day. Portugal boasts an endless number of beautiful and important monuments that are scattered throughout the country.
But the oldest and most memorable cities are located in the north of the country. Historic Braga boasts the pilgrimage site of Bom Jesus de Monte, the center of the cradle of the Portuguese nation of Guimarães even belongs to the UNESCO World Heritage List.
There is also the center of the second largest city, home to the famous Port wine and the romantic streets full of Porto. But Lisbon is the number of visitors. With seven million a year, the capital is the second most attractive tourist destination in Europe, after Barcelona in Spain.
Gastronomy – In Portugal, don’t forget to taste, because the country has a lot to offer in this area as well. You can taste, for example, one of the famous fish specialties. If you are not on a diet, you should definitely not miss a taste of the popular Portuguese dish, which is francesinha. It consists of toast, which is stuffed with meat and sausages, covered with a slice of cheese and drizzled with port wine sauce. French fries are served as a side dish. You can enjoy delicious dishes with a glass of excellent Port wine. You will soon fall in love with Portugal and all its tastes.
MAY BE USEFUL
Official language: Portuguese
Telephone prefix: +351
Speed limits: in the city 50 km / h, outside the village 90 km / h, long-distance road 100 km / h, highway 120 km / h
Time zone: UTC +1
HOW TO SPEND TIME ACTIVELY IN PORTUGAL?
Surfing is by far the most popular water sport in Portugal. The most famous surfing beaches include Praia do Amado in the southwest of the Algarve, which is also suitable for beginners. More experienced surfers prefer the west coast and places like Nazaré, which has one of the largest waves in the world, Péniche or Ericeira near Lisbon.
Thanks to its climate, beautiful coastline and 8 marine parks, Portugal is a popular location for diving and adrenaline sports such as flyboarding or coastering (a combination of climbing, diving and swimming).
The islands of Madeira and the Azores are an ideal place for canyoning (expeditions through canyons with the help of various skills such as climbing, rappelling, swimming, etc.) and for hiking (levadas in Madeira), balloon flights, paragliding.