Welcome to Portugal
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- Portugal -
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- Home to nearly 1000 km of mainland coastline and two island archipelagos
- Spectacular beaches and Oceanside villas
- Sunny Mediterranean Mediterranean climate with
- Rich wine making history and is home to Port and Madeira wines
- Lovely scenery and a variety of cultural attractions
- Exploring Portugal -
Portugal is a small country located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula. It is a well developed country with a high quality of life index and a highly globalized economy, a famous vacation destination and home to several impressive luxury villas. As the westernmost of European countries, it is also one of the warmest, with a primarily Mediterranean climate. The mountainous interior features a cooler and rainier climate.
Travelers renting luxury villas in Portugal often visit the beautiful beaches of the mainland. The region of Algarve boasts over 100 miles of coastline, featuring both fine sandy beaches and the rugged cliffs around Cape St. Vincent. Major seaports are located in LeixÃµes, Aveiro, Figueira da Foz, Lisbon, SetÃºbal, Sines and Faro.
The capital of the Algarve region, Faro, is noted for its historic monuments, such as a 13th century cathedral and its ancient city walls. Faro is also known for its cuisine. Fresh seafood and produce are readily available, contributing to the quality of the region’s full-flavored dishes. Although Portuguese cuisine is closely related to other sorts of Mediterranean cuisine, it is also notably influenced by the use of a variety of spices. Cinnamon, vanilla, and hot chili peppers are generously combined with the more common staples of classic Mediterranean cuisine: olive oil and garlic. Salted dried cod, known locally as Bacalhau, is the national dish. Most Portuguese villas come with fully equipped kitchens for experimenting with the local cuisine and many offer al fresco dining areas as well.
The Ria de Aveiro coast is formed by a delta that is rich in both marine life and avian fauna. Four main channels flow through several islands and islets at the mouth of the Vouga, AntuÃ£, Boco, and FontÃ£o rivers. This formation of narrow headlands formed a lagoon leading to the formation and production of salt. Aveiro is sometimes referred to as the Venice of Portugal. Visitors flock to this are in order to swim in the clear blue waters and enjoy the beach at SÃ£o Jacinto, located in the middle of the SÃ£o Jacinto Nature Reserve, or to visit the beach at Costa Nova with its traditional brightly colored seaside wooden houses. A little further south PalheirÃ£o Beach., surrounded by pine trees, is also worth a visit.
The Praia do Sol, a broad beach fringed by dunes, with wooded hills lying just inland, runs south from Costa da Caparica for some 22km/14mi. Access to the remoter beaches is by a narrow-gauge beach railroad that runs as far as Fonte da Telha.
The autonomous archipelagos of the Azores and Madeira feature a more subtropical climate. An extensive dune covered beach, on the island of Porto Santo, is located in Madeira. Most of the Azores are sprinkled with black sand and boulder-lined beaches, but Santa Maria offers a white sand beach. Madeira is also the home of Madeira wine and is well known for its flowers, embroidery and huge New Year’s Eve fireworks show. The harbor in Funchal is the major port for cruise ships in Portugal.
In addition to Madeira, several other regions in Portugal produce table wines. The famous Douro Valley, Unesco World Heritage Site, is the birthplace and home of Port wine and home to many luxurious Portuguese villas. The Douro Valley is marked by its steep hillsides, terraced with vineyards overlooking the wide placid Douro River. It is home to archeological sites as well, and vacationers may also enjoy combining wine tasting with a luxurious spa experience in the Douro River Valley.
The city of Lisbon and its surrounding region are the economic center of Portugal. This area hosts two Unesco World Heritage Sites of its own. The Belem Tower and the Jeronimos Monastery provide excellent examples of a unique Portuguese architectural style known as Manueline. This architectural style is marked by towering spires, twisted columns, and flamboyant sea related carvings.
Urther inland there also a number of Portuguese villas that are conveniently situated near many culturally and historically interesting towns, located on scenic hills and plateaus or nestled in valleys. Visitors will find a variety of opportunities to enjoy sun and surf, fine wines, as well as a vast array of unique and delectable Portuguese cuisine. Portugal offers the discerning traveler a wide range of both scenic and cultural attractions which remain unknown to many.