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Portugal Travel Guide
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Portugal, officially the Portuguese Republic is a country on the Iberian Peninsula. Located in southwestern Europe, Portugal is the westernmost country of mainland Europe and is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean to the west and south and by Spain to the north and east. The Atlantic archipelagos of the Azores and Madeira are also part of Portugal.
Lisbon (Lisboa), the country's capital, stands breezily on the banks of the Rio Tejo. The city's low skyline, unpretentious atmosphere and pleasant blend of architectural styles conspire to make it a favourite with many visitors. Orientation is fairly straightforward - apart from the puff required to negotiate the hills - with most of the daily activity centred in the lower part of the city.
Sintra (Sintra Hotels & Sintra Resort Reservation Service)
The town of Sintra lies immediately north-west of Lisbon and was long favoured by Portuguese royalty and English nobility (Lord Byron was mad about it) as a summer destination. Its appeal is still evident today, with its thickly wooded setting, romantic gardens and ramshackle glamour. Dominating the town are a number of palaces and ruins, including the Palácio Nacional de Sintra, an interesting amalgam of Manueline and Gothic architecture, and the Palácio Nacional da Pena. Just outside the town are the rambling Monserrate Gardens, while further out is the Convento dos Capuchos, a tiny 16th-century hermitage enclosed in forest, with cells hewn from rock and lined with cork.
The walled town of Évora is one of the architectural gems of Portugal. Situated in Alto Alentejo in a landscape of olive groves, vineyards, wheat fields and brilliant spring flowers, it's a charming town with one-way backstreets so narrow that car wing mirrors have the potential to be lethal.
The focal point is the Praça do Giraldo, and its attractions include the Sé (cathedral), which has a museum of ecclesiastical treasures; the picturesque Templo Romano; and the Igreja de São Francisco, which contains a ghoulish ossuary chapel constructed with the bones and skulls of several thousand people.
Lagos (Lagos Hotels & Lagos Resort Reservation Service)
Lagos, on the south coast of the Faro, is one of the country's most popular tourist resorts. Most visitors are drawn to the superb beaches, which include Meia Praia, a vast strip of sand to the east, and the more secluded Praia do Pinhão to the south. The town has abundant facilities for renting bicycles, mopeds and horses, and there are also boat trips from the main harbour. Apart from the sun and sand, the resort's other highlight is the Museu Municipal, which has eccentric displays of ecclesiastical treasures, handicrafts and preserved animal fetuses.
Portugal History, Portugal Government & Politics, Foreign Relations & Armed Forces, Law & Criminal Justice of Portugal, Portugal Geography, Portugal Administrative Divisions, Demographics of Portugal, Portugal Religion, Languages in Portugal, Economy of Portugal, Communications in Portugal, Energy in Portugal, Portugal Tourism, Portugal Science & Technology, Education in Portugal, Healthcare in Portugal, Portugal Transport, Culture in Portugal, Portugal Cuisine & Wine, Sport in Portugal
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