It all started with Zamora Treaty, signed by Portugal’s first King, Afonso Henriques, in 1143. Portugal got its independence and expanded its land to the Algarve, down South. The country has since then sailed over the seas, gone to India, Brazil and crossed the Good Hope Cape.
It officially became a Republic in 1910, having had a peaceful revolution in 1975, after a 3 decade dictatorship. Its people;s resilience is famous for the “desenrasça” culture: the Portuguese way of improvising when facing a problem.
Their kindness is already known, so Portugal is among the most welcoming countries in the world.
A small but yet diverse country, the so called “Garden planted by the sea” by the famous poet Fernando Pessoa, Portugal has all kinds of ‘flowers’ in its garden: the mountain, the big city, the beach, the rural village. It has the fish, the meat, the cheese and the yummiest bread you can find.
A Mediterranean-like cuisine, Portugal has more than 100 ways of cooking codfish, and almost every single one involves olive oil. The olive trees in the Alentejo, aside with the cork oak one, which make Portugal the biggest exporter of cork, give the region’s flat land a touch of yellows and greens.
We cannot forget the fishing villages in Setubal; the canals of Aveiro, where the gondolas in the river make you feel like you’re in .....; the shale villages in the Central region; or the Gerês Natural Park in the northern border with Spain.
It’s history it’s written by its people, its food (Tripas à moda do Porto was invented in times of food shortage) and its monuments.
From Guimarães, where it all started, to Palmela, and Óbidos, a fortified town, or Santa Maria da Feira, where every year the Medieval Fest takes you back in time, the national heritage lies in the castles walls or in the churches towers along the Romanesque route up north.
And of course we cannot forget the islands. Azores and Madeira are two autonomous regions, two archipelagos of 9 and 7 islands respectively, amongst the most beautiful islands in the world. The islands natural beauty, volcanic cavities and green and blue landscapes can be overwhelming.
We’re only the size of an America state and the population of a city like São Paulo, but you would be amazed with what we do with that.