Exploring the Charms of Portugal: A Journey Through History and Culture
Portugal, officially known as the Portuguese Republic (Português: Portugal), is a country located in the westernmost part of the European continent. It is situated on the Iberian Peninsula in southwestern Europe. Portugal shares its borders with Spain to the north and east and is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean to the south and west. The archipelagos of the Azores and Madeira, located in the northern part of the Atlantic Ocean, are also part of Portugal with their own autonomous administrations. The country has a population of around 10 million people and covers an area of approximately 92,212 square kilometers.
Throughout the past 3100 years, the Portuguese lands witnessed the presence of various civilizations, including the Phoenicians, Greeks, Romans, Germanic tribes, and the Umayyad Caliphate of Al-Andalus. These influences have shaped the country's culture, history, language, and ethnic composition. In 1093, King Alfonso VI of León and Castile granted the southwestern lands of his kingdom to Henriques of Burgundy, establishing the County of Portugal. In the following years, an independent kingdom emerged, and Portugal continued to expand its territory with military support from Christian forces, gradually pushing back the Andalusian Muslims. The Portuguese colonial expansion ended with the capture of the southern coast of the Algarve in 1249.
Portugal played a prominent role during the Age of Discovery in the 15th and 16th centuries. Its explorers, supported by England, embarked on maritime expeditions, discovering new territories and trade routes. The Portuguese Empire stretched from Brazil to the Philippines, making Portugal one of the leading economic, political, and cultural powers in the world. However, the empire declined in the 20th century, and Portugal turned its focus back to Europe. Today, Portugal is a member of the European Union, operating under a democratic structure.
Portugal has a Mediterranean climate. The average annual temperature in mainland Portugal is warm, ranging from 15 degrees Celsius in the north to 18 degrees Celsius in the south. The temperature range in Madeira and the Azores is narrower. The weather is sunny in spring and summer, while autumn and winter bring rain and storms.
Official Language: Portuguese
International Dialing Code: +351
Area: 92,212 square kilometers
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