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Portugal

Portugal has a rich, unique culture, lively cities, wonderful beaches and beautiful countryside.
Portugal is located on the Iberian Peninsula in southwestern Europe. It is the westernmost country of mainland Europe. It's only neighboring country is Spain located to the north and east, and to the south and west it is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean. The Atlantic archipelagos of the Azores and Madeira are also part of Portugal. The total population of Portugal is around 10.6 million; Lisbon is the capital and largest city of Portugal with a population in the metropolitan area of about 2.8 million.

Algarve is the southernmost province of Portugal. It has the most annual sunshine hours in Europe and some of the continent's most beautiful beaches and golf courses. Throughout the country, the climate is mild and the entire coastline offers sandy beaches, many of them almost deserted, others very popular for watersports such as surfing and windsurfing. On the island of Madeira, it is spring all year round, the islands of the Azores are famous for excellent whale-watching opportunities.

Portugal offers a uniquely diverse and exciting range of cultures, outstanding monuments, climates and landscapes, and attracts many tourists each year. In 2006, the country was visited by 12.8 million tourists. The main tourist areas are, Greater Lisbon, Algarve, Madeira and the Azores, Greater Porto and Northern Portugal, and Alentjo.

Lisbon
is one of the European cities that attract most tourists, with 7 million tourists sleeping in the city's hotels in 2006. The city of Lisbon is rich in architecture: Romanesque, Gothic, Baroque, traditional Portuguese, Modern and Post-Modern constructions can be found all over the city. Lisbon also have many museums, among these the most famous are: the Museu Nacional de Arte Antiga, the Museu do Azulejo, and the Museu Calouste Gulbenkian. The Bairo Alto area is the heart of the capital's nightlife. It also functions as a residential, shopping and entertainment district.

There are three international airports in mainland Portugal; all connects with the rest of Europe and to many other destinations in the world. The main international airport is Lisbon Portela Airport (LIS) also known as Lisbon Airport. It is located within the city of Lisbon. The second largest airport is Faro Airport located 7.1 kilometers to the west of Faro. The airport is commonly used by tourists on holiday in the Algarve. Aeroporto Internacional Dr. Francisco de Sa Carneiro (OPO) is the international airport of Porto, located about 10 kilometers northwest of the city. The Madeira and Azores Islands also have international airports, Madeira/Funchal (FNC); Ponta Delgada (PDL) on Sao Miguel Island in the Azores.

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