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View All Drive Packages. The handover of Macau to China in marked the end of what can be considered the longest-lived colonial empire.

Portugal has left a profound cultural and architectural influence across the globe , a legacy of million Portuguese speakers , and many Portuguese-based creoles.

It is a developed country with a high-income advanced economy and high living standards. At the time the land of a specific people was frequently named after its deity.

Those names are the origins of the - gal in Portugal and Galicia. The name Portucale evolved into Portugale during the 7th and 8th centuries, and by the 9th century, that term was used extensively to refer to the region between the rivers Douro and Minho.

By the 11th and 12th centuries, Portugale , Portugallia or Portvgalliae was already referred to as Portugal. The region of present-day Portugal was inhabited by Neanderthals and then by Homo sapiens , who roamed the border-less region of the northern Iberian peninsula.

Neolithic Portugal experimented with domestication of herding animals, the raising of some cereal crops and fluvial or marine fishing. It is believed by some scholars that early in the first millennium BC, several waves of Celts invaded Portugal from Central Europe and inter-married with the local populations, forming different tribes.

Modern archeology and research shows a Portuguese root to the Celts in Portugal and elsewhere. The figures of maximum authority were the chieftain chefe tribal , of military type and with authority in his Castro or clan, and the druid, main referring medical and religious that could be common to several castros.

The Celtic cosmogony remained homogeneous due to the ability of the druids to meet in councils with the druids of other areas, which ensured the transmission of knowledge and the most significant events.

The first documentary references to Castro society are provided by chroniclers of Roman military campaigns such as Strabo , Herodotus or Pliny the Elder , among others about the social organization, and describing the inhabitants of these territories, the Gallaeci of Northern Portugal as: Other similar tribes, and chief among them were the Lusitanians , with the core area of these people lying in inland central Portugal, numerous other related tribes existed such as the Celtici of Alentejo , and the Cynetes or Conii of the Algarve.

A few small, semi-permanent, commercial coastal settlements such as Tavira were also founded in the Algarve region by Phoenicians — Carthaginians.

Romans first invaded the Iberian Peninsula in BC. During the last days of Julius Caesar , almost the entire peninsula was annexed to the Roman Republic.

The Roman conquest of what is now part of Portugal took almost two hundred years and took many lives of young soldiers and the lives of those who were sentenced to a certain death in the slave mines when not sold as slaves to other parts of the empire.

It suffered a severe setback in BC, when a rebellion began in the north. The Lusitanians and other native tribes, under the leadership of Viriathus , wrested control of all of western Iberia.

Rome sent numerous legions and its best generals to Lusitania to quell the rebellion, but to no avail — the Lusitanians kept conquering territory.

The Roman leaders decided to change their strategy. In BC, Viriathus was assassinated, and Tautalus became leader.

Rome installed a colonial regime. The complete Romanization of Lusitania only took place in the Visigothic era. In 27 BC, Lusitania gained the status of Roman province.

There are still many ruins of castros hill forts all over modern Portugal and remains of Castro culture. The former, beyond being one of the largest Roman settlements in Portugal, is also classified as a National Monument.

The site also has a museum that displays objects found by archaeologists during their excavations. Coins, some of which coined in Lusitanian land, as well as numerous pieces of ceramics were also found.

Contemporary historians include Paulus Orosius c. In the early 5th century, Germanic tribes , namely the Suebi and the Vandals Silingi and Hasdingi together with their allies, the Sarmatians and Alans invaded the Iberian Peninsula where they would form their kingdom.

About and during the 6th century it became a formally declared Kingdom of the Suebi , where king Hermeric made a peace treaty with the Gallaecians before passing his domains to Rechila , his son.

After the defeat against the Visigoths, the Suebian kingdom was divided, with Frantan and Aguiulfo ruling simultaneously.

Both reigned from to , the year in which Maldras — reunified the kingdom to finish being assassinated after a failed Roman-Visigothic conspiracy.

Although the conspiracy did not achieve its true purposes, the Suebian Kingdom was again divided between two kings: By the year , the Visigothic Kingdom had been installed in Iberia, based in Toledo and advancing westwards.

They became a threat to the Suebian rule. After the death of Remismund Remismundo in a dark period set in, where virtually all written texts and accounts disappear.

This period lasted until The only thing known about this period is that Theodemund Teodemundo most probably ruled the Suebians. The dark period ended with the reign of Karriarico — who reinstalled Catholicism in He was succeed by Theodemar or Theodemir Teodomiro — during whose reign the 1st Council of Braga was held.

After the death of Teodomiro, Miro — was his successor. During his reign, the 2nd Council of Braga was held. The Visigothic civil war began in Later in he also organized an unsuccessful expedition to reconquer Seville.

During the return from this failed operation the Miro died. In the Suebian Kingdom many internal struggles continued to take place. Eborico Eurico, — was dethroned by Andeca Audeca — , who failed to prevent the Visigothic invasion led by Leovigildo.

The Visigothic invasion, completed in , turned the once rich and fertile kingdom of the Suebi into the sixth province of the Gothic kingdom.

For the next years and by the year , the entire Iberian Peninsula was ruled by the Visigoths. Under the Visigoths, Gallaecia was a well-defined space governed by a doge of its own.

Doges at this time were related to the monarchy acted as princes in all matters. King Roderic Rodrigo was killed while opposing this invasion, thus becoming the last Visigothic king of Iberia.

From the various Germanic groups who settled in Western Iberia, the Suebi left the strongest lasting cultural legacy in what is today Portugal, Galicia and Asturias.

According to Dan Stanislawski, the Portuguese way of living in regions North of the Tagus is mostly inherited from the Suebi, in which small farms prevail, distinct from the large properties of Southern Portugal.

Bracara Augusta , the modern city of Braga and former capital of Gallaecia , became the capital of the Suebi.

Orosius , at that time resident in Hispania, shows a rather pacific initial settlement, the newcomers working their lands [43] or serving as bodyguards of the locals.

This occupation lasted from some decades in the North to five centuries in the South. After defeating the Visigoths in only a few months, the Umayyad Caliphate started expanding rapidly in the peninsula.

The governors of the taifas each proclaimed themselves Emir of their provinces and established diplomatic relations with the Christian kingdoms of the north.

Most of Portugal fell into the hands of the Taifa of Badajoz of the Aftasid Dynasty , and after a short spell of an ephemeral Taifa of Lisbon in , fell under the dominion of the Taifa of Seville of the Abbadids poets.

The Taifa period ended with the conquest of the Almoravids who came from Morocco in winning a decisive victory at the Battle of Sagrajas , followed a century later in , after the second period of Taifa, by the Almohads , also from Marrakesh.

Gharb Al-Andalus at its largest was constituted of ten kuras, [47] each with a distinct capital and governor. The Muslim population of the region consisted mainly of native Iberian converts to Islam the so-called Muwallad or Muladi and berbers.

The Arabs were principally noblemen from Syria and Oman ; and though few in numbers, they constituted the elite of the population.

The Berbers were originally from the Atlas mountains and Rif mountains of North Africa and were nomads. An Asturian Visigothic noble named Pelagius of Asturias in was elected leader [48] by many of the ousted Visigoth nobles.

Pelagius called for the remnant of the Christian Visigothic armies to rebel against the Moors and regroup in the unconquered northern Asturian highlands, better known today as the Cantabrian Mountains , in what is today the small mountain region in North-western Spain , adjacent to the Bay of Biscay.

Finding that the region had previously had two major cities — Portus Cale in the coast and Braga in the interior, with many towns that were now deserted — he decided to repopulate and rebuild them with Portuguese and Galician refugees and other Christians.

The last great invasion, through the Minho river , ended with the defeat of Olaf II Haraldsson in against the Galician nobility who also stopped further advances into the County of Portugal.

Henry based his newly formed county in Bracara Augusta modern Braga , capital city of the ancient Roman province, and also previous capital of several kingdoms over the first millennia.

Afonso then turned his arms against the Moors in the south. Afonso then established the first of the Portuguese Cortes at Lamego , where he was crowned by the Archbishop of Braga, though the validity of the Cortes of Lamego has been disputed and called a myth created during the Portuguese Restoration War.

Afonso Henriques and his successors, aided by military monastic orders , pushed southward to drive out the Moors.

At this time, Portugal covered about half of its present area. In , the Reconquista ended with the capture of the Algarve and complete expulsion of the last Moorish settlements on the southern coast, giving Portugal its present-day borders, with minor exceptions.

This treaty established inter alia the border demarcation between the kingdom of Portugal and the kingdom of Leon, where the disputed town of Olivenza was included.

In and Portugal, like the rest of Europe, was devastated by the Black Death. Particularly in the Oporto region, there is visible English influence to this day.

With this battle, the House of Aviz became the ruling house of Portugal. Portugal spearheaded European exploration of the world and the Age of Discovery.

During this period, Portugal explored the Atlantic Ocean , discovering several Atlantic archipelagos like the Azores , Madeira , and Cape Verde , explored the African coast, colonized selected areas of Africa, discovered an eastern route to India via the Cape of Good Hope , discovered Brazil , explored the Indian Ocean , established trading routes throughout most of southern Asia, and sent the first direct European maritime trade and diplomatic missions to China and Japan.

In , Portugal acquired the first of its overseas colonies by conquering Ceuta , the first prosperous Islamic trade centre in North Africa.

There followed the first discoveries in the Atlantic: Madeira and the Azores , which led to the first colonization movements. Throughout the 15th century, Portuguese explorers sailed the coast of Africa, establishing trading posts for several common types of tradable commodities at the time , ranging from gold to slaves , as they looked for a route to India and its spices , which were coveted in Europe.

The Treaty of Tordesillas , intended to resolve the dispute that had been created following the return of Christopher Columbus , was made by Pope Alexander VI , the mediator between Portugal and Spain.

It was signed on 7 June , and divided the newly discovered lands outside Europe between the two countries along a meridian leagues west of the Cape Verde islands off the west coast of Africa.

In , Vasco da Gama reached India and brought economic prosperity to Portugal and its population of 1. Portuguese sailors set out to reach Eastern Asia by sailing eastward from Europe, landing in such places as Taiwan, Japan, the island of Timor , and in the Moluccas.

Although for a long period it was believed the Dutch were the first Europeans to arrive in Australia, there is also some evidence that the Portuguese may have discovered Australia in The Treaty of Zaragoza , signed on 22 April between Portugal and Spain, specified the anti-meridian to the line of demarcation specified in the Treaty of Tordesillas.

Portugal voluntarily entered a dynastic union between and Portugal did not lose its formal independence, briefly forming a union of kingdoms.

At this time Spain was a geographic territory. From to the Dutch-Portuguese War primarily involved the Dutch companies invading many Portuguese colonies and commercial interests in Brazil, Africa, India and the Far East, resulting in the loss of the Portuguese Indian sea trade monopoly.

In , John IV spearheaded an uprising backed by disgruntled nobles and was proclaimed king. This was the beginning of the House of Braganza , which reigned in Portugal until John V died the following year and his son, Joseph I of Portugal, was crowned.

Impressed by British economic success that he had witnessed from his time as an Ambassador, he successfully implemented similar economic policies in Portugal.

He abolished slavery in Portugal and in the Portuguese colonies in India; reorganized the army and the navy; restructured the University of Coimbra , and ended discrimination against different Christian sects in Portugal.

These reforms gained him enemies in the upper classes, especially among the high nobility, who despised him as a social upstart.

Disaster fell upon Portugal in the morning of 1 November , when Lisbon was struck by a violent earthquake with an estimated moment magnitude of 8.

The city was razed to the ground by the earthquake and the subsequent tsunami and ensuing fires. We bury the dead and take care of the living. Despite the calamity and huge death toll , Lisbon suffered no epidemics and within less than one year was already being rebuilt.

The new city centre of Lisbon was designed to resist subsequent earthquakes. Architectural models were built for tests, and the effects of an earthquake were simulated by marching troops around the models.

As his power grew, his enemies increased in number, and bitter disputes with the high nobility became frequent. In Joseph I was wounded in an attempted assassination.

The Jesuits were expelled from the country and their assets confiscated by the crown. This was the final stroke that broke the power of the aristocracy.

Joseph I made his loyal minister Count of Oeiras in The Marquis of Pombal died on his estate at Pombal in With the occupation by Napoleon, Portugal began a slow but inexorable decline that lasted until the 20th century.

In the autumn of , Napoleon moved French troops through Spain to invade Portugal. From to , British-Portuguese forces would successfully fight against the French invasion of Portugal in the Peninsular War , during which the royal family and the Portuguese nobility , including Maria I, relocated to the Portuguese territory of Brazil , at that time a colony of the Portuguese Empire , in South America.

This episode is known as the Transfer of the Portuguese Court to Brazil. As a result of the change in its status and the arrival of the Portuguese royal family, Brazilian administrative, civic, economical , military, educational , and scientific apparatus were expanded and highly modernized.

However, the King of Portugal remained in Brazil until the Liberal Revolution of , which started in Porto , demanded his return to Lisbon in Thus he returned to Portugal but left his son Pedro in charge of Brazil.

Brazilian independence was recognized in , whereby Emperor Pedro I granted to his father the titular honour of Emperor of Brazil. Though Pedro was his heir, and reigned briefly as Pedro IV, his status as a Brazilian monarch was seen as an impediment to holding the Portuguese throne by both nations.

Pedro abdicated in favour of his daughter, Maria II. Under his reign, roads, telegraphs, and railways were constructed and improvements in public health advanced.

His popularity increased when, during the cholera outbreak of —, he visited hospitals handing out gifts and comforting the sick.

At the height of European colonialism in the 19th century, Portugal had already lost its territory in South America and all but a few bases in Asia.

During this phase, Portuguese colonialism focused on expanding its outposts in Africa into nation-sized territories to compete with other European powers there.

With the Conference of Berlin of , Portuguese Africa territories had their borders formally established on request of Portugal in order to protect the centuries-long Portuguese interests in the continent from rivalries enticed by the Scramble for Africa.

Even before the turn of the 20th century, railway tracks as the Benguela railway in Angola, and the Beira railway in Mozambique, started to be built to link coastal areas and selected inland regions.

Other episodes during this period of the Portuguese presence in Africa include the British Ultimatum. This forced the Portuguese military to retreat from the land between the Portuguese colonies of Mozambique and Angola most of present-day Zimbabwe and Zambia , which had been claimed by Portugal and included in its " Pink Map ", which clashed with British aspirations to create a Cape to Cairo Railway.

Manuel II of Portugal became the new king, but was eventually overthrown by the 5 October revolution , which abolished the regime and instated republicanism in Portugal.

Political instability and economic weaknesses were fertile ground for chaos and unrest during the Portuguese First Republic.

Gradually, new economic development projects and relocation of mainland Portuguese citizens into the overseas provinces in Africa were initiated, with Angola and Mozambique , as the largest and richest overseas territories, being the main targets of those initiatives.

After India attained independence in , pro-Indian residents of Dadra and Nagar Haveli , with the support of the Indian government and the help of pro-independence organisations, separated the territories of Dadra and Nagar Haveli from Portuguese rule in Another forcible retreat from overseas territories occurred in December when Portugal refused to relinquish the territories of Goa , Daman and Diu.

As a result, the Portuguese army and navy were involved in armed conflict in its colony of Portuguese India against the Indian Armed Forces.

The operations resulted in the defeat and surrender of the limited Portuguese defensive garrison, which was forced to surrender to a much larger military force.

The outcome was the loss of the remaining Portuguese territories in the Indian subcontinent. Also in the early s, independence movements in the Portuguese overseas provinces of Angola , Mozambique and Guinea in Africa, resulted in the Portuguese Colonial War — Throughout the colonial war period Portugal had to deal with increasing dissent, arms embargoes and other punitive sanctions imposed by most of the international community.

This period was characterized by social turmoil and power disputes between left- and right-wing political forces. Over one million Portuguese refugees fled the former Portuguese provinces as white settlers were usually not considered part of the new identities of the former Portuguese colonies in Africa and Asia.

By , all the Portuguese African territories were independent and Portugal held its first democratic elections in 50 years.

In this capacity Soares tried to resume the economic growth and development record that had been achieved before the Carnation Revolution, during the last decade of the previous regime.

He initiated the process of accession to the European Economic Community EEC by starting accession negotiations as early as Portugal bounced between socialism and adherence to the neoliberal model.

Land reform and nationalizations were enforced; the Portuguese Constitution approved in was rewritten in order to accommodate socialist and communist principles.

Until the constitutional revisions of and , the constitution was a highly charged ideological document with numerous references to socialism, the rights of workers, and the desirability of a socialist economy.

In , the independence of East Timor Asia was formally recognized by Portugal, after an incomplete decolonization process that was started in because of the Carnation Revolution, but interrupted by an Indonesian armed invasion and occupation.

On 26 March , Portugal started to implement Schengen Area rules, eliminating border controls with other Schengen members while simultaneously strengthening border controls with non-member states.

The Republic of Ireland was the only EU state to hold a democratic referendum on the Lisbon Treaty; it was initially rejected by voters in The territory of Portugal includes an area in the Iberian Peninsula referred to as the continent by most Portuguese and two archipelagos in the Atlantic Ocean: Mainland Portugal is split by its main river, the Tagus , that flows from Spain and disgorges in Tagus Estuary, in Lisbon, before escaping into the Atlantic.

The northern landscape is mountainous towards the interior with several plateaus indented by river valleys, whereas the south, including the Algarve and the Alentejo regions, is characterized by rolling plains.

The archipelagos of Madeira and the Azores are scattered within the Atlantic Ocean: Geologically, these islands were formed by volcanic and seismic events.

The last terrestrial volcanic eruption occurred in —58 Capelinhos and minor earthquakes occur sporadically, usually of low intensity. This is the 3rd largest exclusive economic zone of the European Union and the 11th largest in the world.

There are however, variations from the highlands to the lowlands: Rivas Martinez, presents several different bioclimatic zones for Portugal.

Portuguese Institute of the Sea and the Atmosphere. The record high of In these places snow can fall any time from October to May.

In the South of the country snowfalls are rare but still occur in the highest elevations. Both the archipelagos of the Azores and Madeira have a subtropical climate, although variations between islands exist, making weather predictions very difficult owing to rough topography.

Some islands in Azores do have drier months in the summer. Porto Santo island in Madeira has a semi-arid steppe climate BSh.

The Serra da Estrela , the highest mountain range on continental Portugal. Beach in Vila Nova de Milfontes , on the Alentejo region.

The cultivated hillsides of the Douro river valley of Northern Portugal. Monsaraz and the Alqueva Reservoir on the background, on the Alentejo.

Cabo da Roca , the westernmost point of mainland Europe. Despite the fact that humans have occupied the territory of Portugal for thousands of years, something still remains of the original vegetation.

Due to the human population decrease and rural exodus, Pyrenean oak and other local native trees are colonizing many abandoned areas. Boar , Iberian red deer, roe deer, and the Iberian wild goat, are reported to have expanded greatly during recent decades.

Boars were found recently roaming at night inside large urban areas, like in Setubal. Protected areas of Portugal include one national park Portuguese: Parque Nacional , 12 natural parks Portuguese: Parque Natural , nine natural reserves Portuguese: Reserva Natural , five natural monuments Portuguese: Monumento Natural , and seven protected landscapes Portuguese: These natural environments are shaped by diverse flora, and include widespread species of pine especially the Pinus pinaster and Pinus pinea species , the English oak Quercus robur , the Pyrenean oak Quercus pyrenaica the chestnut Castanea sativa , the cork-oak Quercus suber , the holm oak Quercus ilex or the Portuguese oak Quercus faginea.

Due to their economic value, some species of the genus Eucalyptus were introduced and are now common, despite their environmental impact. Laurisilva is a unique type of subtropical rainforest, which nowadays, in Europe, is only restricted to the Iberian Peninsula: Portugal is an important stopover for migratory birds, in places such as Cape St.

Vincent or the Monchique mountains, where thousands of birds cross from Europe to Africa during the autumn or in the spring return migration. Most of the avian species congregate along the Iberian Peninsula since it is the closest stopover between Northern Europe and Africa.

Six hundred bird species occur in Portugal either for nesting or during the course of migration , and annually there are new registries of nesting species.

The archipelagos of the Azores and Madeira are transient stopover for American, European, and African birds, while continental Portugal mostly encounters European and African bird species.

There are more than freshwater fish species, varying from the giant European catfish in the Tagus International Natural Park to some small and endemic species that live only in small lakes along the western portion of country, for example.

Some of these rare and specific species are highly endangered because of habitat loss, pollution and drought. Up-welling along the west coast of Portugal makes the sea extremely rich in nutrients and diverse species of marine fish; the Portuguese marine waters are one of the richest in the world.

Marine fish species are more common, and include thousands of species, such as the sardine Sardina pilchardus , tuna and Atlantic mackerel.

Bioluminescent species are also well represented including species in different colour spectrum and forms , like the glowing plankton that are possible to observe in some beaches.

There are many endemic insect species, most only found in certain parts of Portugal, while other species are more widespread like the stag beetle Lucanus cervus and the cicada.

The Macaronesian islands Azores and Madeira have many endemic species like birds, reptiles, bats, insects, snails and slugs that evolved independently from other regions of Portugal.

In Madeira, for example, it is possible to observe more than species of land gastropods. The Constitution grants the division or separation of powers among four bodies referred as "organs of Sovereignty": The President, who is elected to a five-year term, has an executive role: The Assembly of the Republic is a single chamber parliament composed of deputies elected for a four-year term.

The Courts are organized into several levels, among the judicial, administrative and fiscal branches. A thirteen-member Constitutional Court oversees the constitutionality of the laws.

The Head of State of Portugal is the President of the Republic , elected to a five-year term by direct, universal suffrage.

He or she has also supervision and reserve powers. Presidential powers include the appointment of the Prime Minister and the other members of the Government where the President takes into account the results of legislative elections ; dismissing the Prime Minister; dissolving the Assembly of the Republic to call early elections ; vetoing legislation which may be overridden by the Assembly ; and declaring a state of war or siege.

The President is advised on issues of importance by the Council of State , which is composed of six senior civilian officers, any former Presidents elected under the Constitution, five-members chosen by the Assembly, and five selected by the president.

The Government is both the organ of sovereignty that conducts the general politics of the country and the superior body of the public administration.

It has essentially Executive powers, but has also limited Legislative powers. The Government can legislate about its own organization, about areas covered by legislative authorizations conceded by the Assembly of the Republic and about the specific regulation of generalist laws issued by the Assembly.

Each government is required to define the broad outline of its policies in a programme, and present it to the Assembly for a mandatory period of debate.

The failure of the Assembly to reject the government programme by an absolute majority of deputies confirms the cabinet in office. The Assembly of the Republic , in Lisbon is the national parliament of Portugal.

It is the main Legislative body, although the Government also has limited legislative powers. The Assembly of the Republic is a unicameral body composed of up to deputies.

Elected by universal suffrage according to a system of closed party-list proportional representation , deputies serve four-year terms of office, unless the President dissolves the Assembly and calls for new elections.

The Portuguese legal system is part of the civil law legal system, also called the continental family legal system. The main laws include the Constitution , as amended , the Portuguese Civil Code , as amended and the Penal Code of Portugal , as amended.

Other relevant laws are the Commercial Code , as amended and the Civil Procedure Code , as amended. The Public Ministry , headed by the Attorney General of the Republic, constitutes the independent body of public prosecutors.

Portuguese law applied in the former colonies and territories and continues to be the major influence for those countries.

Portugal was the first country in the world to abolish life imprisonment in and was one of the first countries to abolish the death penalty.

Maximum jail sentences are limited to 25 years. Portugal is also known for having decriminalized the usage of all common drugs in , the first country in the world to do so.

Portugal decriminalized possession of effectively all drugs that are still illegal in other developed nations including cannabis , cocaine , heroin , and LSD.

While possession is legal, trafficking and possession of more than "10 days worth of personal use" are still punishable by jail time and fines.

People caught with small amounts of any drug are given the choice to go to a rehab facility, and may refuse treatment without consequences. Drug use among to year-olds also declined, however the use of marijuana rose only slightly among that age group.

On 31 May , Portugal became the sixth country in Europe and the eighth country in the world to legally recognize same-sex marriage on the national level.

The law came into force on 5 June Administratively, Portugal is divided into municipalities Portuguese: Operationally, the municipality and civil parish, along with the national government, are the only legally identifiable local administrative units identified by the government of Portugal for example, cities, towns or villages have no standing in law, although may be used as catchment for the defining services.

For statistical purposes the Portuguese government also identifies NUTS , inter-municipal communities and informally, the district system, used until European integration and being phased-out by the national government.

Portugal Continental and the autonomous regions of Portugal Azores and Madeira. The 18 districts of mainland Portugal are: It has a friendship alliance and dual citizenship treaty with its former colony, Brazil.

The armed forces have three branches: Navy , Army and Air Force. They serve primarily as a self-defense force whose mission is to protect the territorial integrity of the country and provide humanitarian assistance and security at home and abroad.

As of [update] , the three branches numbered 39, active personnel including 7, women. Portuguese military expenditure in was billion, representing 2.

Military conscription was abolished in The minimum age for voluntary recruitment is 18 years. The Army 21, personnel comprises three brigades and other small units.

In addition to the three branches of the armed forces, there is the National Republican Guard , a security force subject to military law and organization gendarmerie comprising 25, personnel.

This force is under the authority of both the Defense and the Interior Ministry. It has provided detachments for participation in international operations in Iraq and East Timor.

In the 20th century, Portugal engaged in two major conflicts: The Portuguese government is heavily indebted, and received a 78 billion euro bailout from the European Union and the International Monetary Fund in May The Portuguese government also agreed to eliminate its golden share in Portugal Telecom which gave it veto power over vital decisions.

This allowed considerable slippage in state-managed public works and inflated top management and head officer bonuses and wages.

Persistent and lasting recruitment policies boosted the number of redundant public servants. Risky credit , public debt creation, and European structural and cohesion funds were mismanaged across almost four decades.

In the second decade of the 21st century, the Portuguese economy suffered its most severe recession since the s, resulting in the country having to be bailed out by the European Commission, European Central Bank and International Monetary Fund IMF.

In May , the country exited the bailout but reaffirmed its commitment to maintaining its reformist momentum. At the time of exiting the bailout, the economy had contracted by 0.

The Global Competitiveness Report for —, published by the World Economic Forum , placed Portugal on the 36th position on the economic index.

Major state-owned companies include: The International Monetary Fund issued an update report on the economy of Portugal in late-June with a strong near-term outlook and an increase in investments and exports over previous years.

Because of a surplus in , the country was no longer bound by the Excessive Deficit Procedure which had been implemented during an earlier financial crisis.

The banking system was more stable, although there were still non-performing loans and corporate debt. The IMF recommended working on solving these problems for Portugal to be able to attract more private investment.

Agriculture in Portugal is based on small to medium-sized family-owned dispersed units. The country produces a wide variety of crops and livestock products, including: Traditionally a sea-power, Portugal has had a strong tradition in the Portuguese fishing sector and is one of the countries with the highest fish consumption per capita.

The nation is also a notable producer of tin , tungsten and uranium. Although the country has vast iron and coal reserves — mainly in the north — after the revolution and the consequent economic globalization , low competitiveness forced a decrease in the extraction activity for these minerals.

The Panasqueira and Neves-Corvo mines are among the most recognised Portuguese mines that are still in operation. The largest lithium mine in Europe is operated by Grupo Mota, Felmica, in the Guarda region, which is estimated to have reserves for 30 years of production.

It has 5 more deposits in its possession. The company said the estimated mineral resources at the mine now stood at 14 million tonnes.

Lithium prices have risen in expectation of growing demand for the mineral, which is used in batteries for electric vehicles and for storing electricity from the power grid.

Europe consumes more than 20 per cent of the global supply of battery-grade lithium but currently has to import all its supplies of the mineral.

The so-called reverse circulation drilling program included 15 holes with around 2, metres of total drilling. The objective is to extend resources by integrating the data from drilling results with the expansion expected with the ongoing campaign.

Wine has been one of the most noted Portuguese exports. The country is the seventh largest exporter of the product worldwide, by value. Industry is diversified, ranging from automotive Volkswagen Autoeuropa and Peugeot Citroen , aerospace Embraer and OGMA , electronics and textiles , to food , chemicals , cement and wood pulp.

Modern non-traditional technology-based industries, such as aerospace , biotechnology and information technology , have been developed in several locations across the country.

Following the turn of the 21st century, many major biotechnology and information technology industries have been founded, and are concentrated in the metropolitan areas of Lisbon , Porto , Braga , Coimbra and Aveiro.

The banking and insurance sectors performed well until the lates financial crisis , and this partly reflected a rapid deepening of the market in Portugal.

While sensitive to various types of market and underwriting risks , it has been estimated that overall both the life and non-life sectors will be able to withstand a number of severe shocks, even though the impact on individual insurers varies widely.

Travel and tourism continue to be extremely important for Portugal. It has been necessary for the country to focus upon its niche attractions, such as health, nature and rural tourism, to stay ahead of its competitors.

Portugal is among the top 20 most-visited countries in the world, receiving an average of 20,, foreign tourists each year.

Tourist hotspots in Portugal are: Also, between 5—6 million religious pilgrims visit Fatima each year, where apparitions of the Blessed Virgin Mary to three shepherd children reportedly took place in The Portuguese government continues to promote and develop new tourist destinations, such as the Douro Valley , the island of Porto Santo , and Alentejo.

The Rooster of Barcelos is bought by thousands of tourists as a souvenir. A number of both national and multinational high-tech and industrial companies, are also responsible for research and development projects.

One of the oldest learned societies of Portugal is the Sciences Academy of Lisbon , founded in Iberian bilateral state-supported research efforts include the International Iberian Nanotechnology Laboratory and the Ibercivis distributed computing platform, which are joint research programmes of both Portugal and Spain.

Portugal is a member of several pan-European scientific organizations. With the emergence and growth of several science parks throughout the world that helped create many thousands of scientific, technological and knowledge-based businesses, Portugal started to develop several [] science parks across the country.

Companies locate in the Portuguese science parks to take advantage of a variety of services ranging from financial and legal advice through to marketing and technological support.

The European Innovation Scoreboard , placed Portugal-based innovation in the 15th position, with an impressive increase in innovation expenditure and output.

Again in the s, after joining the European Economic Community , the country built many new motorways. Opened in , the first motorway which linked Lisbon to the National Stadium was an innovative project that made Portugal among one of the first countries in the world to establish a motorway this roadway eventually became the Lisbon-Cascais highway, or A5.

Although a few other tracts were created around and , it was only after the beginning of the s that large-scale motorway construction was implemented.

On many highways, a toll needs to be paid, see Via Verde. Vasco da Gama bridge is the longest bridge in Europe. The primary flag-carrier is TAP Air Portugal , although many other domestic airlines provide services within and without the country.

The government decided to build a new airport outside Lisbon, in Alcochete , to replace Lisbon Portela Airport , though this plan has been suspended due to austerity measures.

One other important airport is the Aeroporto Internacional das Lajes on the island of Terceira in the Azores. This airport serves as one of two international airports serving countries outside the European Union for all nine islands of the Azores.

It also serves as a military air base for the United States Air Force. The base remains in use to the present day. A national railway system that extends throughout the country and into Spain, is supported and administered by Comboios de Portugal.

The railway network is managed by Infraestruturas de Portugal while the transport of passengers and goods are the responsibility of Comboios de Portugal CP , both public companies.

In Santa Cruz da Graciosa you will find ancient streets and manor-houses, a beautiful mother-church 16thth centuries , Santo Cristo Church 16th century , Cruz da Barra Manueline and Ethnographic House.

In the Furna do Enxofre, dazzling sights and a vaulted cave over an underground lake between 11am and 2pm the sunlight filters in.

You must also visit Guadalupe and its Baroque church, Luz and Praia typical windmills. Faial is one of the favorite central islands in the Azores. In Horta, the famous yacht harbor, look at the beautiful tiles and gilded carvings in the 17th and 18th century churches of Sao Salvador, Nossa Senhora do Carmo and Sao Francisco.

Pico features the highest mountain in the Azores and Portugal. Owes its name to the ft high volcanic cone. Velas, with its fishing port, is the main town.

The smallest of all Azores islands and a peaceful sanctuary. In Caldeirao enormous volcanic crater ,there are two lakes with nine small islands, just like the archipelago.

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Home About Portugal Regions Azores. Azores The Azores is an archipelago of nine islands located in the north Atlantic ocean, about 2 hours from Europe and 5 from North America.

Faial Island Faial is one of the favorite central islands in the Azores. The fertile soils and temperate climate attracted settlers from other countries, notably French people and cultural minorities such as Jews and some Moors.

Its geographic position and fertile soils permitted rapid economic development. The first capital of the island was Vila Franca do Campo , which was devastated by the Vila Franca earthquake and landslides.

The tragedy helped to elevate Ponta Delgada to the administrative and economic status of capital and business centre from With the Portuguese Restoration War , the island regained its position as a commercial centre, establishing new contacts in Brazil , which was heavily colonized during this period.

In , during the Liberal Wars , following the landing of troops loyal to Queen Maria II in Nordeste sent by future Duke of Terceira , a resistance to the Absolutist regime on the Island was organized.

In , this militia declared allegiance to the Charter constitutional monarchy and Queen Maria, forming a contingent that sailed to the continent where they were involved in the liberation of Porto.

Following the Liberal Wars, the period of Devourism allowed the economy to flourish, and the port of Ponta Delgada expanded, through the export of new crops such as tea , pineapple , and tobacco.

The development of the fishing industry, cultivation of food staples and expansion of the dairy industry permitted the growth of many of the population centres on the island.

Following the Carnation Revolution , the island received the seat of the Presidency of the Autonomous Region of the Azores , located in Ponta Delgada, while its economic, social and political importance continued to grow within the archipelago.

In the ancient crater of Furnas the faults are aligned west-northwest to east-southeast. The Sete Cidades Massif — an area that occupies the extreme western part of the island, and corresponds to a central volcanic crater and lake-filled caldera , with various cones, deposits of pumice , lava domes and maars.

In the northeastern flank of this volcano the Mosteiros Graben , a tectonic structure created from the collapse of lands and located along a northwest to southeast orientation.

On the northeastern flank of the Massif the Ribeira Grande Graben is visible, representing a tectonic depression oriented northwest to southeast; The Achada das Furnas Plateau - a region with a central plain marked by cones and maars, with deposits along a west-northwest to east-southeast and northwest to southeast; Furnas Volcano - located in the eastern part of the island, along the southern coast, and comprising two ancient calderas, occupied by a lake Lagoa das Furnas.

From west to east these zones are: These geomorphological structures have resulted from millions of years of compound growth that began in the eastern portion of the island; around 4 million years ago the Nordeste Volcano burst from the ocean floor in effusive and fissural eruptions.

The first phase, composed of the older materials, erupted from lava flows and Trachyte pyroclasts, the secondary phase corresponded to volcanic products that began erupting , years ago.

These latter deposits included pyroclastic, trachyte flows lava and surges , mud flows and a mixture of basalts. In what would become the western portion of the island a fourth volcano formed: These eruptions were explosive and fed by activities in the neighboring volcanic systems.

This formation integrated lavas, basaltic pyroclasts, tuff cones and trachyte domes into two layers referred to as the Ponta Delgada and Penhal da Paz sub-depoists and compiled to about 5, years ago.

They are primarily made up of basaltic cones which were formed during Strombolian and Hawaiian-style eruptions. This is the part of the island with most recent volcanic activity.

The youngest volcanoes are relatively well dated. It is estimated [ by whom? Several eruptions have been witnessed and recorded by people.

The last one took place in the 17th century. The ancient laurisilva forest has mostly been replaced by cultivated fields and imported trees and plants, such as the ubiquitous cryptomeria trees.

Lying at the eastern end of the island, it is the focus of a Special Protection Area containing the largest remnant of laurisilva forest on the island, which is home to the endemic and critically endangered bird, the Azores bullfinch.

One may see sea turtles , dolphins and humpback whales. Owing to the predominance of volcanic cones and craters in the interior, human settlement has developed primarily along coastal and interior plains.

Regardless, these settlements were largely agrarian and concentrated around the parish churches and the many fertile parcels of land.

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There is a poolside bar and sports pub for informal drinks. Elektronische Casinos und Sportwettlokale,. Spezial-Bonus zur Gruppe F: Bleibt Kovac oder kommt es zur Entlassung? All rooms at Hotel Apartamentos Gaivota have hardwood floors and elegant furnishings. Madeira Where to Stay. Die Mannschaft des Trainer-Duos Lagerbäck und Hallgrimsson bestritt danach noch neun Freundschaftsspiele, wovon sechs verloren gingen und lediglich gegen Finnland, Griechenland sowie Liechtenstein Generalprobe gewonnen wurde. Travel Insurance We understand that there are unforeseeable circumstances, like flight cancellations, that prevent our clients from making their trips as planned. The island is also home to the largest outdoor, manmade salt-water swimming pool, which is surprising deep and perfect for swimming laps.

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