In the southwest corner of Europe lies Portugal, one fifth of the Iberian Peninsula it shares with Spain.
Portugal has its own language, the 6th most spoken in the world (think Brazil-Portugal’s former colony), its own culture and cuisine. Portugal’s shape is rectangular, the longest north-south distance is 349 miles/561 km and widest east-west distance is 135 miles/218 km. It’s roughly the size of the U.S. state of Indiana. the country’s modest dimensions make it easy to visit when time is short.
Portugal is divided into regions, each offers unique features , history, scenery and cuisine. The regions are from south to north: Algarve, Alentejo, Lisbon and Lisbon Coast, Estremadura and Ribatejo, the Beiras, Douro and Tras-os-Montes and the Minho.
Portugal also includes 2 island groups: the Azores (800 miles southwest of Lisbon) and Madeira (600 miles south of Lisbon)
The Story of Resilience
Lisbon 1755 Earthquake
Lisbon: 09:30 on November 1, 1755. Earthquake, Fire and Tsunami
3 seismic waves rolled through Lisbon on All Saint’s Day, reducing over half the city to ruins. Fires broke out after the third shock and raged for a week. An hour later, huge waves came rolling into the Tejo river estuary inundating the lower part of the city and sweeping people and ships out to sea.
The city center was rebuilt on a grid pattern planned by the Marques de Pombal. Today, Lisbon’s Baixa and Chiado districts are easy to explore due to the grid.