60 Interesting Facts About Portugal - The fact file (2023)

Last updated on October 29, 2022

Portugal,officially the Portuguese Republic, is a country located primarily on the Iberian Peninsula in south-western Europe. It has atotal areaof 92,090 square kilometers. It is LisbonCapital cityand largest city. Portuguese is the officialLanguagefrom Portugal.Euro (€) (EUR)is its official currency.Spainis the only country that borders land.

It is alsothe westernmost country of mainland Europe.With the history of its golden era during the 15th and 16thLisbonalone), Portugal has so much to discover. Let's learn more about its history, culture, people, inventions, economy and more with these interesting facts about Portugal.

1.Portugal was founded in 1128 and is thusone of the oldest nations in Europe. Portugal isnamed afterits second largest city, Porto.

2.Did you know thatPorto has the most bridges in Europe crossing the same river?There are a whopping 6 bridges: Dom Luis I Bridge (most popular), Arrabida Bridge (most controversial), Maria Pia Bridge (the oldest bridge in the city), São João Bridge (the futuristic one), Freixo Bridge (the most remote) and Infante D Henrique Bridge (the newest). The sixunite bridgesthe cities of Vila Nova de Gaia and Porto. The residents of Porto are not only proud that these are functional buildings, but also because they serve as real landmarks.

3.Portugal is adevelopedCountry. It ranks 6th according to the 2022 Global Peace Indexth safest countryin the world.

4.TheGreen-Lane-MautsystemAndPrepaid-Handycard are tooPortuguese inventions,to name a couple.

5.Portuguese thatThe national language of Portugal is also spokenBrazil, Mozambique, Angola, Guinea-Bissau, East Timor, Equatorial Guinea,Cap Verde, and São Tomé and Príncipe – overallnine countries.

6.It (Portuguese) is toodie 6thmost spoken mother tongue(232 million speakers)in the world.

Flag of Portugal

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7.Portuguese werea key factor in the Age of Exploration.They helped discover several countries unknown to Europeans in America, Africa, Asia and Oceania.

8.The largest community ofPortuguese outside Portugal is inRio de Janeiro.

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9.The dolphin interaction program (the only one of its kind in Europe) brings you up close and personal with the dolphins.

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10. Sintra is considered the most romantic place in the countrybecause of its charming streets, buildings and misty climate. It is also famous for stunning beaches, vast forests and Europe's westernmost point (Cabo da Roca). In fact, Sintra was once described by Lord Byron as Portugal's glorious Eden. In addition, in 1995 it was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in the cultural landscape category.

11.There are17 UNESCO World Heritage Sitesin Portugal… and in 2019 more than27 million touristsvisited the country.

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  • Alto Douro Wine Region (2001)
  • Central zone of the city of Angra do Heroismo in the Azores (1983)
  • Christi Monastery in Tomar (1983)
  • Cultural Landscape of Sintra (1995)
  • Garrison frontier town of Elvas and its fortifications (2012)
  • Historic Center of Evora (1986)
  • Historic Center of Guimarães (2001)
  • Historic Center of Porto, Luiz I Bridge and Serra do Pilar Monastery (1996)
  • Landscape of the Vineyard Culture of the Pico Island (2004)
  • Kloster von Alcobaça (1989)
  • Kloster Battle (1983)
  • Monastery of the Hieronymites and Belém Tower in Lisbon (1983)
  • Prehistoric Rock Paintings in the Côa Valley and Siega Verde (1998,2010)
  • Royal building ofMafra– palace, basilica, monastery,I'm looking forGarden and hunting park (stuffy)(2019)
  • Sanctuary of Bom Jesus do Monte in Braga (2019)
  • University of Coimbra – Alta and Sofia (2013)


  • Laurels of Madeira (1999)

12.Thelargest artificial underwater park–The Ocean Revival underwater parkin the world, is in Portugal.

13.The VASCO DA GAMA BRIDGE in Lisbon isthe longest bridge in Europewith a total length of 17,185 meters.

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14.One ofmost modern ATM systemof the world belongs to Portugal. More than 60 operations are possible through the system, including making a donation to charity, topping up phone credit and purchasing concert tickets.

15.Founded in Lisbon in 1290, the University of Coimbra isone of the oldest continuously operating universities in the world,the oldest university in Portugal and one of the largest universities and research institutes. The University of Coimbra has a long history that can be traced back to the 13th century. The massive buildings of this faculty tower over the whole of Coimbra, 100 meters above sea level. One of the university's oldest libraries (Joanina Library) contains over 30,000 books and is decorated with marble walls and floors covered in gold leaf.

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16.The Montado landscape ofPortugal produces about half of the cork harvested annuallyworldwide. Cork is impermeable, buoyant, resilient and has fire retardant properties. It is most commonly used aswine stopper.

17.The world record forthe biggest Santa Claus paradeis held from Porto, Portugal with 14,963 participants.

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18.Portugal is also known as the "land of tiles". The Portuguese have long adorned their walls and floors with tiles. To learn more about the history and artistic development of Portuguese tiles from the earliest times to the present day, you can also visit theNational Tile Museumin Lisbon.

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19. The unique streets of Lisbon are lined with Portuguese pavement.The special landmark is a common bucket list for tourists visiting Europe. First appearing near Castelo de São Jorge, they gradually grew in popularity and quickly spread throughout the capital. With a whimsical design, the sidewalks create a magical aura and make a trip to the capital a once-in-a-lifetime experience. The tiles are designed with mosaic patterns and were carefully installed through a process discovered centuries ago. You can find them all over the central streets of Lisbon.

20.Still in Lisbon you will find the largest indoor aquarium. The oceanarium is located in the Parque das Nações districtHome to a wide variety of fish from bluegill– the largest bony fish, deep sea fish,Hedge, to small tropical fish. It is filled with about 5 million liters of sea water. While the aquarium is the biggest attraction, visitors often take another tour to see exhibits of mammals, plants, invertebrates, etc.

21.Portugal isworld leader in the generation of renewable energy.It succeedscovers almost 70% of its energy needs with water, wind and solar energy.The country is also able to convert the movement of sea waves into electricity and energy. (You really do have a secure future given the energy shortages the world is facing)

22.LandsNational drink is Port(wine), which is also its most famous export.

23.Port wine is probably the only wine derived from a city name. It comes from the Douro Valley in Porto and ages in the cellars of Vila Nova de Gaia, located across the river from the city. Wine lovers take wine tasting tours in the Caves of Gaia. To get to the wine cellars, you have to cross the impressive Dom Luís I bridge for about 10 minutes.

24. Women in Portugal live longer than menInthe countrysince the life expectancy of women is 2 years longer than that of men.

Portugal on the map

25.Portugal has one of the EUlowest fertility rate.

26.Os Lusíadas (von Luís de Camões) ist dieNational Epic of Portugal.

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27.Chili, peppers, potatoes and tomatoes were includedintroduced by the PortugueseIf.The Portuguese also invented the piri-piri sauce.

28.The world record forthe largest omelet belongs to Portugal.It weighed a whopping 6,466 tons. More details about the omelet can be found hereGuinness World Records-Website.

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Facts about Portuguese history and culture

29. Portuguese appreciateArt, music, drama and dance.

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30.The majority of the country's cities haveat least one cinema.

31.Fadois Portugal's national music (it is characterized by sad melodies and lyrics, often about the sea or the lives of the poor).

32.The Portuguese areFatalisten.They have a deep faith in their destiny that they feel they cannot escape.

33.Cafe culture is tooan important cultural traitthe Portuguese.

34.Portugal is best known for its distinctive late Gothic Manueline architecture.

35."Ar de Rock" byRui Veloso, released in 1980, was the first popular Portuguese rock song.

36.AfterCarnation Revolution1974,Portugal has regained its freedom of expression.

37.More than 275,000 residents died in an alleged earthquake in 1755one of the biggest earthquakes in Lisbon.The earthquake was followed by a tsunami and devastating fires throughout the capital.

38.TheMean age of first-time mothersInPortugalis 30.9 years.

39.Portugal hadthe biggest wave ever surfed.In 2011, Hawaiian sat Garret McNamaraA world recordby surfing a 90 foot wave.

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40.I am 31. May 2010,Same-sex marriage was legalizedin Portugal. It became the sixth country in Europe to do so.

41.The Anglo-Portuguese Alliance isthe oldest alliancein the world that is still in force... Yes, that's right!

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42.The island of Madeira, often also "the floating garden of the atlantic,' is in Portugal.

43.Christmascan be sunny and even warmin Portugal as it receives more than 300 days of sunshine annually!

44.In 1761 Portugal becamethe first colonial power to abolish slaveryalmost 50 years before Great Britain, France, Spain or the USAUnited States.

45.A trip to Lisbon will take you through a plethora of books crammed along the beautifully tiled streets. Lisbon is a book lover's city and even has the oldest working library in the world.BertrandBookstore, located inLisbon, Portugal, is the oldest active bookstore. It has beenIn in operation since 1732 and was officially documented in the Guinness Book of Records in 2016.Thealso portugueseDiscovered Brazil.

Facts about famous Portuguese people

46. Cristiano Ronaldo(world famous soccer player) was born in 1985 in Santo António, Portugal. Football is undoubtedly the most popular sport in the country. The footballer has played for big clubs like Real Madrid, Manchester United, Portugal and Juventus. He is considered one of the top players alongside Lionel Messi. When he left Manchester United he became the world's most expensive footballer, signing from Real Madrid in 2009 for €94m. He has an impressive tally of over 700 goals.

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47.Vasco da Gama, a Portuguese explorer, wasthe first European to reach India by sea.

48.The oldest director in the world –olive tree manuel– who continued making films until his death on April 2, 2015, was also Portuguese. He was 106 years old at the time of his death.

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