Portugal is a small south Europe´s country, marked in red in the map above. The country is divided in regions: Norte, Centro, Beiras, Lisboa e Vale do Tejo, Alentejo and Algarve. Each region has a capital of district´s city but the country´s capital is Lisbon.
Last week, I was researching online to write a good general description of Algarve when I came across a very complete Tourist Guide. I think this description is very good because it was clearly made to promote Algarve. I couldn´t have made it any better, so I decided to post it here, crediting it´s source:
"The Algarve region stretches across the whole of southern Portugal. It´s name derives from the Arabic El-Gharb that means "west". Algarve has been occupied by the Moors for 600 years. All houses in the Algarve are still being build with those typical arabic chimneys. The Romans however left several bridges and ruins.
East of Faro the coast is known as the leeward shore. The area stretching eastwards to the Spanish border forms an unusual lagoon landscape closed by sandy islets. A great part of the coastline has been declared a protected area, namely Parque Natural da Ria Formosa.
The windward shore is the Algarve's most famous stretch of coast. Ochre - coloured cliffs plunge down to the beach and the turquoise sea surges into coves and grottoes.
The interior of the Algarve is still relatively unknown. The flower-decked, whitewashed villages have managed to preserve their traditional appearance, where handicrafts are still an important industry for the local population. The year-round scents alone are worth the visit, with eucalyptus, pine, lavender and rock-rose all growing here in abundance".
Map credits: luventicus.org