Portugal is an old country, born in the 12th century, between the Minho and Douro rivers. It was successively inhabited by several people: Phoenicians, Carthaginians and Celts. The Roman invasion of the Iberian Peninsula was an important source of influence on language, law and religion. With the decline of the Roman Empire, the country was occupied by Germanic peoples and later by Muslims.
As a pioneer of maritime exploration in the Age of Discovery, the Kingdom of Portugal expanded its territories between the 15th and 16th centuries, establishing the first global empire in history, with territories in Africa, South America, Asia and Oceania. Thanks to the fortunes that the colonies of that time provided to Portugal, many of the country’s most popular monuments were built to commemorate this period.
The dramatic earthquake that struck the capital Lisbon in 1755, along with the Spanish and French invasions, led the country to a political and economic instability. The revolution of 1820 brought the approval of the first Portuguese Constitution and the beginning of the Constitutional Monarchy that had to face the loss of the Portuguese greater colony, Brazil.
The Monarchy was abolished in 1910 and the first Portuguese Republic was not able to solve the numerous problems that marked a country immersed in social conflict. The “coup d’état” of 1926 was the birth a long dictatorship, which had to fight with a colonial war from 1961 till 1974, when a military coup overthrew the government in the "Carnation Revolution."
The following year, Portugal declared the independence of all its colonies in Africa. After a troubled revolutionary period, the democracy was proclaimed in a regime of Semi-Presidential Republic. From 1986 on, it strengthened its modernization and joined the European Community, adopting the euro as its currency in 2002.
Portugal is today renowned for its security and modernity, for the friendliness of its people, for its unique and inviting mild climate. Its prodigious heritage - which attracts millions of tourists - is a legacy of its rich past. It has also left its mark on the cultural diversity of this small country that offers a variety of cultures and gives you always new reasons for a visit.