Portugal is one of the oldest nations in Europe and has been independent since 1143. It sits on the west side
of the Iberian Peninsula, bordered to the east and north by Spain and to the west and south by the Atlantic
Less than 36,000 square miles in size, the small country is nevertheless, geographically diverse, with peaks
rising to 6,500 in the Estrela Mountains range and lows falling to sea level along the coast and around the
Atlantic Madeiras. Basically, the landscape is typically Mediterranean, with scrub brush, olive groves,
vineyards, figs and almonds, and mixed deciduous wood in the north and northern interior.
Climate is mild with winters in the 50's F range and clear dry summers in the 70's F range. More
specifically, the northwest has more rainfall than the south coast and temperatures are cooler in higher
altitudes. The subtropical Madeiras enjoy the warmest temperatures, rising to 76 Fahrenheit.
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Portugal Intro Continued...