Portugal is a country situated in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula and a member nation of the European Union. Portugal is the westernmost country of Europe, and is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean to the West and South and by Spain to the North and East.
The Atlantic archipelagos of the Azores and Madeira are part of Portugal. The country is named after its second largest city, Porto. Continental Portugal is serviced by three international airports located near the principal cities of Lisbon, Porto and Faro. Lisbon's geographical position makes it a stopover for many foreign airlines at several airports within the country. The primary Portuguese airline is TAP Portugal, although many other domestic airlines provide services within and without the country. The government decided to build a new airport outside Lisbon, in Alcochete, to replace Lisbon Portela Airport.
Currently, the most important airports are in Lisbon, Porto, Faro, Funchal in Madeira), and Ponta Delgada in the Azores. The two largest cities in Portugal are served by subway systems with Lisbon Metro and Metro Sul do Tejo serving the Lisbon metropolitan area and Porto Metro serving the Porto metropolitan area - each possessing more than 35 kilometers or 22 miles of lines. All the other major cities and towns have their own local urban transport network, as well as taxi services.
The territory of Portugal includes an area in the Iberian Peninsula and two archipelagos in the Atlantic Ocean - the archipelagos of Madeira and the Azores. Mainland Portugal is split by the Tagus River that flows from Spain and disgorges in the Tagus Estuary near Lisbon before continuing into the Atlantic Ocean.
The northern landscape is mountainous towards the interior with several plateaus indented by river valleys, whereas in the south which includes the Algarve and the Alentejo regions, it is characterized by rolling plains. The highest peak in Portugal is Mount Pico on the island of Pico in the Azores. This ancient volcano, which measures 2,351 meters or 7,713 feet is a highly visible symbol of the Azores, while the Serra da Estrela on the mainland, with a summit of 1,991 meters or 6,532 feet is a favorite destination for skiers.
The archipelagos of Madeira and the Azores were formed by volcanic and seismic events, although the last volcanic eruption occurred in 1957–58 at Capelinhos. Other minor earthquakes will occur sporadically, but are usually of low intensity.
Portugal is defined as a Mediterranean climate, with a semi-arid climate or steppe climate in certain parts of the Beja district. It is one of the warmest European countries with the annual average temperature in mainland Portugal varying from 12°C or 53.6°F in the mountainous interior north to over 18°C or 64.4°F in the south and on the Guadiana River basin.
The Algarve, separated from the Alentejo region by mountains reaching up to 900 meters in Pico da Foia, has a climate similar to that of the southern coastal areas of Spain or Southern California. The country enjoys around 2500 to 3200 hours of sunshine each year with an average of 4–6 hours in the winter and 10–12 hours in the summer. I failed to mention Fado music and Port wine, but those are things you'll have to go to Portugal to experience first hand...