Portugal – GENERAL INFORMATION – Geographic Information

Geographic Information


Location: Southwestern Europe, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean, west of Spain

Total Borders: 2879 km

Border Countries: Spain 1232 km

Coastline: 1647 km  (mainland 832 km, islands 815 km)

Beaches: sand

Offshore Islands

        Azores (area: 2352 sq km)        Madeira (area: 759 sq km)

Terrain: mountainous north of the Tagus River, rolling plains in south

Elevation extremes

        lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m        highest point: Ponta do Pico (Pico or Pico Alto) on Ilha do Pico in the Azores 2,351 m

Climate: maritime temperate; cool and rainy in north, warmer and drier in south

Main tourist season: April through October

Peak tourist season: July (14,65%) and August (20,65%)

Waters: Continental Portugal is split in two by its main river, the Tagus (Tejo). To the north the landscape is mountainous in the interior areas with plateaus, cut by four breaking lines that allow the development of relevant agricultural areas. The south down as far as the Algarve features mostly rolling plains with a climate somewhat warmer and drier than the cooler and rainier north. Other major rivers include the Douro, the Minho and the Guadiana, similar to the Tagus in that all originate in Spain. Another important river, the Mondego, originates in the Serra da Estrela (the highest mountains in mainland Portugal – 1,991 m).

Natural hazards: Azores subject to severe earthquakes