Portugal is publicly famous as the Portuguese Republic, located in southwestern Europe. It is a participant of the United Nations and the European Union and is popular as an advanced and globalized state having a progressive economy and democratic government.
Its capital is Lisbon, which is also a beautiful and cosmopolitan city. Lisbon is the westernmost capital city in the continent of Europe having a populace of approximately 552,700. Many interesting and strange facts about Portugal are related to its high living standards, rich arts, media, and entertainment culture, as well as it has varied cuisine and Mediterranean climate. It is the best destination for tourists.
10: Once Portugal was under the Umayyad Empire
The interesting facts about Portugal are that it was once under and part of the Umayyad Caliphate. In 711, the Muslims of Umayyad invaded the south and made Portugal its part for nearly 5 centuries. Umayyad Empire was massive, stretching from the Indus River, Pakistan, and crossways Europe to the South of France. Though, after 7 years of the conquest of Umayyad Christian Visigoth’s protestors joined together to begin a long process of Reconquista and got their land back.
After 10 years this part of the state became the Christian Kingdom of Asturias, and the king was Pelagius. After the resistance to the Moorish empire was organized there, over 700 years, the Christians of Asturias reclaimed the land of modern Portugal. The towns and cities of the land were repopulated with Christian communities who had resisted conversion during the Umayyad Caliphate and Portuguese refugees. This place got to name the County of Portugal, after its main port city, Portus Cale.
09: Mediterranean Climate of Portugal
It is a strange as well as interesting fact that Portugal is one of the states in Europe that has the warmest climate. Its average temperature is just 53.6 °F in the mountainous north to over 64.4 °F in the south. The warmer areas of Portugal’s temperature reach up to 113 °F but, you know on the other side its northern areas experience mostly snowfall throughout the year. Its temperature drops up to 14.0°F. This state has a pleasant climate that why it is famous as a tourist destination.
08: Belem Tower was once a prison
Belem tower is beautiful and stunning in Portugal, the interesting and strange facts are that, once it was a prison. But now it counts as a national landmark and architectural wonder. This tower was built during the age of discoveries as military protection, but most individuals don’t know that it was used as a political prison during the Liberal Wars of the 19th century.
07: Strange Festival Night
Portugal has strange and interesting night festivals are real facts in the city of Porto holds. The Festa de São João do Porto gives tribute to Saint John the Baptist and has been held for almost six centuries. Its party starts in the afternoon and continues the night. Where the citizens of Portugal enjoy dance parties, street music, and the release of sky lanterns and balloons. The midnight fireworks show is amazing and it continues till the young people walk to the seaside at dawn and watch the sunrise.
This festival that commenced paying honor to Saint John, has one strange side. There is one tradition in which young men seek out attractive women, and continue to hit them with garlic flowers or soft plastic hammers. This is a strange ritual for this festival and nobody doesn’t mind this activity.
06: The Portuguese Invented Piri Piri Sauce
Piri Piri is a tasty sauce well known as African Bird’s Eye Chili that grew in many African countries, like Nigeria, Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Mozambique. But the interesting fact is that it was initially invented in Portugal. Portuguese invented the famous Piri Piri Sauce, after noticing this unusual chili ingredient during the colonial period. This famous sauce is made with garlic, onion, lemon juice, paprika, and as well as with unusual chili.
05: Same-Sex Marriage Is Lawful
It is not so interesting but included in strange facts of Portugal, the same-sex marriage. This state’s law has allowed same-sex marriage. Almost 10 years before Portugal’s government legalized it. The government’s decision was not without opposition though, specifically from the Catholic Church. There was also a great deal of media exaggeration around the major topic.
04: Portugal Is a Surfer’s Paradise
You know Portugal considers one of the best spots for surfing in Europe. Because it has variation in waves that is suitable for surfers. Though, the waves can be here much higher, as a nearly 80 ft wave was recorded at the shoreline of Nazaré, Portugal. Hawaiian surfer Garrett McNamara rode this wave in 2011, he was the first who set the record for the largest wave ever surfed.
03: Strange record of largest Omelet
Day by day people is busy making unusual acts and records. You know one of the facts of Portugal people made an interesting and strange Omelet making a record. In 2012, during the immigrant festival, Portugal people made the world’s largest omelet. It was around 6,466 kg, for this preparation 55 people worked for 6 hours under the direction of head chef Pedro Mendes. They made an omelet in a pan, they used 145,000 eggs, 220 lb of butter, and 880 lb of oil.
For this Portugal’s major egg producer, Uno Ovo donated the eggs for this strange record. So, this unusual world record goes to Portugal. You can find it more detailed on the Guinness World Records site.
02: Oldest bookstore is still operational is in Portugal
Besides other interesting facts, you know the oldest bookstore is still working in Portugal. Livraria Bertrand, which translates to Bookstore Bertrand in English, considers the world’s oldest operational bookstore. This bookstore opened in 1732, and currently has a chain of 52 locations across Portugal, now it is also an online store. Historically, Portuguese has a lot of interest in books and literary figures who would congregate at Livraria Bertrand to discuss literature, politics, and history.
01: Portugal Is the Land of Tiles
Tiles are now used all over the world but if we say that Portugal is a land of tiles so they will not inappropriate. You will notice that they used tiles to decorate anything from churches and palaces to homes, fountains, shops, and even train stations. They use not only plain but as well as painted and glazed tiles, that depict the images of the country’s history or the natural beauty of Portugal. Even they use tiles as nameplates and street signs as well. Interesting fact that there is a museum in Lisbon, the National Tile Museum, you can visit here.