The Algarve (UK: , US: , Portuguese: [alˈɣaɾvɨ] ) is the southernmost NUTS II region of continental Portugal. It has an area of 4,997 km2 (1,929 sq mi) with 467,495 permanent inhabitants and incorporates 16 municipalities (concelhos or municípios in Portuguese).

The region has its administrative centre in the city of Faro, where both the region's international airport and public university, the University of Algarve, are located. The region is the same as the area included in the Faro District and is subdivided into two zones, one to the West (Barlavento) and another to the East (Sotavento). Tourism and related activities are extensive and make up the bulk of the Algarve's summer economy. Production of food which includes fish and other seafood, as well as different types of fruit and vegetables such ...Read more

The Algarve (UK: , US: , Portuguese: [alˈɣaɾvɨ] ) is the southernmost NUTS II region of continental Portugal. It has an area of 4,997 km2 (1,929 sq mi) with 467,495 permanent inhabitants and incorporates 16 municipalities (concelhos or municípios in Portuguese).

The region has its administrative centre in the city of Faro, where both the region's international airport and public university, the University of Algarve, are located. The region is the same as the area included in the Faro District and is subdivided into two zones, one to the West (Barlavento) and another to the East (Sotavento). Tourism and related activities are extensive and make up the bulk of the Algarve's summer economy. Production of food which includes fish and other seafood, as well as different types of fruit and vegetables such as oranges, figs, plums, carob pods, almonds, avocados, tomatoes, cauliflowers, strawberries, and raspberries, are also economically important in the region.

Although Lisbon surpasses the Algarve in terms of tourism revenue, the Algarve is still, overall, considered to be the biggest and most important Portuguese tourist region, having received an estimated total of 4.2 million tourists in 2017. Its population triples in the peak holiday season due to seasonal residents. Due to the high standards of quality of life, mainly regarding safety and access to public health services, as well as due to cultural factors and considerably good weather conditions, the Algarve is becoming increasingly sought after, mostly by central and northern Europeans, as a permanent place to settle. Several studies and reports have concluded that the Algarve is among the world's best places to retire.

The Algarve is the fourth most developed Portuguese region–in 2019, it was placed fourth out of seven regions with a human development index (HDI) of 0.847 (Portugal's HDI average was 0.864 in 2019). With a GDP per capita at 85.2% of the European Union average, it has the second highest purchasing power in the country only behind the Lisbon Metropolitan Area.

Pre-Roman times  The Megalithic Monuments of Alcalar in Mexilhoeira Grande, dating back to the 3rd millennium BC Conii script, 8th century BC

Human presence in southern Portugal dates back to the Paleolithic and Neolithic periods. The presence of megalithic stones in the area of Vila do Bispo, Lagos, Alcoutim and elsewhere in the region attests to this presence.[1]

At around the year 1000 BC, the Phoenicians founded the city of Cádiz,[2] and, subsequently, coastal ports along the Algarve coast. Olissipo (Lisbon) is believed to be of Phoenician origin.[2] By the time of the Carthaginians, Portus Hannibalis – located in what is today either the city of Portimão or the town of Alvor in the Algarve – is named after Hannibal Barca.[2] The Cynetes, as they were known in Greek, Conii, in Latin,[3] were established by the sixth century BC in the region of the Algarve (called Cyneticum). Their ethnic and linguistic origins remain widely disputed, although, due to geographical proximity, it is possible that they were related both to Tartessos[4] and the Celtici, seeing that Conii, the likely designation they used to describe themselves,[3] is derived of the Proto-Celtic kwon ('dog').[5] These Indo-European tribes, Celtic or pre-Celtic, created a settlement in Lacóbriga (today's Lagos) in the year 1899 BC.[6]

Roman period  The Roman temple of Milreu in Estói

The Algarve region came under Roman control after Fabius Maximus Servilianus defeated the Lusitanians and the Turduli in the context of the Lusitanian War, as was the case of much of the Iberian Peninsula, which was absorbed into the Roman Republic in the second century BC. Cyneticum (in reference to the Cynetes who inhabited the region), as it was then called, became integrated into Hispania Ulterior and into Lusitania afterwards, being under Roman influence for around 600 years (from 200 BC till 410 AD), having thus adopted Latin as the official language, as well as Roman cultural, political, architectonic, religious, and economic tenets.

Seeing that during this time traveling through the land was dangerous, its geography meant that Cyneticum was of crucial importance as a passageway between the Mediterranean and the Atlantic Ocean, connecting countless Roman ports to several provinces, mainly in other parts of Hispania, Gaul and Britannia. This meant that the region experienced a great level of prosperity accrued through an expansion of its trading and commercial capabilities, mainly from the production and commercialization of olive oil and garum, products very much sought after throughout the Roman Empire.[7]

 Mosaic of Roman God Oceanus, found in Ossonoba, modern day Faro

As Christianity rose in popularity, becoming the official religion of the Roman Empire under Constantine the Great, Cyneticum, following the same tendency of the rest of the Roman provinces, made the transition from a polytheistic society into a monotheistic one. The region made a gradual changeover into Christianity, as Pagan and Animistic religions became obsolete under this new cultural influence. Roman Emperor Theodosius I, himself a native of the Iberian Peninsula, would come to prohibit Paganism in 381. The Roman Temple of Milreu, originally dedicated to Venus, transformed later on into a Paleochristian temple, is an example of the religious changes that took place in this period.[8]

Many Roman ruins, both in the form of temples, countryside villas (of which more than 30 were found in the Algarve), public baths, bridges, salting and fish-processing facilities and mosaics are widespread all over the region, notably in Vila do Bispo, Lagos, Portimão, Quarteira, Faro, Olhão, Tavira and in other areas, illustrating the strong contributions that Roman culture as a whole made to the Algarve.[9][10][11]

Medieval period  A Visigothic capital found in Silves

After the fall of the Western Roman Empire, the Visigoths, a Germanic tribe originally from Scandinavia but who had spread into Eastern Europe, occupied the Iberian Peninsula around the year 500. With the death of Amalaric in 531, the original dynastic shape of the Visigoths came to an end, and out of the fusion of the Roman and Germanic components a new Iberian identity came into being. The Visigothic Kingdom was thus founded in 542, with Toledo as its capital. Practicing Arianism at first, a large portion of the Visigoths eventually adopted Catholicism to secure their position in the region.[12] In 552, the Algarve was conquered by the Byzantine Empire and, in 571, Liuvigild managed to secure the region for the Visigothic Kingdom once again, which lasted until the year 711 (which was the starting date of the Umayyad conquest of the Visigothic Kingdom), and comprised most of the Iberian Peninsula and parts of modern France.

 The city of Silves, the first capital of the Algarve and an example of the noticeable Moorish influence in the region

When the Moors conquered Lagos in 716, it was renamed Zawaia. Faro, which the Christian residents had called Santa Maria, was renamed Faraon, which means "settlement of the knights". Due to the conquest of the Iberian Peninsula, the region was called Gharb Al-Andalus: Gharb means "the west", while al-Andalus is the Arabic name for the Iberian Peninsula. As the westernmost region to be conquered by the Moors, the coveted lands of the Algarve, in this corner of Europe, became for a while the end goal of the Muslim Empire's expansionist policy. With the advent of Moorish rule in the eighth century, Faro, called Ossonoba by then, retained its status as the most important town in the southwest corner of the Iberian Peninsula.[13] In the 9th century, after a revolt[14] led by Yahia Ben Bakr who was succeeded in office by his son, Bakr Ben Yahia, it became the capital of a short-lived autonomous princedom and was fortified with a ring of defensive walls.[13] At this time, in the 10th century, the name Santa Maria began to be used instead of Ossonoba. By the 11th century, the town was known as Santa Maria Ibn Harun.[13] During the Moorish era (9-12th century), Silves was a major stronghold, and the town prospered greatly as the capital of the region. In the mid-13th century, during the Reconquista, the Kingdom of Portugal took over the region in a series of successful military campaigns against the Moors. Al-Gharb became the Kingdom of Algarve, and the non-assimilated Muslim Moors who didn't flee the region would be expelled in 1496 not only in the Algarve but in all of Portugal.[15] As the southernmost region to be conquered by the Portuguese, the coveted territory had become for a while the end goal of the Kingdom of Portugal's expansionist policy known as Reconquista and by itself one of the reasons behind the foundation of Portugal. There were subsequent Moorish attempts to recapture the region, without success.

 Statue of King Afonso III of Portugal in Faro, Algarve, Portugal

King Afonso III of Portugal started calling himself King of Portugal and the Algarve. The most outstanding fact of his reign was indeed the definitive conquest of the Algarve. Silves was taken from its last Muslim ruler Ibn Afan by Paio Peres Correia, Grand-Master of the Order of Santiago in 1242 and Tavira was also taken in the same year after Alentejo and most of the coast of the Algarve (then part of a historical region called Gharb al-Andalus by the Muslims of Iberian Peninsula) had already fallen in 1238. In March 1249, the city of Faro was conquered. From this date, Afonso III became the first Portuguese king to use the title King of Portugal and the Algarve. The friars of Sant'Iago and Calatrava played a decisive role, and were entrusted with the task of concluding the conquest.[16][17] The conquest of the Algarve led, however, to serious disagreements with the Kingdom of Castile. Peace was initially achieved with the marriage of King Afonso III to Beatrice of Castile, illegitimate daughter of King Alfonso X of Castile (after the pope had annulled the marriage to Matilda II because she was sterile), but the problem was only definitively solved by the Treaty of Badajoz, of 16 February 1267. By this treaty it was defined that the Guadiana river, from the confluence of the Caia until the mouth, would be the Portugal-Castile border.[18]

 Portrait of Henry the Navigator who based himself near Lagos, in the Algarve, and conducted various maritime expeditions

After 1471, with the conquest of several territories in the Maghreb – the area considered an extension of the Algarve – Afonso V of Portugal began fashioning himself "King of Portugal and the Algarves", referring to the European and African possessions (Algarves is the plural word of Algarve and means the Algarve plus all the overseas territories that Portugal would conquer abroad further south). The over five centuries-long Moorish rule over the Algarve (and Alentejo), left their mark and added to a unique blend of architectonic,[19][20] gastronomical[21] and artistic features[22] like the traditional Algarve corridinho,[23] a folk dance found in this southernmost region of Portugal. In the 15th century, Prince Henry the Navigator based himself near Lagos and conducted various maritime expeditions which established the colonies that comprised the Portuguese Empire. Also from Lagos, Gil Eanes set sail in 1434 to become the first seafarer to round Cape Bojador in West Africa. The voyages of discovery brought Lagos fame and fortune. Trade flourished and Lagos became the capital of the historical province of Algarve in 1577 and remained so until the fabled 1755 Lisbon earthquake.

Modern times  The walls of the ancient town of Lagos which was severely destroyed during the 1755 earthquake

After the destructive effects of an earlier major earthquake in 1722, the 1755 earthquake damaged many areas in the Algarve and an accompanying tsunami destroyed or damaged coastal fortresses, while coastal towns and villages were heavily damaged except Faro, which was protected by the sandy banks of Ria Formosa lagoon. In Lagos, the waves reached the top of the city walls. For many Portuguese coastal regions, including the Algarve, the destructive effects of the tsunami were more disastrous than those of the earthquake itself. Prior to the independence of Brazil, "United Kingdom of Portugal, Brazil, and the Algarves" (1815–1822) was an official designation for Portugal which also alluded to the Algarve. After the independence of Brazil in 1822, Portuguese monarchs continued to use the title of "King of Portugal and the Algarves" until the proclamation of the First Portuguese Republic in 1910.

 Estácio da Veiga's 1878 archeological map of the Algarve

In 1807, while Jean-Andoche Junot led the first Napoleonic invasion in the north of Portugal, the Algarve was occupied by Spanish troops under Manuel Godoy. Beginning in 1808, and after subsequent battles in various towns and villages, the region was the first to drive out the Spanish occupiers. During the Portuguese Civil War (1828–1834), several battles took place in the region, especially the battle of Cape St. Vicente and the battle of Sant’Ana, between liberals and Miguelites (antiliberal absolutists). Remexido was the guerrilla Algarvian leader who stood with the Miguelite absolutists for years, until he was executed in Faro in 1838.[24] As the first canned fish undertaking in the country, the Vila Real de Santo António plant of the company Conservas Ramirez (founded in 1853) became the cradle of the sector in Portugal. Vila Real de Santo António and other places in coastal Algarve thrived on the growth of the fishing industry, which included the processing of species of tuna and sardine.

Cork as a material used by people is a very old product. Throughout times, Portugal became the world's largest producer of cork, with the Algarve and some areas of the neighboring Portuguese region of Alentejo producing world-renowned high-quality cork (50% of the world's cork production comes from Portugal,[25][26] and cork is one of the country's main exports in modern times, but large-scale use of the material by the Portuguese goes back to the 14th century, when Portuguese explorers used cork in the construction of their ships because one of the properties of cork is that it does not rot). At one time, between the late 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century, São Brás de Alportel, in Sotavento Algarvio, was the center of cork production in the Algarve, with 80 factories in operation, but gradually the industry moved to the center and northern regions of Portugal, and only a few cork factories remained in São Brás de Alportel municipality.[27] Starting in the late 19th century, Silves Municipality, in Barlavento Algarvio, used to be another area with a large production of the valuable cork and that industry would prosper until the 1930s (by 2010, the cork industry had disappeared in the area but Silves had a museum[28] showing how cork was harvested and processed in the old days when it was a major center of that industry, a museum opened in 1999 that in 2001 won the prestigious award for Best Museum of Industry in Europe).[29] The establishment of the First Portuguese Republic in 1910 marked the end of the almost nominal Kingdom of Portugal and the Algarve.

By the 1950s, as air traveling became more accessible, the Mediterranean Basin increasingly developed into a hot-spot for international tourism.[30] Regions such as the Algarve benefited economically from this trend.

 Opened in July 1965, Faro International Airport became a hub for the first time in March 2010 when Ryanair decided to base many of its aircraft there.

In the Algarve, from 1962 to 1966 and beyond, the mutation of tourism is visible in the new tourist accommodation developments. Hotels play a secondary role, in favor of apartment buildings, extended villas (some with golf course, many with swimming pool) and village complexes. After years of planning and construction work in progress, the Faro International Airport was inaugurated on 11 July 1965, by the President of the Republic Américo Tomás. The access road, between the national road EN125 and the newly built airport, was also opened to the public at the same time.[31] However, tourism services were unprepared for this rapid change. The formation of an accommodation supply outside the framework of tourism legislation and the incapacity of public regulation of the tourism supply begins and would be a reality until the 1990s. This somewhat chaotic tourism boom made the tourist industry the biggest contributor to the economy of Algarve and the largest employer in the region. Starting as a fast-paced tourism urbanization hotspot between the 1960s and 1990s, the Algarve had morphed itself into a seasonal metropolis by the 2010s.[32]

During the process, the Algarve has remained anyway a fairly exotic region for Portuguese citizens from other regions in mainland Portugal due to its Mediterranean climate,[33] unique foods,[34] architecture[35] and geographical location – in modern times many Portuguese residing in other parts of the country traditionally spend their summer break or own a holiday home in Algarve. The state-run University of Algarve was founded in January 1979 and for the Fall 2021 semester had about 9,000 students enrolled. Its medical school opened in 2009. In 1991, the construction of the A22 motorway (also known as Via Infante de Sagres, named so after Henry the Navigator) which crosses the Algarve from west to east began and by 2003 it was fully completed. It connects Lagos in western Algarve to the Guadiana International Bridge over the Portugal-Spain international river border in eastern Algarve.

^ "Arqueologia no Algarve". E-cultura. Retrieved 18 March 2020. ^ a b c Ribeiro, Ângelo; Hermano Saraiva, José (2004). História de Portugal (in Portuguese). QuidNovi – Edições e Conteúdo, S.A. pp. 9–10. ISBN 989-554-106-6. Volume I ^ a b DE ALARCÃO, Jorge (1973). Portugal Romano (in Portuguese). GRIS, IMPRESSORES, S. A. R. L. p. 17. ^ AAVV. "Algarve" in Enciclopédia Luso-Brasileira de Cultura (in Portuguese). Editorial Verbo. 1973. ^ DELAMARRE, Xavier (2008). Dictionnaire de la langue gauloise (in French). Errance. ISBN 9782877723695. ^ PAULA, Rui Mendes (1992). Câmara Municipal de Lagos (ed.). Estudo do Manuscrito Anónimo do Séc. XVIII (in Portuguese). Livro Aberto, Editores Livreiros Lda. p. 392. ISBN 9789729567629. ^ Viegas, Catarina (2011). A Ocupação Romana do Algarve (PDF). CENTRO DE ARQUEOLOGIA DA UNIVERSIDADE DE LISBOA. p. 39. ISBN 978-989-95653-4-0. Retrieved 18 March 2020. ^ Neto, João; Gordalina, Rosário (2003). "Ruínas de Estói / Ruínas de Milreu". Direção-Geral do Património Cultural. SIPA. Retrieved 19 March 2020. ^ "Finding Rome on the Atlantic: an informal guide to some of the visible remains of Rome in Southern Portugal and Southwest Spain". Algarve History Association. David Johnson. Retrieved 18 March 2020. ^ CM-FARO. "Milreu Roman Ruins". Retrieved 27 February 2017. ^ "Villa de Milreu, os romanos no Algarve". RTP Ensina. 2015. Retrieved 19 March 2020. ^ Louth, Patrick (1978). Civilization of the Germans and Vikings. Editions Ferni. p. 307. ^ a b c Câmara Municipal, ed. (2015), História (in Portuguese), Faro (Algarve), Portugal: Câmara Municipal de Faro ^ "A revolta dos Muladis de Xantamarya Al-Gharb". Histórias de Portugal em Marrocos (in European Portuguese). 3 February 2014. Retrieved 11 July 2023. ^ Porto Editora – Cristãos e Muçulmanos em Portugal na Infopédia [em linha]. Porto: Porto Editora. [consult. 2022-01-01 11:56:13]. Disponível em$cristaos-e-muculmanos-em-portugal ^ "Crónica de como D. Paio Correia, mestre de Santiago de Castela tomou este reino do Algarve aos mouros" (Tavira Municipality) ^ "A conquista de Tavira por Paio Peres Correia". RTP Ensina (in European Portuguese). Retrieved 11 July 2023. ^ Porto Editora – D. Afonso III na Infopédia [em linha]. Porto: Porto Editora. [consult. 2022-01-01 09:48:10]. Disponível em$d.-afonso-iii ^ Costa, Miguel Reimão (January 2008). "Casas e montes da Serra entre as estremas do Alentejo e do Algarve. Forma, processo e escala no estudo da arquitetura vernacular [phd – volume completo]". FAUP – via ^ Inácio, Isabel; Santos, Constança dos; Coelho, Catarina; Liberato, Marco; Gomes, Ana Sofia; Bugalhão, Jacinta; Catarino, Helena; Cavaco, Sandra; Covaneiro, Jaquelina; Fernandes, Isabel Cristina; Gómez, Susana; Gonçalves, Maria José (June 2015). "A propósito da investigação sobre cerâmica islâmica em Portugal" [Regarding research on Islamic ceramics in Portugal]. Medievalista (in Portuguese) (17): 01–44. ^ Pardal, Francisco José Pegacha (January 2018). ""Sabores ao Sul do Tejo: alimentos e pratos típicos do Alentejo e do Algarve no Guia de Portugal (1927)", Revista Trilhas da História, vol. 8, n.º 15, Três Lagoas, 2018, pp. 204-220". Revista Trilhas da História – via ^ "Images" (PDF). Retrieved 10 November 2020. ^ "Corridinho e Baile Mandado no Algarve". Folclore.PT. 11 September 2018. ^ "Remexido". Algarve Primeiro (in European Portuguese). Retrieved 27 February 2017. ^ "Cortiça Portuguesa: uma das maiores riquezas da nossa agricultura" [Portuguese Cork: one of the greatest assets of our agriculture]. WOW (in Portuguese). Cortiça, Museus, Porto Cidade. 12 May 2021. Archived from the original on 8 April 2022. ^ Custódio, Sandra. "A indústria da cortiça e Santa Maria da Feira. Potenciais e fraquezas". Cadernos de Geografia. Coimbra, FLUC (21/23 2002–2004): 269–282. ^ "Indústria Corticeira". (in European Portuguese). Retrieved 11 July 2023. ^ FERREIRA, João. "Parliamentary question | The Silves Cork Museum | E-9412/2010 | European Parliament". Retrieved 11 July 2023. ^ "A cortiça". (in European Portuguese). Retrieved 11 July 2023. ^ Fernando Almeida García; Antonia Balbuena Vazquez; Rafael Cortés Macias (August 2014). Trends and evolution of tourism in the Mediterranean Basin. International Geographical Union Regional Conference. 18-22 August 2014, Krakow, Poland. doi:10.13140/2.1.2666.6885. ^ Cabrita, Aurélio Nuno (11 July 2015). "Airport Faro opened 50 years ago – evoking July 11, 1965". Sul Informação. Retrieved 11 July 2023. ^ Martins, João Carlos Figueira (November 2014). Algarve, da Urbanização Turística à Metropolização Sazonal - 1960/2013 [Algarve, from Tourist Urbanization to Seasonal Metropolization - 1960/2013] (Doctoral thesis) (in Portuguese). ^ Moss, Stephen (8 April 2021). "Weatherwatch: why Atlantic Portugal has a 'Mediterranean climate'". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 11 July 2023. ^ Jenkins, Peter. "Top 10 foods to try in the Algarve". Retrieved 5 May 2022. ^ Santos, Nina (9 July 2017). "A Tour of the Algarve's Stunning Architectural Landmarks". Culture Trip. Retrieved 11 July 2023.
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