What is Portugal best known for? Cristiano Ronaldo is on this list, but other than that we are sure you also know about the Portuguese Fados or the delicious Belem cakes. Which are the most famous things about Portugal for you?
10 Famous things in Portugal
Many people visit Portugal every year, but unfortunately everyone keeps comparing it with Spain as if they were the same country (Clearly, they are very different). It´s true that football and Cristiano Ronaldo are one of the reasons why Portugal is famous, but there is way more than just that. Next you will see a list with the top 10 things Portugal is known for:
What are the most famous places in Portugal?
Lisbon, Algarve, Porto, Madeira, Azores…Absolutely each region of Portugal has like a million places that make Portugal be so famous. As this list is so big and we can´t talk about all of them, we have selected 3 of the most popular places in Portugal:
1) Belem Tower
Lisbon is for sure one of the best places to visit in Portugal and there is one landmark no one ever misses when they travel to the capital: The Belem Tower.
The Eiffel Tower In Paris, the Leaning Tower of Pisa or the Sagrada Familia in Barcelona are iconic places of their cities and countries. Well, the same happens with Belem Tower, it´s beautiful and you will love it, but we advise you to go early in the morning as it´s a very crowded area.
2) Dom Luis I Bridge
Another iconic monument of Portugal is the Dom Luis I Bridge. This time you will need to go to Porto to see it and admire its 385 meters of length (huge right?)
This bridge separates the city of Porto with Vila Nova de Gaia a place known for having an amazing view of Porto. You can either cross it by car, by train or walking, but wat we definitely recommend you is going to the upper part of the bridge to enjoy an incredible sunset view.
3) Pena Palace
Another place that is very famous in Portugal is the Pena Palace. This popular castle is located in Sintra and although it has a more difficult access than many other places it still receives around 3 million visitors per year.
The Pena Palace is a romantic style building from the XIX century, and it was one of the main homes of the royal family of Portugal. Due to its shape and colours it became an UNESCO heritage site in 1995. Have you been already?
What food is Portugal known for?
Food is one of those famous Portuguese things, Chicken Piri-Piri, Sardines,Caldo Verde…These are just a few of the delicious dishes you can try in the country. As it happens with the rest of the countries from the Mediterranean area, Portugal is popular for having a very exquisite cuisine.
Everyone recognises their seafood and meats, but there are two dishes that you will regret not trying:
4) Belem Cakes
To answer why is Portugal famous? We must mention the Belem Cakes or also known as Pastel de nata. This traditional Portuguese dessert is a symbol of the country and it has become even more popular than any other tourist attraction in the country, everyone who goes to Portugal must try it at least once.
Without any doubt Belem Cakes are the number one reason why Portugal is famous, just so you can have an idea of how popular they are, there is a place in Lisbon called “Casa Pasteis de Belem”, where you will have to wait more than one hour to try their cakes.
5) Portuguese Cod Fish
Not as famous as the dessert we have just mentioned, but the Portuguese cod fish, also known as bacalhau is very typical in the country.
The cod fish is an obsession for locals and that´s why you will be able to try it in every single restaurant you visit. They like it so much, that it is said that there are over 365 bacalhau recipes in Portugal (one per day of the year)
What wine is Portugal famous for?
If you have been following our other blog posts from France, Italy or Spain, you will realise we are always talking about their famous wines.
Well, the truth is that the countries from the Mediterranean area are very popular for their wines, and although Portugal may not be as good as the other 3 countries, they still have a great variety and some amazing wines. Wines are also one of the best things made in Portugal.
6) Port Wine
If there is one drink we must add on our “What’s portugal famous for” list, that needs to be the Port wine. The Port Wine is the national drink of Portugal and it´s produced with grapes from the Douro valley, an area located near Porto.
The creation of Port Wine is made with a mix of different grapes: Tinta Roriz, Touriga Nacional, Tinta Barroca, Touriga Franca, and Tinta Cao.
What sports are popular in Portugal?
Probably when ask yourself about the Portugal famous things, your mind is already picturing an image of Cristiano Ronaldo and the Portuguese national team.
It´s true, football is the most famous sport in Portugal, but they also practice other sports. Golf is also an important sport in the country, since they have many golf fields a lot of people enjoy playing it on their holidays. Cycling and water sports are also common sports in Portugal.
7) Portuguese football
As we said, football is extremely popular in Portugal, and nowadays is even more since the national team won the Euro cup in 2016.
The national team is considered one of the best teams in the world right now, and the main reason for it is Cristiano Ronaldo, known by many as the best player in the world.
On another hand, the club league is not as good as the national team. There are good teams like Porto FC or Benfica, but in general the league is not as competitive as the Premier League or La Liga.
What music is popular in Portugal?
When we heard about Portuguese music, we are sure most of us think of their fados. Fados are impressive and we will talk about them later, but we can´t just limit the Portuguese music to this traditional folk music.
In Portugal, other genres like rock and hip hop are very popular and although their songs are more commonly listened just in Portugal, some artists have had a significant international success.
Fado music is one the biggest reasons why people visit Portugal, and in 2011 it was named by the UNESCO a Cultural Heritage.
The Fado was invented in 1820 and it was the artist Amália Rodrigues (known as the queen of Fado) who made this music style the most famous in the country.
Fado is recognise for being a very emotional and expressive music as it complains of the hard reality of some aspects of life. It is normally played with a singer and a Portuguese guitar.
Famous Portuguese people
To talk about the Portuguese famous people, we need to divide it 4 different subjects: Football players, musicians, explorers and writers, as they are the ones who receive more fame. Names like Luis Figo, Salvador Sobral or Ferdinand Magellan are very well known, but there are two characters that are recognise by everyone:
9) Cristiano Ronaldo
He is a hero for most of the kids who like football, he is known as the best football player in the world and for many people also the best footballer in the history.
He has played for different teams, but his time in Real Madrid FC is what made him be so famous.
He has won many club championships and individual awards, but what keeps impressing to everyone is that at his 35 years old, he is still being one of the best.
10) Vasco da Gama
Everyone knows who Vasco da Gama is as he was the most famous explorer in the history of Portugal (Almost like Christopher Columbus for the Spanish people)
Vasco da Gama was the first European explorer who reach India by sea, this allowed Portugal to make the trading routes and for that reason he became a hero in the country.
Other than that, he was also the first European visitor in some parts of Africa like Mombasa in Kenya.
Other things associated with Portugal
That were just some of the best things in Portugal, but there are many more. Next, we will tell you about the most common ones:
What are Portuguese known for?
As it happens in almost every country in south Europe, Portuguese people are known for being very friendly. Family and friends are very important for them, and that´s why whenever they are hosting somebody, they make sure to give their hosts all they need.
Some curiosities you should know about the people from Portugal is that they love to talk for hours and they also love to drink coffee.
Portugal is known for its sunsets
We can tell you from our experiences, the sunsets in Portugal are amazing! If you ever have the chance to go to Portugal, we advise you to wake up every single morning to see the sunrise and see every sunset as well, as each of them is different from one day to another.
We have seen sunsets of all kind of colours in Portugal, but the best is that they have many cliffs and viewpoints to enjoy them.
Portugal is famous for its beaches
Excluding Croatia, Portugal is popular for having some of the best beaches in Europe.
Their beaches are long, with clear waters and white sand.
Another good point about Portuguese beaches is that there are many of them, so unless is a very popular one you won´t see that many crowds as it happens in Spain
There is just one small bad thing about the beaches in Portugal…The water is very cold!
Hope you enjoyed reading the famous things about Portugal
That´s all you need to know about “What is Portugal famous for?”, hope you have enjoyed reading it and if you ever have the chance to visit the country, enjoy it!
As you have seen there are many good things about portugal, and before you leave, we would love to know, what is the most famous thing about Portugal for you?
Let us know if you have any other question, we would love to help you!