"You don’t have to be particularly patriotic to conclude that Portugal is one of the most pleasant countries in the world to live in and to visit: you just have to travel and compare. By chance of circumstances - geographical, climatic, historical, cultural -, what in other areas slows us down is also what, in terms of quality of life, makes us envied and coveted as a destination by so many people from other parts of the world." Miguel Sousa Tavares, one of the most renowned Portuguese columnists, wrote it recently. It could be just an opinion that deserves to be relativized or contextualized in the light of the personal taste of a journalist who has his roots in the North, lives in the capital city and a has a holiday home in the South. But it's not. It is a statement that can be verified in multiple international rankings that determine a country's credibility: security, above all.
Last year, Portugal appeared once again in the list of the safest and most peaceful countries in the world, taking fourth place in the Global Peace Index report, promoted by the Institute for Economy and Peace. The researchers analyzed 163 independent States and their territories, according to 23 qualitative and quantitative indicators, such as police violence, public security, homicide rate, terrorism, social justice, participation in conflicts, degree of militarization and spending on weapons. And of all the countries, ahead of Portugal was only Iceland, New Zealand and Austria.
As far as small-scale internal crime is concerned, security forces reports also point to an overall decrease over the last ten years. ATM robberies, for example, which are so frequent elsewhere, have almost disappeared in Portugal. The tranquility experienced in urban centres also extends to those who have the most isolated country houses on the outskirts. Security is, therefore, one of the biggest attractions of the country, not only for those who intend to visit it, but especially for those who want to buy a property. Besides, it is this factor that explains the increase in tourism and the growing interest of foreigners, including an endless list of famous figures, in domestic real estate, mainly in Porto and the Algarve - two of the most award-winning regions in recent years.
It’s no coincidence that Portugal has also just been elected as the 7th best country in the world to spend your retirement, the monthly magazine "International Living" announced. Security, hospitality, landscape beauty, historical heritage, cultural offer and low cost of living are the factors that contribute the most to the distinction. A new ranking, just released by the American publication “Life and Invest Overseas”, puts the focus on the south of the country.
To the question: "If you could live anywhere in the world, which place would you choose?", most of the respondents answered: Algarve - the region of 300 days of sunshine a year and of the luxurious and exclusive Golden Triangle, which concentrates Vilamoura and, in the parish of Almancil, Quinta do Lago and Vale do Lobo. The region, internationally recognized for the luxury real estate villages, considered among the best in the world, also stands out as a paradise for beach, golf and marinas lovers. But once again, maximum score is obtained in security. Equal value is given to the quality of health services, leisure, English level of residents and absence of property restrictions.
The virtues of southern Portugal can also be seen in the North and especially in Porto - the contemporary city that was elected three times (in 2012, 2014 and 2017) by the website European Best Destinations as the best city in Europe to visit. Without surprise, the security of the region is once again mentioned, along with its History, culture, gastronomy and modern architecture, which extends to private houses, many with swimming pool, and almost always with balcony and terrace.
"Porto has the charm of the cities that live together with their own river. You can walk along the Douro River, fly over the city by helicopter or discover the architecture of Downtown, the fantastic landscapes and magnificent bridges through a cruise. Porto is also a city of sea and a short trip by tram takes you to the beaches at Foz do Douro, face to face with the Atlantic ocean", praised the website.
So, if your goal is to spend the rest of your life, quiet and without fear, in an attractive and welcoming country, you just have to contact a real estate agent of a credible company, buy a villa or an apartment or even a plot area, pack and settle in. LUXIMOS Christie’s International Real Estate, which operates in the markets of the Algarve, Porto and North of Portugal, provides a service of excellence that is the result of a wide experience and tradition, while respecting the highest standards of ethics, discretion and integrity, and it may surprise you with the beauty, quality and location of the properties that it has to sell.