Portugal occupies the southwest part of the Iberian Peninsula and shares borders in the north and the east with Spain, while to the south and west lies the Atlantic Ocean. The country is divided into various provinces, including the Atlantic islands of Madeira and the Azores; the latter lying some 1220km (760 miles) due west of Lisbon. The Douro, Guadiana and Tagus rivers flow across the border from Spain. North Portugal is mountainous, the highest part being the Serra da Estrela, a popular area for skiing. South of Lisbon stretch the vast plains of the Alentejo region. A range of mountains divides the Alentejo from the Algarve, which runs along the south coast, and is one of the most popular resort areas with wide sandy beaches and attractive bays.
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