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Albufeira is a coastal city in Portugal and the seat of the Albufeira municipality, in the Faro District of the Algarve Region, in the southernmost part of Portugal. The city is 250 kilometres or 160 miles from Lisbon with Lagos being located 30 kilometres or 19 miles to the west, and Faro 45 kilometres or 28 miles to the southeast. It has a marina and golf courses plus numerous hotels, apartment blocks, restaurants and bars for the tourists that flock there each year.
Under the Romans the city was named Baltum, and it initially had an aqueduct of which parts still remain. Trade with the North Africans brought the city its name, which is derived from Arabic. The Arabs also helped advance the city, teaching agricultural methods of sustaining what had, till then been merely a fishing community.
The Christian conquest of the region began at the end of the 12th century. The Moors were driven out in 1249, during the reign of King D. Afonso III. The town became part of the kingdom of Portugal and the Algarves. King D. Manuel I awarded a charter to the city of Albufeira on 20 August 1504. The town became a hub for tourism in the 1960s, and has grown ever since, expanding out into the surrounding hills to accommodate a portion of the 5 million tourists who visit the Algarve region each year.
The tourist areas are divided into two main areas, Areias de São João, known as The Strip, containing many clubs and bars, and the more relaxed Old Town, set in the original town, which maintains much of the traditional Arabic architecture.
Albufeira also has two beaches, Praia dos Pescadores (Fisherman's Beach) and Praia do Túnel (Tunnel Beach) to the West, which is accessed through a tunnel through the cliffs. There is a harbour as well which offers a variety of boat trips up and down the Algarve coast.
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