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Portugal - Viseu

The Viseu district of Portugal is situated inland in the centre of the country. The district is named after the city of Viseu and has 24 municipalities. The city of Viseu has around 48,000 inhabitants and has undergone considerable changes in recent years. Economic growth has been strong, leading to more people moving into the area and as there are several universities in the district there are many international students living in the area, so there is a growing expat population.

The climate in Viseu ensures hot and dry weather in the summer with very high temperatures. The winters are considerably colder and much wetter, with high rainfall levels, mainly due to the inland location of the district.

This area of Portugal is home to a growing number of expats, many of whom have chosen to retire there, but this area is also a busy one, so is not ideal for those who are looking for a quiet life. The city in particular is growing, so some of the outlying towns and villages may be a better option for those who want to experience the relaxed lifestyle of the traditional Portugal.

Due to the large numbers of students, there are opportunities in this region for those who want to become landlords and rent out properties. The retail parts of the city are also undergoing development and there are opportunities to start a retail business. The growth also means that buying an established business is also an option.

The city of Viseu has an old town as well as newer areas. As with many cities that have older sections, the streets are narrow and the houses are small with courtyards rather than gardens. Many have no outside space at all. Property prices in the older part of town are reasonable and on a par with the regional average. In the area around the university there are many apartment buildings, although most of these are only available to rent. In this part of town property prices are quite reasonable for renting and apartments occasionally come up for sale. Houses away from the city centre will usually be larger and have extras such as garages. Some areas have villas which have swimming pools and which are renovated to a very high standard. These buildings command very high prices, usually more than 300,000 Euros.

The educational system in Viseu is very good and there are several schools to choose from. The town has a lot to offer in the way of leisure facilities such as sports facilities and restaurants. There is a lack of nightlife apart from restaurants which makes the town ideal for those who are looking for a quieter life. The area is better known for its crafts, wine making and traditional foods, which may offer opportunities for those who are looking for a small business in the area. Shop premises and other commercial units are available both to rent and buy.

The town of Sernancelhe is a traditional Portuguese town with whitewashed buildings. The properties have many period features and are much sought after, both by Portuguese locals and expats, so as they come onto the market they sell very quickly. Property prices are reasonable for the area although not as low as some rural areas. Schooling in the area is a little basic so children can travel to bigger towns for schools. The area does have some basic leisure facilities such as cafes and restaurants but there are no nightclubs.

The surrounding areas of Viseu are mainly mountains and hills so in the winter months, sports such as skiing are popular, although the area is not officially a ski resort. Properties such as old farmhouses are available to buy, usually with large parcels of land, which may be ideal for those who want to begin an agricultural based business. Prices of building plots are fairly low and most will also have planning permission. There are also business opportunities for those who want to run campsites and activity holidays in this area, as it is a good place for hiking and fishing. When living in the rural areas of this district, it is necessary to travel some distance to school, so the area is well suited to those who are retired and who do not need to consider schooling.

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