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Loulé

Located in the very heart of the Algarve, in the District of Faro, the City of Loulé is the largest and most populous municipality in the region. It is distributed throughout nine civil parishes and divided into four zones with distinct characteristics: Hill Chain, Foot of the Hill, Gullies and Coastline.

The municipality is lying by the sea, on 765,12 km². Enjoying excellent accessibilities, Highway A2 or Faro International Airport, the Municipality of Loulé is furnished with a modern road network. The climate is mild throughout the year making the Municipality of Loulé, and Algarve in general, one of the most attractive touristic regions in all of Europe.
The Municipality of Loulé consists of 9 civil parishes. The old part of the city is where most of the administrative and urban functions are concentrated (schools of all levels, shopping streets, city administration), as well as the main sport stadiums and facilities. It is divided into two civil parishes – S. Clemente and S. Sebastiăo. The village of Almancil has two well-established holiday and residential developments nearby (Quinta do Lago and Vale do Lobo) and is a hub of tourism related services. On the coast, the relatively new settlement of Quarteira is developed around the former fishing village, which grew from the 80s on, when international tourism started taking up. Urban sprawl is taking place between and around these cores due to old farm estates being converted into developments of detached houses.

The Municipality of Loulé has 70 622 inhabitants (2011), 16.5% of which are residing foreigners. The last decade witnessed a demographical growth of over 20%, with a particular emphasis on the civil parishes of Quarteira, S. Clemente and Almancil. The density population is low (92/km²). Regarding age groups, the majority of the population is working-age (56% are 25-64 years old). Although the aging index is high, with a rate of approx. 129%, Loulé stays above the national average.

The Municipal Council of Loulé is the executive body of the municipality and its mission is to define and implement policies that promote the development of the county in different areas, according to the legal competences.

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