Guimaraes is a northern Portuguese city and municipality in the district of Braga, in the Ave Subregion (one of the more industrialized subregions of the country). The city proper has a population of 52,181 inhabitants. The population of the municipality in 2011 was 158,124, in an area of 240.95 square kilometers (93.03 sq mi). The present Mayor is Domingos Bragança, elected by the Socialist Party. The municipality is bordered to the north by the municipality of Póvoa de Lanhoso, to the east by Fafe, to the south by Felgueiras, Vizela and Santo Tirso, to the west by Vila Nova de Famalicão and the northwest by Braga.
It is an historical city that had an important role in the formation of Portugal and it was settled in the 9th century, at which time it was called Vimaranes. This denomination might have had its origin in the warrior Vímara Peres, when he chose this area as the main government seat for the County of Portugal which he conquered for the Kingdom of Galicia.
Guimaraes is one of the country’s most important historical cities. Its historical center is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, making it one of the largest tourist centers in the region.
The city is often referred to as the “birthplace of the Portuguese nationality” or “the cradle city” (Cidade Berço in Portuguese). This might be because the administrative seat of the County of Portugal was established there by Henry of Burgundy, or that it might also been the birthplace of Afonso I of Portugal, the first Portuguese king or because of the historical role of the city in the Battle of São Mamede (24 June 1128), which had a tremendous importance in the formation of Portugal and was fought in the vicinity of the city, However, due to the needs of the Reconquista, the governative center was changed to Coimbra in 1129. The “Vimaranenses” are also called “Conquistadores” (the Conquerors) in relation with the historical heritage of the conquest initiated in Guimarães. Guimarães, jointly with Maribor, Slovenia, was the European Capital of Culture in 2012.
Information courtesy of Wikipedia.org