These four cities were chosen among 12 municipalities that submitted an application, and are now in the final stage of the application process for European Capital of Culture in 2027.

Applications were submitted from Aveiro, Braga, Coimbra, Évora, Faro, Funchal, Guarda, Leiria, Oeiras, Ponta Delgada, Viana do Castelo and Vila Real.

The announcement of the finalist cities was made at a press conference at the Centro Cultural de Belém, in Lisbon, at the end of a week of audiences with the delegations of each candidate city.

The applications were evaluated by an international jury that included representatives of the European Parliament, the European Council, the European Commission, the Committee of the Regions and the Ministry of Culture of Portugal.

In the past, three Portuguese cities received the title of European Capital of Culture: Lisbon, in 1994, Porto, in 2001, and Guimarães, in 2012.