EFEPorto (Portugal)

The King and Queen of Spain on Monday began their three-day state visit to Portugal with a formal welcome at Porto's Liberty Square.

King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia were greeted at Porto International Airport by Portuguese Minister of Foreign Affairs Augusto Santos Silva, from where the Spanish monarchs headed to the historic center of the coastal city.

Liberty Square was adorned with the colors of the Spanish and Portuguese flags when the royals arrived to be formally received by President of Portugal Rebelo de Sousa.

The monarchs were driven up the sloped square in a vintage car escorted by a cavalry squadron from the Portuguese national guard.

Hundreds of spectators gathered next to the security fences on each side of the square that is dominated by the town hall.

Both countries' national anthems were played before the Spanish monarchs inspected the formation of Portuguese soldiers.

Porto Mayor, Rui Moreira, is to present the King and Queen with the keys to the city.

Felipe VI and Letizia waved to the cheering crowd as they headed into the town hall at the top of the square where the King was due to give the first of six speeches scheduled for this trip.