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New Year’s Eve In Portugal

Most of us know how well the Portuguese can throw a party, and no better excuse than to throw one for New Year’s Eve, cities all over Portugal come alive with music and fireworks to see in new Year. Often, even smaller towns and villages will have a local celebration in a favourite restaurant that you can go along and join in with!

All over the country people will gather and party away long into the small hours. Whether it is Madeira with its impressive firework display (which actually holds a Guinness record for the largest display in the world!), Nazare with its many stages set up along the boardwalk, the Alentejo with beautiful local wines to toast with or parting the night away on the beach in the Algarve, there is something for all ages and all tastes.

(Above: fireworks in Madeira)

Like many other countries Portugal is not without its wonderful New Year traditions, most are aimed to bring luck and health for the coming year and whether you see them as crazy superstition or something with more meaning there is no doubt they are fun to partake in!

You join in the tradition of eating 12 raisins, one raisin for each strike of the clock and making a wish with each one as you eat it, have money in your pocket to ensure you attract good fortune, always step down from a step or chair with your right foot first for positivity, bang pots and pans to ward away bad spirits and if possible do these things while wearing blue underwear to bring harmony to the incoming year! In some areas children still often go from house to house singing traditional janeiros (January songs) for good luck between New Year’s Eve and Epiphany (also known as Kings Day)

There is also still time to eat Bolo Rei (King Cake) if you haven’t yet eaten any over the festive period you have plenty of time still, it is eaten usually until 6th January (Kings Day) and can be bought in almost any market or shop but you can also make your own! If you fancy giving it a go this link will explain how!

(Above: Bolo Rei – King Cake)

Whether you are staying in or headed out to celebrate we all at Pure Portugal wish you a wonderful New Year’s Eve and much happiness and health for 2018.

A Portuguese phrase to help this month:

Feliz Ano Novo – Haply New Year!

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