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The Pure Portugal Guide To Portuguese Public Holidays & Celebrations – 2024

Whether you are just visiting Portugal or already living here you will want to be sure you know the important dates and public holidays which happen through the year, many businesses close over holidays and there are some great celebrations to join in with too! Not all businesses close for a public holiday, generally you can still find supermarkets and main shops open especially in larger places, public transport will still run usually also, but expect to find the local shop or coffee in the village closed while the owners celebrate like everybody else!

You will notice with many holidays and celebrations it is not unusual for generations of all ages to gather in the streets to eat and drink, other days for celebration include processions which you can sometimes take part in. In August it is widely joked that ‘Portugal shuts down’ it of course doesn’t literally shut down but many businesses do stop or slow down for the summer holidays, people head back to their home towns and villages to see family and spend time at the beach/river beach relaxing.

There are local holidays which you may find are specific to your area and of course on top of the dates listed below there are many other days of celebration and not to forget (3 months of )school holidays too! 

Diaries at the ready –
Here is the Pure Portugal guide to holidays and
celebrations for 2024 so you can celebrate like a local!

Key Public Holidays & Celebrations in 2024:
1st January – New Year’s Day: A time for family gatherings and reflection, celebrated similarly to other Western countries.
13th February – Carnival (Shrove Tuesday): A vibrant celebration leading up to Lent, marked by colorful parades and festivities.
19th March – Father’s Day: A day to honor and celebrate fathers and father figures.
31st March – Clocks go forward (Daylight Saving Time begins).
29th March – Good Friday: A significant day in the Christian calendar, marking the crucifixion of Jesus Christ.
31st March – Easter Sunday: Celebrated with family gatherings; Easter Monday is not a public holiday in Portugal.
25th April – Freedom Day: Commemorating the Carnation Revolution of 1974, which ended the dictatorship. Expect patriotic celebrations and parades.
1st May – Labour Day: Celebrating workers and the labor movement.
5th May – Mother’s Day: A day dedicated to honoring mothers.
30th May – Corpus Christi: A Catholic feast celebrating the Eucharist, often marked with processions.
10th June – Portugal National Day: Commemorating the death of Luís de Camões, Portugal’s famous poet, with military parades and cultural events.
15th August – The Assumption of Mary: A religious celebration marking the Virgin Mary’s ascent to heaven, particularly significant at the Sanctuary of Fátima.
5th October – Republic Day: Marking the establishment of the Portuguese Republic in 1910.
27th October – Clocks go back (Daylight Saving Time ends).
1st November – All Saints’ Day: Remembering saints and martyrs, as well as deceased family and friends.
1st December – Restoration of Independence Day: Celebrating Portugal’s independence from Spain.
8th December – Immaculate Conception: A key date in the Catholic calendar.
25th December – Christmas Day: A festive day celebrated with family gatherings and traditional customs.
Local Holidays: Remember, there are also regional holidays and celebrations specific to different parts of Portugal!

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