One of the strongest Portuguese traditions are the summer festivities held all along the country by almost every locations: from small villages and neighboring up to main cities. Frequently these festivals honor a saint patron or a specific related date.
Among all these festivals, the “Santos Populares” occurring in June must be highlighted, as the most popular ones, from which the Festivities of Lisbon is maybe the most impressive, deserving a visit.
Whilst the summer puff spreads over people’s soul, the Lisbon Festivities offering a wide list of entertainment activities, magnetizes large thousands of people to invade the streets of the more characteristic neighborhoods.
Lots of music and dance to the rhythm of popular songs animate evenings from "Castelo to Graca", Mouraria, Bairro Alto, Ajuda and Alfama (the most traditional neighborhoods of Lisbon Downtown). Colored garlands and globes decorate the city’s streets, whilst the roasted sardines and sweet basil odors invade every place together with paintings and paper carnations concerning to Saint Antonio.
Although the main festivities are held in June, they also continue throughout the following months with a wide number of events such as jazz, the traditional fado, other musical performances, theater, cinema, festivals, exhibitions and sport events.
Highly worshiped and regarded as the Lisbon Patron and who also is believed to enhance marriages, Saint Antonio moods set the rhythm for the main two days festivities, which high point is the parade of popular marches, held on the evening of the 12th June. A procession in honor to the popular Saint on June 13th afternoon, winds in the streets surrounding the Main Cathedral, thus providing a special worshiped detail to the festivities.