Holidays in Lisbon

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Holidays in Lisbon

As the capital city of Portugal, Lisbon follows the public holidays in the country. Many of these holidays coincide with religious festivities throughout the year. However, Lisbon has no national holidays for the three popular saints – St. Anthony, St. John and St. Peter. Instead, the celebrations are combined into one huge weeklong party.

On every holiday in Lisbon, banks, offices and government departments are closed for the day. Small shops and businesses often close their doors as well, but malls, supermarkets, and other bigger shops remain open but with early closing times. As for public transportation, expect reduced bus routes, a decrease in number of taxis, and earlier closing time for trams and the Metro. To be sure, always get in touch with your local host and they will let you know the best routes and tips to enjoy the holidays in Lisbon.

Many of Lisbon’s holidays begin with processions, followed by a mass, and ends with city-wide parties, but they don’t cause that much problem to the regular tourist, since all programs are scheduled weeks before. The only holiday that shuts the whole city down is Mardi Gras, but both locals and tourists alike flock to the center of Lisbon to witness the floats, vibrant costumes, and lively music, even participating with their own masks throughout the day.

Things to do during the holidays in Lisbon

Petiscos Tapas & Portuguese Fado Tour

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€27.00 p.p.

Basic travel photography tips+ photo session

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€45.00 p.p.

Lisbon's Favourites and Hidden Gems Tour

NEW! WITHLOCALS ORIGINALS

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€20.00 p.p.

National Holidays in Lisbon

  • January – Lisbon’s annual holiday calendar begins with a bang for New Year’s Day. While the city is generally quiet during the first day of the year, The Barrio Alto streets, for instance, are more lively than usual during NYE.
  • February – Lisboetas take a day off from school or work on Mardi Gras or the last day of Carnival. The city does not have carnival celebrations but parades are held at Alfama, Castelo and Mouraria neighborhoods. Lisbon only had its first carnival on February 17, 2015. Another carnival you might like to check out is at Torres Vedras, about 50km awar from the city centre.
  • March – As a city with over 90% of its people born into Catholic faith, Lisbon observes Good Friday and Easter Sunday. Unlike other countries, Easter isn’t just about bunnies and egg-hunts. Lisboetas follow age-old traditions, eating folar (sweet bread) and codfish instead of meat during Good Friday, and roast lamb for Easter Sunday.
  • April – Liberation Day, a day in honor of Lisbon’s 1974 revolution, takes place on April 25.
  • May – Every 1st of May, Lisbon celebrates Labour Day (Dia do Trabalhador), wherein labor and communist marches. On May 22, Corpus Christi (Corpo de Deus) is observed with processions and a mass.
  • June – The month of June is always filled with festivals, so expect a very vibrant city if you visit sometime this month. Lisbon celebrates National Day on June 10th with the rest of Portugal cities all throughout the country. Lisbon then begins its month-long festivities starting with St. Anthony Day on June 13.
  • August – The Fest of the Assumption, held August 15, is another religious holiday. Many locals spend their time off from work or school with a beach day-out.
  • October – On October 5, the entire Portugal remembers the founding of the Republic in 1910.
  • November – Nothing much happens during All Saints Day (Festa de Todossos Santos) on November 1st, but locals use this holiday to rest after spending the night at cemeteries, or after a night-long drinking and mingling at the Lisbon party districts.
  • December – The Restoration Day, held on the 1st of December, celebrates the restoration of the Portuguese royal family in 1640. Another important religious holiday is held on December 8 – the Immaculate Conception (Imaculada Conceição). On Christmas Day (December 25), many shops and public transportation are closed for the day.

This is what guests are saying about our hosts

Withlocals guest
Withlocals host
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Yvonne Lisbon
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90 Minutes Kickstart Tour of Lisbon

Withlocals guest
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Renee Lisbon
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90 Minutes Kickstart Tour of Lisbon

The 90-minute kickstart tour with Camila was the perfect way to get started on our trip to Lisbon. We walked all over the historical center and Camila pointed out many historical and cultural things along the way. It was a perfect way to get acquainted with Lisbon and all it has to offer. Camilla gave us tons of great recccomondations for the rest of our trip and it was lovely to spend the morning with her. Thanks, Camila!

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Debby Lisbon
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Lisbon's Favourites and Hidden Gems Tour

We had the best experience on our Lisbon tour with Jorge.
Visiting Lisbon with a large group it was a challenge to find the right activities. Jorge and colleague Sylvia turned the afternoon into a moment to remember. Thank you both we have had a super time.