Christmas in the Algarve is . ..
Traditional sweets, nativity scenes and carolling . .. Come discover what this season is like in the south of Portugal !!
Watch the candlelight procession
The Algarve's most important religious festival begins on 07 December with a candlelight procession in tribute to Saint Peter of the Sea, the patron saint of fishermen. A mass is held at 2 o'clock on 08 December, followed by a procession towards the sea to bless the fishermen and their boats.
Tasting Algarve sweets
Leaving hay and carrots for the horses
On the night of 05 January, children fill their shoes with carrots and hay and leave them on their windowsills and doorsteps. According to tradition, the hungry horses of the Three Wise Men come to eat the carrots and hay, and then leave candied fruit and sweets for the children.
Seeing the nativity scenes
Turkey, "Empanadilhas" and Chicken Stew . ..
Roasted turkey, with or without stuffing, is another classic Christmas lunch. With variations from region to region, it can be accompanied by a stuffing of sausages, minced meat, chestnuts and vegetables.
Another traditional Christmas dish in the Algarve is chicken stew. A rooster is chosen months in advance and fattened to be ready for this event. It is then marked as the "Christmas Rooster", receiving special care until the date of its preparation. This is a stew that is cooked slowly for many hours, so that the meat becomes so tender that it falls off the bones, resulting in a delicious dish that comforts the soul.