Carnival in Porto
Carnival is an excellent time of year to visit Porto and join a Food Tour. It’s one of those holidays full of fun, music, dance, costumes, wine, beer, and traditional Portuguese food, of course.
Carnival in Porto: what to do and eat
Originally introduced by the Portuguese to Brazil, Carnival is celebrated on Fat Tuesday. Is it, basically, a three-day extravaganza where people dress up, enjoy food and drinks, and embrace absolute freedom. You might want to mark this event down on your calendar!
1. Join us for a Three-Day Celebration
There are two sayings that pretty much define all the fuss around Carnival:
- “It’s Carnival, nobody will be offended!”
“É Carnaval, ninguém leva a mal!”. This popular saying expresses the feeling of absolute freedom that takes over the country during the festive season of Carnival.
- “Life is two days and Carnival is three!”
This represents, pretty accurately, how Carnival festivities are regarded in Portugal. Carnival is an excuse for friends, families, and solo travelers to indulge in dressing up, eating, drinking, and dancing… for three days long.
There’s also a very old Carnival tradition, that takes place in the region of Trás-os-Montes. We’re talking about Caretos, a ritual where masqueraded figures run through the ancient streets, shouting excitedly and causing rowdy mischief. Caretos are an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
2. Say bye-bye to cold
Portuguese just wanna have fun! On Carnival, the cold gives way to partying all day long. The locals walk through the street with the chosen costumes for the year. We guarantee you’ll see a lot of Clowns! And, of course, all the little girls will want to dress as Elsa from Frozen. Thematic parties in bars and nightclubs promise guaranteed fun.
3. Embrace the Portuguese culture
Carnival, rooted in Catholic traditions, began as a preparation for Easter. Carnival takes place in the week before Lent as a sort of ‘farewell’ to some treats. This represents the forty days Jesus Christ fasted in the desert. Because Catholics are not supposed to eat meat during Lent, they called this festival Carnevale – which means ‘to put away the meat’.
The funny thing is: Lent has been traditionally preceded by a week of over-indulgence that culminates in Carnival (or “Fat Tuesday”. This is pretty much self-explanatory, right?
Tickets to Porto already bought?
These are just a few of the things that make it worth visiting Porto during Carnival. In a nutshell, Carnival is one of those celebrations where you know that something that you love (food!) will be taken away from you soon and you dance to forget. Join us on our Food & Wine tasting tours to discover Porto’s unique culinary offerings. Book a Food Tour now and make your Carnival in Porto memorable!
Taste Porto Foodie Team