‘Festas de Lisboa’ is a two-month series of summer shows and events that take place annually in Lisbon’s historic quarters. The city is swathed in colorful paper garlands and people spill onto the streets, listening to fado, eating grilled sardines, drinking the famous vinho Verde (green/young wine) and generally embracing regional art and culture, music and food.
In June is the time when the oldest and most typical neighborhoods buzz with parties, open-air dancing, and impassioned singing for nights on end. The occasion celebrates Lisbon’s patron saint – St. Anthony’s Day, on 12th June. For this day a huge parade feeds into Baixa along Avenida da Liberdade, where the revelers compete for the best march and costume. In the end, one neighborhood wins the competition and the city explodes into street parties and celebrations.
St Anthony’s Day also hosts the city’s annual collective wedding ceremony, featuring hundreds of Lisboners ‘Noivas de Santo António’ (Brides of Saint Anthony). Wedding parties don’t come much bigger than this!