During summer time it’s quite hard to see one Lisboner sitting inside, either at a restaurant, café or even music concert. As the sun starts to shine and the nights get warmer Lisbon’s streets get more and more crowded with plenty of things to do. Open cafés and restaurants can be found everywhere, belvederes are turned into chill out areas, kiosks open and get popular and there are also the famous feasts of Lisbon. They only last until July, but for those who are visiting Lisbon during August or September (like you, Kristin) and are sad because the Feasts of Lisbon are over, I have great news: “Com’out Lisbon” has just begun.
This festival will last until the 11th of September and will cover the whole city. Almost every concert or projection happens in a different part of Lisbon, which will let you discover off-track gardens or parks. The activities are varied, including music concerts (don’t miss the Big Band from Hot Club Portugal, on Sept the 8th), outjazz, DJ’s and open air cinema. As usual, the entrance is free and you don’t need to pick up tickets some days before, or so. Just show up at the exact place in the exact time and enjoy the show!
The full program can be found here. Unfortunately there’s no English program but it’s not hard to understand the location nor the date, so, since it’s free entrance, I guess that you have nothing to lose!
Today I was doing a walking tour “Old and Downtown” and while walking through the streets of Alfama I could see that everyone is getting ready for “Santo António” night. God, I got really happy and excited as this is my favorite night of the year, in Lisbon. Yes, I prefer it over New Years Eve, my birthday or any other holiday. What’s so special about St. Anthony?
In Portugal we have the normal Patron Saints but we also have three Popular Saints. They are St. Anthony, St Peter and St John and are all celebrated in June. Just like the patron saints, each town chooses one and celebrates him, not with masses and processions, but with a happy party, in the streets of the historical center. In Lisbon we celebrate St. Anthony, the non official patron saint, on the 12th of June at night. All streets get decorated with colorful ribbons, paper balloons, lights and so. Everywhere there’s a small counter where they are selling beer, sangria, grilling sardines and sausages. About 6pm the tram stops to circulate because there are already too many people in the streets as everyone who finishes their work go immediately towards the historical center to meet friends and start to eat something.
This is a party in the streets, with small bands performing live, everyone dancing in the streets (traffic is cut in most areas), old and young people enjoying the party until the sun rises.
It was supposed to last just one night but everyone enjoys it so much that now the “Feasts of Lisbon” last for about one month and include lots of different activies. Check the program here.
“Lisboa vai prá rua, que o Sant’António é teu…”