Portuguese Holidays

The Portuguese calendar has several holidays and holiday periods throughout the year. Holiday can have two meanings in Portuguese:

  • a day to celebrate something of specific cultural or religious importance at a local or national level (called feriado), or
  • a planned period of time off work or school (called férias). Férias are often scheduled around important feriados, such as Christmas (Natal) or Easter (Páscoa).

Some of the Main Holidays in Portugal

Holiday Name and Date English Translation
Ano Novo (1 de Janeiro) New Year’s
Carnaval (Fevereiro) Carnival, Mardi Gras
Páscoa (Março/Abril) Easter
Dia da Liberdade (25 de Abril) National Freedom Day
Dia de Portugal (10 de Junho) Portugal’s National Day
Natal (25 de Dezembro) Christmas

In Portuguese, the structure of dates is “(Dia) de (Mês) de (Ano)” or “(Day) of (Month) of (Year)”, and the numbers are typically cardinal, not ordinal. That means that you say Um de janeiro January one instead of Primeiro de janeiro January first. In writing, dates are written as dd/mm/yyyy or dd/mm/yy. Talking about holidays is a great way to practise saying dates and memorizing the days of the week and the months:
O desfile de Carnaval é na próxima terça-feira à tarde. The Carnival parade is next Tuesday afternoon.
O domingo de Páscoa é esta semana. Boa Páscoa! Easter Sunday is this week. Happy Easter!
Houve fogo de artifício na noite de 10 de junho. There were fireworks on the evening of June 10.


  • I really appreciate the cultural, religious and other Portuguese facts provided in these sections. They help with understanding Portugal’s way of life, and the translations as stated give good opportunity to discuss with local Portuguese people.
    I am loving the units and shorties. I highly recommend my fellow ex-pats to use this website.
    Thanks again

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