The Algarve has a great programme of events throughout the year and right across the region. There are fireworks and parties for New Year, carnivals at Mardi Gras and concerts throughout the summer with a variety of artists performing jazz, pop, rock and classical music.
During the summer months the "Allgarve" programme of events includes many open air concerts with a wide range of artists, medieval festivals, gastronomy festivals, street theatre spectaculars and of course the gorgeous weather is perfect for beach parties! If you would like see how much goes on in summer in the Algarve, have a look at a previous year's Algarve Summer Events programme.
Algarve sports events attract spectators and competitors from all over the world and include powerboat racing, kitesurfing, surfing, sailing, cycling, tennis and golf and, with the opening of the race track near Portimão, there are various motorsport events on the calendar. (For information on motorsports at the Algarve Motor Park / Autódromo Internacional do Algarve, see Portimão Events).
The Algarve has plenty on offer for art and music lovers too with cultural events throughout the year - there are art galleries in nearly every town with constantly changing exhibitions from both international and local artists as well as concerts, theatre productions and dance shows.
There are also local festivals, fairs and Algarve markets aplenty - gastronomy festivals to sample the local delicacies; craftwork fairs demonstrating the skills of local artisans like lace-makers, ceramic artists and basket makers and then historical festivals recreating medieval times and celebrating the Voyages of the Discoveries for which the western Algarve is famous. The biggest and best known markets are Loulé (every Saturday morning) and Quarteira (every Wednesday morning).
If you're not sure exactly when you're coming to the Algarve yet, check out the Algarve Annual Events programme so you don't miss out on something when you book your holiday!
Algarve Events December 2013
Here are just a few of the events that are taking place in the Algarve this month and next. You can also check out our Algarve Uncovered resort guides for specific events information. For more Algarve Events information download the Algarve Events Guide December 2013 produced by ERT Algarve – Algarve Regional Tourism Board.
Christmas Concerts by Orquestra Clássica do Sul
15th - Igreja Sao Pedro do Mar, Quarteira at 16.00 (free)
20th - Cultural Centre, Lagos at 21.00 6€
22nd - Teatro das Figuras, Faro at 18.30 7,50€
Father Christmas Fun run/walk
Albufeira on 15th December starting from the municipal market at
Caliços at 10am
Bivar - Art, Design and Culture
Rua Conselheiro Bivar, Faro on 14th December from 16.00 to 02.00
Restaurants, bars, businesses and cultural groups have joined together for a night of live entertainment, exhibitions, theatre, dance and music
David Fonseca - Season Tour 'Rising: Falling'
Venue: Portimão TEMPO (Municipal theatre) on 20th December at 21.30
Ballet - Midsummer Night's Dream
Venue: Teatro das Figuras, Faro on 21st December at 21.30
Giant Nativity Scene
Venue: Vila Real de Santo António in the Cultural Centre.
Open every day from 6th December to 12th January
With over four thousand figures it really is a very large scene!
In Marquês de Pombal Square, Vila Real de Santo António from 6th December to 6th January. Open every day from 10.00 to 22.00.
Christmas Market, music and dance, ice rink, trampolines, inflatables, carousels and of course Santa!
Venue: Cacela Velha (near Monte Gordo) on 15th December from 10.30 to 17.00
New Year celebrations, Monte Gordo
5 nights of partying on the waterfront!
27th - Retro Night 'Katia Aveiro'
28th - Disco Night 'Mastiksoul'
29th - Mundialato Night ' Diego Miranda'
30th - Youth Night ' DJ Ride'
31st - David Carreira and fireworks at midnight
New Year's Eve in Albufeira
From 10pm at Praia dos Pescadores - DJ China feat Kat Blu, followed by Richie Campbell. Fireworks at midnight
Avenida Sá Carneira (the strip) - fireworks at midnight followed by lively street entertainment from Star Parade
New Year's Eve across the Algarve
VRSA - Concert, music and entertainment from 22.30
Tavira - DJ, live band and musical firework display 22.00 to 04.00
Quarteira - Music and fireworks at midnight in Praça do Mar 22.00.
Faro - Live music and fireworks in downtown Faro from 23.00.
Venue: Paderne (near Albufeira) from 28th December to 1st January
Medieval market, food court, traditional games, parades and entertainment.
Algarve markets are always popular and there are great bargains to be had. The biggest and best known are the Saturday morning gypsy market in Loulé and the Wednesday morning market in Quarteira where you can buy everything from lace to pots and pans! Most towns and villages have their own local daily markets for really fresh local produce at very good prices as well as a monthly gypsy market, so there is nearly always somewhere close by if you can't resist a bargain!
- Gipsy / Flea Market on the street 'Rua da Escolas' (near the municipal canteen) on the 3rd Saturday of every month
- Market twice a month in Caliços on the 1st and 3rd Tuesday of every month
- Monthly market in Pereiro: In front of the church, on the 4th Sunday of every month
- Monthly market in Vaqueiros: (Exit to Bentos), on the 2nd Thursday of every month
- Monthly market near 'Igreja Nova' (the "new" church) on the 3rd Monday of every month.
- Market twice a month near the school in Almancil on the 1st and 4th Sunday of every month
Castro Marim market:
- Monthly market at the town marketplace on the 2nd Saturday of every month
- Monthly market in Estói: Near the food market ("Mercado Abastecedor") on the 2nd Sunday of every month
- Gipsy Market in front of Fatacil in Lagoa on the 4th Sunday of every month
- Monthly market in front of Fatacil in Lagoa on the 2nd Sunday of every month
- Monthly market in Ferragudo on the 2nd Sunday of the month
- Monthly market in Estombar at the Fairs and Exhibitions Park on the last Saturday of every month
- Market, at the municipal stadium (Estádio Municipal) on the 1st Saturday every month
- Cultural Centre (on the street 'Rua da Mata') on the 4th Sunday of every month
- Weekly market on the street called 'Rua da Nossa Senhora da Piedade' every Saturday
- Gipsy / flea market in the square 'Largo dos Chorões' on the 4th Sunday of every month
- Monthly market in the market square 'Largo do Mercado' on the 2nd Friday of every month
- Gipsy / Flea market at Fuzeta (near the camping site) on the 1st Sunday of every month
- Monthly market in Moncarapacho on the street called 'Rua das Olarias' on the 1st Sunday every month
- Gipsy / Flea market at the 'Fairs and Exhibition Park' in Portimão on the 1st Monday and 3rd Sunday every month
- Weekly market in 'Jardim Filipe Jonas' every Wednesday
- Monthly market, in front of the market hall on the 1st Friday of every month
São Brás de Alportel markets:
- Gipsy / Flea Market on the street 'Rua 1.º de Junho' (near the school 'Poeta Bernardo Passos') on the 3rd Sunday of every month
- Weekly Market on the street 'Rua Boaventura Passos' every Saturday
- Gipsy / Flea Market, next to the Cemetery on the 3rd Monday of every month
- Antiques / Gipsy Market on 'Avenida D. Manuel I' (near to the new market hall) on the 1st Saturday every month
- Monthly market on the street 'Rua Vale Caranguejo' on the 3rd Saturday of every month
Vila do Bispo markets:
- Monthly market (in front of the market hall in Vila do Bispo) on the 1st Thursday of every month
- Market in Barão de São Miguel on the 1st Monday of every month
Vila Real de Santo António markets:
- Monthly market in Vila Real in the square 'Praça Marques do Pombal' on the 2nd Saturday of every month
- Monthly market in Monte Gordo (next to Turismo - tourist information office) on the 4th Saturday of every month
- Monthly market in Vila Nova de Cacela, near to the market building on the 3rd Sunday of every month
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Algarve Annual Events
January Events in the Algarve
- Festival of “Chouriças” (Sausages), which is also known as the Festival of S. Luís, the patron saint of animals in Querença .
- Janeiras Festival in Silves. The tradition of the Janeiras (seasonal songs) dates back to ancient times when, at the beginning of each year, the Romans would greet each other to evoke the god Janus who represented the guardian of the gateway to heaven.
February Events in the Algarve
- Carnivals take place across the Algarve on Shrove Tuesday and the preceding weekend. (If Easter is late, this can be in March)
- Cycling Tour of the Algarve (Volta ao Algarve)
March Events in the Algarve
- Festival of Hot bread and fresh cheese (Feira do Pão Quente e Queijo Fresco) in Vaqueiros.
- EXPOMAR Fair of the Sea and Nautical Activities in Olhão
- Traditional Sausage Fair in Monchique
- Gastronomy Festival of the Serra in Tavira (March/April)
April Events in the Algarve
- 'Liberation Day' on April 25th is always a reason for fireworks, music and entertainment in towns across the region.
- Vila de Amêijoas (Clams Festival) in Olhão
- Vodafone Rally of Portugal - Algarve Stadium is the base for the event with superspecial stages at the beginning and close of the rally (sometimes takes place in May)
- Baja Terras d’El Rei ( off road championships) - various locations
Easter Events in the Algarve
- Folar Fairs across the Algarve with music and entertainment and a chance to try the traditional 'folar' cakes - Easter cakes with hard boiled eggs (complete with shells) on top!
- Flower Torches Festival in São Brás de Alportel on Easter Sunday
- Feast of The Sovereign Mother ('Festa Pequena') in Loulé - a tradition dating from the 16th century.
- Triumphal Procession on Palm Sunday (Sunday before Easter Sunday) in Tavira - This is a religious event that was started in the 18th century by the Carmelite Order of the City of Tavira. The procession consists of decorated litters with gilt woodwork and images depicting the life of Christ from the Mount of Olives to his death.
May Events in the Algarve
- May Day is a day for celebrations and traditionally the festivities include dancing and music as well as heading into the countryside for a picnic lunch.
- May Fair in Azinhal- A chance to see the traditional skills that are typical of the area - bobbin lace, basketwork, embroidery, tapestry and weaving of esparto grass.
- Festa da Pinha (Festival of the Pine Cone) in Estoi - a traditional festival to celebrate spring
- "The Gastronomy of the Sea" - Festival in Tavira
- Snail Festival in Castro Marim
- 'May Sweet May' Jazz Festival in Portimão
- International sand sculpture festival at Pêra from May to October
June Events in the Algarve
- 'Feira da Terra' (local produce market) in Aljezur on 1st Saturday of each month from June to October
- Handicrafts Fair in Alcoutim
- Cataplana Festival in Almancil
- Popular Saints Festivals across the Algarve celebrating St. Anthony, St. John and St. Peter. The warm nights are filled with the aromas of barbecues and grilled sardines as the towns and villages celebrate, often partying until the small hours!
- Portuguese Gastronomy week in Lagoa
- Caldeirada (Fish stew) Festival in Armação de Pêra
- "Pleasures of the Sea" Festival in Aljezur - gastronomy, music, entertainment
- "Festival Med" in Loulé- mediterranean music, gastronomy and handicrafts
July Events in the Algarve
- "Arte Doce" Competition and Fair in Lagos - a wide range of traditional sweets as an art form! Also musical entertainment in the evenings
- Loulé Handicraft Fair
- Fair of the Serra in São Brás de Alportel
- Fair of Traditional Smoked Ham in Monchique
- Allgarve Jazz Festival in towns across the Algarve
- Algarve International Motorbike meeting in Faro
August Events in the Algarve
- The festival of 'Our Lady of the Oracle' (the patron saint of Albufeira fishermen)
- Municipal Day in Albufeira with lots of entertainment and fireworks
- Vaqueiros Festival (near Alcoutim)
- Burgau Festival
- Barão de S. Miguel festivals
- FATACIL in Lagoa - It is the major fair of handicrafts, tourism, agriculture, business and industry in the Algarve and also includes horse shows, evening entertainment and gastronomy
- Medieval Fair in Silves
- Medieval Fair in Castro Marim
- Noites de Moura Encatada in Cacela Velha - recreating the times of the Arab occupation with a traditional Souk, music, belly dancing and traditional food.
- Sardine Festival in Portimão - live music and entertainment, plus, of course, barbecued sardines!
- Shellfish Festival in Olhão - a major event with live music every night
- 'Sounds of the Atlantic' music festival at Senhora da Rocha, Lagoa - concerts, street theatre, handicrafts and gastronomy
- Grand Champions Tennis competition at Vale do Lobo
September Events in the Algarve
- Fishermen's festival at Praia dos Pescadores in Albufeira including a gastronomy festival
- Festival in Alcoutim
- Festival in Martinlongo
- Grand Prix of Portugal Powerboat P1 Championship in Portimão
- Formula One Wind Surfing championship at Alvor
October Events in the Algarve
- Santa Iria Fair in Faro - lots of entertainment, fairground rides and stalls at this 400 year old fair.
- Festival in honour of Nossa Senhora da Alva in Aljezur
- Festival and fair in Raposeira
- AgroExpo in Vila do Bispo – A fair of economic activities, tourism, gastronomy, handicrafts and livestock farming. Another essential ingredient is evening entertainment, with plenty of music on four consecutive days
- Partridge Fair in Martim Longo
- Sweet Potato Festival in Aljezur
- Gastronomy fortnight in Almancil
- Portugal Masters in Vilamoura for the golf enthusiasts
- Annual Fair in Monchique
November Events in the Algarve
- St. Martin's Fair in Portimão
- Gastronomy week in Messines
- Casinos do Algarve Rally with stages in Portimão and Monchique
December Events in the Algarve
- Loulé Mountain Fair - The aim of this festival is to enable people to find out more about the diversity and popular culture of the parishes of the “Serra do Caldeirão”. Visitors will be able to get a close up view of handicrafts, a variety of products, gastronomy, ethnography and the traditions of the upland regions.
- Albufeira Christmas Grand Prix - a 9km run and a 3km Father Christmas Walk
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