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São João (Saint John) is a festival in Porto that takes place from the 23rd to the 24th, this is a catholic festival that celebrates the birth of St. John on June 24th.

St. John is, like St. Anthony and St. Peter, a popular saint celebrated in Portugal. He is known to be a holy protector of the married and the sick, being the saint who baptized Jesus Christ.

The party is celebrated in several Portuguese locations, but the city where the festivities are greatest is in Oporto , where June 24 is a municipal holiday .

St John´s Night

Although St. John the Baptist is considered by many as the “patron saint of the people” of Invicta , the official title of patroness of the city of Porto belongs to Our Lady of Vandoma.

On the night of June 23, the population goes out to celebrate. The basil is one of the symbols of the festival, as well as the colorful plastic hammersand leeks used by people to knock (gently) on the heads of others.

Hot air balloons, made of paper, are other attractions that light up the skies on St. John’s night.

Although St. John the Baptist is considered by many as the “patron saint of the people” of Invicta , the official title of patroness of the city of Porto belongs to Our Lady of Vandoma.

On the night of June 23, the population goes out to celebrate. The basil is one of the symbols of the festival, as well as the colorful plastic hammersand leeks used by people to knock (gently) on the heads of others.

Hot air balloons, made of paper, are other attractions that light up the skies on St. John’s night.

As cascatas sanjoaninas, uma espécie de presépio animado feito com esculturas que exemplificam as artes, ofícios e arquitetura portuenses, é outra característica da festa portuense em homenagem a São João.

The waterfalls Sanjoaninas , a kind of animated crib made with sculptures that exemplify the arts, crafts and architecture of Porto, is another characteristic of the feast in honor of Saint John.

In gastronomy, the festivities are only complete with sardines , broa, green broth, peppers and wine.

The party is concentrated in the historic area of ​​Oporto , with thousands of people walking through the streets and watching the firework display by the river Douro, on the banks of Porto and Vila Nova de Gaia. The program of the feasts of St John is extensive, encompassing dozens of various activities that run for about a month.

The youngest people travel along the Douro river to the mouth of the river, finishing the night on the beaches with a morning bath, according to tradition.

In Braga there is also a strong tradition of Saint John.

You are spending the holidays in Porto and don't know where to have a family lunch on Sunday? In this post, we suggest some restaurants that prepared menus for Easter lunch. Warning: These menus are mouth-watering!

Bonjour Porto!