In June, the month of the Festas dos Santos Populares (Feast Days of the Popular Saints), the Lisbon nights are filled with lively festivities that take over the city’s historical center. On the eve of Saint Anthony day Lisbon turns into one big party! Lisbon’s craziest night 2011
Bica, near Bairro Alto – partying in the small street around the famous funicular, it’s hard to walk there!
The narrow streets in Bairro Alto (at night) are filled with people in a party mood, enjoying a whole lot of caipirinhas and mojitos on the bar-lined hills. Every bar and club in the district shuts its doors and moves its drinks to the windows, or on to tables outside.
Bairro Alto – restaurant Paladar – drinks & sardinhas (sardines) with traditional bread. (I can recommend this trendy restaurant)
Largo da Trindade – people are dancing on Pimba music – a term used for a variety of popular Portuguese folk solo singers and bands whose songs are frequently driven by metaphors with sexual meanings. Pimba music in English http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5NbZtySlios
Alfama in June – all the streets are decorated with garlands and lights, from Castelo to Mouraria, Graça to Alfama, and Ajuda to Bairro Alto. Barely a street escapes as paper lanterns, streamers and coloured lights are hung from balconies and railings.
Historical area Mouraria
There’s also the grilled sardines, you can smell it everywhere in the streets!It’s not a good time for sardines though as everywhere in Lisbon you see people grilling sardines outside their homes and the narrow streets fill up people in party mood.
As a symbol of affection, people present each other with little pots of basil (manjerico)and paper carnations on which they write poems.
Santo Antonio (better known as Saint Anthony of Padua), revered as a matchmaker, protector of young brides and patron of the lost and found, was actually born in Lisbon, on the site of this church, Largo Santo Antonio à Sé, Alfama.
Mass marriages known as “St. Anthony’s Weddings” are held during the mid-June St. Anthony’s Day celebrations.