From celebrating sausages and sweet potatoes to Michelin-starred chefs cooking with fire, Portugal honours its rich gastronomic heritage with dozens of food festivals, wine fairs and events.
Food is closely intertwined with culture in Portugal so it’s no surprise the small country puts on more than its fair share of food events. Each village has a specific and special cuisine or locally grown product to celebrate, so why not throw a huge party?
I’ve scoured the country to find the best Portuguese food festivals that celebrate traditional dishes, top chefs and Portuguese culture. Read on to discover more than 40 food festivals across Portugal.
Music lover? Check out this article with best music festivals in 2024. Medieval minstrel? Step this way. Culture vulture? Check out these traditional events.
Have you heard the term “confrarias”?
Portuguese confrarias, also known as brotherhoods, are an intriguing part of Portugal’s living cultural and culinary heritage. Each brotherhood is made up of people with a passion for a certain type of food or drink. Sometimes it’s broad, like the Confraria Gastronómica do Bacalhau (salted cod), while other times it’s more specific, like the Confraria da Caldeirada, which exists in support of a seafood stew. Funnily enough, they wear matching cloaks and have badges like Boy Scouts. Many of these clubs can trace their roots back to medieval times, and throughout the year they host festivals, contests and events to celebrate their chosen food or drink.
Note: I’ve done my best to ensure the information in this article is accurate at the time of publishing. Be sure to check the website or links in case anything changes closer to the date.
Throughout the year
Ordem da Cabidela
When: Random dates across 2024
Where: Across Portugal, a different place each month
Half a dozen times across 2024 the “Order of the Cabidela” is popping up at restaurants across Portugal. Each special evening a handful of chefs are invited to create a multi-course meal inspired by the traditional chicken blood rice dish that many Portuguese laud as a comfort food. If you attend, you will knighted by a giant chicken and become a “Knight of the Order of the Cabidela”, receiving a symbolic silver feather.
Festival do Peixe do Rio (River Fish Festival)
When: 23 February to 3 March 2024
Where: Alandroal, two hours east of Lisbon.
Discover the versatility of river fish. Taste it grilled, fried, in tacos, as ceviche, and more with market stalls and cooking demonstrations. On weekends a fair in the Praça da República will have locally made products, workshops, games and entertainment. Plus there’s a program with mountain biking, hot air balloon rides, guided hikes, and a fishing contest in the Grande Lago de Alqueva.
Tasquinhas, Rio Maior
When: 1-10 March 2024
Where: Rio Maior, 1-hour north of Lisbon.
If you love Portuguese food then you surely love tascas, the homely canteens and diners that dish up rustic Portuguese food. The 38th edition of Tasquinhas is popping up in Rio Maior, about 70 minutes north of Lisbon, in late March. Get to know the traditions and food of the region with a huge pavilion filled with pop-up tascas and markets selling sweets, liquors and local artisan goods.
Festival do Ouriço-do-Mar (Sea Urchin Festival)
When: 15-24 March 2024
Where: Ericeira, 45 minutes from Lisbon.
On weekends you can drop into the local market to try the raw, natural sea delicacy along with arrtisanal beer and local wine. On weekends there is also cooking demonstrations with top Portuguese chefs and other entertainment. Throughout the festival, a long list of local restaurants have special dishes using sea urchin.
Pura Sede (Natural Wine Fair)
When: 23-24 March 2024
Each year this natural wine fair focuses on what nature provides, perfect for those with a thirst for purity. A ticket gains you access to a huge fair where you can taste wine directly from the producers themselves.
Talha à Mesa (Amphora Wine Festival)
When: 23-24 March 2024
Where: Vidigueira, Alentejo
This weekend is focused on talha wines – the huge clay amphora vessels that are still used to make some Alentejo wines. At the Adega Cooperativa de Vidigueira there will be a bar with only talha wines, invited chefs cooking up a feast, cooking demonstrations, entertainment and a masterclass. Book tickets for the various events ahead of time.
Festival do Peixe do Rio (River Fish Festival)
When: 23-24 March 2024
Where: Pomarão, Mértola, Alentejo
Discover the Guardiana River and the fish that comes from it with this Alentejo festival. Expect two day of concerts, food, talks, markets, and culture. Fado singer Ana Moura is marked to perform on the 23rd, and there will be fireworks that night too.
Festa do Arroz (Rice Festival)
When: 23 March 2024
Where: Ponte de Sor
Rice pudding – or arroz doce – is big news in Ponte de Sor. This town, two hours northeast of Lisbon, as rice-growing heritage and the 11th edition of the rice festival has good money up for grabs for the prize winners. Beyond rice there will be music and fanfare too.
Feira da Bola Doce e dos Produtos da Terra
When: 28-30 March 2024
Where: Jardim dos Frades Trinos in Miranda do Douro, far northeast corner of Portugal
Tras-on-Montes is one of my favourite areas of Portugal, so if you’re looking for an excuse to visit the far remote northeast, maybe this cake festival is it. The festival always aligns with Easter and celebrates “Bola Doce Mirandesa”. You’ll also experience local culture like the Pauliteiros, can taste Tras-on-Montes smoked sausages and meats, and local liqueurs and wines.
When: 29-31 March 2024
Where: Vidigueira, Alentejo near Beja
At Easter the Alentejo town of Vidigueira will be throwing a huge party to promote its local wines. Expect plenty of wine tastings, a roster of concerts, can’t Alentejano (traditional singing) and a local crafts market. At the same time the town isx running a gastronomic week, highlighting the best regional produce from olive oil to oranges.
Queijo, Pão e Vinho
When: 5-7 April 2024
Where: São Gonçalo, Palmela – about 30 minutes south of Lisbon
Cheese, bread, wine – what more could you want? I attended this fun local food festival south of Lisbon in 2023 and it was a brilliant day out. Entry was €1 and gave us access to more than a dozen hyper-local wine producers and almost as many cheesemakers. The star is the famous DOP Queijo do Azeitão, a gooey, stinky sheep’s cheese that I adore. Bring cash (and a plastic cup if you already have one).
Expobarrancos – Feira do Presunto e dos Enchidos (Smoked Meats Festival)
When: 12-14 April 2024
Where: Barrancos, on the border with Spain almost three hours west of Lisbon
Expect a showcase of presunto (prosciutto), chouriço (chorizo), alheira (a game bird sausage with a fascinating history), blood sausage and other Portuguese enchidos at this three-day party. There will be concerts into the night, markets and food.
XIII Grande Mostra Vinhos de Portugal (Portuguese Wine Show)
When: 12-14 April 2024
Where: Albufeira, Algarve coast
This huge wine fair will take over the Espaço Multiusos de Albufeira, bringing more than 100 exhibitors to the space. That makes the 13th edition one of Portugal’s largest wine shows, with more than 9,000 people expected. It’s put on by the Confraria do Bacchus de Albufeira with doors open from 3pm each day.
Festa do Vinho do Cartaxo
When: Late April (confirmed for 2024, dates to come)
Where: Cartaxo, one-hour north of Lisbon
Join the 33rd edition of the Cartaxo Wine Festival, where dozens of local wineries bring their top drops to taste alongside artisan markets and local taverns. Expect traditional music and concerts, plus a traditional parade and entertainment until midnight each evening.
Provocação de Sabores (Wine Festivals)
When: 4-5 May 2024
Where: Barreiro, south of Lisbon (you can take a ferry there!)
Wine lovers are invited to this tasting event, where more than 55 producers are expected to present their wines to the public. There will be music, guided tastings, and food too. Last year it was €8 per day, or €10 for both days with the doors opening from 3pm.
Mercado á Moda Antiga (Old-style Market)
When: 10-12 May 2024
Where: Pinhal Novo, south of Lisbon
Venture back in time with the 8th edition of this old-fashioned market. Try local traditions, like sopa caramela and pudim de abóbora, and buy produce direct from farmers.
Festival do Arroz Carolino das Lezírias Ribatejanas (Rice Festival)
When: 17-19 May 2024
Where: Benavente, a 45-minute drive from Lisbon
Love rice? Don’t miss the festival celebrating Carolino rice, the native grain of this most rice-loving of all European countries. The fifth edition will be held in Benavente and features a program with cooking demonstrations, stages, music, entertainment and, of course, plenty of delicious Portuguese rice.
When: All of June, but especially June 12
The Santos Populares celebrations that take over Lisbon’s oldest neighbourhoods each June are more of a cultural affair than a food festival, but like any good party the fun revolves around good food and drink. Sometimes in English it’s nicknamed Lisbon’s Sardine Festival, and you can always find the fun by following the fishy scent or billowing charcoal smoke.
More information – read my guide to Saint Antonio festival in Lisbon
Festa da Cereja (Cherry Festival)
When: 7-9 June 2024
Where: Fundão, almost three hours from both Porto and Lisbon
One doesn’t need an excuse to visit Fundão, a historic mountain village considered one of the most beautiful in the country. It’s just a bonus that you can find excellent cherries. Of course, a great crop is reason to celebrate – expect three days of markets, entertainment, concerts and even a tourist train through the cherry orchards.
Vagos Sensation Gourmet
When: 30 June – 2 July 2023 (2024 dates TBC)
Where: Praia da Vagueira, one-hour south from Porto
A stone’s throw from the beach, this food festival celebrates the local gastronomy with three huge festival days. Expect Michelin-starred chefs from around the country, cooking demonstrations, workshops, talks, food stalls, snacks, wine, concerts and more.
Related Blog: 18 best medieval and historic events in Portugal in 2023
Feira do Vinho Verde (Green Wine Fair)
When: First weekend of July (dates TBC)
Where: Castelo de Paiva, one-hour from Porto
Over three huge days taste award-winning vinho verde region wines along with traditional snacks and local sweets. Many people think vinho verde is simply a zesty, slightly effervescent white wine, but it is actually a region that produces juicy fresh reds too. Expect a program of folk dance and music too.
XXVIII Festival do Caracol (Snail Festival)
When: 28 June to 2 July 2023 (2024 dates TBC)
Where: Porches, Algarve.
Portugal’s summer hero is the snail. And in the Algarve locals celebrate the favourite post-beach snack with a full three-day festival. Expect plenty of delicious snails, along with traditional sweets, and a music and cultural program, and river views.
More information to come
Festival da Sardinha (Sardine Festival)
When: 6-9, 13-16 July 2023 (2024 dates TBC)
Where: Praia do Pedrógão in Leiria, halfway between Lisbon and Porto
Summer means sardines and here they take it seriously. In the middle of July, Praia do Pedrógão becomes the centre of all things sardinha, with around 5 tonnes consumed during the festival. You’ll find a big party atmosphere with stalls peddling sardines, huge stages with music and plenty of beachside fun.
Guarda Wine Fest
When: 14-16 July 2023 (2024 dates TBC)
Where: Alameda de Santo André
Sip, swirl and sample wines from the Douro and Dão regions at this festival bringing together about 40 producers. Taste famous drops and new experiments, hear from the winemakers and learn more about the landscapes of this region. Pair tastings with cooking demonstrations and jazz for a great few days in the Beira region. Entry is free and tastings are possible with the purchase of an official tasting glass.
More information to come
Festival de Gastronomia do Maranho
When: 13-16 July 2023 (2024 dates TBC)
Where: Alameda da Carvalha, Sertã – two hours from both Lisbon and Porto
This huge festival – with big concerts, fun run events and more – celebrates an unusual rice sausage. This local delicacy is said to have emerged more than 200 years ago, and was popular on feast days last century. Basically a large sausage is stuffed with goat or sheep meat, plus ham, chorizo, mint, parsley, dry rice, salt, spices and white wine. It’s boiled, sliced, served and a good excuse for a party.
Related blog: Where to eat in Lisbon: 28 best restaurants and tascas
Sines Tasquinhas Food Festival
When: 12 July – 3 August 2024
Where: Sines – two hours south from Lisbon
Around 20 food tents will pop up along the beachfront in Sines, each with a tasquinha (little tasca/bistro) inside. Expect daily entertainment and concerts with music of all genres. Some of the concerts overlap with the Festival Músicas do Mundo program.
Festival do Caldo de Peixe (Fish Soup Festival)
When: 21-22 July 2023 (2024 dates TBC)
Where: Rabo do Peixe, on São Miguel Island in the Azores.
Historically connected to the sea, Rabo do Peixe celebrates its heritage with a party starring a traditional fish soup. The delicious rich broth features big chunks of fish and bread, making it more a meal than a starter. Learn about the lives of local fishermen and enjoy warm hospitality you can only get on a remote island.
XXXII Feira de Enchidos, Queijo e Mel – (Smoked Meats, Cheese & Honey Fair)
When: 29 July – 6 August 2023 (2024 dates TBC)
Where: Vila De Rei
In 2023 we can expect the 32nd edition of Vila de Rei’s fair dedicated to local smoked meats, cheese and honey. It’s said thousands attend this nine-day event, which includes big Portuguese names in music and entertainment plus around 100 stalls with produce, regional cuisine and artisans.
Festival da Sardinha (Sardine Festival)
When: 1-6 August 2023 (2024 dates TBC)
Where: Portimão, Algarve – 50 minutes west from Faro
Sardines are the summer star of this big Algarve festival. Follow the salty, smokey wafts from the barbecues to find the festival where some 2,000 seats fill up fast. Once you’ve had your feast of fish, venture towards the stage where big name Portuguese acts take the mic each night.
Festival do Marisco (Seafood Festival)
When: 10-14 August 2024
Where: Olhão, 15-minute drive from Faro in the Algarve
Olhão is one of my favourite Algarve towns, mostly thanks to the brilliant waterfront twin market halls. A huge tent gets set up nearby for the annual Marisco festival, a mega celebration of all things shellfish. You can taste traditional dishes, such as Arroz de Marisco (seafood rice), Cataplana (seafood steamed in special copper pan) and Feijoada de Búzios (whelk and bean stew), and admire fresh spider crab, whelks and cockles.
Related Blog: Best music festivals in Portugal in 2023
Festival do Bacalhau (Salted Cod Festival)
When: 9- 13 August 2023 (2024 dates TBC)
Where: Jardim Oudinot in Gafanha da Nazaré, about 50 minutes south of Porto
Where better to celebrate Portugal’s favourite ingredient than in the bacalhau capital? Courageous sailors left Portugal for the cold seas of Newfoundland and Greenland to fish for cod, a beloved staple in the Portuguese diet. For five days in August try bacalhau cooked in various ways, taste wines from Bairrada, and enjoy entertainment, music and markets.
Festival da Sopa da Pedra (Rock Soup Festival)
When: 28 August – 1 September 2024
Where: Almeirim, 70-minute drive from Lisbon
Only Portugal could host a festival dedicated to a single soup (and this isn’t the only soup fest). Sopa da Pedra (rock soup) is a bit like a minestrone and has a special legend attached, as well as a literal stone. Chase down this local soup festival at Almeririm’s Parque das Tilias to try the dish along with other petiscos (snacks/tapas). You can expect to find a big festival atmosphere with concerts, market stalls and more.
Festa da Broa de Avintes (Corn Bread Festival)
When: Late August TBC
Where: Avintes, near Porto
This year will be the 34th cornbread festival in the town of Avintes, just south of Porto. More than just a celebration of this regional bread, the festival includes concerts, trail running and cooking demonstrations too.
Read next: 25 traditional dishes to order in Portugal
Vindouro – Festa Pombalina
When: 30 August – 1 September 2024
Where: São João da Pesqueira, two hours east of Porto
Combining wine and history, this huge Douro Valley event celebrates the Pombaline era (late 1700s) and local winemaking traditions. Expect three days of fantastic Douro wines (with more than 100 wine producers) and historical Portuguese baroque-vibes, harking back to the early days of the Douro’s wine-growing heritage. There will be a Pombaline parade, entertainment, wine tastings, big concerts with live music and DJs, and regional markets in Portugal’s oldest town.
Festa das Vindimas
When: 31 August – 5 September 2023 (2024 dates TBC)
Where: Palmela, 30-minute drive from Lisbon
Each year this festival celebrates the local wine harvest and Palmela’s winemaking traditions. A huge party takes place over many days with many events, including the crowning of a festival Queen. Join in grape picking, wine tasting, traditional dancing, and concerts. Taste local traditional dishes and, of course, sample local wines.
Chefs on Fire
When: 20-22 September 2024
Where: FIARTIL, Estoril, about 30-minutes west from Lisbon
Chefs on Fire is the jewel in the crown of Portugal’s food festivals. Set in a beautiful park, beneath towering pine trees, some of Portugal’s most highly regarded and Michelin-starred chefs cook up a feast using only fire. Each day chefs and food changes, along with a line-up of great bands and musicians too. Unmissable.
Festival da Cerveja Artesanal com Lúpulo Feirense (Artisan Beer Festival)
When: 5-8 October 2023 (2024 to come)
Where: Santa Maria da Feira, between Porto and Aveiro
Curious about how hops is grown? Sometime usually in August you can participate in the harvesting and drying of 20 varieties of hops grown on the banks of the Cáster River. Then return a couple of months later to taste special editions crafted with the same hops. Each year the Festival da Cerveja Artesanal com Lúpulo Feirense (craft beer festival) in Santa Maria da Feira challenges artisanal breweries to create special brews. The three-day festival program features tastings, beer pairings and workshops, plus music, DJ sets and markets.
Festival Nacional de Gastronomia (National Gastronomic Festival)
When: 25 October – 3 November 2024
The smaller city of Santarém tries to represent all of Portugal’s rich regional cuisines in one big showcase. Held for more than 40 years, you’ll find a bit of everything at this food festival, with cuisine from the north to south to the islands of Azores and Madeira. Expect food stalls, cooking demonstrations, wine tastings and more, plus confrarias from across Portugal.
Read next: 6 best food markets in Portugal
Trancoso Feira da Castanha (Chestnut Fair)
When: 1-3 November 2024
Where: Trancoso, in the interior Serra da Estrela area
Trancoso is a really cute mountain town wrapped in ancient walls and topped by a castle. It happens to be a huge chestnut-producing region too. Last year’s chestnut celebration included mountain biking, cooking demonstrations, competitions and concerts.
Marvão Feira da Castanha (Chestnut Fair)
When: 9-10 November 2024
Where: Marvão, on the border with Spain east of Lisbon
There’s nothing better than hot chestnuts in autumn, and it’s the focus at this cultural festival in the ancient village of Marvão. Apparently 4,500 kilograms of chestnuts are consumed, along with 1,500 litres of wine. In existence for more than 40 years, it celebrates the local culture and traditions too with an artisan market, folk singing and entertainment.
São Martinho or Magusto
When: 11 November 2023
Speaking of Saint Martin (or São Martinho), November 11 is a favourite day to celebrate in Portugal. Saint Martin was a Roman soldier who cut his cloak in half to share with a cold beggar. Afterwards the sun came out – and it’s why warm winter days in early November are called Saint Martin’s Summer. This time of year the Portuguese enjoy Magusto, a celebration that involves bonfires, wine and chestnuts, especially in the Trás-os-Montes and Beira Baixa areas.
Xira Wine Fest
When: 15-17 November 2024
Where: Vila Franca de Xira, 30-minutes north of Lisbon
Held at a big pavilion, the Xira Wine Fest celebrates World Tourism Day with a showcase of local gastronomy. Sample the goods from local wine and food producers at this party.
Festival da Batata-Doce (Sweet Potato Festival)
When: 24-26 November 2024
Where: Aljezur, one-hour from Faro or three from Lisbon
The humble sweet potato is in the spotlight at this special western Algarve festival. Expect to find plenty of food stalls making the most of the star ingredient, dozens and dozens of exhibitors, and a stage with music and fun kicking on until 2am some nights. How late would you party for a potato?
XX Feira da Vinha e do Vinho de Amareleja
When: 8-10 December 2023 (2024 TBC)
Where: Amareleja – Moura, Alentejo – 2.5 hours from Lisbon
This December celebration of wine is a fun weekend deep in the Alentejo. Close to the border with Spain, Amareleja and Moura crack bottles open for a “Rota das Adegas” wine tasting on the Saturday with commentary and Cante Alentejano. On Sunday the highlight is a concert, plus there is music all weekend long.
Hopen Braga Beer Festival
When: 15-17 December
Where: Mercado Municipal de Braga, 30-minute drive north of Porto
Hopen returns for a Christmas market celebrating all things craft beer. Taking over the local markethall, this craft beer festival will showcase the best of the Portuguese craft beer movement over a weekend with tastings, concerts and fun.
XXVI Feira Gastronómica do Porco (Pork Festival)
XXXIII Feira do Fumeiro (Smoked Sausage Festival)
Festa das Chouriças (Sausage Festival)
VIII Festival de Sopas — Ó Sim, Ó Sopas! (Soup Festival)
Feira do Fumeiro de Vinhais (Smoked Meats Fair)
Feira do Queijo Serra da Estrela – Seia (Cheese Fair)
Festival do Butelo e das Casulas (Sausage & Bean Festival)
XXIV Festival de Sabores Mirandeses
Feira do Queijo do Alentejo (Cheese Fair)
FYI in my best food festivals and events list I’ve chosen to only include proper food festivals, pop-up markets and gastronomic events across Portugal. I have not included “food festivals” that don’t have a festival heart, fair or central stage. While living here I’ve noticed lots of local councils throw “festivals” that are more a marketing exercise. While they involve all the branding of a festival, the fun exists only as dishes at participating local restaurants. A nice idea, but not the Portuguese food party we’re looking for!
Am I missing any great food festivals or events happening in Portugal in 2024? Leave me a comment…