The Algarve loves a celebration, and the many towns and villages that make up the region are more than willing to oblige when it comes to hosting one or two. These are some of our favourites, festivals that fill up the tummy and wear out the legs.
Querença Sausage Festival (Jan)
There are few things in life more fulfilling than a high quality sausage festival. Querença Sausage Festival takes place near Loulé every January, a celebration of the mighty banger, a fun-filled day featuring some of the finest sausages we’ve had the pleasure of chomping. There is a spiritual side to it all, as the villagers offer pork in return for the patron saint’s protection. Works for us!
The Iberian peninsula loves itself a carnival and the Algarve is no different, with this special time of the year given over to colour, celebration, dancing, booze, immense costumes and the types of party that go long into the night or early into the morning, depending on your point of view. No single carnival stands out — just make a point of being here in February.
Triumphal Procession on Palm Sunday (Apr)
Easter is a big deal in this part of the world and the entire period is full of festivals, events and the rest. The Festa Pequena is definitely worth checking out, but it is the Triumphal Procession in Tavira that wins out for us. A rather moving event, to say the least.
Gastronomy of the Sea (May)
The vast oceans and vibrant seas have filled the stomachs of people in these parts since, well, since there were people in these parts. Fishing is a way of life here, and the dishes that are concocted using ingredients from the sea are an integral part of the Algarve’s culture. This festival takes place in Tavira and is undoubtedly one of the region’s most delicious.
Soul in the Algarve (May)
An annual celebration that has been going on for more than 15 years, Soul in the Algarve sees hundreds of soul fanatics from all over the world descend on the Algarve (Alvor, to be specific) for a week of live music, parties, sun and joy.
Portuguese Gastronomy Week (Jun)
We’re going to go ahead and say that this is the best food festival in the Algarve. Taking place every June, Portuguese Gastronomy Week is a celebration of all things culinary from this charming country, a mass of national dishes and drinks that remind you just how creative these people are when it comes to sating those appetites. Lagoa is the place to be for this one.
Festival Med (Jun)
For party lovers and music aficionados alike, Festival Med is the highlight of the year in the Algarve. Usually taking place at the very end of June, the festival is a massive celebration of Mediterranean culture with music at the forefront, as more than 50 artists wow the thousands across nine stages. Some heck of a party, and then some.
One of the most important festivals on the calendar, FATACIL is a celebration of all things Algarve. The unique culture and history of the region is brought to the fore through a variety of events, parties, exhibitions and more, as artists from all over the area descend upon Lagoa with the region close to their hearts.
Portimão Sardine Festival (Aug)
What do you expect from a sardine festival? The little oily forage fish are a delectable part of life in the Algarve and we’re all sorts of thankful for them, so you can bet your bottom dollar we’ll be making a pilgrimage to Portimão every August to devour as many as we can.
Festival F (Sep)
The ‘F’ stands for ‘Faro’, if you were wondering. Festival F is one of the main pop, rock and hip hop festivals in Portugal, as some of the biggest artists from these lands descend upon the Algarve’s capital. The festival takes place over three days in September.