Annual events in Loulé
Festa das Chouriças in Querença
Querença Chorizo Festival takes place in January and is a festival in honour of St. Luis (the protector of animals). Traditionally the families in inland Algarve raised a pig to sustain themselves through the year and asked St. Luis to keep it in good health. To thank the saint they offer their best homemade chorizo. The festival includes a procession, musical entertainment and, of course, lots of homemade chorizo!
3 days of celebration in February (or occasionally March) of parades, music and dancing, the 3rd day being Shrove Tuesday. The centre of Loulé (Avenida José da Costa Mealha) is shut off for the carnival and it costs a few euros for entrance. It is worth arriving early - the procession starts at 3.00pm but you will need time to find parking, especially if you haven't been to Loulé before.
Festa da Mãe Soberana
Easter Sunday in Loulé marks the beginning of the celebrations 'Feast of the Sovereign Mother', the patron saint of Loulé. The Small Feast (Festa Pequena) takes place on Easter Sunday when the statue of the patron saint is brought down from its sanctuary to the Church of São Francisco, where it will stay until the Festa Grande 2 weeks later. In the morning of the "Big Feast", the statue of the Sovereign Mother leaves in a procession from the Church of São Francisco towards the Engineer Duarte Pacheco Monument, where there is a religious service. In the afternoon, the Eucharist is celebrated at the Church of São Francisco, followed by the procession through the main streets of the city, with the high point being the ascent to the Sanctuary. Several thousand faithful arrive in Loulé for one of the city’s most important religious festivals. Traditionally the day ends with fireworks.
Festa da Espiga
Festa da Espiga in Salir is a traditional festival on the Feast of Ascension (40 days after Easter). "Espiga" is an arrangement of ears of wheat (or other cereal) to symbolize abundance mixed with poppies, roses, daisies and marigolds to symbolize the beauty of the countryside and an olive branch for peace and hung inside of the house where it will stay until changed for a "new" espiga the following year. Folkgroups, a parade, music, local delicacies and fun for all the family make a special celebration.
WRC Vodafone Portugal Rally
The WRC Vodafone Portugal Rally takes place between March and May and is based at the Algarve Stadium in Faro.
Festival Med is in June. Loulé plays host to the thousands of people who come for one of the most important cultural entertainment events in the Algarve, Festival Med celebrates mediterranean music and culture, street entertainment, theatre, exhibitions, food and mediterranean inspired craftwork
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Algarve Bank holidays 2011 to 2017
- Municipal holiday: Ascension day (40th day after Easter Sunday): 2011-June 2nd; 2012-May 17th; 2013-.May 9th; 2014-May 29th; 2015-May 14th; 2016-May 5th; 2017-May 25th
- New Years Day: 1st January
- Carnival ("Carnaval" - Mardi Gras): 2011-March 8th; 2012-February 21st; 2013-February 12th; 2014-March 4th; 2015-February 17th; 2016-February 9th; 2017-February 28th.
- Good Friday: 2011-April 22nd; 2012-April 6th; 2013-March 29th; 2014-April 18th; 2015-April 3rd; 2016-March 25th; 2017-April 14th.
- Easter Sunday: 2011-April 24th; 2012-April 8th; 2013-March 31st; 2014-April 20th; 2015-April 5th; 2016-March 27th; 2017- April 16th.
- Liberation Day (celebrating the 1974 revolution): 25th April
- Labour Day: 1st May
- Corpus Christie: 2011-June 23rd; 2012-June 7th; 2013-May 30th; 2014-June 19th; 2015-June 4th; 2016-May 26th; 2017-June 15th.
- Portugal Day: 10th June
- Assumption of the Virgin: 15th August
- Republic Day: 5th October
- All Saints' Day: 1st November
- Restoration (of Independence) Day: 1st December
- Immaculate Conception: 8th December
- Christmas Day: 25th December
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Markets in Loulé and surrounding areas
- Loulé Market: Every Saturday at the end of Rua da Nossa Senhora da Piedade in front of Convento de St. António
- Market in Almancil: 1st and 4th Sunday of each month next to Escola C+S (school)
- Flea market in Almanci: 2nd and 5th Sunday of the month, next to Escola C+S
- Market in Alte: 3rd Thursday of the month in Largo José Cavaco Vieira
- Market in Ameixial: 1st Thursday of the month on the EN2
- Market in Azinhal: last Saturday of the month, next to the Primary School
- Market in Benafim: 1st Saturday of the month, Rua 25 de Abril
- Market in Boliqueime: last Thursday of the month in the Church Square
- Market in Cortelha: 2nd Saturday of the month
- Market in Quarteira: every Wednesday at Fonte Santa, from 9am to 2.30pm