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Christmas in Portugal

I am planning a trip to Portugal to include Christmas and New Year for my wife and I. Dates will be (flexible but approximately) 18th December to 1st January. My dilemma is whether to start in the south (e.g. Tavira) and end in Porto, or the reverse. My preference would be the former, with New Year and a few days in and around Porto (including the Douro), but where would be good for Christmas? Many people claim that everything closes around Christmas Eve, but I have seen some correspondence that claims otherwise. We would not be wanting entertainment and noise, but when we travel we love visiting local cafes, restaurants, bars, etc., to soak up the local ambience. Lisbon, being somewhat central, seems a good bet, but any guidance would be much appreciated.
Thanks, Cliff.

Posted by
921 posts

On Christmas Day most things will be closed. But, other than that, most everything will be open and proceeding with business as usual. There may be an odd restaurant that closes for the month of December, but that is the exception. I don't know how things are in the Algarve but here around Lisbon you should have no problems.