A list of public
holidays in Portugal checked and updated 22nd Decemeber 2019
Holidays are always observed on the day they fall and are not moved to a convenient Monday as in the UK.
Buses and trains usually run to Sunday/Holiday
timetables on public holidays. At Christmas and New Year
timetables may be changed completely.
On Christmas Eve December 24th and New
Year's Eve December 31st Businesses and shops close
early, around 6 or 7pm. On Christmas Eve virtually everything
closes early including bars and restaurants. Some late-evening
buses and trains (especially long-distance services) will not run.
This information is announced in detail about two weeks beforehand.
Major malls and supermarkets are usually open all
day on public and religious holidays, except on Christmas Day and
New Year's Day. when they remain closed.
Some may also close on Good Friday, Easter Sunday and May 1st. You will need to check locally and/or nearer the time.
In tourist areas, smaller shops usually stay open
all day except some will close on Good Friday and / or Easter
On Christmas Day and New Year's Day shops are closed. Many small shops in the villages and of course all post offices and banks observe the holidays strictly.
Local school holiday breaks 2019 / 2020
Summer bus timetables (where different) apply from
1st July until (generally) the second weekend of September
School in the Algarve resumes on 6th January.
Schools have a few days off around Carnaval (see below), then two weeks at Easter.
School year ends not later than 30th June, but in some areas summer bus times will apply from the 13th of June.
Cross border travel may be affected as may local travel in Spain. Do check before making firm
plans. In particular, some of the cross border buses (coaches)
between Seville, the Algarve region and Lisbon do NOT operate on
December 25th and January 1st. They do operate on most other major
For a list of all the timetables on the site,
For an alphabetical list of places in the Algarve, click here
For some important general notes about buses in the Algarve, click here
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